Fort Weyr - Lake Shore

This lake shares many features common to mountain lakes — a brilliant blue jewel nestled amongst the rocks. The waters are crystal clear, and the north shore slopes gently before abruptly falling away into the depths. This lake does have one significant differentiating feature, however. The south shore of the lake is a tumbled mass of rubble, rock and earth of an ancient rockslide smoothed only by the elements in the intervening years. This rubble, as well as the rather sheer east and west faces, makes for the north shore to be the only one easily accessible.

The chill of winter has iced over the lake shore. One section of the north shore shallows is kept broken up for weyrfolk and young dragons to use, though the freezing waters are not well tolerated by humans for any length of time. It requires constant maintenance to keep this section unfrozen and sometimes is more like wading through slush than water. The deepest part of the lake remains unfrozen, a vibrant pool of icy blue surrounded by frozen white.

It is past lunch and chores have resumed once again, out at the lake there's a small group of candidates all training, doing laps and lifting to make sure they are physically fit. After all, a dragon is a lot of hard work and you can't be caught out of breath while trying to make sure that your lifemate has all their needs. Deitra and Padron are among those gathered, the two working alone on some team building workouts, along with trust building exercises. The young woman actually looks to be enjoying herself, along with the young man that has practically become her shadow.

Jaylen has apparenty chosen that her optional chore this time will be training as well, so now that lunch is done and the food is settled in her stomach, the scarred Istan girl has ventured out to the lake. Giving a brief wave to the candidates already present, she moves to join those that are currently doing laps, making sure to stretch her muscles first of course.

The afternoon has brought a rare (though not unappreciated) lull in duties, which has left Th'ero some free time to himself. The Weyrleader has just finished visiting the guard barracks and his idle wandering has now brought him to the lake. Dressed in his winter gear, with his gloved hands tucked into his riding jacket's pockets as is habit, he pauses a moment to observe the candidates, a vague smile on his features as he tries to stay out of the way - though hiding would be pointless. Th'ero's gaze follows a group that jog by him, a brisk nod given to their somewhat surprised glances before he moves on, the same greeting given to Jaylen, then Deitra and Padron, though this time he follows it with a quick half-hearted salute.

The late arrival of another has Deitra looking that way as the other woman begins to stretch, her head tilts and she looks to Padron. The pair exchange words quietly, as if conspiring some elaborate plot. Though it isn't so as both lift their hands to wave a greeting as well as a gesture to join them is given towards Jaylen as she begins her stretching. Th'ero draws their attention next with Padron standing just a little straighter while Deitra's grin only grows into something more amused as he casts a nod of greeting in their directions. A salute is returned while hers is not as neat as the young man beside her. Beginning her approach draws a strangled sound from Padron as he attempts to stop her but her path is set and he is unable to do so. With his head hung slightly in defeat, he shuffles after the former hunter. "Hey Weyrleader. Makin' rounds?" Deitra asks cheerfully, amusement heavy in her tone and Padron simply groans behind her back. "You're going to get is in trouble…"

Jaylen does note the weyrleader's appearance and she remembers to give him a salute, that's what they're supposed to do, right? As she's waved at by Deitra and Padron, she starts towards them. But then they're going towards the weyrleader, so the scarred girl stands a respectful distance away as Deitra strike up a conversation with the boss man especially as she hears the word trouble, that's one thing she doesn't want.

Despite Padron's worries of trouble, there will be none - not from Th'ero's hands anyhow. What does have the Weyrleader frowning through is the disruptive effect he has on the candidates, as more then just Jaylen, Deitra and Padron are now halting in their exercises to watch. There's a bit of a sigh, but really, he should have known it would happen. "I was and hadn't realized you all had exercises this afternoon. Sorry to disrupt, but you're free to resume. Don't mind me." He says in a low voice. And a few candidates do go back to their work, but even so Th'ero seems to reserve a smile for Jaylen and Deitra, as well as Padron, though something else lurks in the Weyrleader's gaze when recognition hits. "And how are you three?" So much for the trio returning to their exercises? But seeing as they're all so close, the bronzerider figures some idle chatter can't hurt.

Padron is casting a sheepish little smile towards Jaylen as she approaches yet remains partially away from them and the Weyrleader. He makes no gestures to beckon her closer, in fact, he seems to think she has a brilliant idea as he begins to scoot away from Deitra.

Deitra, on the other hand, does not really notice that Padron seems to be slipping further and further away, instead, waving for Jaylen to join them despite the Weyrleader's insistence not to mind his presence. When the other candidates that began to gather begin to dissipate back to their workouts, Deitra remains where she is, stretching out a bit and simply acting as if she's doing /something/ at least. "'m good. Stuck with Padron," her head tilts to gesture towards the young man, "he's good 'cause he's been with me." Never mind that Padron was opening his mouth to answer, he's obviously used to Deitra putting words in his mouth as he simply nods along.

