Harper Hall - Grand Hall
Large and echoing, the Grand Hall of the Harper Hall is monumental and somewhat intimidating, leading into the very heart of the Harper Hall. Doorways and passages lead off to a variety of locations; almost all areas of the Hall are accessible from this one location. The east wing, where all teaching takes place, is led into by a doorway to the east, whilst the Dining Hall is to the north, and the Performance Hall to the north-west. The main foyer can be found southwards, heading back out into the courtyard of the Harper and Healer complex. The staircases leading up and down are hidden behind a door to the west of the hall.
Electric lights ensure that this room is never dark, hung from the ceiling and walls with the wiring carefully hidden. Paintings of all the past Craftmasters line the walls, from Robinton himself, right up to Mairean, Phaelba, Erol and the current Masterharper, Moyrel - their own portraits far brighter than the rest, and obviously far newer.


Morning has just edged past the breakfast hour, when most are fully awake and done with the first meal of the day before shuffling off to what duties or tasks they may have. The skies are overcast, promising either rain or snow though the winds remain cold. Harper Hall is bustling with activity, even the outer courtyard teeming with Crafters, riders, workers and visitors alike. Word was sent ahead that a large group of Candidates were to be dropped off at the landing fields and then split in two: one would go to Harper Hall and the other to Healer Hall before rotating midday. Several Simurgh Wingriders volunteered to take the Candidates and it's on brown, green and blue wings that they arrive. Two riders remain behind at the Hall, bluerider R'oh and Venohenth and greenrider Lin and Vyovioth and they will see to their passengers dismounting safely before they're lead towards the Grand Hall and out of the cold.

Inside, just as the doors are closed and snow is kicked or shaken from boots, they'll have a short time to glance about before they're greeted. It's a small welcoming party, lead by one Journeyman and an Apprentice and as they approach, the Journeyman is the one to make the formal greetings, inclining her head to both riders first before her gaze settles on the Candidates. "Welcome to Harper Hall! Always a pleasure to welcome Fort Weyr to visit, as well as the promising Candidates. Come in, come in! You'll have to excuse the business. Mornings always are here!" she says with a broad and warm smile, one that slips a little when R'oh and Lin murmur quietly to her. "Oh? Well, I suppose…" She can be heard muttering, only to glance to the Apprentice at her side. Then she exhales, nodding stiffly. "Alright. I'll have you follow me. Apprentice Rayathess? Please see to the Candidates and that they tour the accessible parts of the Hall." The Journeyman signals to the two Wingriders then, who pause only to give one final reminder (or warning) to the Candidates to behave and that they won't be 'gone'. They'll know if there's trouble! And then they're gone, leaving the Candidates in the hands of Rayathess, a young man who looks far too old to be an Apprentice and yet wears the knot. "Morning." he greets a touch stiffly and awkwardly.

Polana is quickly coming to learn that excursions aren't always fun stuff. Sure, the trip to the dolphin hall was fun enough, at least until the awkward stuff involving the water bucket at the end. But the trip to techcraft was nothing short of chaotic, and there's no telling how this one will turn out. But it starts the same way these things always do, with one terrifying trip between. Today she is with unfamiliar riders, which actually is a bit of a relief to her. No one to be judging her before she even does anything. As Polana dismounts from the dragon she glances around in annoyance at the bustling of the hall. However, she holds her tongue, instead silently following the riders over to the hall. Oh, look, she's a 'promising' candidate. Clearly someone doesn't know her very well! As the riders say something to the journeyman before leaving her in the hands of an apprentice Polana's eyes widen. Oh, and it's not any apprentice they leave her and the other candidate's with, it's Rayathess, the former heir that had seen her little semi-fight with Solan at the dance. Well, this is going to be fun. At his awkward greeting Polana nods before murmuring, "Rayathess." Then, in an attempt to kill the awkward before it can spawn, she blurts out, "if you impressed might you become Ra'th or Ray'th? Because that could be confusing…

Oh, some may know of Polana's reptutation! The two Wingriders did, but they're a type not to make obvious light of it and give her a chance. ONE chance! They may not be there looming over her shoulders or hanging in the background, but they've ears and eyes a plenty in the Hall. All Candidates are 'promising' though the Journeyman may not of known how ironic that statement was. To her, it was a formal enough greeting. Not that that matters now, as the Journeyman has led the two Wingriders away and they've disappeared up one of the stairwells, leaving poor Polana and the other Candidates to their fate. "Apprentice Rayathess," Rayathess corrects, only to clear his throat and give a slight nod of his head as he smirks, "Though I suppose we could drop the formalities. You're Polana, right?" Looks like he might not recall all the details of that day of the dance or if he does, he's playing the oblivious card. Brows lift at her awkward blurted statement and he snorts, but his mouth quirks into a vaguely amused smile. "Neither and none. I'm not ever to be a Candidate. I'll be too old in a few Turns and I've… other priorities." he points out dryly, while gesturing for her and the other Candidates to follow. Time to switch subjects! "Is this your first visit to Harper Hall?"

