Who Kezresan, Phineas, Aignes
What No kitkat bars, but plenty of snacks as Finn, Kez and Aignes all play hookie.
When Day 25 of Month 2 of Turn 2718
Where Fort Weyr - Scenic Overlook * Sheltered Cavern

Fort Weyr - Scenic Overlook * Sheltered Cavern
// To get to this room first you must walk up a long and perilous staircase, and move through a sturdy wooden door. Once you do that, however…
Distinct bands of deep brown and black work their way across the low ceiling, and act almost like columns along the sides of this room. The stone has been polished to a high sheen, perfectly smooth as it follows the natural contours of this cavern. Thin gauzy panels of fabric have been hung from ceiling to floor in cascading complementary colors. The fabrics roll and flutter beneath the invisible air currents which occasionally push their way into the cavern. Nestled coves of curving benches and pillow piles can be found stashed in the semi-private coves between the waving fabrics. Light filters through the thin fabrics, creating a surreal if peaceful daytime scene while lit from a few spots unobtrusive along the ceiling at night. At the back of the cavern are two heavy wooden doors while farther forward it looks like there is a larger opening.

Chores are totes overrated. Especially when those chores involve kitchens, or gutting things or washing dragons in the dead of winter! Seriously. Who wants to bathe a dragon in the FROZEN LAKE. Not Aignes (probably). And who really wants to be gutting dead things with their bare hands?! Not Phineas (probably). And Kez? He definitely doesn't want to be in the kitchens, sweating his… stuff off turning that spit again. As far as the healer-turned-candidate is concerned, he's totally done his time in the kitchens. And what does cooking have to do with baby-dragon raising anyways?! Nothing. That is the argument he's gonna stick with, and why he feels totally and completely justified in tucking himself away and literally hiding from the world. Nestled amongst a copious pile of pillows, Kezresan has a blanket and a book and is pretty content to call this day a win. Hibernating works for the bears, why not candidates?

Aignes probably doesn't want to bathe a dragon anywhere. Considering the amount of wool she had in what passes for a "swim suit", it's probably understandable. And so Aignes flees as far away from the lake and the eggs as her feet can carry her while still being within the realm of the Weyr. Only so many rules should be broken at once after all. She doesn't even really have time to catch her breath after fighting those perilous staircases before letting out a rather confused sounding "Ooooohhh," Upon spotting another renegade candidate. Judging by the blanket and book in her own hands, similar plans here. Very similar plans.

Finn? Definately not down the gutting. Not that he can't do it. He just prefers to avoid killing things when he can. He's filled a basket with food from the living cavern. And, remarkably, it is NOT all sweets. In fact, there are a number of fruits and veggies, cheese, breads and meatrolls for those disinclined with sugar. Naturally, there is a /platter's/ worth of sweetrolls, three thermos of Klah, napkins, plates and forks for the picky folks. Rather then head directly for the overlook, he took the time (meaning he amused himself) with being stealthy. Stealthy in this case meaning he takes the most circuitous route possible to achieve his goal. "FOOD!" The anouncement is made loudly as he appears around the corner— and no doubt echos in the cavern. Course, he pauses a moment later, one brow twitching as he stares at Kez like he has grown a second head. "You brought a book? There is no reading in hooky, Kez.." Which is promptly followed with a broad smile at spotting Aignes, as well. "Ha! I knew it when you were both missing in action." That being said, he kicks a pillow toward Kez and then another for Aignes before stepping over and dropping into boneless sprawl.

One could argue that Kezresan's job is the exact opposite of killing things. But still, he'd probably have preferred hunting and gutting the food, rather than actually cooking it. So. Hooky it is. But it is Aignes' 'oooooh' that draws his gaze, an unrepentant look in those brown eyes, chin stubbornly set as though he expects opposition rather than company. A quick sweep of blanket and book and it's confusion rather than defense. "You're…" but then there's Finn, announcing his presence and his bounty in one fell swoop. Scowl. "Of course I brought a book!" And in his defense, it is not a medical book. It's probably something with a completely indecent cover likely to make the weaver among them blush scarlet. "She brought a book, too!" he announces, thrusting a finger toward Aignes. But even so, he's closing said book and shoving it amongst the pillows, pushing himself more upright as he eyes Phineas and his basket before sliding back to Aignes. "You can sit," he offers, shoving a few pillows over into a secondary pile. "Plenty of space." As Finn demonstrates, with his sprawl. A long, long look for the potter-candidate, but whatever Kezresan has on his mind, it's decidedly unspoken.

