Living Caverns
This cavern, having been created by bubbles in the volcanic flow of this extinct volcano, has a breathtaking ceiling — a vast dome that arches high above the heads of the weyrfolk that scurry around beneath it. A hollow echo can be heard from loud enough noises, and the chatterings of various firelizards are consequently multiplied into a chaotic babble. All in all, the living cavern is a loud place.
Tables are scattered around the room, apparently in no particular order. Over to one side near the kitchens, two medium sized serving tables are constantly spread with snacks, klah, and other goodies. The tables look worn, yet perfectly fitted to the atmosphere of the caverns. In the 'corners' of the cavern, smaller two and four place tables are set up for more private talks or just a less chaotic atmosphere in which to eat.

Such a cacophony of noise in the Living Caverns on any given day. Firelizards darting and calling far above as they wing about the ceiling in play, clanks and thumps of plate ware against wooden surfaces and the dull roar of muted conversation. The bustle of the Living Caverns is something a person grows quickly used to. It’s that or be driven entirely insane. For her part, Gabriela has chosen to tune it out as background noise as she works. The table before her is dotted with neat stacks of paper which she often digs through as she makes notes on a sheet pinned before her by an elbow.

Add some unhatched firelizard eggs and there's bound to be more chaos soon enough. Today a few more weyrbrats hover expectantly by the basket but Faranth only knows if they'll be lucky or have days left to wait. Th'ero has been scarce of late but there is a lot on the Weyrleader's mind these days. Which may explain why he sits at Gabriela's table, his focus elsewhere, until he realizes… the table is not empty. At least he hasn't knocked over her paperwork? Hopefully she doesn't mind a sudden guest.

Another yet wanders into the spacious room, though like the flow of a school of fish, he'd go largely unnoticed for the others surrounding him. Despite social invisibility for the nonce, he's fairing far better then he did the last day or so. Properly rested, properly groomed, a brown firelizard semi-permanently adoring his shoulder, munching on a small piece of sausage. He breaks away from the human flow, and finds himself a seat, one without rhyme or reason, simply because it's one available. Beyrl lays open the book, one about poems, prose written in rhythm about Fort's way of life, a usual study for the harper apprentice. Without much though, for a routine they've made, he picks up a sausage, and parts it in two, to share with his friend, who gives a delighted squeek and snags it from hand.

Unhatched firelizard eggs? Gabriela hasn’t even noticed the brats and the basket. Her notes must be finished by this evening and she is scribbling away. Darn her neat and readable penmanship! She has been elected to make notes when Zhirayr either doesn’t care to or is too busy. Which it is today is anyone’s guess. The scrape of a chair has her finishing a sentence and glancing upward. A once quiet table is quickly becoming crowded it would seem. “Hello there,” she greets the Weyrleader with a slight smile. Rescuing a stack of papers before he can manage to knock them on the floor. Beyrl gets a curious glance but no greeting. She doesn’t know you yet. Friend or foe?

The brats and the basket are just fine being ignored! Honestly. Though there is sudden excitement when some of the eggs begin wobbling though only one seems really interested in the whole Hatching bit. Which means there is a bit of arguing among the weyrbrats as there are far too many of them and too few eggs. Th'ero is oblivious to the conflict and even if he did spot them he'd leave it to fate to mete out how it works. The Weyrleader has enough to deal with and now conversation is being added to that list. He clears his throat when Gabriela greets him, looking a touch sheepish. "… sorry. I didn't see you there." Or her stacks of work. "How have you been?" Seems only polite to ask after her health, right?

After a poem (or two or three), Beyrl discovers the cache of sausage has gone missing, and King along with it. There lay the lizard, upon the plate of food, looking rather content to have stolen the meal prepared for two. A scritch he gets, then off the plate he slides as Beyrl goes for seconds (and not last, he's certain), to fill the bottomless pit that he's so bonded to. Wending his way through, in no particular fashion, he gives nods to those he's met, following gentleman traditon. Th'ero has one offered, a silent one at that, for being preoccupied by the poem songs (for tune he puts to them) still weaving through his mind. A nod extended to Gabriela, if only for close proximity to he who was met before.

