Fort Weyr - Headwoman's Office

This area is plainly set up as an office space. A slightly used desk, with a slightly used chair pushed up to it, is in the left corner immediately as one enters, and a set of bookshelves lines the right corner. Against the west wall, offset away from the door, is a curtained doorway that leads to the Bedroom. The curtain, made of fabrics of pure browns and dark blacks is pulled shut, firmly discouraging snooping. A comfortable couch and some chairs, along with a low table, are set up in the back left corner, though some more uncomfortable chairs are placed right on either sides of the door for when the Headwoman has to mete out punishment.
Next to the desk is a low cupboard, only coming up to about waist-high off the floor, and made of a dark, fine hardwood. On the top of the cupboard is an area made for holding glasses until one wants a drink of something. On the walls are various tapestries and even a painting - of the gentle, rolling seascape. The tapestries depicted have the common theme of Fort Weyr - a giant tapestry of Fort's crest is the most prominent, situated on the wall across from the door to the Hallway. Other tapestries depict everything from a formation of dragons fighting Thread over Fort Weyr, to gentler tasks, though most have dragons or firelizards woven into the design somewhere. Most decorations are done in either a deep, rich brown or a stark, unending void of black, with a spattering of royal blues thrown into the mix. This seems to be a room you can make yourself at home in.
The desk is hardly cluttered - it is clean and neat. There are, however, a few official looking notices piled neatly in one corner, and a stack of fresh hides and writing utensils in the other corner.

Winter is slowly giving into spring, but when night falls over Fort it's hard to imagine that the day will ever be warm. This night is no different, with a raw wind blowing in from the north and the skies darkened by clouds that could hold anything from snow to rain to ice. Nothing falls yet but it's dark as dark can be outside as the hour ticks on well past midnight. The Weyr by now is asleep, the only motion being that of the guard patrols and the watch dragon and his rider on duty and perhaps a few brave souls. But it's not to be and the calm is disturbed by the arrival of a messenger by runner, who's intercepted by the guards. Whatever his message may be must be of great importance, as the Headwoman is alerted and from her others are woken and set to rouse Weyrleader and Werywoman a like.

And woe to the poor lad sent to wake Th'ero. Not one to enjoy being roused in the early hours, by the time the Weyrleader has stormed his way to the doors, his mood is bad enough that he snaps at the boy before the hastily stammered message (mixed with a long string of apologies) sinks in and he's dismissing him with a brisk gesture. Then he retreats back inside his weyr, muttering and cursing and not entirely to himself. There's a likely chance he's got company and company he's about to wake up too. Dressing as quickly, Th'ero stalks across the stone bridge, ignoring the cold as he all but storms in on the Headwoman's Office.

Kimmila is the company, of course, and she shrugs into her clothes and warm riding gear to follow after Th'ero, rubbing her eyes and finger combing her hair.

The Headwoman has sent for some warm drinks - mulled wine, cider, and even some klah for those who would like to avoid going back to sleep. "My apologies for waking you, Weyrleader, but this couldn't wait." Her eyes glance questioningly to Kimmila, and then back to Th'ero. "The boy relayed the message?" she asks pointedly.

The Weyrwoman isn't so hard to rouse from her bed, the one who is sent to wake her is, however, met with a grumble before she's setting out on her way. She's dressed in a warm winter coat. She wastes no time in exiting her weyr and shuffling quietly into the Headwoman's office, hands tucked into her pockets. There's a brief look at the Headwoman as she lingers, briefly, by the doorway before shuffling in further. Dtirae tilts her head, just the slightest bit as a questioning look is sent towards Th'ero, with a brief flicker of attention settling on Kimmila.

Th'ero will go for the mulled wine of course but before he helps himself to a glass, he happens to notice the questioning look the Headwoman gives Kimmila and his reaction is immediate: a disapproving look and one that is unmistakable as to not question his decision on the matter. Not at this time, however. If Talica wished to, she could hound him later on it. "He did." The Weyrleader grumbles before glancing towards wherever Kimmila has settled herself and gesturing if she'd prefer a drink and to which one. Once he has both drinks in hand, he'll return to the bluerider's side. Then Dtirae is arriving and Th'ero gives her a long, silent look before turning his attention back to the room as a whole. "Now that we're all here… care to give us the details?" he says in a low and flat tone. The Weyrleader is definitely not in a good mood and not just from being woken up and now his eyes focus solely on the Headwoman.

Kimmila takes some cider for herself, having settled uninvited into one of the Headwoman's chairs. She sips her cider and gives the Headwoman a small smile - she knows her, after all.

Talica gives Kimmila a small frown, but then turns her attention to the Weyrleaders. "Laurali was sent out to the cothold as scheduled, but she never arrived there. It seems she actually went to a different place - some very remote one - and then she vanished shortly after arriving there, along with a few other folks."

Dtirae shrugs at Th'ero as he looks to her, saying nothing and giving indication that this likely has nothing to do with something she's done. Kimmila is taking a seat and she turns her attention to her, watching her for a brief moment but certainly not saying anything before her gaze resettles on the Headwoman. The start of her statement has her opening her mouth, for a brief moment before promptly shutting again. Brows furrow and she crosses her arms firmly across her chest. "She went to some other cothold? What do you mean by… Remote?" Her nose wrinkles, annoyance settling into her features. "Why are people vanishin'?"

