Harper Hall - Somewhere in the lower levels…
An old and disused room, abandoned and often used by Apprentices as a 'hang out'.

The nice thing about most places on Pern is that there are secrets to almost any Weyr, Hold or Crafthall and the Harper Hall isn't without its fair share. Rayathess has made it his business in the past to sniff most of these 'secrets' out and he's using ALL of them today. The trials have ended and already word is spreading of the verdicts handed down and Rayathess is looking to escape all those prying eyes and the awkward questions. So down those unused halls he goes and one of them will bring him close, if not passed, the kitchens. He's so wrapped up in his own reeling thoughts that he may not even be aware that he's passed someone who will recognize him as he hurries by and slips into that unused room he found as an Apprentice. Either he forgets to lock the door or it doesn't close properly but it'll be open just enough for anyone curious (and stupid) enough to approach to hear Rayathess' muffled voice within. It sounds… like he's crying? Nah, that can't be.

Tyani had to move quickly to avoid Rayathess knocking the tray of bread out of her hand. Frowning as he storms past, the Baker glances up and down the hallway and then pushes the tray off on a drudge before she quickly hurries after the Harper. Down to that room, she tilts her head towards the door. The sound of crying ?? has her startled and concerned, and she pushes open the door and moves inside, closing it behind her. "Harper Rayathess?"

Not exactly wailing or sobbing, but definitely crying… and putting up a good fight to choke it back. Rayathess is facing one of the dusty old bookshelves, weight braced against his arm as he leans forwards heavily, head bowed. It'll snap up fast when he hears his name and he turns equally as abrupt, the back of his hand roughly wiping at his eyes and face. Must. Erase. Evidence. "W-what… are you going here?" he says in a flat but shaky, toneless voice that a startled man doesn't usually utter. If that didn't get the hairs on her neck standing, maybe the way his expression twists, fuelled by grief and anger (and Faranth knows what else) and the cold spoken: "You shouldn't be here!" will.

Tyani pauses on the stairs, her hand on the railing. "What's wrong?" she asks. "What happened?" Grey-green eyes search his face, his expression, brows furrowing. A small shiver runs down her spine.

No, no, no! She's not supposed to be here! Already she's seen too much (how dare he show weakness?). "You shouldn't be here!" Rayathess snaps at her, his voice rising in pitch as he glares at her, eyes dark and troubled. None of her questions are answered. He doesn't want to be pestered right now. Can't she see that? "Get out of here!" he snarls as he begins to storm away from those bookshelves and trying to get out of her line of sight.

Tyani shifts on the stairs, hesitating. But…she hardly knows him. What else can she do? She goes back to the door and turns the knob. Tugs. Tugs again. "Oh shards…" she hisses under her breath. It's stuck. Or locked from the outside. Or something. YANK.

She should have been trapped in a pit with a hungry feline… it would have been kinder. Rayathess is not in a good state of mind and when he can hear Tyani trying to pry the door open, his resolve snaps. He just wants to be alone! Why can no one ever understand that? With a growl, he grabs some of the smaller pillows as he lunges for the stairs and in a fit of irrational rage he'll whip the first one at the poor baker. He doesn't see that the door is stuck, that she's trying to be polite and leave. All Rayathess sees is a pest and an annoyance and someone who Saw Too Much and that just riles him further. Anxieties and paranoia feed into him. What if she talks about what she saw? They'll all snicker at him. Crying over his lost 'love' and foolish enough to love a renegade to begin with. "Get out!" Rayathess shouts from the bottom of the stairs and the first pillow he whipped will miss her and smack the wall beside her. Too close. He winds up with the second, mouth drawn back in an almost wild snarl as he let's his arm swing and the pillow goes sailing through the air… Poor, poor Tyani.

The pillow being thrown has her gasping a quick shriek of surprise as she ducks and whirls to look at him with wide, frightened eyes. That lasts but a moment before they narrow in return anger. "I'm TRYING!" she yells as he flings the second pillow at her. Amazingly (surprisingly?) she catches it and just whips it right back at him. "The door is stuck you crazy fool!" What is WITH him? Crazy, crazy Harper! At this point hell yes she's going to talk about it. Crazy Rayathess yelling and throwing pillows. (At least he's not throwing books.)

Never say never and if Rayathess runs out of pillows and is still in a fit, he will start throwing the books. He is NOT expecting the pillow to be lobbed back at him and so it smacks him good and smartly in the shoulder and knocks him in the face too. It causes him to give a startled yell and then he breaks into a furious string of curses. What can be worse than things being tossed? How about a really angry Rayathess storming up those stairs in alarming speed? Maybe Tyani will wish for him to be at the bottom of the room again and throwing things from a distance. Crazy is right and he's frightening up close. "You should never have come!" he growls menacingly as he reaches out to roughly shove her aside to get to the door. Talk? Pfft. Good luck!