If Polana knew that the people of the hall are indeed aware of her reputation she would have thrown her arms up in the air and let out a overdramatic groan. But she is, thankfully, no mind reader and so she has no idea. Really, Polana being a mind reader would be a complete and utter disaster. But that's besides the point. She raises an eyebrow when Rayathess corrects her, using his formal title. It really is quite a mouth full, and why anyone would want to use that instead of their normal name she has no idea. Shards, she doesn't want to use it to address him! Lazy mouths and all. But thankfully he says they can drop the formalities, getting a sigh of relief and a grin from her. When he asks for clarification on her name Polana nods before saying, "yep, that would be me." She begins to open her mouth as if to argue at his statement that he will never be a candidate only to apparently think better of it and close it. Instead she follows him while saying, "yeah, never been here before. I wanted to come here though!"

It's probably for the best that Polana doesn't argue with him, as Rayathess can prove to be a rather prickly one to debate with — something he obviously will be working on now that he's an Apprentice here at the Hall. Formalities really are only for the beginning of the greetings and he does not expect to keep using the titles every time he goes to address her by name. "You've wanted to come to Harper Hall?" he asks, walking at a sedate pace as he begins to lead her and the other Candidates into the large Hall. The further they go in, the larger it becomes and it nears an almost monumental and somewhat intimidating size as it leads into the very heart of the Hall. "Because of it's history or for actual interest in the Craft?" he asks, giving her a curious look while also eyeing the other Candidates following her. Isn't he supposed to be giving a tour? That thought drifts back to him and he clears his throat, looking a touch sheepish. Why did they saddle him with this? He's still new enough to the Hall itself!

Oh, Polana can be rather good at arguing, even if she tends to leave a little thing called 'logic' out of her arguments a good deal of the time. In fact all too often what she says doesn't even make sense. But she tries, and that's… something. Maybe not something good when it comes to arguing but something. She has been been good with formalities aside from the elongated names, she either forgets to say the title or doesn't think the person she's talking to is worthy of the title. If Rayathess had insisted on using titles it is more likely to have been the first scenario than the second. Polana nods in response to his first question, the grin remaining on her face. To the second one she says, "I'm interested in the craft. I like music, you see, and story telling. I'm not sure how good I am at if but I like it." She pauses before asking, "is this the main hall? It's huge!"

Rayathess would only stick to titles in a very formal setting and since these tours are meant to be a little more casual and relaxed, he allows it to drop. Plus, he does get a little irked being referred to as Harper Apprentice Rayathess all the time by everyone. He accepts it, obviously, from his fellow Apprentices here and those of higher rank in the Hall but there are days when the young man just prefers to go by his name and nothing more. So here they are, with him leading a few of Fort Weyr's precious Candidates through the Grand Hall and he skimping a bit on the whole respectful title bit. Rayathess turns to give Polana a long, searching look from over his shoulder and comes to a slow stop as he turns, facing her and the other Candidates but also keeping his side facing one of the walls. "There's more to it than that, you know. A lot more. But I suppose it's a start. " he tells her, lifting one brow up as he regards her with mild interest. "So if you don't Impress, is that your backup plan? You did… what, again in the Weyr prior to your Search?" Seems he doesn't mind prying at her with questions, even if it's not the most polite thing to do but he'll be drawn back to his duty as 'guide' soon enough. Glancing up, he nods his head. "It is the heart of the Hall and yes, it is! You'll find that this is the central portion… Almost all parts of the Hall lead from this place. And if you look up here on the wall…" He'll lift a hand up to point to the paintings hung there. Rayathess has purposely lead them to one of the oldest and probably well known of the names without going too far into Pern's history. The name written on the frame is none other than 'Masterharper Robinton'. "… Lots of history here too."

A small flicker of dread crosses over Polana's face at that long, searching look. Part of her expects to be scolded, thinks that maybe she did something wrong. But how is that possible? All she did was answer a question, how could she have done anything wrong in that? Shards, and she didn't even answer rudely! By her standards she was a picture of politeness. Oh, but it seems like she might have not done anything wrong, for she doesn't end up scolded or otherwise. Instead the apprentice says that there's more to it than that but it is a start. Then there's his question, what did she do before search and what is her backup plan for if she doesn't impress. A frown crosses her face at this question. Polana is silent for a moment, pondering it, before finally responding, "I was a messenger before I was searched, and a drudge before that. I, well, I honestly don't have any backup plan for if I don't impress. I lived in Fort all my life, never was affiliated with a craft. I guess I'll go back to being a messenger." Cue a small, disheartened shrug. When he points up at the paintings the frown on her face gives way to curiosity. Slowly she approaches the wall, but only a few steps. No need to get too close and risk somehow breaking something. Her voice is quiet as she gazes up at Robinton's picture and murmurs, "the harper hall sure has a lot of history, let alone Pern itself. I think it'd take a lifetime to memorize it all."

