Who F'inn, K'zre
What Yas and Nymionth's plan works. Kez and F'inn talk it out.
When Summer-Autumn - Month 8 of Turn 2718
Where Bathing Cavern, Fort Weyr

finn_default.png kez_default.png

Fort Weyr - Bathing Cavern
A high, domed ceiling stretches far overhead, voices echoing in the distance. Warm, moist air fills the room, coming from the variety of pools scattered about. Vines have been planted in baskets and grow up the walls, thriving in the soft artificial light provided by glows placed at random intervals about the room.

F'inn has no idea that the dragons are up to anything. Which really? Given who he is? You'd think he'd know better than /that/. Whatever the case, he'd made a beeline for the baths as soon as he was relieved from the infirmary. With Nym otherwise occupied, disrobing was quick and painless, his boots, belt and clothes tucked into a bin before he'd immediately stepped into a hot bath. And, while he had intended to go for a quick wash and off to nap? Napping had proven more sneaky then he'd like and in short order, his head has lolled back on the ledge, eyes closed and he was out. Fortunately, F'inn doesn't snore and he'd managed to spread his arms along the ledge in a fashion that keeps him from immediately slipping under the water.

F'inn can be forgiven for not knowing the dragons are plotting things. Nymionth appears to be much more level-headed and reserved, much less inclined to giving things away. But Yasminath? Other than saying the words « We're up to something! » she's basically announcing her intentions to the world. Certainly, K'zre is suspicious. He cast the pair of dragons a long, long look as he passed by the lake on the way to the caverns. But it would not have crossed his mind to believe that they were plotting together to put him in the same room (in the BATHS no less!) with F'inn so they could hash it out. By the time he's stepping through the lower caverns, pinching at the front of his shirt, avoiding eye contact and seriously lamenting his decision not to at least get a quick rinse in the lake before heading into populated areas, he's all but forgotten that he should be suspicious. The lure of hot water and soap has him shedding layers eagerly, sparing not even a glance for the rest of the room. Clothing tossed and boots left by the door, it is only once he is stepping into the water that he even notices there is another person in the baths with him. And it is only once he more or less submerged and realizes that person is asleep (and therefore, he feels confident enough to spare a longer look for him) that he realizes who it is. The shock that rings through him is echoed by giggling glee in his head, which has him groaning aloud and rubbing a wet hand over his face as he realizes that this is, apparently, the mysterious plot having been conspired while he toiled in the stables.

That groan inspires a snort from F'inn, the snort serving to startle him awake in a fashion that has him slipping under the water before erupting upwards with a flailing gasp and wide eyes. "What?" It is not the best way to wake up and for a moment he is disoriented enough that he does not immediately notice K'zre. Course, he's wet and naked and more then eyeful. It is only after everything stops seeming so URGENT that he exhales a breath and sinks back down on the bench. "Drifted off," he chuckles as he turns his head to regard… K'zre. "Oh." There is a hint of forward momentum that might suggest he's about to stand again, but a firm nudge from Nymionth has him both frowning then sighing as he leans back against the edge of the tub. "I had nothing to do with this," he assures in quiet tones.

Once upon a time, K'zre was a healer. And it is that instinct that has him inclined toward F'inn rather than away from him in the midst of all that flailing. Sharp eyes take in the brief struggle and, while perhaps unconscious, most assuredly slide south a bit once Kez is certain that F'inn is not about to fall over and kill himself. And then he's looking away, twisting his body to grab a handful of sand as an excuse to avoid looking at him. There is no comment in response to the explanation. 'Drifting off'. Dangerous thing to do in the water, but Kez seems unwilling or unable to make himself say so just now. Perhaps it is because their last words were not so pleasant, and F'inn has since been avoiding him, that the healer-turned-weyrling is disinclined to offer criticism and caution. But he does offer a nod of his head, eyes cast toward the water as his hands scrub at his hair to give himself something to do. "I believe you," comes after a three second pause, the words almost dry in tone. Yasminath is an overwhelming ocean of delight in the back of his head, so he's pretty darn sure he knows who is responsible. At least those walls are coming in handy, Kez able to block her out before he does something really stupid. Like smile. "You don't have to leave."

