Fort Weyr - Living Caverns
This cavern, having been created by bubbles in the volcanic flow of this extinct volcano, has a breathtaking ceiling — a vast dome that arches high above the heads of the weyrfolk that scurry around beneath it. A hollow echo can be heard from loud enough noises, and the chatterings of various firelizards are consequently multiplied into a chaotic babble. All in all, the living cavern is a loud place.
Tables are scattered around the room, apparently in no particular order. Over to one side near the kitchens, two medium sized serving tables are constantly spread with snacks, klah, and other goodies. The tables look worn, yet perfectly fitted to the atmosphere of the caverns. In the 'corners' of the cavern, smaller two and four place tables are set up for more private talks or just a less chaotic atmosphere in which to eat.

What time is it? Who cares! It is apparently a time for celebration! Never mind the timing, what with the ill news about the botched undercover work in Southern Boll Hold, the nagging problem with rabbits and Kainaesyth's release of the Weyr's herdbeasts. Maybe it's a good thing to have a little bit of distraction and while the caverns certainly aren't packed, there is a little crowd tucked to one corner. Rayathess sits among them, dressed in his casual clothes but wearing a rather pleased and smug look to his features and holding a large pint of ale. Several platters line the table top, filled with various assortments of finger food and goodies. Some of which Laurali is helping herself too, though the newly minted Journeyman Healer seems far more quiet than Rayathess.

Ezra is there as well, of course, drinking an ale and chatting away. "I /told/ you they'd promote you soon," he says to Rayathess with a grin. "They'd be stupid not to." His arm is slung over Laurali's shoulders, and he flashes her a warm smile. "You too," he murmurs. "And now…" Now all sorts of things are going to happen. "I wonder when they'll recall Sarah back to the Hall…"

Abigail hadn't caught word of the celebration until she was basicly wandering into the cavern that is. Not that she was coming inside for such thing honestly. Her pale gaze drifts over the room, taking in the little group off to the side, and knowing the few there she has to at least go and give her congrads to as it is a good thing to have such a promotion after all.

"Yeah, well… It was still hard to keep waiting and guessing!" Rayathess mutters but his grin is easy going as he lifts his mug in a half-toast and takes another sip. There's a snort, "You think so? I figured they just enjoyed seeing me squirm and wait." he teases, careful to keep his voice lowered just a little bit.

Laurali's cheeks colour faintly for Ezra's words and she returns his smile. "Sarah will stay on with me for a little longer yet. See that I am properly settled." she informs him quietly. It's when she gazes back out towards the caverns that she notices Abigail approaching and offers a welcoming smile. Rayathess waves, recognizing the Wingleader. "Good day to you!" he greets, in rare good mood and form. "Care to join us?"

Ezra laughs. "Well that's probably true also," he replies to Rayathess with a wink. "But now…now you can be posted at Stonehaven!" Right? That's something to drink to. He looks back at Laurali, kissing her cheek gently. "Would you-" but he stops that question, instead beckoning to Abigail. "Hey!"

Abigail offers the little group a warm smile along with a nod. "Good day to ye all as well. Thank ye for the offer but I don't wish to intrude. I wanted to come and offer my congratulations to ye Rayathess on the promotion." She looks to Laurali. "To ye as well of course. Always a good day for such things."

Rayathess waves a hand dismissively, "You're not intruding, Abigail! And thanks. Seriously though, sit if you have a moment? The caverns are open to all and we're just kind of having a pseudo little celebration here. More the merrier!" Right? "And maybe if I get enough ale in me, I'll play something." Chuckling, he sips a little more of his drink and motions with a hand again for the Wingleader to seat herself. To Ezra, he grins, "You know I've put in my request!" So they'll find out?

Laurali smiles shyly to Abigail, "Thank you, Wingleader. It is, isn't it? Has the day been going well for you?" she asks, only to turn back to Ezra and blush a bit for the kiss. "Would I what?" she pries. Currenly she is sitting at a table with Ezra and Rayathess and there is an air of celebration to their corner of the caverns. Platters of food line the table and there's a general feel of open welcome to any who venture into the living caverns.

Ezra laughs. "You'd better play something, Journeyman," Ezra teases his big brother with a wink. "Sit, Abigail! There's plenty here, join us!" Looking back at Laurali, he shakes his head. "Later," he whispers, giving herk nee a gentle squeeze.

A young short stranger walks into the Living Cavern, his stomach giving a decidedly un-genteel loud rumble. "Oh, excuse me." The voice is soft and deep and sounds as if it would come from a much larger and older man. He walks over to the food area and carefully gathers a plate full, before grabbing a mug of drink. He looks around pensively, his eyes flicking to and fro… looking for a spot to sit.