Gabriela collects her papers and organizes them into crisscrossing stacks for easy separation later. The goal is to finish her notes in a bit. Rocking egg and squealing weyrbrats a possible foreshadowing of doom to that hope. All it would take is one or two to back up and bump the table for the papers to go flying. Gabby doesn’t register the danger when she sets them on the edge like that. “It’s alright. No harm done.” Tilting her head she eyes The’ro close and frowns. “From the look of you, I’m doing a sight better than you at the moment.” And only a moment ago she’d been focused on her own woes. “Something eatin’ at you?” Briefly she considers it might be the blown smithy. Everyone in the Weyr heard that go up! Out of the corner of her eye she’d watched the ‘lizard make off with Beyrl’s meal. So as the Harper resigns himself to retrieving more she gives him an amused smile. Smiles are good she just might like you yet! Suspicious creature that she is.

Doom is right. Only it may not be in the form of Weyrbrats. As the egg continues to wobble and predictably crack, the squabbling among the children intensifies. Seems there's arguments that so-and-so had marked that egg as there's while others counter that the eggs can't be claimed and that if it's such-and-such colour, it should be THEIRS anyways… and so on and so forth. Headache inducing to be sure. Th'ero grimaces at Gabriela's keen observation. "Guess it's obvious?" he mutters and then he shakes his head. "Plenty is eating at me but it's difficult to… speak of." Confidential stuff. Such is the curse of a Weyrleader. He cannot openly speak of what plagues him, less his tongue say something that shouldn't be said. "So you've settled in well? Despite the uh… hiccups?" He means that whole debacle with Ha'ze's trickery. As Beyrl approaches, he'll be greeted in return with a polite nod of his head. "Good day to you, Apprentice. I see you've made a new friend?"

All that shrieking is bound to draw attention. Gabriela glances over her shoulder to glare at the noise makers. Not that a glare is going to stop the action at this point. They are really getting into it over that egg. “You’d think they’ve never seen a firelizard egg in life.” From the fluttering and humming going above their heads she doubts a one of them doesn’t already have the beginnings of a fair already. With a roll of her eyes over the silliness she refocuses on Th’ero. “You kind of do look like you’re either about to kill us all or puke. I haven’t decided which. Possibly both.” A quick sip of her juice is had before she nods her head. “I’m getting settled now. Hiccup beside the point. That was just me being lonely and him being an ass.” She chuckles, “Which I’ve since learned is just how he is..” Trailing off on her summation of Ha’ze she glances toward Beyrl as Th’ero addresses him. Curiosity sparking in her expression.

Beyrl pauses briefly as a response he gets, and he replies in kind. "A well and wonderful afternoon as well to you weyrleader, though.." as he glances between the two "the pleasure of the morn appears to be etched with a lining of disquiet." he makes as observation. To the other, the unknown, one of the fairer sex, he gives a kind smile, and a dip of his head. "A sight to never cease, a ladies smile to be seen, I greet thee, for whatever pleasure to be had, in company such as yours, I'm sure I shall find the greater." Again now, to The'ero, he addresses, to finish the conversation a question had started. "A firelizard I have Impressed, though it's affects the last few days surprising. I'd give it up for none however, the experience being most delightful."

"Disquiet is well put," Th'ero grumbles under his breath and snorts for Gabriela's assumption. It does bring a faint smile though so maybe the Weyrleader isn't a total loss cause? "Unless I am about to get really drunk, there's no risk of me being ill. As for killing all of you, I'd never dream of such a thing. I won't lie though, I am… upset at a few members." On being his own sister who is beyond his reach rank-wise to do much about. Awkward situation that is, as Gabriela put it earlier, eating at him. Toss in everything else and yes, he's on edge but still holding it together. To Beyrl, he chuckles dryly. "They're useful if you train them well, Beyrl. Does he have a name?" As for the weyrbrats causing all that fuss… Th'ero gives them a cursory glance and then shrugs his shoulders to Gabriela. "Could be none of them have if they're young enough. First time is always exciting to a child…"
Finally, the egg hatches and the weyrbrats are all but at each others throats. So much so that few even realize that the occupant is freed and by the time they do and back off it's already too late. No hatchling is going to stick around among such chaos and negativity! So off it scurries, awkward and ungainly in it's infancy and flapping wings still too damp for precise flight. Sorry kiddos! No firelizard for you.