Rayathess might have reacted in surprise or suspicion if he had half an inkling of all the concern running through Polana's mind at that moment and all caused by his single searching look. Thankfully he remains oblivious, simply chalking it up to either nerves or something close to shyness. This tour is a little awkward, as the young man is still trying to work out just how to be sociable and not offensive in the same breath. He's got a lot of work ahead of him, if he's ever to be a decent Harper! Rayathess' eyes will follow the other Candidates as they drift on a little down the line of portraits, murmuring to themselves over the names, but for now his focus is primarily on Polana. He frowns a little, "You were a drudge? How'd…" She doesn't seem to fit that part in his mind, but he shakes his head. "… Never mind. A messenger then? Good position to hold and an old one too. Why not consider a Craft then, if you don't succeed on the Sands?" he asks, giving her a longer look. "You said yourself you were always interested in the Hall." As she approaches the paintings, he waits patiently and unconcerned by her closeness to the valuable artifacts. They're hung securely and high enough that it'd take a great effort by anyone to do any damage before being caught. Her remark has him exhaling, part agreeing and part amused. "The Hall has been standing for a long, long time. So has Fort Weyr and Fort Hold but you're right. Pern is rife with history, if one knows where to look. And you'd probably not be able to memorize it all. There's enough just here to last a lifetime, without even delving into the archives Landing holds. I'll be studying it all too intimately soon."

If most people knew what went on in Polana's mind most of the time she might as well have a 'suspicious girl' tattoo on her forehead. Mindreading. It really gets people into trouble and, thankfully, does not exist. Being sociable and not offensive at the same thing is a hard thing to do, Polana can attest to that. Honestly, tell one high ranking lower caverns worker that she has a wherry in your hair and you have extra chores for a month. Of course, it turned out that wherry was just her actual hair but Polana, only twelve turns old at the time, had been trying to help. Thankfully she's now a lot more mature than she was at twelve. Possibly. She notices the apparent surprise at her having been a drudge and couldn't help but let out a small snort of laughter. When he finishes speaking she responds, "yes, a drudge. I'm not sure why I was one, guess I didn't do anything to prove I deserved a better position, or they didn't trust me with one. Something like that." Never mind that she got in a ton of trouble before getting her messenger position, which she has been clinging to ever since. She is quiet for a moment before adding, "and, well, I guess I might be a little afraid of leaving Fort. I mean, I I've lived there my whole life, and while I don't have many friends there I have some, and if I came to a whole new place I wouldn't see them again for who knows how long." A small sigh leaves her before she muses, "but it might be worth it in the end." Polana then falls silent for another moment, thinking about what Rayathess said about the history of the hall and Fort. She is still staring up at the portrait as she says, "I know quite a bit about Fort's history, or at least I think I do. I listened to a lot of the stories about the first pass and it's founding, but when Faranth was alive." Another pause before, "studying… you mean reading hides and whatnot?"

Thankfully she's much more mature, or things wouldn't be going as calmly as they are now. Rayathess has progressed a lot from the youth they dragged from the Gold Hill Hold raid, but it's been a very slow going process. At least now he has a reason not to lose his temper so easily! He values his rank as Apprentice, knows how special it is, given his age. He won't botch it or lose it without a fight and that means having to grit his teeth against his temper, no matter how his buttons are pushed. So far though, Polana has done nothing but stir a platonic sort of curiosity in him. The other Candidates are still mingling beneath another portrait, unaware that he is keeping watch on them too. "Ahh, I see." Rayathess drawls to her but the look he gives her next is one of understanding. He held little once in the Weyr as well and if it hadn't been for his family name well… he'd probably not have been afforded the respect he had. Respect he's still unsure if he's ever earned. "But you're… not leaving Fort? Or do you mean the Weyr itself?" he asks her and then falls silent again with a slight frown. Is she touching on a few personal points? One's Rayathess either shares or understands (or both) but will not admit to it. "It is a hard adjustment, but you make friends here. And it's not like you're forever stuck at the Hall. Sometimes you get to leave with a Journeyman if needed. A valid excuse for travel!" He nods then and shrugs his shoulders slightly, "It could be but it's your decision in the end. So you've interest in Pern's beginning then? And yes, studying. Lots of it." He grimaces then, whether to joke or to be serious but he doesn't elaborate before he's gesturing to her and her fellow Candidates. "Come on and follow me, then. I'll show you another part of the Hall." Waiting until they all gather, Rayathess will then move off towards one of the entranceways and after a quick peek inside, he'll beckon them to follow.