F'inn doesn't want to leave. That he has Nymionth in the back of his head absolutely urging him to stay? That makes the whole desire to stay just slightly awkward. Unfortunately, he missed the southern exposure glimpse— that might have encouraged him to relax at least a bit. "Right. Good. Good. Cause I wouldn't lie to you." Which immediately brings their last conversation to mind and inspires a frown to twitching at his lips. Again, it's Nymionth in his head that has him distracted enough to reach for sand and, given his own wet hair, set to work on that. Course, he's paying attention to what Nymionth is telling him, pale blue eyes sweeping toward K'zre as a few things become clear. "Why would you think I'd lie to you…?" As the words are uttered, he leaves off scrubbing his hair.

K'zre might have picked up too much soap. There's an abundance of suds dripping from his fingers and his hair, and while so far it has avoided his eyes, it makes what might be a rather comical contrast to the seriousness of his expression. He's listening, and there's a brief flash of his eyes toward F'inn for all those initial words, and then away again as he works at washing his hair without actually paying a lick of attention to what his hands are doing. Those scrubbing fingers stutter briefly at the question, and when the go back to work with such a vengeance Kez is likely to scratch himself raw beneath them. "I didn't think you were lying." He's pretty sure he knows what F'inn is referring to, and so refrains from asking for clarification. "Not intentionally."

F'inn is listening. He is, in fact, taking Nym's advice entirely and remains utterly silent until K'zre has finished speaking. Still, he's watching him intently. Intently enough that he finally steps over and reaches for K'zre's wrists with the intention of drawing his hands away from his scalp before he can hurt himself. "Then why are you so mad at me," he asks in quiet tones. And, while he has no intention of letting go? His grip is loose enough that he can be easily disengaged should it be desired. Still, there's no concealing the hurt in blue eyes, or the confusion that dances there as well.

The cessation of movement comes before his wrists are taken, fingers freezing just before contact is made. K'zre is frozen, gaze fixed on F'inn as his hands are drawn away to prevent potential damage. His expression is briefly unreadable, a flash of uncertainty before he's swallowing hard and pulling a familiar mask into place. Healer-neutral, even if it's waffling a bit around the edges. It is not the question, but the hurt displayed, that has K'zre's own eyes darting away to settle on something innocuous. Like the bowl of soapsand, or the stone of the tub that contains them. It will be a moment, two, three, even, before he can manage to sort out an honest answer. "I am not angry at you. I was… I was upset," he admits, because that was obvious enough. "I was angry. Confused. I didn't… I wasn't…" A click of his teeth comes as Kez shuts his mouth, and he tightens his jaw against his own inability to adequately explain to /himself/ what it was that made him mad. What is making him upset even now. But Yasminath has settled in her glee, and just as she said she would, she is a soothing presence in the back of his head and helping him sort out what he really means. "I was mad at myself. Am. I am mad at myself."

When he doesn't pull away, F'inn exhales a sigh of relief. He does not, however, let that gaze get away. The moment it flickers off, he tilts his head, stepping firmly into the path of K'zre's eyes. Otherwise, he remains silent, his fingers giving a reassuring squeeze the moment that he notes the locking of that jaw. With Nymionth's warning clearly in mind, he waits for K'zre to work out what he wants to say. When it comes, however, F'inn's brows furrow, the tip of his tongue brushing over his lips. "Why are you mad at yourself?" Even as he asks the question, though, one hand releases K'zre's wrist, raising to catch a dribble of soap before it can get into the healer-turned-weyrling's eyes.

It is likely not possible for K'zre to be any tenser than he currently is. The lack of escape, the unavoidable contact in skin and eyes, has him edgy and stiff. The release of his wrist sees an immediate reach behind him, hand going to the lip of the bath with Kez soon to follow. Seeking escape from F'inn, or the support of solid stone at his back, it isn't clear. What is undeniably clear is that K'zre is in no way comfortable. But he is not avoiding the confrontation at least. Perhaps trying to avoid his gaze. Perhaps trying to avoid the question, or at least taking a helluva long time to answer it. But he is not trying to run. Rapid blinking, despite the swipe of thumb that sees his eyes safe from soap, and shallow breaths come in lieu of words. It is a struggle; Kez trying to figure out his own thoughts and feelings before he can even hope to put them into words. Eventually, there's a shallow shake of his head and a frustrated, "For being… for being confused. I was so /sure/," he argues, frustrated once again. "So sure that… about you… and if that was true then…" His words make no sense. He knows this. He can hear the jumbled nature of unfinished thoughts. And so he closes his eyes. Cutting off the sight of him since averting his gaze did not prove fruitful. "If it was all Nymionth, then I could ignore it."