Gabriela glances at The’ro with a quirked eyebrow. Is this guy for real? Fresh off the wagon so to speak she is as yet unused to Beyrl’s type. She can’t say she is unused to Harpers at all for many are met on the roads and still others had traveled with the caravan. Just not quite of Beyrl’s ilk. “Well met kind sir. The pleasure is mine I assure you to have met such an interesting person.” Yeah that’ll have to do. Gabby is more a rough cut gem to Beyrl’s polished stones. “You like it eh?” Slipping right back into her usual blunt manner she puts the question to Beyrl. She herself has never sought out a pet of her own. “When I was a girl I played with Jhithana’s sometimes and they were a hoot.” Gabriela giggles lightly at Th’ero and waggles a brow teasingly, “Well drink is always obtainable Sir. If you’re lookin’ to escape from your woes.” Just not in her bed m’kay? We’ve had enough issues with that already. “Seriously though I hope whatever it is resolves itself soon enough. I’d hate to see you run through the bowl screaming like a mad man or something. Not that it would be the first time mind you, just the first time in a Bowl directly.” The plight of the tiny firelizard draws a soft aww from her as she shifts a foot out of the way. “Run little guy run,” she encourages with a chuckle. “I wouldn’t want to be in the middle of that brawl either!”

"Then a teacher in the ways of the firelizard is what I shall seek. As for a name, King suited him closely, so King did I chose." is the reply to the leader. The commotion of the young, and bickering included, catches his ears for a moment or so. Blue jewel on wing has his eye set, curiosity now, by first Impression wet. Though things more interesting still grabs again at his attention. To Gabriela he looks, with a smile still worn, a natural sort, no false intentions hide behind that one. "You do me a pleasure quite undeserved. I hope expectations shall I attain for a lady of such generous words. As for a lizard of unceasing company, I'd gladly again that path to chose, though tiring may his presence be," and as if on cue, a screech from King, "happiness I have gained all the more."

Th'ero catches that quirked brow from Gabriela and the Weyrleader only shrugs and nods his head curtly. Yep, he's for real! Meet the very eloquent Harper Apprentice! Her attempt to match him for words though has him struggling not to actually smile. That'd totally ruin his image right now. "I'll drink late. I'm afraid my sobriety is required at least until nightfall," Lucky him and Gabriela has not a single worry about finding him in her bed. He is not Ha'ze (or a typical bronzerider) and only chases his weyrmate. Exceptions are, of course, flights. "There's been a case of someone running through the bowls screaming?" he drawls curiously only to have his attention drawn away first by Beyrl. "King? Interesting name. Old… archaic even. Earth term, isn't it?" Second distraction? That firelizard hatchling and the disappointed children. The Weyrleader leans back as if to ward off the blue. Not it! "Don't need another." he mutters.
The little blue does run! Kind of. He slows as he ducks under one table, taking a moment to flap his wings clear of egg before he slinks forwards again. Encouragement is… better than squabbling and so off he goes! No master of flight is he yet and his leap will take him as far as the table ledge, which he claws and scrabbles at, only to reach for the nearest thing — Gabriela's paperwork!

“I have never had unceasing company of any sort. Everyone tends to come and go in the flow of life,” Gabriella remarks a little distractedly. She looks up to smile apologetically at Beyrl. It’s just the scrabbling baby blue has won her attention in this moment. With his valiant attempt to escape the fighting Weyrbrats. The whole scene unfolding is amusing and she leans over the edge of the table to continue watching the scene unfold. She has no mind of impressing the thing. In truth she isn’t positive how one goes about it. People just show up with them and it never crossed her mind to ask why. “King is a nice strong name.” Losing track of the little blue beneath a table she sits upright once more and glances at Th’ero. Eloquent is something she will likely /never/ be accused of. Yet that glint in the Weyrleader’s eye is encouraging. Was that amusement? “Why is sobriety required? Hasn’t everything that CAN blow up already done so?” Or is the Weyr hiding some explosive as yet untapped? “Not here that I have seen thus far. Though there is a story about a man in High Reaches who did just that. A harper no less.” She is totally teasing about the Harper part. “Snapped under the pressure and streaked across the bowl with nary a stitch to protect his..ahh.. pride.” Ahem. What is this about her paperwork? One minute she is sitting there telling half truths about a story from back home and the next her papers are no longer neatly stacked. “Oh dear!” Too late she makes a grab for them but the papers scatter leaving her grabby handing air.

A nod given to Th'ero, an answer thought up in a moment's time. "A term of our ancestral home it does belong, to lords up high, rulers over kingdoms great and small." He twitches some, a slight reflex, when upon his back claws are felt, and a brown muzzle slides over his should to watch the green from a safe and comfy perch. A grin Beyrl gives to the lizard there. "He wished to rule my heart, my dinner, my time, so King I named him." Beyrl , short conversation done, a light smile is returned to the fair lady of blunt ways, then refocused on the blue winged trouble. One moment brings mirth, as papers and green collide. This is followed by shock and smirk, slight but sure, in the direction of the teller of the story of the streaker.