Jaylen does have those once in awhile, brilliant ideas of course, too bad she doesn't often follow through with them. The Istan does shuffle a few steps closer, but just close enough to answer the weyrleader's question without being absolutely and completely rude to the man. "Good, Sir." Yep, that's all the answer she gives, oh wait, and she manages to remember to add, "And yourself?" Manners and all that.

Th'ero is fairly observant and does notice Padron shuffling away and the manner of which Jaylen had lingered back from before. That only earns a slight puzzled frown before Deitra's caught his attention again. There's a smirk given for the ex-hunter, "Do you usually answer for him?" The Weyrleader remarks bluntly, but with a hint of amusement in his tone to take the edge off his words, brown eyes flicking back to Padron for a heartbeat as he gives the other candidate a searching look. Jaylen is turned to next and Th'ero tilts his head a bit, seeming to study her for a moment until he realizes that she is one candidate he has yet to actually "formally" meet. "Well enough. Wandering, since I have the time." He replies, before shaking his head a little. "No need for the Sirs. I'm not one to stick to being too formal, so Th'ero is fine." A pause and he musters up a brief, if not crooked smile. "And what's your name?" he asks Jaylen.

Deitra is giving Jaylen a curious look, brows lifting. "Somethin' got yer tongue? It ain't like you can't talk if yer wantin' ta. The Weyrleader ain't goin' ta bite." The former hunter lifts her arms again, stretching and then beaming a wide grin at Th'ero. "Usually. He ain't said nothin' 'bout it, I think 'm pretty accurate." A questioning look is given in Padron's direction and the young man simply nods. The young man straightens again as he is again given a look from the Weyrleader, and rather than standing and doing nothing, he quickly begins to work on his stretches. "You scared him." Deitra notes towards the Weyrleader with a laugh, moving over towards Padron, stepping on his feet in order to help with his sit-ups.

Jaylen isn't a big talker, as a matter of fact the Istan hasn't said much of anything except what has been required of her since hewr arrival at Fort. As for the weyrleader not yet formally meeting Jay, that just means she's done well to just blend in, it's easier here than at Ista what with the cold weather gear to cover all her scars and the hoods that she so often wears to shadow her face. As she's studied, she shifts and ducks her head down a little, not used to having such focus on her. "Jaylen, Si..err Th'ero. But most jus' call me Jay. From Ista." Of course, maybe some manners might slip as normally someone would offer a handshake in a first greeting but that action slips her mind as her hands remain firmly planted in her pockets.

"If he isn't saying anything, how do you know you're accurate? You could be wrong and he's just not telling you otherwise." Th'ero challenges Deitra, still smirking but his voice carrying amusement with it. The Weyrleader then chuckles dryly, giving the ex-hunter candidate a pointed look before side glancing to Jaylen. "No, I don't bite." He confirms. As Padron still refuses to speak and instead turns to his exercises, Th'ero only shrugs a little before blinking a little at Deitra's remark. "I'm scary?" he asks to no one in particular, looking completely surprised by the concept. And here he was working on being approachable! This he'll reserve to mull over later, but for now, his focus turns back to Jaylen. With all the winter gear, its unlikely Th'ero saw much, just enough of a glimpse to at least have something to work with. "Well met, Jaylen." He says, politely enough. And while his hands do slip from his pockets, it's not to initiate a handshake and instead he simply crosses his arms loosely over his chest. "From Ista, eh? You're the second to come from that region. Only visited it briefly myself a few times." Th'ero has a sudden odd look cross his face, but it's fleeting and quickly replaced by a subdued smile.

Deitra gets no response from Jaylen, but says nothing on that, merely providing support for the candidate she is now standing on. Or, on his feet, really. "Hm." The woman shrugs at the challenge presented by the Weyrleader. "He ain't sayin' no, at least." A smile is beamed down at Padron as he begins to work away, barely catching her smile and slightly returning it. The pointed look? She simply beams back before turning her gaze towards Jaylen. "Ain't nothin' ta be 'fraid of. I heard Ista has hot winters. Can't imagine it. Ain't a fan of bein' hot." When Padron stops his sit-ups, Deitra releases his feet and moves to sit upon his back as he begins pushups. Obviously, she's been doing her own training with the young man as he makes no obvious objections to her using him as a moving seat. Poor Padron, but at least he's looking busier than them all.

Jaylen considers Deitra's comment a moment, "I ain't 'fraid, jus' ain't got much t'say really. An' Ista's nay bad once y'get used ta it. At least we don't hafta freeze our patoots off in snow an' ice ev'ry winter. I'm still nay used t'th'chill 'ere. A'ready went though a nasty cold when I first came 'ere." She eyes the lake a bit woefully, "An' y'canna swim 'ere without catchin' pneumonia. S'what I miss mos'." She looks to Th'ero. "There's 'nother Istan 'ere? A can'date?" How could she have missed that?

