Stay Awhile Longer

Fort Weyr - Weyrleaders' Offices
Aged by time, this office has lived through the ages of Fort just as its counterparts have. But unlike the Weyrsecond and Junior Weyrwomen offices, this cavern is spacious and formed in a rough semicircle of three conjoined caves that were carved and modified Turns ago. The middle portion acts as a waiting room of sorts, holding only a few modest chairs and a simple tapestry to otherwise brighten up the plain stone walls. There are no windows here and the only light comes from well placed glow baskets.
To the right, the smaller of the two adjoining caverns has been set aside for the Weyrwoman, a large desk situated in the middle and a bookshelf pressed against the wall. A small hearth allows for some warmth in the colder months and another cabinet rests across the room to hold various supplies, as well as several books, reports and records. More tapestries have been hung there, lending some color to room.
On the left, the larger cavern belongs to the Weyrleader's office and the walls here are littered with a vast array of maps, as well as a tapestry hung behind where he would sit. The desk is large and the wood aged, looking old and a bit worn, but well tended too. Shelves and a bookshelf line one wall, crammed with rolled hides, other maps, books, reports and records and all arranged in an organized chaos. A small hearth has been built in here as well and various well placed glow baskets are hung to offer just the right amount of light in this windowless office.
Both offices have stout wooden doors that have been carefully worked into the stone. They can be closed and locked if privacy is needed but are often left open.


Morning finds the sky a mix of blues and trays, the cloud cover already beginning to increase to blot out the rising sun. Those who can venture outside on their tasks to enjoy what little sunlight will remain before the day becomes entirely overcast. By noon, the air is stifling, promising a more humid day than normal for this early into the summer season. Not that such weather can be felt this deep into the stone and the Weyrleader's office remains comfortably cool. The door is open, a silent invitation that to whoever approaches that Th'ero is, indeed, within. What his mood will be is left to question, but judging from the silence from within he's alone and seated behind his desk. A tray of food, no doubt his lunch, sits barely touched on a small end table by the side of his desk. He'll catch another lecture for his lack of eating later, but for now he's settled into some quiet brooding, as he always does when facing troubled times.

Hazelon isn't one to seek out authority. He's spent a better part of his life avoiding it. But the last seven has left him with some thinking…. and some decisions. When that doorway is shown to be open, it's Hazelon that steps through it, and pulls it closed behind him. Hopefully the weyrleader doesn't mind. There's a darkness in his eyes, and a stillness to his movements when it comes in. Something is hanging over the teen's head.

Th'ero's eyes blink as he refocuses and draws himself out of whatever deep thoughts had him brooding. The Weyrleader doesn't mind the door being closed and he takes that as a sign that something is amiss. Unsurprisingly, given who stands in his office. "Hazelon," he greets, simple and in a voice that is lowered. He gestures with his hand to one of the empty chairs. "What brings you to my office?"

Hazelon comes forward, his steps deliberate. At the edge of the desk he stops. A single glance is spared for that chair before he's shaking his head. Mutely he undoes the candidate knot from his shoulder and offers it to Th'ero. "I think it's time I left." Short, sweet, simple. Hazelon's eyes move up to look directly at Th'ero.

Th'ero misses little in the way Hazelon steps forwards and his expression hardly shifts even as he begins to undo the Candidate knot from his shoulder. His brows knit but that's about it and he remains seated in his chair. The knot is glanced at when offered but the Weyrleader only leans back and does not lift a single finger to take it. "Why?" he asks, equally as short and simple as his eyes meet his and hold steadily.

Hazelon's arms fold back behind him, his stance relaxed. Rarely does he do things without thinking, though, once in a while… and yeah, they usually have bad consequences. Exibit 1, Th'ero's shoulder. Exibit 2, the deep bruising across his chest. "Because I have business what needs to be taken care of what ain't able to be done here in the weyr."

"Care to tell me what this business is, Hazelon?" Th'ero asks in a voice that is firm but oddly gentle in it's request. A Weyrleader asking for clarity and answers, nothing more. No judgement is passed, though his brows have begun to knit together in a heavier frown as he mulls over the situation, weighing his words before he speaks again.

"Ustrr." Short, simple and to the point. His hands lock behind him as he gazes firmly at Th'ero. There is a rather peaceful serenity that comes from knowing the path which one wants to walk, and is finally able to walk that said path. Years of hiding, of utter indecision melted a way as finally, purpose is found.