When she's shoved she gasps, looking at him in shock. "You do NOT push a lady!" she yells at him, and tries to shove him back as she also tries to hop down a few stairs. Tries. Fails. Stumbles. Falls. Her foot slips off the step and her ankle rolls, and she has to clutch the banister to keep from falling /all/ the way down as she cries out in pain. "You're an ASSHOLE! I just came to HELP!" Those are totally tears. Totally.

Rayathess will shove whoever he wants! Right now he wants her GONE and FAR away from here. Only she's not going and the door hasn't budged yet and… she's slipping on the stairs. Instinctively he reaches for her, a reflex move to snatch and grab but he moves too slow. She slips and that cry of pain has him flinching away as if burned and he'll draw back at the sight of those tears. Uh… shit! He swears under his breath but something snaps in him again and his wild and irrational state is replaced by a still furiously angry but far more rational Rayathess and a man who is now beginning to feel the first icy touch of guilt. Oh Faranth, what has he done? "… I— I'm sorry, I didn't mean to…" Go crazy? How lame is that and Rayathess just grimaces. No, there's no apologizing for now. He steps away from the door, edging towards her slowly and almost cautiously now. "… please don't cry…" he mutters. Too late, idiot? "Are you hurt?"

Tyani jerks back from him, her eyes wide and…scared. "You're crazy," she whispers, her voice wavering and tears streaming down her cheeks, hobbling awkwardly down a step, her right foot held up to keep the weight off of it, still clutching to the railing. Down another step, though /where/ does she expect to go? He's between her and the door. The stupid door that won't OPEN. "Yes I'm hurt! You don't just push people on the stairs!"

If she ever wanted to hurt him, well… she just found one way of doing it. And eye for an eye? Rayathess winces and draws back. "I am not crazy…" he protests but even to his ears his voice wavers and sounds weak. He isn't crazy, right? Yet she's backing away from him like he is a madman and that just has him feeling all the worse. He ignores her scolding and instead holds out a hand in a placating and warding manner. Easy, easy… See? He's not coming down after her. "You shouldn't… don't go down the stairs." Yeah, he sees her taking her weight off her leg. Damn it! "Let — Let me try the door. Please." Then she can Go Away. Backing up, Rayathess will keep his eyes on her until he can reach back to the door and still keeping her in his sights he will finally work the door free. Letting it drift open, he steps back as far as he can even if it means he's painfully squished against the wall. There's the exit!

He started it. Oh really? He's not crazy? His behavior would say otherwise. Tyani holds herself on the stairs, still clutching the railing as she watches him. When the door is finally open there's visible relief on her face. Now, at least, she could yell for help if she needed to. Gripping the railing, she very, very awkwardly begins to hobble up it, having to use her bad ankle and whimpering with each step.

Rayathess will have a lot to answer for and have to work hard in his apology to her. He won't even know where to begin and part of him may just try to convince him not to bother. Right now, he's just needing to be alone. It's a terrible need and desire and already his anger is beginning to rise and war with the immense guilt and shame already weighing heavily on him and driven just that much deeper into his being with each whimper she gives and pained step she takes. "Do you need help?" he offers quietly but makes no move to approach her, less he spook her.

"You've done enough," Tyani says with a scowl as she hauls herself up the last step. She pauses to look at him for a long moment, her eyes searching his face. "I just wanted to see if you were alright." And this is how she gets repaid? She tosses her hair over her shoulder and limps out. A few moments later there's another voice, a woman's. "Oh my goodness, Tyani! What /happened/?" And a pause. Does she tell the whole truth? That Harper Rayathess went crazy and shoved her on the stairs? Does she really want to damage his reputation? Finally, "I slipped on some stairs. Help me to the Healers?" "Of course, of course, here, put your arm around me, come on."

Rayathess remains hidden behind that door but he'll hear the exchange between that other woman and Tyani and when the Baker makes up a false story and protects him? That just breaks something further inside of him and he punches the wall the moment he's certain they're gone. Hissing with pain, he'll shake out his hand and then lift it to suck at his scraped and lightly bleeding knuckles. The door is closed (quietly) and he retreats down into that room, down into the dim light and settles upon the remaining cushions. Alone. Now he can safely fall apart and there's no one here to be hurt by it — only himself.