Abigail smiles and nods to the talk of sitting. "Sure, I can stay for a bit I'm sure." This said while she settles upon a seat, her arms settles upon the table. "Aye, that is correct." This said to Laurali. "It has been well, no problems come to mind so I don't worry about such things." Other then she is chasing after some lost herdbeasts to try and round them back up in the morning. She never was well with that, hunting is a bit more her leage really. She glances up to a new voice and offers a nod of her head.

"Wonderful," Rayathess flashes a quick smile to Abigail and then waves a hand over the many platters of food. "Help yourself too! Got plenty to snack on here. Thank him for the generosity," He juts a thumb over to where Ezra is sitting. Is it true? Could be! Finishng the last of his ale, he signals a drudge for another while chuckling to his brother's teasing. "Hey now! Be nice. You know the warnings of what happens to cotholders who don't pay due respect to a Harper, right?"

Laurali gives Ezra a puzzled look but doesn't question him further and turns her attention back to Abigail. "I'm glad to hear things are well. Though I hear about the herdbeasts and… rabbits, is it?" she asks softly and following the nod from the Wingleader, she spies Giroux and offers a little wave. Plenty of empty seats their way!

Ezra grins. "Hey, it's not every day your brother and your girlfriend get promoted to Journeyman!" Then he laughs, trying to kick his brother under the table. "No. Remind me," he teases. "Things good here then, Abigail? I saw some rabbits hopping by and kids running after them when I was coming in here…"

"I've never heard of that either. At least not at our Hold." Giroux says aimiably as he hears the conversation as he approaches. "Do you mind some company? You seem a jovial lot, and a smiles are the best form of currency." That's brokered with a smile of his own as he nods his head to those in attendence. He sure doesn't talk like a young man, either.

Abigail looks amused at the two brothers before glancing over to Laurali. "Yes… The they are proving a bit troublesome. I'm use to hunting beasts not rounding them up I must admit." She looks amused at the talk of the rabbits. "The rabbits are still around, I have a feeling we will be keeping them around for some time now. Not to mention the tunnelsnaks will now be all over the place." At the offer to help herself she will be picking up a mug of ale for certain. "Thank ye Ezra." Is offered for the snakcing and drinking. "How have ye lot been?" She's not actually talked to Rayathess or Ezra for some time now, well actually since Ha'ze was arrested.

Rayathess grunts softly as he's kicked under the table and shoots his brother a quick glare that turns into a crooked smirk. "I suppose not! And what, you haven't?" His attention turns to Giroux now and he chuckles. "Don't mind at all! Take a seat, get comfortable. If only the world worked on smiles! Then we'd all be rich, wouldn't we?" he mutters and gives the newcomer a curious look over. "Not Fortian, are you?" he ventures to ask a touch bluntly, eyeing the man's knot. "Pleasure or business bringing you here?" Let's hope Rayathess isn't far off the mark or he'll look a bit the fool! "Been well, but busy." he answers Abigail, though she could hazard why!

Laurali frowns, "So it's more difficult then to round up beasts than it is to track and hunt them?" she asks curiously, only to grimace about the rabbits and tunnel snake ratios. "Which means the Weyr will likely see an increase of snake bites. Are there none of those small scrappy canines that can be employed to curb both populations?" As for her well being, Laurali smiles and darts a look to Ezra. "I've been well. Busy. I spend most of my time up in Stonehaven now."

Ezra leans back in his chair, a contented grin on his face as he keeps one arm looped casually over Laurali's shoulders. Scanning the newcommer for a moment, Ezra then leans forward and extends a hand. "Ezra Stonehaven," the cotholder introduces himself. "Have a seat, join us. We're just celebrating Rayathess and Laurali here getting their Journeymen knots finally." Half listening to the conversation Abigail is having with Laurali, he nods. "They should get more of those canines if they don't have a lot already."

Giroux smiles in turn at the gathering as he sits his things down. He reaches out with his left hand to take a drink of his Klah before he sits it back down and turns his attention to Raya. "No, I'm not. I'm going around Pern. Thought I'd start here." He reaches out towards Ezra with his left hand and pauses, switching to his right to shake in the more common place manner. "A pleasure, all of you." His smile is warm and friendly "My name is Giroux, My family's hold is Nerat." Might as well just come straight out with it, he supposes even if he hopes he's left it somewhat vague. "Ah you are? Congratulations. I know, not from experience mind." he motions to his knotless shoulders. "That it's very difficult to reach that level."