Th'ero brows lift in surprise to Hazelon's answer and then a form of understanding. The Weyrleader's mouth curves at one corner, looking almost vaguely bemused. "You're not alone in that," he admits in a low drawl, but his next breath is a quiet sigh. "… but I can't let you go, Hazelon. I'm not about to let you turn in your knot now, solely to chase after Ustrr on your own. Not yet." There's a nod to the knot the Candidate still holds. The knot the Weyrleader is refusing to take and thus 'hands back' by his refusal. "You're needed here." There's a pause, as Th'ero drums his fingers briefly against the surface of his desk. "May I ask you something?"

Well. That wasn't exactly how Hazelon saw this conversation going. Th'ero's amusement draws Hazelon's mouth into a tight light, and his fist clenches around that knot. Carefully, deliberately, he sets it on the table in front of him. Now it will stand as an impasse between them. There are angry words at the tip of his tongue that he holds back at the last second. Finally, "Sir?" That's a nice neutral statement, right?
Carefully and deliberately, Th'ero doesn't take the knot and leaves it to rest between them on his desk. For now. There is the sound of the chair creaking under his weight as he sits forwards slightly, but only so he can look up at Hazelon. That brief smile is gone now, his face a mask of neutrality but a seriousness that lines his mouth. "Is it vengeance that sets you so determinedly to follow after Ustrr? Revenge? What good do you think it'll do, to turn your back now?" he asks, keeping his answers simple and to the point.

His questions echo those of Abigail, and as such, do not cause Hazelon to flinch back. "Yes. I've run, I've hid, and now it is time for me to kill him." There is more than hatred in Hazelon's dark eyes. It's a backness that will consume him if he's not careful. But right now, he finally has a goal in mind for himself, and something that sings deeply to him. "As for what good it will do, it'll mean him dead. He won't catch me again if I can get moving."

Th'ero can see much of a younger version of himself in Hazelon and that both amuses and saddens the Weyrleader though he keeps careful hold on his expression. He sighs, "Hazelon, this isn't just your battle to fight. Revenge will serve you nothing. I've been down that path with Laris and I can tell you now it is not the path you wish to follow…" he remarks and, carefully and using only his one arm, he will push to his feet. Standing to full height, he looks down at Hazelon now as his jaw works silently. Then, in a quiet spoken voice, he asks on a completely different vein: "Are you a man of honour, Hazelon?"

"This is my battle to be fightin'." Perhaps Th'ero and Hazelon should have met in a more… peaceful time. Then the teen would not feel the need to disagree so much. "I ain't made my mind up about much, but I'm determined to be goin' after him." But there is a question, and finally Hazelon hesitates. Does his resolve waiver just a for a second? Perhaps, but it is quickly hidden under resolve. "No sir."

"No, it isn't," Th'ero counters firmly, levelling Hazelon with another look. "Not entirely. Look beyond your fear and hatred, Hazelon and you'll see that." He goes to cross his arms over his chest, but the movement halts midway through and the Weyrleader grimaces as his left arm seizes before falling back to his side. Old habits die hard and he is continuously forgetting the bandages that bind his shoulder. All the same, he watches Hazelon carefully. Did he see that resolve waver? Possibly. He chuckles dryly, "I beg to differ on that. I think you are. So I ask you this… Niumdreoth Searched you for a reason. He's a good brown, Abigail one of my best riders. Would you dishonour them by turning in your knot and walking away just to feed your need for revenge? A chance at it?"

Eyes follow that movement of Th'ero's arm as it stops. Dropping from his lock with Th'ero his eyes fall to the weyrleader's shoulder and he scowls just fainting. There was owing there, for the weyrleader stepping into the path of that arrow. "I will be killin' him." More hatred then Hazelon could express in words is hinted at there. Finally, "Abigail is good people."

Th'ero will catch how his eyes drop after looking to his shoulder and he will glance briefly to the left, then back again to Hazelon. Ahh, now he sees. "I'll mend." he informs him reassuringly and even goes as far as to shrug the shoulder carefully. "It's more of a nuisance, really." But that's not why he's here and so he lets the subject drop as he walks around the edge of his desk. If Hazelon allows it, Th'ero will try to clasp him firmly on the shoulder. Not to hold him, but as a gesture of reassurance. He understands, but there is so much more at play here. "And you will." Th'ero tells him, his eyes finding his and holding firm. A promise, perhaps? "But you're not ready to face him yet. Stay here as Candidate, Hazelon. At least until the eggs Hatch." He nods to Hazelon's assessment of Abigail. "Stay for her, at the very least." he adds. "And no matter what the outcome is, Ustrr will fall. Men like him always do."

