Fort Weyr - Trader and Crafter's Square
The massive rock face that makes up the outer walls of Fort Weyr looms, ever present even here where a large space has been cleared among the trees. A well tended and worn path threads its way from the Entrance Square, broad and wide enough for even the largest and most cumbersome of Trader's wagons. It continues on some distance, running parallel to the outer walls of the Weyr until veering subtly towards the forests again where it will expand again into a circular clearing. The ground is hard packed and scarcely any grass grows, save for along the edges a few patches here and there where folk are known to sit and relax rather than tread. In the center of this clearing is a stone well, ringed by a swath of wild grasses but accessible to all.

Branching in multiple directions are more paths, another large and broad one leading to a secondary clearing that is clearly designed for the Traders benefit, offering several choice locations, most of them sheltered by trees, for their wagons to be set up and ample room for their beasts to be properly penned. Firepits, large and small, are arranged and set at safe distances.

Another path, still wide but meant more for small wagon or foot travel, leads to a third clearing which holds several wooden stalls, all simple of build but well cared for. They are set up in a horseshoe loop, allowing most visitors to glimpse each of the Craft-related signs that mark each one. During the warmer months, this half is meant to be a Crafter's market and the stalls are often manned by posted Journeymen and any Apprentices under their wings.

Other paths lead away from all these clearings and both the Trader square and Crafter square. Some wind their way towards Fort's Forests, while others disappear up towards the Mountain Pass or loop back around to return either to the Entrance Square or towards the tunnels leading back into the Weyr itself.

The sun it setting at the end of a Fortian summer day, though there's still enough warmth around for it to be very pleasant beneath the colours of the fading sunset sky. Activity in the square is slowing, though there's still the clang of hammer on metal from the smithy, the lowing of cattle penned up for sale, the general sounds of business winding down for the day as the lights are switched on to add more light. Near the Beastcraft's area, there's a Thys - and she's juggling an armful of… something? It's dark, wriggly, and squeaking as she ends a conversation with a Beastcrafter, turning around to make a beeline for one of the trader stalls that's selling large woven baskets. That wiggling armful clearly needs to be set down somewhere!

Summer time, and the living is easy…well more or less anyway. C'rus has been spending his days riding out to some of the more remote cotholds to offer medical care that normally can't be found. A pleasant change certainly from the infirmary where he normally spends his days. This evening he finds himself wandering around the traders square just looking to see what products have made their way into Fort. The seasonal change always brings something new in. It's then that he notices Thys and her squeaking bundle. He begins to make his way toward her and waves his hand, "Hey Thys." he says trying to get a closer look at what she carries.

Alister isn't actually always everywhere: it just seems like that sometimes. Today has him walking a beat, and tonight, specifically, his evening route is an ambling course through the quieting bustle of active trade. A brief conversation between the guard and a seller breaks up, and he resumes his walking — only to be distracted, like C'rus, by Thys and her bundle. "That a recipe for more trouble, ma'am?" he casts out as he comes near, saluting both riders before settling back on his heels, eyebrows up but a grin threatening to spread.

A wriggling armful of puppies is definitely a recipe for trouble, especially as Thys struggles to return Alister's salute after she winks and nods at C'rus. She's multitasking, holds up a finger for the boys to wait a moment, finishes haggling, and sets the four pups down in the just-bought basket before handing over payment. "Cy. Alister. Tell me what you know about looking after puppies? We found were out over the desert in Igen and Rhenesath spotted them, and we couldn't leave them there, of course, so…" She shrugs. The rest is obvious, isn't it?

C'rus also returns Alisters salute and returns his attention to Thys and her bundle of joy. That's alot of joy! Four puppies….thats a whole lot of cute, and yes a whole lot of trouble. C'rus can only shake his head, "I'm afraid that I know next to nothing about puppies. We weren't allowed to have pets growing up." No firelizards, puppies, or felines for him. He turns his attention to Alister who hopefully has more relevant information on the care and feeding of little puppies.