"No, but harder to keep the thought of hunting them out of the minds of certain dragons from time to time. Not allowed to harm them, and honestly a rump of heardbeast could make some of them drool." This said with an amused tone at the idea. "Canines is a great idea, which I'm talking to my father on getting a few more to help next time we try again so to speak." She looks to Giroux and tilts her head slightly. "Nice to meet ye. I'm Abigail, Wingleader with Thunderbird Wing. Welcome to Fort."

Both Rayathess and Laurali incline their heads politely as Ezra introduces them and explains the reasoning behind the celebratory nature of their little gathering. "Rayathess Stonehaven, Journeyman Harper… as you've already been told," he muses and offers his hand to Giroux as well. "Ahh, a traveller! And Neratian born, huh? Well… Welcome to Fort! You picked a good time to venture this way. Summer months are always more pleasant." Aren't they anywhere? "Well met, though Giroux. And thank you. It's been many a Turn of patience…"

Laurali will politely nod her head but not offer her hand — partially because they're full of little finger foods! Hey, she's hungry? She chuckles softly to Abigail, "Good point. I guess the dragons would be more interested in taking one down than gathering them. Have they managed to get any back? I thought I saw some in the pastures by the lake but… not as many as before." Blinking, she gives Abigail a curious look and then to Ezra. "Your father breeds canines?" Doesn't Ezra have a canine too?

Ezra gives Giroux's hand a firm shake and smiles. "Welcome to Fort, though Abigail here is really the only one who can truly offer you welcomes. We're from Stonehaven." Obviously. He looks at Laurali, then to Abigail. "I've got some good canines but they're not little ones. They're big herding canines. Wouldn't be very good against tunnelsnakes."

"I'd imagine smaller ones would be most preferable, since the tunnels are quite small." Giroux pauses for a moment after the greetings before he shrugs. "I don't know much about that, however. Our Hold mostly consists of fruit and wood and such." He states, "Thank you all for the warm welcome. I've felt most welcome here." He grins at Rayathess. "Traveller, in my own way, yes." he chuckles and eats some, looking to the others. "Two siblings and two friends."

"Smaller canines would be good for the tunnels, the ones for the beasts are bigger for sure." Abigail says with a slight nod seen at the idea of it. "My canines can help, just I have two now so I wanted to get a few more from my father so they can work with one another easier when herding." Though really this is more a D'ani thing, she is just helping.

Rayathess smiles crookedly and as a drudge returns finally with another pint of ale and water (or other drinks) for everyone else, he'll lift the glass and tip it to toast Abigail. "There's your answer, Giroux. Small tunnels and warrens and you need a small canine." He gives Giroux another curious look. "Sounds like a profitable Hold! All good exports, those goods."

Laurali politely listens to the conversation, a small smile still curving her lips. She shakes her head to Ezra, "Guess not but… maybe you can loan them to help with the herding? Not… that I mean offence to Fort though or your father, Abigail!"

Ezra studies Giroux for a moment. "Are you Blood?" he then asks, searching for a knot. "It'd make sense…maybe Fort should import small canines just for the time being to help with both the rabbits and the tunnelsnakes." Looking to Laurali, he nods. "Perhaps, though…herding cows isn't that hard. Not like they can hide from you."

"I'm me?" Giroux answers in a cryptic response. "It is, rather so. My Father does well, as do my brothers." He turns his attention back to Ezra and gives him a small smile. "My father is Lord Holder, yes." He says. "Don't hold that against me, please."

Abigail peers over at Ezra and Giroux at the bit on blood and the like but she isn't to knowledge of it before she smiles to Laurali. "No offence taken in the least." She offers before sipping at her drink.

Rayathess's eyes focus on Giroux again when he gives a cryptic answer before the truth and the quirks a brow. "Why ever would we hold it against you? Unless you're shamed to be of Blood?" he says softly, careful to keep his voice lowered and thus Giroux's "secret" exactly that. "Dunno about you three, but I think it's time for a bit of music?" He's two ales in and feeling generous now! Leaning over, he grabs his guitar and sets it in his lap.

Laurali looks relieved when Abigail assure her no offence was given and then she laughs softly, "Anything can hide in a forest, Ezra?"
Ezra's brows lift at Giroux's answer, giving him a puzzled look. "Are you ashamed of it?" he asks, a bit bluntly. "You're not heir I assume." Otherwise he wouldn't be traveling. Then his attention is pulled to Laurali again. "Oh, they got to the forest? That's odd, wouldnt the guards stop them trying to go through the tunnel?"