Th'ero comes to stand next to and behind the chair Kimmila has settled herself into, uninvited or not. The Weyrleader doesn't exactly sip his wine as he downs half the glass in one shot with barely a grimace. His expression shifts from a frown to a scowl within seconds of the Headwoman's recount of the message. "Damn it!" he growls, "I knew it was wrong to send the girl out!" Grimacing now, his eyes focus and narrow on poor Talica. "Since when to the Holds have cotholds secreted away from the Weyr? What's the name of this place?" he asks, his tone taking on a harsher edge as his mood riles his temper before he can clamp down on it, controlling it with a deep breath that he exhales as a curse. Dtirae is echoing his own question and thoughts it seems, as he turns to glance towards the Weyrwoman with the barest of nods. "And why weren't we alerted right off?" This seems to be directed to all present.

Kimmila glances up at Th'ero, then frowns at the news, sipping her cider some more but generally staying quiet.

Talica looks a little pained as she sits down behind her desk, shaking her head. "It's not really one that's on our maps, ma'am. Either it's a new one we don't know about yet, or…" An old one they don't know about yet. "I don't know that either, sir," she says to Th'ero. "I just got word that she did not arrive where we'd sent her, and word arrived from this other cothold that she was seen there, then left. The man who sent the messages visited Fort not long ago, elsewise no one would've been able to recognize her or know to send us word. Plus the caravan reported her missing, but we only just got that message today. That messenger's runner broke a leg in that storm we had not long back and he had to continue on foot."

Dtirae grumbles under her breath, likely cursing the stupidity of the situation. "Probably felt that it ain't worth mentionin' because there ain't Thread. Figurin' that they ain't goin' ta be noticed or bothered if the Weyr ain't sure they exist." Annoyance is lingering heavily in her tone, and the woman taps her foot impatiently. "Did she go off on her own or somethin' like that? Did they decide that it'd be better ta have her somewhere else, then? I ain't gettin' any of this bullshit plan of theirs."

Th'ero makes a low and gruff, frustrated noise in his throat and downing the rest of his wine, sets the glass aside. "So basically she's slipped through the cracks is what's happened." He growls and then begins to pace, back and forth, but only behind Kimmila's chair and where he can still keep an eye on Dtirae and the Headwoman both. "Seems all too… convienent. Hidden cotholds - and I /will/ be talking to some of the Lords about that - and then messengers delayed. Something isn't right." Abruptly he lapses into silence, scowling and lost in his thoughts, which are now alert and racing. Dtirae is shot a look and the Weyrleader only smirks, likely sharing some agreement to her comment and shared annoyance. "Shouldn't /have/ to hide. A cothold that has to hide is suspicious. They best have a good reason for it…" It's not so much a threat, but its obvious Th'ero is itching to go visit and get to the root of things. "There's only one I can think of that'd have any interest in the girl. That's /if/ she hasn't gone and done something stupid on her own, as you suggested." He tells the Weyrwoman, but his gaze roams to include the Headwoman and Kimmila as well, lingering the longest on the bluerider. "I'm not making the connection either." He says with another frustrated sigh as his pacing goes on and on.

For once, Kimmila has nothing to say and no advice to offer as she just frowns into her mug before draining the rest of it.

The Headwoman, too, seems at a loss of what to do about it now that her message has been conveyed, and her duty has been done. She just glances between the two Weyrleaders and then rises. "I'll leave you to discuss things," she murmurs softly. "If there isn't anything else I can do…?"

Dtirae heaves a heavy sigh and shakes her head, "well, I'm going to go get a meeting set with the Holders and see if anyone can give us some answers about that cothold." She's not lingering long behind, clearly intent on getting business done. And looking none too pleased as she makes her way out. Breakfast is also ordered to the Weyrleader's offices in passing.

"Send some of the Wingriders out to rouse the larger Hold's Lords," Th'ero hastily adds to Dtirae, before the Weyrwoman can leave. The Weyrleader looks eager for action too, but perhaps not in the same sense. He may not wait for meetings to be set. "Let us know if more messages arrive or if any news comes in." He tells the Headwoman in a low and authorative tone before turning to Kimmila. "Wingmate?" Th'ero asks, noting her silence now and giving her a questioning and sidelong look. "Come with me." It's both a command and not but it's unmistakable. As he waits for the bluerider to join him, he tells Talica quickly. "I'll be in my office. Until the hour turns a little more favorable and then I'll be paying these cotholds a personal visit. I want to find that caravan too. Send some maps up as well." Orders given, Th'ero gives a brisk nod and then stalks from the room without a backwards glance.

Kimmila pushes to her feet and puts the empty mug on the Headwoman's desk, giving her a nod. "Time to go hunting," is all she says, her tone rather flat as she turns and strides out.

Talica nods her agreement with her various orders, already reaching for a paper and stylus to record them all, before she gets to work.

'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.