"They don't like fish, either," is Alister's super helpful contribution to this conversation. Once they're all safely deposited in the basket, he reaches out to let them … lick his fingers? to keep them from climbing out? possibly some of both? Definitely some of both is what ends up happening, regardless of whether or not that was his original intention. "Uh. Depends on if they're old enough to be weaned or not, I guess? They'll piddle everywhere."

"Well then, C'rus, you will be taking one of these - once they're weaned," which answers Alister's question. Thys, seeing that the guard is occupying one of the little ones, scoops up another to hand it to C'rus. Its little squinty eyes are just open, and it's very wriggly. "The Beastcrafter over there said they still need their mum, but… well, the poor thing was dead. She was horribly skinny. And there were two dead puppies, too, though these ones should be fine; with a bit of milk, they should get fatter. So I was told, anyway…" She doesn't look so sure as she reaches into the basket, copying Alister in letting one nuzzle at her fingers. "Piddling I can handle," she says with a short laugh. "I kept my goats in my weyr at one point."

All of a sudden Cy has a puppy! He holds it gently, not wanting to harm it, but not really having any idea what to do with it otherwise, "Piddling?" he asks curiously. The puppy is undeniably cute, and there is even a sad story to go along with it. But still a puppy is a huge responsibility, "What do I do with it?" he asks.

"Pissing," Alister clarifies with an apologetic crimp to his mouth and crinkle around the eyes, "At least 'til you train them not to, but that's a whole 'nother story." He gestures with his free hand, indicating that Cy should tuck the puppy closer to himself, then frowns down as one of the half-blind squirmmonsters tries to nurse off his fingers. "They're going to keep you busy."

Perhaps if he's lucky, C'rus will get a firsthand demonstration of piddling? Thys shifts the weight of the basket to rest the handle over the crook over her arm, which jostles the three little ones inside. "Well, Cy, you can just cuddle it and hold it close for the moment, make it feel safe. Then when it's weaned, trained not to pee inside, like Alister just said, you can keep it properly. If you want to, of course - I won't force one on you if you're not keen? Perhaps you'd like one too, Alister? They might grow to be good guard dogs? The bitch was quite a big dog, but no breed I've ever seen; probably just a mutt."

C'rus ahhhs softly, "I spend most of my day dealing with other people bodily fluids." It is difficult to gross out a healer, though for the moment the pup seems to be keeping those fluids in…for the moment. He follows the directions and moves the puppy closer to his body and cuddles it. There is just something about the puppy that sort of forces snuggles upon a person, and C'rus is not exactly a cuddly or hugging sort of person. He looks up from the puppy and back to the other two individuals standing nearby, "I think I could keep it. I'll talk to Kera to see what she thinks, but I don't really see her saying no…we already have a small army of lizards between us."

Alister considers — well, considers the puppies, really, in the wake of the goldrider's offer, while she and C'rus converse. He even goes so far as to extract his fingers from little seeking mouths to pull up a paw for examination. Because puppy paws are precious. (And these ones are gonna be big 'uns, if their paws are any indication.) "Yeah," he finally agrees, "could do. Most of the best guard dogs are the mutts, anyway, even if the breeders won't tell you that. Could maybe find homes for the rest, if you don't?"

"Consider it training for when you two have a baby to look after." Thys beams at C'rus, while stroking her hand gently over the backs of two basket-wrigglers. "I'm sure Ralik will like puppies, so we'll keep one, two, maybe? I'll have to see when he's going to move back from the Hall, since I can't be caring for dogs as well as everything else…" She's pleased as punch that Alister will take one, and stands there grinning at both men. "So, since you're both going to take one home… why don't you choose the one you'd like? Or would you rather wait to see what their personalities will be like? I don't mind."