Th'ero uncrosses his arms long enough to wave his hands in a mocking gesture of defeat as Deitra wins the final round, giving a slight snort. Instead, he simply observes the ex-hunter and the trader turned candidate go through their excerises - or rather watch Padron do his while Deitra "helps". That earns another smirk, but the Weyrleader has no comment for the time. Poor, poor Padron indeed and with a shake of his head, Th'ero turns to Jaylen again. A hint of a frown is given at the accent, no doubt trying to place it but failing. He's very unfamiliar with most of Pern; given his previous life, so most accents or mannerisms fly right over his head. "Ista /is/ hot, it seems, all Turn around if you're not used to it." He agrees to Deitra, before replying to Jaylen with a dry chuckle. "It can be a harsh change. I'm not used to it either, though I had sampled cold in Western. Not cold like this though." Concern tinges his expression next and another long look is given to Jaylen. "Cold? You're recovered now then?" he asks, before his look softens and his subdued smile returns. "Yes, another candidate. Kershaw, if I recall correctly."

"Ah. Well, 'm sure you'll have more ta say at some point." Deitra decides and leaves it at that, keeping a mindful eye on Padron as the exercises continue. "Ain't goin' ta get used ta heat. Born in Fort, ain't ever leavin' Fort. Can't stand heat. Igen'd be instant death for me." A chuckle and there's a shake of her head, "you can swim, 'pparently, but you got ta know what yer doin'. Summer ain't bad for swimmin'." Th'ero's gesture of defeat is met with a hearty laugh from Deitra, causing Padron to pause which in turn brings the former hunter to hop up and offer him a hand up. "We won, Pad!"

Padron blinks at Deitra and laughs, finally. "You're crazy, Deitra. I don't think we've really won anything." His hands go into his pockets and the trader looks towards Th'ero before giving a sidestep to partially hide behind Deitra — to no avail as he's taller than her! — before he's offering a slight smile in Jaylen's direction.

Jaylen rolls that name around in her brain a moment, nope doesn't sound familiar. "Hmm, musta nay known 'im, was only at Ista fer a lil while b'fore Miki an' Sohnyuoth brought me 'ere." Long enough to get comfortable there though, obviously, if she misses the place. And please, if the weyrleader does recognize her accent, hopefully he'll share because she doesn't rightly know where it comes from either, it could be trader or renegade or even some distant hold's accent. "R'covered…Oh, th'cold. Aye, th'healers cleared me an' stuff. I won't be infectin' th'rest of th'cand'dates." She listens to Deitra and Padron a moment, "I s'ppose each t'their own an' such, huh? If I was botn inta th'cold I'd prob'ly feel th'same 'bout th'heat. Padron's smile is met with a little headbob, though if Jay returned the smile it's likely to be hidden in the shadow of her hood.

Th'ero is going to be a thorn in Deitra's side this afternoon it seems, as he instantly challenges the candidate again. "How do you know Igen would kill you if you refuse to visit it?" he says with a smirk, before wrinkling his nose a little at the mention of swimming. Obviously not a preferred pastime of the Weyrleader, but no comment is offered as he's instead turning to glance at Padron as the candidate makes a poor attempt at hiding behind Deitra. "Oh, you did win." Th'ero remarks cryptically, mostly just to see him squirm a little more. Who knew he had a little mean streak? Though it's certainly not meant to be malicious, simply just a rare mood for the bronzerider - being playful and teasing. "Good to hear you've recovered." Th'ero sobers now as he turns to Jaylen, an actual genuine smile curving the corners of his mouth upwards. "And a shame then, that you didn't get to experience more of Ista's seasons before being brought this far north." He muses, before titling his head to the side, clearly distracted. The Weyrleader then sighs, stuffing his hands back into his pockets. "Duty calls." He murmurs, excusing himself with those words and a series of quick nods before he's turning on his heel, boots crunching in the snow as he strides quickly away and back up to the main bowls of the Weyr. Must be urgent?

"Mhm. Ain't like 'm tryin' ta say Fort's better'n everywhere else. Which it is." Deitra beams a wide grin at Jaylen, entirely playful and simply meant to be teasing before she's again turning her gaze towards Th'ero as he challenges her yet again. "'Cause I said it would. I'd… Melt. Maybe shrivel up, if 'm lucky." With a roll of her shoulders she beams another grin in the Weyrleader's direction.

Padron does indeed squirm at the mention of them winning, and shuffling again to hide behind Deitra though it does him little good. When the Weyrleader takes off, there's a sigh of relief but a nudge comes from the former hunter in a way of teasing him. But, their break is short lived as they're being called out by the instructor for slacking off. With a squeak, Padron turns around and quickly heads off to join the others jogging while Deitra laughs at his expense. "See you with the others, Jay." Nickname given, Deitra takes off to follow after the trader-candidate.

'The World of Pern(tm)' and 'The Dragonriders of Pern(r)' are copyright to Anne McCaffrey (c) l967, 2000. This is a recorded online session, by permission of the author but generated on PernWorld MUSH for the benefit of people unable to attend.