Aignes did indeed bring a book and the only weavery thing about it is the tassle hanging from what's probably a neatly embroidered bookmark. The tassle swings back and forth as she clutches that book to her chest, too distracted by Phineas' arrival to glance at whatever potentially embarassing book the healer-candidate might have. The offer of a seat is met with a quick glance at the pillows before she does settle in on the far side. "Thanks." And there's a bit of glare directed towards Finn's direction at the mention of hooky. "I am not missing in action…" There's only a little bit of pink with that fib. And then an eye for the pic-a-nic basket that Boo-Boo Bear snagged. "Food or cookies?"

"I see that," Finn laughs as he notes the cover. "Interesting choice." Personally, he's not to keen on reading. Unless, of course, he's reading to the kids while playing Nanny. It's Kezresan's look, however, that has him grinning, pale blue eyes twinkling with good humor as he leans back on his elbows. "Soon as I realized you were both 'missing', I grabbed food. Don't worry, I brought things you'd actually eat." Whatever Kez might be thinking is met only with a mild twitch of brow and an inquiring tilt of Finn's head. "Sure you are, Connie," he notes with a wry smile. "Not to many dragons in here needing washing." Course at the mention of food, he leans forward and tugs a thermos and sweetroll from the basket before falling back into a comfortable sprawl.

"A break is necessary," decides Kezresan, "for mental as well as physical health." Which is probably why they are granted a rest day once per seven, but whatever! A little hooky never hurt anyone. And Kez will just ignore any mention of it, even if his ears might be a touch pink. Sigh. "It's fine," notes Kez. "He's clearly also skipping chores." Because there're no fish or game up in this room! At least none that aren't already cooked. It is, in the end, the basket of food and the thermos of Klah that has his attention. His book is nicely secured amongst the pillows, so it's the basket he reaches for. A moment's consideration and he's collecting a plate and piling it with, you guessed it, vegetables. A bit of fruit, cheese and a roll make it on before he settles back to nibble. No fork or knife needed, yet.

Aignes turns a bit more red at being called out on her hooky-dom. "I went to the healers. Headache, you know?" A headache which apparently didn't interfere with being able to climb approximately a million stares to get up here and away from to barracks. "Besides… trying to wash a dragon in this weather?" She shivers. "I happen to like my fingers." And she'll definitely nod along with Kez's excuse that breaks are necessary for mental health even as she inches closer towards the basket and claims a citrus fruit from the basket. No knife or fork needed here either, but she does grab a napkin as well to hold those annoying peel parts.

Phineas says, "Course, I am," Finn laughs. "But everyone expects it from me." Tearing the sweetroll in half, he gestures between Kez and Aignes. "You two? Not so much. Course," he adds as he pushes the half of roll into one cheek. "You can always blame it on me." He's pretty sure that, of the three of them, he's the most believable culprit. Shoving the rest of the roll into his mouth, he falls silent while he opens the thermos, chewing a few times before swallowing it all down. He's amused at their stubborn excuses, though, that much is clear from a glimpse in his eyes. "Makes sense," he finally allows in the wake of swallowing."

"That doesn't mean you have to meet their expectations," snorts Kezresan, pausing between bites of something green and crisp. "You could actually rise above them." But, considering he's currently abstaining from chores, he probably shouldn't be talking about rising above. Another bite, and he slants a glance at Aignes at the mention of her headache, disbelief clear in his expression. But again: also playing hooky! He can't talk. Sigh. A snort, and he decides, "Why would I do that?" of blaming it on Finn. "If someone asks, I'll admit the truth." But he's kinda hoping no one will notice. "I just need a break."

Aignes continues to ignore any of those disbelief glances as she calmly peels that orange. "I guess you can't get nanny duty every day. I just wish it hasn't felt like all I do is muck and scrub lately." She gives a bit of a wistful sigh for pretty much any other chore. As for Finn's offered excuse, she shakes her head. "And nobody is going to ask." She hopes, although there is quick glance over her shoulder to check for any possible lurking weyrseconds or weyrlingmasters. They're some sneaky folks.

Phineas shrugs, twisting to pull another sweetroll from the basket. "Why ruin a perfectly good track record," he points out as he tears it in half. "I have nothing to prove." It's the last that inspires a mild shrug for. "Suit yourselves." Frowning faintly, he lapses into silence, tearing chunks off the roll and mashing it into balls before popping the balls into his mouth.

