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.


It is a few hours before lunch and the living cavern has been cleaned from the mess left at breakfast time, candidates taking a break from the living cavern duties and sitting at a table playing a game or two while people continue to filter in and out from the Weyr. Not among the group playing games are the ones who have been kicked from the kitchen for simply taking up too much room while they're trying to get things done. And being that you don't really need to be in the kitchen to peel tubbers, Deitra and Padron are settled down at the table together, peeling along with a few other candidates. More notably, Padron is grumbling softly under his breath declaring a new found hate for the vegetable in his hands that he works so hard to peel.

Even wingseconds need to eat, they just do it on odd schedules and simurgh's own blueriding second slinks into the caverns from the direction of the wing offices with an armload of files and paperwork. It would be easy enough for him to settle at a table well away from the children and candidates and perhaps have a modicum of silence, but what's the fun in that? He steals the table next to the tuber-peeling candidates and drops the files with a loud whumph of air, "Morning. I trust the tubers aren't giving you too much trouble?"

A few loud squeaks are released as the files hit the table and the wingsecond is given a few wide-eyed looks from a few of the candidates before a shaky smile is given along with a few wavering salutes. Deitra is not one of those who startle from the sound, but she is stilling her knife so not to accidentally slice into her fingers. Grey eyes lift and settle upon P'rius who is met with a wide smile of greeting and a slight salute considering the knife in her hands. "Not too much trouble, sir. How're you doin'? Comin' for an early lunch?" The hunter asks as that wide smile remains in place.

Padron shakes his head, completely disagreeing with Deitra on the tuber front. "They're frustrating. I'd rather be cooking." He insists, then pausing to offer a proper salute once freeing his hand of harmful knifes. "They insisted that I should help with the tubers as they already have enough people helping out with cooking. There's a few dishes already finished if you're looking to grab something, sir."

P'rius flops into a chair and opens the first file on his stack, "That's better than what they told me when I was in your position." He inclines his head slightly to Deitra, "Early lunch, late breakfast. Pretty much the same thing for me, really." He lets his eyes skim carefully over the document before penning his signature at the bottom, "I'll worry about food in a second." The file is allowed to close and set aside so he can peeeer at the pair over his paperwork, though he spares a half-glance for the eggs and pair of golds brooding them on the hearth, "So… how are you liking our candidacy program?"

Padron sighs, "I suppose that could be better than something else." He considers the man with a bit of a frown etched into his brows, his head tilting a bit. "What'd they tell you when you were a candidate?" Curiosity brings the trader to forget about his task for the moment, instead, focusing on what P'rius has to say and the work that he's doing rather than his own.

Deitra chuckles, "seems like yer always busy, 'specially if yer always havin' late breakfasts and early lunches. Why don't you get someone ta get breakfast for you and eat while yer workin'? 'less yer worryin' 'bout gettin' food on yer work." With a hum, the candidate shrugs and her gaze is cast over towards the hearth when P'rius' settles there briefly. Brows are lifting slightly before she's drawn back to the question. "Oh. It's fun. Lotta work ta do, keepin' busy. 'm enjoyin' myself. Padron seems ta be enjoyin' it."

P'rius clears his throat, then puts on a good imitation of the head cook, "Get out of here you great lummox! You'll poison the whole Weyr!" He grins and makes a vague motion towards himself, "I can deliver a baby or set a broken bone, but in the name of the egg, don't ask me to cook." He skims the next form and doesn't sign it, setting it into a separate pile from the first, "You volunteering to get me food, Deitra? Well, that's awfully kind of you. I greatly appreciate it." He wiggles the end of his pen at her a beat, then smirks more broadly, "They're not hard enough yet. Another sevenday or two, probably. Just as well, Ivy and Lucy are pretty territorial over their eggs." He glances between the two, then chuckles softly, "Then I should tell Melze to make you do more exercises. 'Snot supposed to be fun."

Padron is unable to help the snort of laughter as P'rius mimics the head cook, his hand lifting — the one that wasn't holding the tuber — to cover his mouth but the laughter still manages to escape. "That sounds about right." He grins widely at the other man, nodding. "Delivering children and fixing broken limbs are a lot different than cooking. I don't know what either of those entails, but I do know how to cook." He is quite proud of this fact, even grinning widely as he returns to his work of peeling. When Deitra is volunteered to get P'rius some food, that grin only grows wider.

Deitra blinks, "what?" Her mouth opens then promptly closes before the hunter settles her things upon the table top. "Oh." This is dumbly offered in response to the talk of the firelizards, and as she pushes from her seat she stares in their direction. "Ain't ever had a firelizard. Seem interestin', at times." With that, she shakes her head. "Nah. We been doin' extra exercises cause I make us do 'em. I /like/ workin' out so it ain't much of a punishment as I get fun out of it." Sleeves are rolled up, and an Ada-eque flex is done — without the ripping off of her shirt, at least — and she grins widely. "Hunters ain't supposed ta be weak. Gotta be strong 'nough to disarm traps, and ta take down animals that may be strugglin'. 'm tryin' ta get Padron fit properly." And with that, she briefly departs to the kitchen to fetch food.

P'rius makes a motion with his hands like catching a migsy ball, "It's not that hard so long as there aren't any complications." He glances down to skim the next form, "They're work, mostly, but worth it once they're trained up. I'd offer to introduce you, but Ivy's not at her best at the moment." The Ada-like flex draws a grin, "Well, that's always best. I started out doing candidate exercises with my weyrmate when she was a candidate and I wasn't. Really helps you bulk up, doesn't it?" He looks the boy up and down, then chuckles, "Some people aren't meant to be hunters, you know. That's why we've got dragons."

"Complications sound… Frustrating. I don't think I want to ask for details." Padron notes quietly, finishing off his last tuber and then reaching over to finish Deitra's while she's away. "Firelizards are rather handy, aren't they? Well, once they're trained. I imagine they are like untrained canines?" The former trader offers in question before chuckling. "No, I'd rather not disturb her while she has eggs." A glance over in that direction, curious but not so much to completely draw his attention away. "She knows I'm not meant to be a hunter… I think she just wants to make me stronger." A sheepish grin is given towards P'rius and his gaze lowers to the tubers.

Deitra returns with a rather filled plate — likely to some complaints of the chefs until noting that it wasn't for herself to eat — and placing it down near the wingsecond before plopping down in her seat once again. "I'd like ta see when the eggs hatch," a tilt of her head towards the firelizards. "'m rather fond of Hatchin's, at least. The whole clutchin' business is all the same. Touchin' the eggs is different. Woulda thought that the eggs were all just borin' forever. Do firelizard eggs do somethin' similar?" The question turns her attention to P'rius, curious and off in random tangents of thoughts. "He ain't goin' ta be a hunter, nah. He can't deal with the killin' bit at times. Dragonriders need ta have strength, which is what we're pushin' for." She says, basically echoing what the trader said.

Quiet conversation continues until the tubers are needed in the kitchen and then the candidates depart, leaving P'rius to his late breakfast and early lunch.


'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.