F'inn does not want to let go of K'zre's wrist but at the same time, he cannot stand seeing him as uncomfortable as he clearly is. That being the case, he does let go, his arms folding over his chest as he forces himself to go back to sitting on the ledge. "Alright." Falling silent for a moment, he scrubs a hand over his own face, reminding himself to remain calm and patient. To make /sure/ that that happens, he sinks beneath the water, rinsing the soap out of his hair before surfacing once more. "Is that what you want then? To ignore it? I mean, it is fine to tell me you are not interested in being more then friends, K'zre. It's not going to piss me off or make me go away." He won't particularly like it, but he's not an asshole.

For a few seconds, Kez just stands there against the stone and breathes. Soap dripping lazily down his forehead and over his temples, eyes closed and hands grasping at the rim. That F'inn has moved away is acknowledged with a tip of his head and a flash of his gaze; a quick peek that finds him for a moment before he's closing his eyes again. This time, it is in response to the sting of soap. One hand flies up to his face swiping furiously at the suds before he ducks beneath the water to be rid of it. It allows him a moment to gather his thoughts and compose himself. And to think of an answer for that last question asked. When he stands once more, free of soap but just as stiff and tense as he'd been when he went under, there's a moment of hesitation before he quietly admits, "I don't know. I don't… thinks so."

"You realize," F'inn points out with a lopsided smile. "That you are kinda looking at me the way you looked at Yasminath's egg?" It's an attempt at humor with the hope that it eases some of the tension wafting off Kez. In the wake of the teasing, he notes in more serious tones. "Can you tell me why you are so tense? Have I done something that makes you think that I might hurt you?" Realistically speaking, F'inn's a lover not a fighter, Kez can probably kick his ass.

"What? I am not!" K'zre might not laugh at the comparison, but it at least gives him pause and throws him off balance enough to get him out of his head for a moment. "I'm not," he states firmly, though he sounds more like he's trying to convince himself than F'inn. But while he might be certain that he is not eyeing the other weyrling as though he were dangerous (when he definitely is), it is a much more difficult task to ascertain /why/ he is so tense and uncomfortable. There is an immediate answer that comes to mind, which Kez does offer because he is Kez and has no problem pointing out the obvious in that, "You're naked." But there is a second half to that question that is a bit longer in being answered. "Not physically," he decides at last. "I don't think… not…" A sigh. A frustrated swipe of his hand across his face. "I'm no good at this. I don't… I just don't know."

F'inn is absolutely naked and doesn't even consider trying to deny it. Instead, he glances down at himself, his brows twitching mildly as blue eyes slide back up to K'zre's face. "I am naked," he agrees. "You are naked, as well." And no one is bleeding. It's the last though that has his arms stretching out along the edge of the tub, his head tilting to the side. "You're fine with this. You think I am going to hurt you emotionally?" In the wake of clarifying the statement, he brushes his tongue over his lips, his expression softening. "We have a lot of time ahead of us to figure this out, you know? Just take your time with what you want to say, I'm not going any where."

A rough sound of protest, impatience or annoyance, comes for the returned observation. K'zre's gaze flashes briefly in irritation and he offers a more clear-cut explanation with, "You're naked. And it's distracting." That he is also naked? Yup. True fact. And one that Kez is rather aware of as well. Despite his weyrbred tendencies toward not really giving a damn about the flash of skin, it's been a heck of a long time since Kez has seen any action outside of his imagination — candidacy and weyrlinghood be damned. Distance at least provides a measure of relief from that source of discomfort. It's the emotional uncertainty that keeps his shoulders tense. "Yes." There's no point in denying it, and there's something rather liberating about hearing it aloud and agreeing. "Sex is easy, F'inn. I've had plenty of it before being Searched. It's… the rest of it. It's…" a frustrated sigh, and he drops to a seat on the shallow stone ledge, legs drawn up as he sort of curls up beneath the water. "What happens when it's not like you expect. Or if you decide you don't want… me, but I want you? Or…" Or a million other scenarios that have played out in his head because Nymionth was absolutely correct in his assessment that Kez thinks too damn much. "You're my friend. You're the closest one I've got."