"Because I may be called to further meetings and generally it's looked poorly upon your fellows if you arrive there drunk off your ass," Th'ero remarks dryly to Gabriela and glances to Beyrl too to include him in on the conversation. He'll give the young woman a lingering look for her tale of the High Reachian Harper and this time there IS a small smile from the bronzerider. "High Reaches is bound to make anyone crack." he admits. He's never been entirely quiet about his disapproval of the area… or more specifically the Leaders of the Weyr. "Fitting name then, Beyrl." he adds a touch belatedly but to Gabriela he only has this for advice: "Might want to try and coax him down or feed him. Or… shoo him away…" He'll try to grab some of the papers as they're scattered his way as the blue hatchling creels in need for FOOD as he continues his trek all over (and through) everything on the table. Forgive his lack of grace… he's just a baby after all!

“Feed him what?” Gabriela is staring at the tiny creature as though half afraid it will bite her. It has no handler after all. It could! In theory. Loose theory. “Does he like juice? I have juice. But I didn’t stop for a meal.” She looks around at the papers mournfully, “I was too busy.” Now she is just out of luck for getting a darn thing done. Look at that mess! At least she’d managed to amuse both men with the tale of the snapped Harper. When life gets bad it’s always best to find a reason to laugh. “There is a reason I’m an odd duck around here,” she remarks with a chuckle in light of the current paper – lizard situation. “Growing up there certainly gave me an edge so to speak.” She reaches out and pats the table, “C’mon little guy. Please move so I can clean this mess up eh?”

Beyrl , having learned quickly the importance of an emergency snack, now has on hand a small sausage (or two), one which is offered to the lady for blue. Dissaproval is given from the brown on his shirt, but quickly forgotton when the other piece it recieves. Bending down for papers to pick, he helps ease Gabby's burden, and with a motion of hand, sends toward Gabreila the hatchling scurrying.

It's Beyrl to the rescue! Th'ero would have signalled one of those Weyrbrats over but luckily for ALL of them they'll avoid that mess. Faranth only knows what kind of… food those children thought to bring (or how long they've had it — eew?). Th'ero grabs a few papers and sets them aside for Gabriela to sort out later. "Not so much what you feed them but what you feel towards them too. Show them love and kindness…" No matter how great or small! He doesn't warn Gabriela that her little act of gentleness is likely to draw the blue in. If she hands over that sausage from Beyrl? Call it a deal!

Gabriela is a remarkably skinny woman and her size isn’t not all to blame. She simply gets caught up a lot of the time and forgets food is necessary. Such as today for example. The sausage is accepted with a grateful smile. Look it! Beyrl won himself a friend! Congratulations or condolences depending on how that works out in the future. “Thank you! You’re a life saver.” She glances up at Th’ero as the Weyrleader gives her tips. “How does one show love to a screaming infant ‘lizard? If I cuddle him he’ll likely bite me.” Not that she doubts him at all. Gabby is just a mite confused and not a little upset over her hard work being crumpled. “Did he just eat a chunk of my paper?!” Hey you stop that! Breaking off a piece she hands it to the blue. “With a little of this maybe he’ll calm down and stop destroying everything.”

With work done and papers picked from the dirty floor, Beyrl takes a step back, for this interesting (and perhaps amusing) event to watch. Also observing the quaint little scene (at least how it forms in Beyrl's mind) is a certain brown lizard, making random little screachy sounds to voice opinion about the situation.

"They won't bite you. Maybe scratch but half the time that's by accident. Even those who try to physically grab a firelizard will just find it has gone Between," Th'ero explain patiently. "Just be gentle and you'll be fine." Yeah, right! There's probably more to it. "Oh, he'll settle…" And yes, he is watching Gabriela closely for a moment. Probably waiting to see if the blue does end up choosing to stick around with her. Beyrl is given a distracted nod of thanks for his help with the scattered papers.

At least most of Gabriela’s work is intact if all jumbled to the point it will take forever to sort through. If she returns them like that she can see herself out of a job real quick. It’s doubtful saying ‘ a firelizard ate my homework’ will sit well even in jest. Let alone reality. “Thank you for picking all that up,” she tells Beyrl with a brief smile. Distracted because every time she hands the Blue a nibble of sausage it’s gone in a flash and he hollers for more. “I wonder who owns it,” she muses as she gives the little thing another piece. Trying to make it last but soon she’ll run out. “Should we get someone?” Because the disappointed Weyrbrats seem to have scattered.