C'rus isn't ready to let go of the puppy just yet so he hangs onto it, keeping it close and cuddly, "I do suppose any extra training in that area would be beneficial. Though I'm sure that Kera will have things down before I do." C'rus is after all certan of Kera's parenting abilities or he wouldn't have weyrmated her in the first place, "This one will do." he says, "Never really put alot of thought into the animals in my life. They just sort of happened. Don't see why this would be any different." All his pets up to this point had been gifts, so it makes sense to continue that tradition.

"Looks like there's one answer for you," Alister's laughing just a little, amiably amused at how decisively C'rus has taken to his particular puppy. "I'll put my name on this one," he reaches in and tugs on the ear of one of the puppies, the one whose paw he was playing with earlier, "but check in with you while they grow. Might decide we want to switch." Or might not, you never know. He might get attached.

"Perhaps I could tie a little ribbon around their necks to identify the pair of them? Though of course, you're welcome to change your mind, and you can come see them whenever you like. My weyr's always open… well, um, unless there's a, uh, sock on the door." Thys blushes, biting her lip as she looks down into the puppy-basket to try and hide her embarrassment. "Did you see this one's little marking?" She picks up one of the unclaimed pups, gently holding him - her? - belly-up, where there's a mottled white marking in the rough shape of a heart. "I'm sort of hoping this one's a bitch, so I can call her Heart."

C'rus considers her thought for a moment and nods his head, "I think that would be fine. Ribbons should work well enough." He can only smile and shake his head slightly when Thys mentions the sock, "I'll uhhh…keep that in mind." Privacy is a very good thing sometimes, "Even if she isn't you could probably name the pup that. The pup probably wouldn't mind one way or the other. Unless they get partiuclar about names." He wouldn't think that would be the case. He glances over to Alister and nods, "Don't think I'll be switching, but you are certanly welcome too."

"They mostly come to whatever you call them," Alister advises, reaching out to ruffle the soft heart-patterned belly-fur up on offer, "so I don't think it'd mind being named Heart regardless." He sticks his free hand in his pocket and moves it around like he's considering the contents thereof, then sighs and withdraws the hand again, empty. Nothing of use, apparently. "Could probably find someone here selling collars or ribbons or something?"

"I suppose Heart could be a good name for a boy, too," Thys says thoughtfully, settling the puppy back down once Alister's stroked its belly. "It implies courage and love, so I guess you're right, it'd work either way. Heart. My puppy." Now she's beaming brightly, caressing the little one's back with gentle fingers. "I think there's a stall a little down the way that sells trimmings and things. We could try there?" She indicates the direction she means, then waits for the boys to go first. "I'll have a small menagerie soon enough. Puppies, Butter and Scotch, Shards… I don't suppose I could include Rhenesath, but she's another responsibility at the end of the day. Perhaps I'm a magnet for adorable little things?"

"That is quite a group. We have Aegnor, Gonzo, Minimur, Polgara…the two dragons. Definitely a small weyr within a weyr." C'rus says as he proceeds along the indicated route with puppy in arm, "Works for me…" he says. The puppy for it's part seems to have fallen asleep in his arms, which is probably a good sign that the pair will work well enough together, at least in the long run.

"I've just got Idiocy," Alister shares as they move along, taking point out of habit more than actual intent. Not that they have far to go, though. He steps aside once they've arrived at the stall, to let Thys get a closer look at the wares. "He's, uh, brown." He's a firelizard, which would be a thing to say, but Alister neglects to mention that tidbit. "Could be though, ma'am. You certainly seem to be a magnet for adorable things in general." Is that a sneaky flirt that he knows won't find any ground? Probably.

"Faranth, Cy, you've got how many firelizards? Or is that between you and Kera? Shards is plenty for me, and he prefers Ralik anyway." Thys begins sorting through the stall's odd-ends ribbon basket, looking for scraps long enough for what they need. "A magent for adorable things, for trouble, for murders and thefts and button-stealing and fires, too, it would seem. You can call me Thys, Alister, if you'd prefer; ma'am is only really good for formal occasions, and this is absolutely the opposite." Puppies make everything informal, right? "Now. Who wants this rust-coloured ribbon, and who wants the striped one?"