It takes the consumption of at least two veggies before Kezresan thinks to say, "Thank you," for the food. Because he's definitely enjoying it. And it's definitely polite to say thanks. A glance for Aignes comes as acknowledgement, a flicker of a frown in agreement. "I feel like an apprentice again," he decides. And that's not a terribly pleasant thought, judging by the grimace and the very quick *chomp* taken of his next unsuspecting vegetable. "Except that we're not learning so much as… doing chores. Do you suppose," he muses, picking at a broccoli floret, "there are lessons meant for candidates, or just endless chores?"

It only takes Kez's thanks to spur Aignes into remembering her own manners. Unfortunately, that also happens to coincide exactly with when she took the first bite of an orange segment and so she holds her hand over her mouth as she chews. Once clear, a hastily muttered "Thank you." follows and then a shiver at the mention of apprenticeship. "No alcohol. Endless chores. Plenty of judgement. Nightly snoring… seems about right. Sometimes if I look hard enough, I can sort of see some lessons but on days like today…" Days like today drive even TWO workacholics to skipping.

"Endless chores," Phineas decides with a snort. "A lot of busy work to keep us distracted." Polishing off the roll in hand, he takes a long swallow from his thermos before stretching his legs out. "If you think about it, lessons would be a bit pointless. Why waste all that time teaching us things that most of us will not need to know." Pausing a beat, he glances at Kez and raises the thermos in a salute. "You're welcome." When Aignes chimes in, he flashes an easy smile. "It's' no big deal, I was nicking sweets anyway." So in the end, it all works out.

A shake of Kezresan's head, though the protest comes mildly when he says, "It's how we earn our keep. I just don't understand why I can't earn it doing what I've been doing since I got here…" Grump. "I am a healer, and a damn good one. I will do my duty and Stand for the eggs, but I don't understand why I can't—" but he stops before he can really get going, and the next bite is entirely too aggressive for that poor veggie. Rapid chewing, and then a quick swallow, before he concedes with a muttered, "True. Only six of them are going to walk away with a dragon. Why bother training them early?" Logical, even if it has him looking briefly cross. "On days like today," finishes Kez, "I wonder why I said 'yes' in the first place."

"I can at least pretend while I'm assigned things like laundry or working on my robes," Aignes shrugs in between bites of the fruit. "And the exercise regime I can halfway understand…" Because really, the girl's got noodle arms and if anybody saw her in anything except skirts, her noodle legs would be equally exposed. "It's like what, a thirty percent chance of it actually happening? twenty?" Not like anybody is counting. There is a bit of a wry smile to Phineas. "And since you stole fruits and veggies, clearly this was a chore."

Phineas has been wondering that for days now. Course, his response comes in the form of a shrug. "Got me," he admits. "Although in your case? I'm willing to put marks on cause it's your duty. I," he adds as he takes another swallow of klah. "Still think Varmiroth was just tweaking Kimmila's nose with me." Which while funny? He can't help feeling like he's the butt of a joke that is going to end up costing him marks and time in his craft. "You keep saying 'them' like you think you don't stand a chance," he points out to Kez. "Exactly," is added to Aignes with a wry smile.

"I'm just being realistic." It comes with a gesture toward Aignes as Kez adds, "As she said, twenty percent chance. So really, I don't." Stand a chance. And that is the argument he will stick with, polishing off a final bite before he goes for the fruit on his plate. "I don't mind the exercise," he admits, rolling a bit of fruit between his fingers. "I don't think dragons play games like that. But, I don't know Varmiroth." A squint at Aignes, and he wonders, "Who Searched you?"

Aignes eyes Phineas like he grew a second head when he mentions having a chance. "Twenty isn't a lot. One in five!" Glass half empty, completely and totally. As the talk turns to who Searched who arises, Aignes polishes off the orange fruit and rummages around until she finds some fingerroot sticks. But when directly asked, she glances up from her plate. "Velokraeth… but now I'm not sure at all why he was wanting me to touch the eggs when they were all…" She doesn't have words for what exactly those eggs were and so just waves her hand helplessly.