F'inn remains silent as he listens, pale blue eyes remaining on K'zre's face. To his credit, he manages not to say anything smart assed and, when he is certain that K'zre is finished he nods slowly. "I get it. I mean, it's a risk for both of us, you know? I mean, you could wake up in a month and decide I'm a total idiot and waste of your time. I don't think that is going to happen, though," he adds in matter of fact tones. "For what it is worth, I mean, your gorgeous, don't get that wrong. But I can talk to you and I /know/ that you are always going to be honest with me. That's way more important then sex." F'inn? He's had a lot of sex and while he enjoys it? That's a different (albeit related) thing then what is going on now. "Relationships are always a risk," he admits. "But I mean, I think we're both realistic enough to not be stupid if things didn't work out. Frankly speaking, I feel pretty confident that that would never be an issue. I mean, I'm great, how could you ever stop loving me?" Okay, that? That was meant to be funny.

"People change their minds all the time," argues K'zre. "What if /you/ woke up in a month and decided I wasn't… that I'm not…" But he can't say it, because while he was on a roll to start, it's come to a stuttering stop as his thoughts run wild and he's left trying to corral them into some semblance of order. So he falls back into silence, curled up on the ledge and watching F'inn with a mix of uncertainty and doubt. It is the last that startles him most, a brief moment of shock and then a swift narrowing of his eyes and deep study of the other weyrling before he decides, "You're teasing." And if not, he has at least ascertained that F'inn is not being serious in assuming that K'zre holds such deep feelings at this point in time. And so after another, albeit not as lengthy, pause, he asks, "What is it you want from me?"

"What if I don't," F'inn counters in response to the first. "What if I spend the rest of my life perfectly content with you?" For a moment, he starts to slide closer along the ledge, but the uncertainty in K'zre's gaze has him slipping back to where he started from. It's the last that though that has him really considering the question. "I want you to be open to the thought that there might be more then just friendship here, K'zre." Falling silent a moment, he frowns faintly, one hand raising to push wet strands of hair off his face. "I've had a lot of… well, lovers.. in my life. I want more then that. I'm comfortable with you, you know? I actually like talking to you. I actually care about what you think. I /like/ that we're friends. I like that we can be completely honest without getting our feelings hurt. And when I think about that? I think, if I was going to spend my life with /anyone/? I want to be a person that I can have all of that with."

"That's not… it's too… I can't—" But the words cut off, K'zre's thoughts running away with him once again, tension rising and panic threatening to the point where on the beach, Yasminath stirs and shudders, eyes whirling in mild distress to the influx of emotions that she cannot begin to comprehend. It is for her sake that Kez forces himself to calm down; to shove aside everything else and just think of /her/ until she's settling beside Nymionth and she's reassured that he is alright. She has been tuned in to the conversation, but that does not mean she understands it. A moment. Two. And Yasminath is settled and K'zre is able to revisit the topic at hand. If anything, calming Yasminath has calmed /him/. Enough that he can nod his head in acquiescence and admit that, "There is more," without losing his head over it.

"I'm listening," F'inn points out in calm tones. Of course, he's concerned. How could he not be? The last thing he wants is for this conversation to end with them both walking away from each other, again. That being the case, he makes a point to remain calm, giving K'zre the time he needs to figure out what it is he wants, or needs, to say. He does, however, provide in soothing tones. "You know I'm not going anywhere, Kez? Even if you just want to be friends, that's fine. I'm just being honest with you about what I am thinking and feeling."