C'rus nods his head as he listens to Alister explain his Idiocy. It doesn't take him too terribly long to make out that Idiocy is a firelizard, though he just can't help himself from replying, "Yeah. I've got idiocy too. Comes out sometimes…can't seem to help it." Though instead of chuckling he deadpans it as much as he can, such is Cy humor…such as it is. "I just have two the bronze and blue, but kera has a brown and a gold. So thats four of them between us. We have our own faire pretty much." At least it seems that way sometimes, "Thats not counting the crazy one that lives in Kera's cottage that belonged to the former owner of the place." So. Many. Lizards. "I can do the rust one."

"Yes ma'am," Alister says, and the face he's pulling is too innocent not to be cheeky; it dissolves into a grin after a moment, though, and he relents with, "guess that leaves me with the stripes, Thys." He reaches out to tug on his probably-puppy's ear again, distracting it from attempting to chew on one of more-than-likely-Heart's. Which almost, almost lets him keep a straight face in the wake of Cy's deadpanning. Almost. (Not really). He attempts to turn the laugh into a cough, but it's clear what it actually was to begin with. "Now, the real question is: will Thys here," oh, that's directed at C'rus, "turn her talents to making dog-trinkets, once they're big enough to not just outgrow a collar every few weeks."

Thys fixes C'rus with an amused look, one brow arched high on her forehead, beneath her shaggy cropped hair. "Really, Cy." She delivers that straight enough, then can't help but smirk as she shakes her head and looks away. "So, one rust, one striped…" The marks are handed over, and she hands a ribbon each to C'rus and Alister. "Trinkets, for their collars? Do you think that could be a thing?" Because it's something that seems to pique her interest, if her thoughtful expression's anything to go by. "I mean, my goats wear collars with bells, so… canines could totally wear something similar, right?"

Never let it be said that C'rus doesn't have a sense of humor buried deep deep down in there somewhere. He doens't crack a smile, but offers a slight shrug of his shoulders, "It's true." Though he leaves it at that. When Alister brings up his idea for dog jewlry he can only assume that is some kind of joke as well so he smiles, but Thys seems to be taking it seriously enough, "I wouldn't imagine that people would spend too much money on canine's right?" he says, "Though certainly some little things might work." he reaches over and places his pup-to-be into the basket again and smiles, "This has been an interesting evening, but I'm afraid I've got to get going. Work will come early tomorrow and I'm sure that Kera is waiting. I'll have alot to tell her." He offers the pair of them smiles, "Good evening to the both of you." he says before he begins to wander back toward the southern bowl.

"Clear skies," Alister offers C'rus in parting, then returns his attention to Thys and the puppies. "Like that," he agrees, "or fancy collars — might not have much of a working-dog market, but maybe riders, the occasional Lord or Lady with a little lapdog" Not that these puppies will be anywhere near little once they're grown. "Maybe offer 'em custom, so you don't end up with a bunch of stuff that won't ever sell, but" he shrugs, grin growing somewhat sheepish. "Was just a thought."

"Have a good evening, Cy - see you tomorrow." Because undoubtedly she will. Thys shifts the weight of the basket again, adjusting it with the extra puppy-weight to rest mid-forearm, rather than on her elbow. "It's a good thought, Alister, I like it. And Heart will absolutely have one. Perhaps your puppy would wear one, too? If it's not too unguardly, of course." She winks, then suggests with a simple gesture that they start walking along the stalls. "Have you had any experience in training a canine before? I have absolutely none, so I'll be relying on the Beastcrafters… though maybe the Weyrsecond will know a trick or two."

A gentleman would offer to carry the basket of puppies for the junior weyrwoman, but this gentleman guard doesn't: instead he keeps his hands clear as he falls into step with her, and settles back into an easy patrolman's amble as he acts as both company and escort. "I'm sure you could come up with a design suitable," he says with a laugh, "and the pup'd be the envy of the all the barracks. Maybe something with a guards' badge? It could start a trend." Like little uniforms for the guards' dogs, too. "I don't really have any direct experience," he admits, "but I've been around it? Not as many of the fishermen keep 'em, but before I transferred up here some of the foresters were starting to."