Harper Hall - Records Hall
It seems that all of Harper Hall has no ground beneath it. This exspansive room is almost like a cave. Harper Hall above being supported by well placed stone pillars craved from the stone so they are connected to both ceiling and cold stone floor. Hundreds of floor to ceiling bookshelves fill this cavernous room The walls are strung with a multitude of lights, keeping every corner of this maze of information well lit. The entire history of Pern is in this cool dry cavern in some form or another. Somewhere amidst the stacks is a plain wooden door leading to the printing room.


If she has hit some personal points, or maybe he understands what she is talking about, she shows no sign of knowing so. Instead she continues to gaze up at the picture, waiting for him to speak. When he does, saying that he sees, Polana glances behind her just in time to see that look of understanding. A small smile tugs at her lips but she turns her gaze back to the portrait before long. At his question she murmurs, "Fort, the Weyr itself, I don't know. I mean, I imagine that I certainly wouldn't leave the Fort territory for a long while, but I was referring to the Weyr itself just now." So maybe she did know? Or she was just unsure about what she felt. When he talks about life at the hall the smile touches her face again as she says in a voice that is just above a whisper, "that sounds nice. I do like visiting different places, just not staying there for too long." With that she turns back around to face the apprentice. She nods when he asks if she has interest in Pern's beginning before silently following him over into the archives. When she arrives her eyes widen and she exclaims, "wow! That's… a lot of records."

"The distance between Fort Weyr and Harper Hall isn't so great, when you really think about it. I travel it regularly." Rayathess murmurs with a vague and crooked smile in return, but doesn't elaborate any further as to why or even how he manages. No doubt the former Stonehaven heir has his ways! "There are some perks to being an Apprentice here. Not sure if it works the same for the other Halls… but I think if I wasn't permitted some freedom here I'd not have signed on. It's difficult enough being away from the Weyr." he admits. So he DOES understand her to a degree! Allowing Polana and the other Candidates to step past him into the Archives, he will follow along behind them though sticking closest to her since she's been the chattiest of the bunch. "Stick close, alright? And keep your voices lowered," Rayathess explains and promptly hushes his own voice to one that isn't whispered but simply held at a respectful level. "It's a labyrinth in here. If you want to look at something, ask me first and try not to disturb those working or we'll all get flayed for it. And for Faranth's sake, don't get lost!" That'd not look good on his records, that's for sure! To Polana, he chuckles dryly. "What'd you expect, for the Harper Hall archives? Kind of puts Fort Weyr's to shame, doesn't it?"

Polana listens as he explains that the distance between Fort and the hall isn't much, a slight 'hmm' leaving her as she does so. Well, there not being much distance is good, very good as a matter of fact. In that moment she decides that if she is going to try and transfer to a crafthall if she is left standing Harper Hall will be the one. She winces slightly before commenting, "I think I would go mad without any freedom. But then again, there was a point where I nearly went mad without any responsibility. I need a balance of the two, I think." At his words about the Harper archives putting Fort's to shame she chuckles before exclaiming, "I'll say! It looks like there's a record for every day of every pass in here. I could probably start reading and never come out." Ignoring that fact that she isn't particularly literate.

Rayathess eyes Polana when she mentions almost going mad without her freedom or without responsibility, his gaze narrowing as he appears to scrutinize her more closely. So far he's finding her rather confusing, if not perplexing, but he chalks it up to knowing so little of the Candidate — something he's content to leave just as that. "Balance is always a wise choice," he murmurs and then chuckles. "You'd not be far off from that. Like I warned, you can get turned around. Come on, we better catch up to the others. I'll show you as much of the Archives as I already know and then we'll go see the Performance Halls and the classrooms if I can gain permission." He'll gesture then for Polana to walk ahead and join her fellow Candidates, while he takes up the rear again and explains all he knows about the Archives and the Hall itself, what those many, many hides and scrolls and records contain. Eventually, they'll have to leave and he will bring them to the Dining Hall first, to refresh with some food and drink while he scopes out a Journeyman or Master to inquire about other parts of the Hall he can lead the Candidates too. It is not meant to be, however, as R'oh and Lin return then with the Journeyman from before and it seems the two Wingriders are there to collect all the Candidates and rotate them out with the group sent to Healer Hall. Rayathess can only say his farewells, the matter entirely out of his hands and not left long to ponder over it before he's snagged by his own duties. Back to studying for him! And if he's envious of the 'freedom' those Candidates have well, he hides it well!