"No, I am not. I am an heir, but I'm third." Giroux gives a small laugh at that. "You've got to understand. People treat me differently when they find out I'm the son of a Lord Holder. I just want to be me, not a title I may or may never hold." He states and takes a long drink of his Klah. "I'm glad that you wont." That smile is genuine and thankfull. "It's a shame that the firelizards aren't larger, they could hunt the problem."

Dtirae is late! Fashionably late! Still, the goldrider strides in easily with leather wrapped parcel in her arms. Grey eyes are scanning and then finding her target. There is a moment of hesitation but she is nodding towards those she passes politely before moving to settle near Rayathess, a polite distance away. "Rayathess." Another nod to those closer towards the man.

"Depends on the firelizard. My gold likes to hunt, along with my brown. Still they can only do so much." Abigail offers at the idea of the lizards helping. "They pull the bronze and they all go hunting. She looks over to the new voice and smiles. "Dtirae, nice to see you again." She hasn't spoken to the goldrider since she has returned and it was good to see her.

Laurali frowns again, "Seems… silly to treat you differently because your a Lord Holder's son. I mean, you have to expect some level of respect from others but… Do they really behave that odd, some of them?" she asks of Giroux. To Ezra, she laughs again and gives him a crooked smile. "You try to stop a stamped of herdbeasts, Ezra… I bet the Guards had their hands full trying to get folks out of the way of them!"

Rayathess has begun to strum and tune his guitar quietly, keeping one ear on the conversation and snickering for the correction Laurali gives his brother. Then there's a familiar voice and he looks up, looking both surprised and pleased to see Dtirae there. "Welcome, weyrwoman Dtirae! Come to join us?" he muses.

"They do, yes." Giroux says to Laurali before he turns and stands when Raya mentions the Weyrwoman. He gives her a half bow and smiles warmly to her. "Ma'am." He states before he looks back to the others. "I understand gruding respect, but give that to my father, not me." He says, giving a small shrug.

"Abigail! It's good to see you, as well." The goldrider smiles to Abigail, widely before she is quieting so not to entirely disrupt the conversation at hand. She's not butting her way into it, only listening. Dtirae looks to Rayathess and grins, "of course. I had to come tell you 'I told you so'." Her grin only grows a touch wider. Giroux is given a polite nod and a bright smile. "Greetings."

Laurali shakes her head, "That's a shame but… I can understand how one's past and bloodline can lead to unwanted attention." There's a faint grimace but it soon returns to a smile, one of which she offers in turn to Dtirae. "Weyrwoman," she greets politely.
Rayathess snorts and laughs dryly for Dtirae's remark and smirks, "Alright. You and Ezra both have told me that today!" He gets it! Another strum of the guitar and he looks at the assembled group. "Any requests?"

Ezra laughs at Laurali's remark, shaking his head. "Alright, point. Well if they're in the woods I'd say they're not going to come back." "Ma'am," he says as he finally notices Dtirae seated near his brother. "Good to see you again." Then another curious look to Giroux. "Ah."

Giroux sits back down as Dtirae nods at him before he nods to Raya and Ezra. "Anything would be nice." He tells the Harper before he says "It's just frustrating, not bad." he tells the man. "My name is Giroux." he introduces himself to Dtirae.

"Well, you needed to hear it." Dtirae retorts. Grey eyes go distant after a moment, but the woman visibly tenses and clutches tighter to per parcel. She then rises, without warning and moves closer to Rayathess. "I've a gift for you, but, I can't stay. Would you join me?" A desperate look is given and then she addresses the table. "It was a pleasure to see you all. And well met, Giroux." And then to Ezra. "And it was nice to see you again, Ezra. Perhaps we'll talk more later." She smiles and then, strides towards the bowl with a brief glance back before she departs.

Heading into the living caverns with a yawn is Briari. She is dressed in a neat, clean blue tunic with a hint of gold trim along the fabric. As she spies some of her fellow Harpers, she lifts up a hand and wiggles her fingers curiously.

"Careful now to request 'anything' from a Harper," Rayathess muses to Giroux and then turns his attention back to Dtirae. He frowns faintly, "You can't stay? Duties? I… right now?" Something in the way she behaves has him concerned but this is also a weyrwoman asking him to join her. Could he really refuse and not be rude? Probably. Yet he hesitates, torn, as he shoulders his guitar. "If it's urgent? Hey… wait, Dtirae!" Now she's striding away and he can only cast his brother and the others a swift apologetic look. "Sorry! I'll be back." No he won't. Once he's out in the bowl, it'll all make perfect sense! He passes by Briari, returning her wave hastily before catching up with Dtirae.