Thys probably wouldn't let him carry the basket, even if he did offer, because girl power! Or something like that. "I have something in mind," she says with a grin, looking side-on at Alister. "Which Hold is it that you're from? I'm sure you told me before, but I can't remember, other than it having something to do with fish?" One of the puppies yawns noisily, and sits up to rest its chin on the edge of the basket.

"Breakwater," Alister says easily, and with some affection, "and that's really about all there is to know about it: it's primarily, uh, a fish-oriented sort of place. You're either fishing, or you're doing something with the fish once they've gotten fished — the forestry's a newer thing, but it's a little bit," he tips one hand from side to side and makes an uncertain face. "There's not much else to do, there. Guarding was about the only thing else, but I liked it."

"Ah, Breakwater. Yes, I remember now." Thys nods, pausing for a moment to look over a stall selling jewellery - rival products! Gasp! "I'm from Crom, from a family of miners. There are other industries in Crom, of course, but mining is my family thing, and they were awfully disappointed when it turned out I just couldn't handle being in the mines. Claustrophobia." She shrugs, nonchalant. "There's an aunt of mine who's a Smith, and I ended up working with her instead, apprenticed to her. Guarding, though, that sounds like it could be interesting, and I have to say that Fort has a sterling force." She should know, she's called them into action often enough. "Do you know Russall?"

Alister is attentive as he listens, and will probably even remember the details later; he has an ear for them, even if it means he often ends up with a head full of useless factiods and tidbits. (He'd be a great gossip, were he more inclined to it.) "Smithing's still sort of — mining adjacent," he says after some consideration. "Since most of what you'd use for it has to get mined first, right?" It isn't quite the family trade, but it's close, is what he's saying. "Oh," is very — neutral. "Russall. Yes." Very carefully neutral.

"Mining adjacent, yes, that's what made it more acceptable to my parents," Thys explains. Then she laughs at the way in which Alister admits knowing his fellow guard. "Yes. Oh." His tone is mimicked, though Thys smiles as she says it. "He's a friend. Good intentions, bright, even, but he just cannot be stirred to promotion, can he? What about you, though? Do you have ambitions to rise beyond Sergeant?" Her smile grows, though it's softened by a touch of embarrassment. "There's always something sort of… appealing about guards and their ranks. I'm not sure why."

"He's a swell enough guy," Alister says once he knows what kind of footing they're on, "but that's a fairly keen assessment of him. It's not even that he's that bad, when he puts his mind to the work, he just. Doesn't." Which clearly rubs upwardly-mobile Alister the wrong way. "I'd like to, ma'am," and that one's not even cheek so much as it is habit: it's a companionable conversation, sure, but there's clearly been a bit of a shift back toward the trappings of Duty. "I got promoted to it just after my transfer here, though, so I'm not looking to step on anyone's toes or climb over anyone to get there." He seems to remember that he's supposed to be relaxing with her — either that or he just can't help himself — and grins as he glances sideways and adds, "I've been told it's the uniform."

As Thys turns her head to look Alister up and down, her hair falls down over her eyes and she has to puff it out of the way. "It could be the uniform… it could be the knot itself, though. Perhaps it's just ambition. I know that's what I like about Ralik. You've met him, I think? It's so hard to keep track of who knows who when I can barely keep straight who I know and don't." She gives Alister an apologetic little smile, and a gentle shrug of one shoulder. "Rhenesath is keen for me to pursue my journeyman's knot. Ambition - it's all about ambition. The time to do so, however, eludes me."