Phineas glances at curiously at Aignes at the question, taking another long swallow of klah before setting the thermos down. It's the percentages that have him exhaling a grunt. "That low? I mean, knew it was low, but I didn't…" Trailing off, he waves a hand absently, his head giving a wry shake. One in five. That inspires another mild frown before falls onto his back. "Who knows. I doubt they had any idea the eggs would be so… aggressive? I don't know. I suck at patience," And he's clearly not getting any better as the days go on.

A quiet "Oh," for Velokraeth. Seems Kez doesn't quite know what to say to that. A grimace at the mention of touching eggs, but rather than speak on the matter, he simply takes another bite of fruit. Chew-chew-chew. "Dragons need choices," murmurs the healer. "More candidates, more choices." Just means the odds are not so great for the candidates. "You want to Impress?" he hazards a guess, glancing at Phineas. "Dragons are a lot of work."

Aignes shrugs to Phineas. "I don't know… that's just a guess if they keep bringing in candidates at this rate? Is thirty candidates a usual number? twenty?" She really has no idea at all. Someone should probably count how many cots are actually in the barracks. "Are they always so agressive? The eggs?"

Phineas snorts as he glances over at Kez. "You're the second one to ask me that in the past two days. I think that that would be pretty unlikely even with better odds. Dragonriders are responsible, serious people." Finn? Clearly he is not. Pushing up to sitting, he cracks his neck before running a hand through spikey blond hair. "Way better choices to be made. Sides, it doesn't matter what I want. No idea," he admits to Aignes. "Care knows way more about that, though. I think this is his second time standing? Maybe third?" He's really not sure.

An answering snort from Kezresan as he counters Phineas with an annoyed, "Not all of them," for those serious, responsible dragonriders. "And I asked… Nevermind." He'll just go back to chewing in silence, frown firmly in place as he stares toward the wall and muses on the odds of dragons and the aggressiveness of eggs. A shake of his head for that because he, likewise, doesn't know. "If they are, you would think the weyrlingmasters would tell us. A warning would have been appreciated," and even now, so long after, there's a small shiver and the lift of his free hand toward his face, mouth and nose and neck before his fingers are sliding free and he's digging into the pillows for his book. A final bite of fruit, and he's pushing the plate back toward the basket with the clear intention of returning the uneaten (and untouched except to select it) roll. "No," he muses, harkening back to something Finn said before. "I guess it really doesn't matter what we want, in the end." A roll to his feet, blanket wrapped over his shoulders, and he issues a polite, "Thank you for the food. I've got to… do something." Maybe. "See you later, Aignes. Phineas." And with that? He's heading for those precarious stairs at the bowl.

Aignes chomps on those fingerroots as she ponders. "They did mention a bit about them being 'unnerving' but followed up with every egg being different." She shrugs. Hindsight is twenty twenty. There's a nod to the departing Kezresan. "I hope he finds something. I think if I stare at the ceiling of the barracks any more, I might go stir crazy." Hence the book and the hiding spot on her 'sick' day.

Phineas lolls his head to the side, his lips twitching in a smirk. "I feel like all I do is annoy him," he notes in wry tones. "I'm /not/ trying to, in case that was a thought." Glancing back at Aignes he considers her a moment before offering a reassuring wink. "It isn't that much longer. And when it's all said and done, you'll either be free to pursue your craft or staring at another barracks ceiling." In the wake of the words, he grimaces mildly. "I am so ready for this to be over. Not that I don't enjoy your company, but… You know what I mean."

"You are not helpful," Aignes rolls her eyes at Phineas as she pours herself some of that klah. "And I can understand, wanting this to be over. Even for people that do get along with most… it's rough being in close proximity so long. I miss my own bed." With a door she can close and only be surrounded by a plethora of half finished works in progress and maybe more than three creepy procelain dolls.

"Sing me that song," Finn laughs. "I am so tired of being woken up by snoring." Pushing up to sitting, he leans over and starts repacking the basket, his familiar, lopsided smile tracing over his lips. "And work. My own work. Although I am going to see about volunteering with the kids a few times a week." He loves that and sees no reason why he can't continue to help out. "So that is something I got out of this, at least."

"At least some of the chores get you tired ennough you can pass out before the snoring starts!" Aignes may find the bright side there. "And it seems like kids, at least the older ones, could like building with clay, right?" She's picturing arts and crafts and probably a mess. What more could a kid want. "I think I should probably go take a nap…" Consider she is playing 'sick'. "Thanks for the picnic." She'll give one last wave before heading off to loiter somewhere else.

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