Fort Weyr - Floating Dance Platform

An enormous raft-like structure of wood and plasticraft has been set up at the edge of the weyr lake. It floats just offshore, supporting a raised stage with a dome-shaped back. A wide, flat area, presumably for dancing, sits before the stage. Food tables, sporting banners in Fort's colors, have been set up along the edges, and a large number of curved benches ensure ample seating. Thick ropes secure the structure to stakes driven into the shore, while a number of floating wooden bridges provide easy access.

Spring in Fort is slow to arrive, by after the first month passes things have thawed and are warming. Despite the mud, people are out and enjoying the weather, and Kimmila is no exception. Recently arrived from Western, the bluerider sits on the edge of the platform with her feet dangling over the edge, bare toes occasionally kissing the water as the raft bobs a bit in the cold lake waters. Leaning back with her weight on her arms, she closes her eyes and relaxes, soaking up the warmth. Relative warmth, at least.

Th'ero has been out since the pre-dawn hours, having managed to coax Velokraeth into leaving the sands and Zuvaleyuth's side long enough to resume some semblance of a normal routine. Patrols to start, then meetings with his Wingleaders, then more duties and more meetings. It's no surprise then that the Weyrleader is looking to escape and with his bronze refusing to go anywhere further for the day, the bronzerider turns to the lakeshore for reprieve. He is dressed in his formal riding gear, though his jacket has been unbuckled as the near-spring warmth is too much. It's not the shore he lingers by though, when he spies a familiar form relaxing and soaking up the sun's warmth on the platform. But he doesn't call out, keeping silent as he creeps closer. Once he's assured it's in fact Kimmila, Th'ero's stance changes and he sneaks along, carefully adding his weight to the platform. Sneaking up on her here will be tricky, as any wrong step could betray him - sound or by the shifting of the platform on the water. So his progress is slow, achingly so.

Kimmila is relaxed enough not to notice, as Th'ero's added weight shifts the platform in the same way that a ripple would. Either that or she's lost in thought, or closely linked to Varmiroth while he drags his talons on the shore, making some sort of doodle that will soon be washed away by water or passing feet and paws. So Kimmila does not notice Th'ero's approach.

Sneaking along closer and closer, Th'ero takes his time as he makes a direct line for Kimmila, eyes focused only on her and alert for any sign that she's caught on. When she remains unmoving, the Weyrleader is only encouraged on until he's close enough behind her now to crouch. Seconds past, bordering onto minutes as he just crouches there in silence before reaching out to touch her shoulder and then wisely withdrawing back in case her reaction is to swing at him. "A mark for your thoughts, Wingmate." He drawls with a grin.

Kimmila jumps for sure when he touches her shoulder, and she nearly goes over the edge of the platform. Hands drop to hastily grab at the edge of the wood and she leans back to keep from falling, instinct overriding her skittishness. "How the hell did you sneak up on me like that?" she demands, turning her head to give him a glare that's not all angry (there's some grudging admiration there too) as she scoots away from the edge, kicking water droplets at him as she does.

Th'ero would have reached out to grab her if she teetered too close to the water but as Kimmila catches herself, the Weyrleader eases back on his heels and stays in a crouch. "Very quietly and with a lot of patience," he tells her with a sly little grin and a low chuckle for her demands and the glare. He lifts his arm up just slightly when she kicks the water droplets at him, grunting a bit in amusement.

Kimmila snorts, "Nicely done," she compliments him as she scoots back further. "I'll make an expert hunter of you yet," she adds, her crooked smile a bit of a teasing smirk for the Weyrleader. "Where've you been all day?"

Th'ero shifts from his crouch just enough so that he can do a mocking bow of sorts, titling his head just enough as he gives her a lopsided smile. "I'm glad to hear it. But then, I've one of the best mentors." He says with a low drawl. Flatterer? Since when? Or he's caught on to her teasing smirk and the Weyrleader is only playing along. "About on duties. Holds mostly and then there were meetings and patrol before it." Th'ero pauses then, giving a bit of a tired sounding sigh. "And you, Wingmate? Off duty or just between shifts?"