Alister strikes just a little bit of a pose as Thys looks him up and down, then ruins it entirely by letting out a laugh at her answer. "Ambition's pretty attractive too, I guess," he says like he's never considered that as part of the equation before, tone just this side of wondering. He'll have to think about that, apparently. "I've met Ralik, while I was still on light duty. I like him — haven't had much chance to get to know him, though." He's quiet for a few more steps, then laughs again. "You could make a line of canine accessories for your journeyman's project," he says, and it's clear he doesn't know how the craft's promotion process works at all. "Or see if they'd let it be a cumulative affair. Sure, you only produce a piece every few months, but pshew," he smacks a hand against his thigh while making the sound, "the quality on 'em. Something like that?"

"He's posted to the Hall still, trying to get his promotion… it's better for his career if he's there, which is why he doesn't spend too much time here anymore." And it would seem Thys isn't too bothered by that fact, as she shrugs it off. "You know, I was in the midst of my journeyman's project when I was handed a white knot. I might've finished it by now if Rhenesath hadn't chosen me - not that I'd trade her for anything, of course. But my project was to make a necklace inspired by each of the Holds, Halls and Weyrs our touring exhibition stopped at. Master Tashryn was disappointed that we had to cut it short, but this was clearly what I was meant to be doing, rather than Smithing." Toting puppies about in a basket totally trumps forge-time!

There's a bit of an aha! moment as Thys explains why Alister hasn't seen Ralik around as much, but his focus is on her truncated career, rather than the glasscrafter's. His eyes go appreciative-wide for the actual scope of her project, then narrow contemplatively. "Rhenesath's a fine reason for a career change," he agrees, then fesses up to what he's just thought of: "But you say she'd rather you complete your journeymanship, right? Maybe," considering, consiiiiidering, "maybe design something inspired by wherever they send junior-est goldriders for diplomacy, instead of where your exhibition would have gone to?"

Thys smiles wryly at Alister, nodding. "Oh, yes - that's actually something I've been doing. I've got a sketchbook at home, full of designs… it's just finding the time to work on them that's the problem. Two are underway, I've sourced materials and gems for three more, and they're all just… sitting there. Gathering dust. I suppose that's what makes your craft so much easier to follow; it's much more immediate than Smithing is. I imagine if I'd been a guard before I was a rider, I could quite happily maintain my craft alongside my other duties."

Alister's laugh is a little bit sheepish this time, and it's accompanied with an, "Oh," of understanding. Clearly she's on top of this. "Well, ma'am, if there's ever anything I can do to help, you just let me know," still has traces of that laughter in it, although the offer's sincere. "I'd say you could always consider a change of careers again, but somehow I think guardriding and goldriding would be even less compatible than goldriding and Smithing have ended up being."

Alister's laugh makes Thys grin, and she reaches out to affectionately pat his upper arm at his offer of help. "That's very kind of you, thank you. There's always something that pops up unexpectedly and needs an extra hand, so don't be surprised if I do call on you sometime… perhaps to play wetnurse to four hungry puppies sometime?" Four hungry puppies who are currently sleeping quite contently in their basket!

It's almost mocking, the sincerity with which Alister puts his palm against his chest and looks over at Thys while he says, "I'd guard them like they were visiting weyr leadership. Or one of you goldriders." Considering how often Inri pulls him as part of her personal detail, that's pretty darn guarded. It isn't mocking, though, and the twinkle in his eyes as he says, "Or at least that's what I'd tell my superiors I was doing, guarding something at a weyrwoman's behest."

"And you wouldn't be lying," Thys laughs, clearly amused by the response. "It could possibly be your most important assignment yet. Or your most precious assignment." She looks down at said future job - for both of them, really - and sighs contentedly. "Don't they just look so peaceful? Oh - actually, Alister, I may need to foist them off on you sooner, rather than later. Ah… when it next rains, perhaps. Kouzevelth is going to fly soon, obviously I have to go, and I don't want to risk taking them between again… if I leave them in my Weyr, do you think you could pop in on them? If you're, ah, not… busy. With it being a… flight, and all…" Her cheeks colour, her teeth sink into her lip, and she looks embarrassed once more.