That clasp upon the shoulder is more physical contact then the teen has allowed in a long while. He doesn't jerk back though, just allows his gaze to drop to that hand. There is distrust there- for Th'ero, and for the weyr. But not for Abigail. It is an underhand move for the Weyrleader to bring up the one person who Hazelon has a deep respect for. His lips twist and his jaw clenches. "I'll be goin' after him regardless of what be happenin' on those stands."

Th'ero won't touch on the distrust that Hazelon has for him or for the Weyr. That will be for another time, if necessary. The Weyrleader does play a mean underhanded game but he's learned a few tricks in his Turn in the position he's held. Not that he is seeking to deceive Hazelon. Not in the slightest! If he had had one iota of distrust towards the Candidate, he'd not have gone through such lengths to deter him. "You will," he confirms and now that certainly does sound like a promise. "For now, remain here. As Candidate." Letting his hand fall from Hazelon's shoulder, he will reach back for that knot on his desk and hand it back to him, pressing it firmly into his hand. "And for what help it may be, I can have you written in to shadow Abigail or any of the Thunderbird Wingriders. Sweepriding shifts, aerial only." Scouting, in other words. "Would that help?" Hazelon may distrust Th'ero, but clearly Th'ero does not distrust Hazelon.

Hazelon's hands wrap back around that knot tightly. Perhaps he never wanted to give it up in the first place. A deep breath has the candidate abruptly wincing, breaking the seriousness of the moment with the lance of ouch that spirals though his chest. Yep, still bruised. "Can't leave till this be healed," Hazelon reaches up to tie that candidate knot back onto his shoulder, as he finally allows that perhaps Th'ero is right. "If they'll be havin' me, then aye." Because really, if Ustrr just happened to be there… well, that knot could always be left behind another time.

The chances of them finding Ustrr on an aerial sweep are slim. So very slim, as the renegade has no doubt hunkered down deep and low somewhere to bid his time. Th'ero, however, does not voice that out loud to Hazelon. He only quietly observes as the knot is reclaimed and tied back into place and how the Candidate winces for the breath taken. "Bad bruising?" he asks with a grimace as he moves away to a small cabinet. He removes a squat looking bottle filled with amber liquid and quickly pours two shallow glasses. Nothing more than a mouthful, a quick shot. Turning back, he hands one wordlessly to Hazelon to take or politely refuse (but would he?). It smells sharply of spice and alcohol and no doubt will go down smooth but hot. "They'd take you. Candidates normally shadow riders in the final sevendays anyhow." Normally.

An eyebrow arches up with that liquid is handed over to him. In the rules Abigail had read him, this was absolutely not okay. But… the weyrleader could make his own rules? And it's not like Hazelon is here for following those rules already. The liquid is lifted to his lips and he'll drink it, roughly slightly from the heat. Right. He hasn't had alcohol in a long time. Abruptly, he'll push his luck. "Can I be spendin' time with the guard too?" You know, to brush up on ways to kill people that don't involve just his arrows.

A little alcohol doesn't hurt and a shot this small is very unlikely to get Hazelon even close to tipsy. The rules Abigail read are true, but rules can be stretched at times. He is the Weyrleader and he figures the Candidate won't go boasting about his one sip of alcohol. "You may, once you're healed. You can sit in on their practices if you choose. If I had the time, I'd train you myself." But he can't. Bad shoulder and his hands are full as it is. Plus, Nyalle would probably skin him even more than he's already suffered by the Weyrwoman. Bad enough she'll likely have another strip from him for what he's offered Hazelon. "So we're of an agreement then?"

Th'ero at least is right about that. Hazelon isn't about to brag about anything to his fellow candidates. That would require him actually speaking to them. The glas is settled back down on the table before him and he nods once. "Yes."
"You may go then, Hazelon and return to your scheduled duties. Tomorrow the rosters will change," Th'ero murmurs as he turns to walk back behind his desk and take his seat. He has some paperwork to fill out, requests to be filled… it'll take the larger portion of the day to get everything set to rights and Faranth knows what else is thrown at him. Oh the joys of being Weyrleader? "Thank you, for coming to speak to me on the matter. Clear skies, Candidate."

Hazelon nods once again. The dismissial is more than clear and so he turns. The scowl hasn't quite left his face, but Th'ero did have a point. Healing would need to happen before he left anyway. At least this way he gets to learn something new before he leaves to destroy Ustrr? The door is left open behind him, just as it was when he came.


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