Kimmila laughs at him, grinning crookedly. Still, she does look pleased. And maybe even a little flattered as she re-positions herself further from the edge, sitting cross legged with her arms resting across her knees. "Off duty for the day," she replies, leaning back onto her arms again and sighing contentedly.

"So rather then enjoy the warmth of Western, you come all the way to the frozen north for some sun?" Th'ero teases as Kimmila resettles herself, his eyes following her movements for some time before he finally drops the teasing act and sobers just a bit. Shifting from his crouch, he settles himself down next to her, close enough to touch but still give some space between them.

Kimmila nods, "Yeah, it's warmer here," she says with a crooked smile, watching him as he settles beside her. "So how were your meetings and everything?"

Th'ero snorts and begins to peel off his gloves, tucking them into his belt and glancing away from Kimmila for a moment as he replies in a low and quiet voice. "They were meetings," he remarks sarcastically and dryly, "Dull for the most part. Others simply droning on mostly over this or that. Only highlight seems to be the success so far with the first trade shipments we've received from Xanadu and Western. Southern continues to be tardy and I'm working on getting the other Weyrs on board. Holders may not like us doing so much inter-Weyr trading but…" he drifts off then with a shrug of his shoulders, side-glancing back to the bluerider and giving her a subtly curious look. "Hope I didn't bore you too much with that little ramble." He chuckles softly.

Kimmila smirks crookedly, "You forget I used to be an Assistant Headwoman?" she teases. "Meetings were my life. I enjoyed them. Hmm, Southern isn't showing up? Wonder what's going on there. What is Fort sending out in exchange? And why wouldn't the Holds like it? They might appreciate not having to hold the sole responsibility of our trade goods. Is this your brainchild?" Clearly she's not bored, as she looks quite interested.

"Mhm. I have forgotten that you were an Assistant once." Th'ero admits with only a hint of a sheepish look to his eyes before he's holding up one of his hands to ward off Kimmila's sudden influx of questions. "Easy, Wingmate." He chides teasingly, a crooked smile on his lips when he catches on to her interest. Not that it's hard to miss! The Weyrleader chuckles dryly again before his mood sobers just as swift. "You know I shouldn't be discussing half of this with you…" Th'ero reminds her gently and falls into a brief lapse of silence, just long enough to leave one wondering if he's being serious and actually withholding on them. Then with a heavy exhale, he answers her questions and from the look in his eye he's /purposely/ clipping them. "No idea with Southern. Weyrsecond is gone on that task. Breeding stock from our herds for fresh goods and materials like glass or what we've lacked in. And the Holds are always on edge by change. And no, not entirely." Th'ero pauses to clear his throat and settle himself more comfortably on the platform. "Trade with Western was bound to happen. Xanadu was… a surprise."

Kimmila arches a brow at him. "I hardly think trade plans are top secret information," she says, a bit surprised that he'd even consider not sharing that information with her. She nods, "Sounds like good trades though, and nice deals made for Fort. It makes sense to trade what you have an excess of for what you are lacking. Why is Xanadu such a surprise?" She pauses for a moment, brows furrowing slightly, "If you can tell me, that is."

Th'ero quirks a brow back at Kimmila, frowning a little now that his teasing failed to stir up any from her. "Wingmate," he begins in a firm tone, leveling her with a look now that is serious and sober. "I was teasing you. You know I value your opinions as much as I do my own staff. I was only trying to add a bit of fun into what could wind up a rather rambling, dull recount of many hours of meetings." Again, he forgets this would be right up her alley for interest, too caught up in his dislike for it. "Mhm," The Weyrleader pratically grunts his agreement, before adding in a softer tone. "Considering how our first visit with Xanadu's Senior began? Not exactly inspiring for relations, if you ask me. But…" And he shrugs here too. "… oddly it worked for our favor. Thea and Xe'ter arrived with offers to help and Dtirae conducted herself well and the deal was done. There was mention of importing more technology but we… politely refused."