"And I wouldn't be lying," Alister agrees, clearly pleased that Thys has caught on. He looks down at the sleeping puppies as well, and grins over at them. "Definitely the most adorable detail I've ever been on, that's for sure." Her comment about the rain gets a puzzled look, then one of dawning comprehension, and another laugh. "I'll check on 'em, yeah, sure," he assures, "on my way to and from, alright? I'm supposed to be guarding Inri during, but that has an — inevitable conclusion." One that doesn't actually include him. "They'll be okay, while you're gone. I'll see to it."

"I'm sure that between you and D'ani, Inri will be well protected." Thys smiles softly, pausing to gently set the basket down so she can stretch her arm. "I'm hoping Dremkoth might win, actually. History tells me that's an unlikely bet, but dear Faranth, they need to get it on, don't they?" She rolls her eyes, smirking, blushing. "Do you have money on anyone?"

Alister scrubs the back of his neck with his hand, slanting a glance over at Thys as he says, "I'm pretty sure I'd have it taken out of my hide if I speculated on Inri's sex life," then stops to unpack that a little. "Not by her — not just by her — you remember she said we grew up, well, I grew up following after her?" He waits for affirmation, and drops his hand back down to his side. "More like, I grew up pretty much assured she was going to end up my sister. I'd get it from both sides, now." He probably has money on someone though. He's just not telling who.

"Aha, right, yes, of course - yes, I remember that now." Thys's cheeks colour a little deeper, and she stands with her hands on her hips for a moment, looking down at the puppies. "I'm not normally interested in other people's lovelives," she says softly, embarrassed once more. "Each to their own, of course, and I'd never want to meddle, only… there are occasionally people who fate would seem to want together, they're just unable to connect the dots and make it happen. You know?" She's babbling, though trying to make it sound like she isn't. "I hope I didn't offend you in any way by saying that."

"Hey," and this time it's Alister's turn to reach out a hand for a reassuring shoulder-pat, "no, it's fine. I'd be happy to speculate about anyone else's love life," well okay, no, he wouldn't, but that's not the point. "I'm just pretty sure I'd get skinned alive speculating about hers. From what I've heard," and seen, probably, "you're probably not wrong, though. I'd like to see her happy."

"I'm quite confident that she's happy, but I do think she could be happier." The shoulder-pat earns Alister a warm smile, then Thys reaches down to gently scoop the basket up again, looping the handle over her arm. "I ought to go hunt down some milk for these little ones, for when they wake up." Not that they look like they'll do that anytime soon, as peaceful and sleep-squirmy as they currently are. "It's perhaps a good thing I've got my own personal supply of goat milk. The Beastcrafter said that's what's best for them, and Butter and Scotch are nothing if not generous! Would you like to accompany me back, or do you have other business to attend to here?"

"That should save you a few marks," Alister says, although whatever his feelings on goats, they're apparently for another time. (At least puppies don't need fish, right?) "I've got a few more candlemarks left in my shift," he admits, "but I can walk with you while you shop. Wouldn't do to let you out of my sight and then have disaster strike, right?" It's possible he just enjoys her company, too. "Just means that I'll be staying once you go, though."

Thys looks at the stalls surrounding them, nose wrinkled. "Unfortunately there's nothing I came to buy; I only came by because I'd heard there was a canine specialist here, while we don't have one in the Weyr… I don't think." She gives a soft shrug of her shoulders as she looks back to Alister. "So I'll be heading back now, I think. Ralik's coming later tonight, though. Perhaps we'll see you for drinks in the Gemstone?"

"In that case, try not to attract too much trouble on your way back," Alister says as he grins, and reaches town to (gently, gently) tug at the ear of his favored puppy. "And say hello to Ralik for me, if I don't make it. I'll try, though." He steps away from her side, finally, and lifts a hand in farewell salute to see her on her way. (And once he's sure she hasn't managed to attract any trouble, at least as far as he can get away with still keeping an eye on her, he turns back to his rounds).

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