A stubborn shake of his head comes before Kez is pressing his forehead into his knees. A few deep breaths, the exhales of which send little ripples out across the water, and he finds his voice again. "I meant I agree," he clarifies, voice slightly muffled. "That there's more. That there could be more." For K'zre, it is a frightening admission. It shouldn't be. He knows that logically speaking, it ought not to be so damn difficult to admit that he can see more between them; that he might even want more between them. No, that he /does/ want more. But while logic tells him it ought not be so scary or difficult a thing, he's still feeling it. A wreck. He's a freakin' wreck, and he knows it. And if he weren't wound so tight right now, he might even have laughed at himself for it. Amputation? Easy. Being in any way, shape or form vulnerable? Utter disaster.

"I'm trying really hard to give you your space," F'inn admits. It's the head on the knees that does it. And he's up and moving over to slide an arm around K'zre's shoulders. "I can't do it." He can't stand seeing the normally confident, utterly self-contained young man so tense. "Listen," he murmurs in soothing tones. "We got a long time to work this out, alright? I.. I'm going to be right here, no matter what happens, Kez. There's no pressure. There's no… I mean, think about it, Kez, our own dragons conspired to nudge us together. That's saying a lot." And Nymionth? He's feeling very smug and proud and goes so far as to croon conspiratorially at Yasminath.

It is certainly not a position that K'zre is accustomed to being in. At least not where someone can witness. But twice now, F'inn has seen him at what Kez would consider to be his worst. Emotional. Uncertain. Raw. And even so there's an attempt to keep himself from showing too much. From utterly breaking apart like he might if it were just him, and Yasminath. That there is no real reason to break in the first place? Beside the point. K'zre's emotions have never made sense to him, and this is no different. But the arm around him helps. The warmth and undeniable, unconditional affection of Yasminath helps. And if nothing else, the desire to not upset her has him pulling himself together. It is the last that inspires words, a skeptical, "Is that what they are doing," offered in a tone that sounds a bit more like himself. A moment later, and there's an awkward, "I'm sorry." Because this? He's pretty darn sure this is not how normal people behave. Yasminath? Well, she has nothing to compare to. Kez is all she's got, and he's absolutely perfect in her eyes. She is also feeling… if not smug, then at least satisfied and relieved that some of the confusion is gone, a huge sigh given as she flops bonelessly beside Nymionth on the beach.

"Nothing to be sorry for, at all," F'inn assures. In the wake of the words he offers his familiar lopsided smile, his head tilting forward to lightly bump his brow against K'zre's temple. "We are in the midst of massive life changes," F'inn points out. "We're no longer just ourselves, everything has gotten bigger, the world, our emotions, our lives, our responsibilities. When you think about it, right now? Right now is the one time that being uncertain and vulnerable is absolutely, utterly reasonable." As for the dragons, F'inn smiles, his hand lightly smoothing over K'zre's shoulder. "They were worried about us. They're fine now. Yasminath, Nymionth and Luna are all cuddled up on the beach." The moment that Yasminath flops, Nymionth nudges the bunny under her head, shifting in closer as he settles on the sand at her side.

Massive life change indeed. K'zre will accept that, and be grateful for the excuse. Even if he offers a somewhat disgruntled, "Then why am I the only one behaving like a fool?" A tip of his head, a slant of his gaze, and he takes in as much as he can see of F'inn's face from that angle. "She was… confused." But he does not want to dive into that again; does not want to try and deconstruct all the ways in which he misunderstood and got things wrong. So Kez leaves it at that, acknowledging the current state and location of their dragons with a slight nod of his head. Slowly, his head lifts. His arms unwind. He lets go of some of that stiffness that had defined him despite the warm water and dark room. "I don't know where to go from here," he admits.

F'inn exhales a snort at the very thought that K'zre is behaving like a fool. "There is /nothing/ foolish about having to learn how to live when you suddenly have your whole heart. I mean think about it, I was sleeping maybe an hour a night for the first few months. You are healer, you know what that could have done to me. We are /all/ trying to adjust to being more then just ourselves, Kez." At the last, his expression softens. "Right now? We go get our dragons, go to the barracks and get some rest. Tomorrow, we go to the living cavern, pack a basket and go on a picnic with them. Eventually? We can go anywhere we please." Oh, he knows what K'zre meant. He has no misunderstanding on that score and he makes that clear when he adds. "We go forward."

Add a New Comment