Kimmila blinks at him, and then clears her throat and glances away, embarrassed that she missed his teasing. "Oh." Clearly that's a bit of a touchy subject for her, since she's still officially a Western rider. Either that or his joking around needs some fine tuning. "Glad it all went well, then." Awkward.

No, the Weyrleader is in sore need of learning a few tricks for teasing and joking around. Th'ero can sense the awkwardness and knowing he's the likely cause, again, only makes it worse by drifting into silence and glancing away too. He had forgotten that she would still be touchy over the subject, but neither has he made the connection. "I can do a few things right, it seems." Th'ero remarks a touch gruffly as he lifts a hand up to scratch at the back of his neck and then draw one of his knees up to rest his arm across it. The other leg remains stretched out in front of him. Rather then apologize to ease the awkwardness or even ask what as upset her (which could just make it worse too), the bronzerider simply changes subjects. Right into another potentially charged topic. "They're transferring Laurali soon. Hatskel's daughter. Plan is to have her go with one of the caravans to a nearby cothold where a family has agreed to foster her after the loss of their only child. I don't favor the idea." In other words, he'd like to lock her in the Weyr like he did Ezra. "But the girl is not adjusting."

Kimmila bristles at the mention of Laurali. "Where did Hatskel end up, anyhow?" If he ever told her, she's clearly forgotten already. "I don't blame the girl. Poor thing. I don't think anyone would adjust well to that sort of situation. Not when she and Hatskel seemed so attached. She must hate us."

"I hold no blame on the child either," Th'ero amends, a touch defensive and a touch wary when he senses Kimmila bristling next to him. He speaks lowly, murmuring the words to the point of almost muttering them even though it's only the bluerider and himself on the platform. "Where we put Hatskel was no place for a child. I had warned them this would happen but they wouldn't listen. He sold his fate with his behavior. Perhaps once from the Weyr and in the quiet of a cothold she'll adjust. Maybe not forgive us but have… some form of a life." There's a long pause then and the Weyrleader snorts. "Where we put all unfavorable criminals. Some blasted and rotten island on the southern edges, with no way in or out except by air."

Kimmila nods her head slowly. "It's no less than he deserves, but not what her life should be. That's a shame. Hopefully she adjusts well, and manages to have a nice life despite it all. Not that it's anyone's fault but her father's."

Th'ero makes a noise deep in his throat, somewhere between frustration and agreement to Kimmila's words. "It is a shame and a pity," he sighs, lifting his hand up to rub at the bridge of his nose. When his hand drops, he's turning his head to face the bluerider now and his lips have drawn into a faint smirk. "What would have had me do?"

Kimmila shakes her head, holding up a hand. "It's a bad situation all around, Wingmate. I wouldn't have done any different." She doesn't think. Then she's moving, pushing herself to her feet. "Enough work talk." Changing gears as quickly as ever. "Let's get something to eat and drink and find people to make fun of."

Th'ero relaxes a little, shoulders and features dropping a bit as if some tension is eased by Kimmila's reply alone. His eyes follow her as she pushes herself up to her feet and then he's swiftly joining her, just as quick to change gears or at least latch on to the opportunity. "You read my mind," The Weyrleader muses as he joins her by her side and slips an arm around her waist. "Not Shenanigan's tonight. The tavern." He murmurs and then begins to walk from the platform, drawing her with him should she be willing. His choice of the tavern would make sense soon enough. It gets more travelers passing through, thus more amusement for people watching. Not that Th'ero indulges much in the game, sticking more to enjoying drink and food and best yet, time alone with the one he loves.

'The World of Pern(tm)' and 'The Dragonriders of Pern(r)' are copyright to Anne McCaffrey (c) l967, 2000. This is a recorded online session, by permission of the author but generated on PernWorld MUSH for the benefit of people unable to attend.