Beyrl spots the opportunity missed by Gab's naive eyes, and gives a bit of smile to the situation unfolding. "Happy thoughts given should calm the blue down, enough to stop it running from the hand that feeds it. Consider how lovely its wings of sky blue, or how cute it takes the food from you." Giving King a pet upon the head, he gets pleasant little squeaks for the action. "If calm you give it, perhaps you it'd let hold it, and consider how nice a happy squeak it'd give."

Th'ero chuckles dryly and apparently in the wake of the newly impressed firelizard the Weyrleader is able to forget the darker things plaguing him. "Who owns him? He's yours now, Gabriela. I'd say he's right happy to stick with you." Unless she forces him to go wild. "Beyrl's got the right of it. The bond between firelizard and human is not as complex or strong as a dragon's but it's similar. They can feel what you feel and understand emotions and certain commands. Loyal things. Useful if you get the training down right."

Gabriela is careful to move slowly as she tries to take Th’ero’s advice and not startle the blue into fleeing between. No doubt he’d pop up in someone’s soup or something! He appears to be a small menace at the current moment. She is trying hard to keep the little blue from chewing her papers or worse scattering them again. Listening to the men with slight nods of her head. Until what Beyrl just said sinks into her confused brain. She glances between the men as if sensing a set up. Her expression suspicious in a comical way. Naive indeed! That she is and then some in dealing with this particular situation. “What do you mean he’s mine?!” Granted the little guy is now reaching for her fingers in search of more food. “What am I gonna do with him?” She glances up at Th’ero in surprise, “I’m not even sure how long I’ll be able to stay.”

Beyrl gives a glance, adding a smile, in Th'ero's way, and (he can't help it) loses a soft, mirthful chuckle at the lady's comical countenance. "Feed him, love him, watch him sleep." After a moment's glances to papers and consideration. "Teach him to fetch." Short, inelegant, but true. He nearly winces slightly at the sound, as if he himself said 'Lizard good. Go fetch.'

"You've Impressed him," Th'ero patiently explains to Gabriela and yes, there is a smile to follow that. "So you tend to his needs which are… fairly basic. Feed and oil and attention." Love too but he figures she'll get that down no problem. A brow quirks, "You can bring him wherever you go. Train him to behave himself." Problem solved, right? Maybe not. Alas, he cannot linger for long and is soon pushing his chair back with a low sigh. "I best be going. Enjoy the rest of your day, both of you." he murmurs to Gabriela and Beyrl both. No explanation as to what is calling him away but one can probably imagine what could be taking up the Weyrleader's time! Dipping his head in farewell, he'll turn and briskly walk towards the staircase leading to the Wingleader offices and Wing lounges above.

Gabriela watches as the little blue bumps his head against her hand. ‘Lizard’s are noisy creatures aren’t they? How is she going to lurk when she needs to with a noisy companion? This proves to be a conundrum. “I’ll be happy if I can teach him not to eat everything in the stores while I’m trying to update the list.” Handing over the last nugget of sausage she looks up at Beyrl with a slight smile. “I suppose I’ll do my best at training him.” The rest she will have to figure out as she goes. “Take care Weyrleader,” she tells Th’ero when the man departs. “I hope things look up for him soon.” Things that go boom are her guess as to what is keeping him down at the moment. That is bound to put a wrench in the works around here. “I reckon I should get this guy more food and attempt to sort back out this mess,” she taps a finger to the papers. “Thank you for your help…” she dosen’t know his name! “I’m Gabriela.”

Beyrl says "A pleasure it's been to have met a wonderful lady as yourself, Gabriela. I am known as Beyrl. Perhaps we'll meet soon again. It's a sincere hope we do." He tells this with a smile of his own, but with King starting to screach in his ear, he starts once again to hunt something to keep his traveling companion's stomach happy."

Gabriela smiles sweetly as she tucks her papers into the crook of her arm and rises from the chair. “The pleasure was mine I’m sure. Your help today is much appreciated.” Granted she wound up with an unexpected mouth to feed. But hey the day could have gone worse. “I’ll see you soon I’m sure.” Scooping up the tiny blue she blends into the crowd to get her plan of action underway.

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