Laurali chuckles, "Who's to say they're not going to bring the herds back?" she teases Ezra, only to blink as Dtirae and Rayathess beat a hasty exit. "… wonder what that's about."

Ezra also looks curiously after Dtirae and Rayathess, and the young cotholder is frowning a bit. "Huh." It'll only make a /little/ more sense to him later. Then he'll be grumpy.

Giroux looks rather and completely lost at this point where he shrugs a bit. "Something I said?" He tilts his head to the side as he looks around "I wonder." He shrugs.

Laurali looks as equally lost and can only shrug her shoulders helplessly. "No, don't think so. And I'm sure we've all bathed recently. I just hope everything is alright? The weyrwoman looked tense." she admits softly, reaching for a small bite of food. "Pity. I was hoping to hear Rayathess play. He so rarely does on his own."

"Wonder if I had anything to do with that." Giroux taps his finger against his chin thoughtfully. He pushes the food away, mostly uneaten. "Hmmm." He sort of grumbles. "What do you think is going on, then?" He says.

Ezra looks around with a furrowed brow, and it's then that a bluerider strides past muttering about a flight. "Oh shards and shells," Ezra says, standing abruptly. "Kouzevelth is going to rise. Gold flight. Laurali," he reaches out to take her elbow and try to pull her to her feet. "We need to go. Uh…you…" Giroux. Did Ezra ever hear his name? "I suggest you find somewhere to lay low, unless you'd like to end up sleeping with some random person."

"Where am I supposed to go?" Giroux asks, standing with the others as he looks around confusedly. "I don't live here. I don't have a room it's a large hall." He states, motioning to some of the lower caverns. "So, uh?" He rubs the back of his head.

Kiard comes out of the lower caverns, just as Giroux is motioning in that direction. He is not so much walking as strutting, with one hand on the handle of a small knife belted at his waist. It's a new knife — well, new to him, not brand new in general — and he seems very proud of its recent acquisition.

"What?" Laurali exclaims softly, blinking as Ezra grabs her elbow and she's slow to push to her feet. "How do you know which gold? And how is it so fast?" she mutters, looking confused. "There was always warning before! And honestly, Ezra…" Looking to Giroux, she offers him a sympathetic smirk. "Just find any empty room or even… get out of the Weyr itself if you can. That's what he means by lay low. Gold's broadcast when they rise so folks act funny but you can resist it…" She fails to mention how hard it is to resist but it's doable!

Ezra shakes his head. "Find a room, yeah. Close the door. Find one with a lock if you can." Ezra probably isn't helping the poor guy. "Or find a lady and have some fun. Up to you. Laurali, we have to go." And he tugs on her arm, urgently.

Abigail had been pulled away and there is a rather good reason why. A certain gold, and a certain conversation. To the point that she was 'arguing' with her dragon and left sitting at the table quietly while the others have been left talking. "Dammit…" Is hissed out before she is standing. "I'm sorry.." Is said while she is moving to the door, running even and soon gone.

"A room, where?" Giroux asks. "And who is going to leave the weyr now?" He shakes his head back and forth. "I'm not from here.. it's not like I've an idea where to go?" He looks around. "Hey wait!" He calls out.

"What's going on?" Kiard asks, as he struts further into the cavern. For some reason he gravitates toward Giroux, even though the man seems to have little clue what's going on here and is unlikely to know the answer.

Laurali shakes her head but not because of Giroux's lingering confusion but because she's starting to feel strange. "There's always empty rooms about. Don't matter if it's not yours… folks will understand. Storage rooms work too. Or… yeah, find a partner if that's your choice…" she murmurs. "Good luck. To you too, Kiard!" She recognizes the fellow Healer and her smile may be just a little over bright and warm. Why is she waving to him too? "Gold flight. You'll want to get out of the public eye for a bit… Riders are strange." Finally she gives in to Ezra's urgent tugging, allowing him to haul her off wherever he's decided to hide until the gold flight is over.

Ezra just looks exasperated. "Figure it out!" Those are his parting words as he hauls Laurali down into the lower caverns.

Giroux points to Ezra and Laurali "Ask them, they know. I've no idea what's going on." The young man states. "But apparently we've got to head somewhere safe!" He states before he shrugs. "Sorry, but I'm out of here." He tells Kiard.

Kiard looks a bit disappointed. He still doesn't know what's going on, after all. "Um, bye," he says, and then shrugs. He can just wander off too, and explore, now that his healer chores are done for the day. Freedom!