~~*~~ 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 chilly lake waters are an invigorating draw to weyrfolk and dragons alike as summer's heat bears down upon the Weyr. The calm jewel blue waters offer pleasant respite upon which to bath, relax, or play. The shoreline buzzes with activity and at the peak of the day it can be hard to find a spot to stretch out. At night, like a great mirror the lake reflects the multitude of stars overhead with the occasionally shadow of a passing dragon breaking the serene visage.

With summer upon Fort, the sky stays brighter as the night goes on. It's the hour where Rukbat lingers in the sky while inching to set slowly. And for once, the Weyrwoman isn't caught up at the Holds and holding hands, making sure that all is well. All is well, but her presence is, for the day, unneeded. At the lakeshore Dtirae lingers with her hands tucked into her back pockets as she stares upwards into the sky, perhaps observing the changing colors as the sun begins to set. It's relatively quiet as most have ventured inside for dinner or are off with family. The setting is one definition of peace.

The lurid colors of a summer sunset succeed in making the awkward gait of one dark-haired young man that much more off-kilter in appearance, his long shadow deformed where it throws across the pebbly ground of the shoreline. He turns, altering his course away from the lap of waves, and the cause of his clumsiness is apparent, the crutch that supports his weight on the left side, the foot encased in plaster. Well aware of how ungainly he looks, he wears an expression of long-suffering good humor, one that he's quick to couple to a pardon-me smile for the only other lingerer this evening, a mute apology for intruding on so fine a scene with his ill-suited clumsiness. "They tell me that it gets easier with practice," he calls from some distance away, no greeting, no formality, no prelude. Blame it on the gathering twilight, but he doesn't seem to have any recognition that he addresses the Weyrwoman, and - between shadows and sunset - must not have seen the knot at all.

Dtirae's gaze lingers skywards and grey eyes don't shift to consider the sound of another approaching. Whether or not that is because the sound of it is entirely different than she's used to or the fact that she hasn't heard it is anyone's guess. But the sound of speaking is what draws grey eyes away from the sky and her thoughts, a smile settles on the woman's lips as a question begins to form but nothing comes as she finally considers Mathier. "Can't say I'd know, but, that's the same with everything. Things are easier with practice." Her gaze lingers, shifting down towards the leg that is the cause of his problems. "Why practice in the more unforgiving terrain, though?"

It seems proper to come up to a sort of level altitude away from the slope to the water, and so he hobble-skip-crutches his way up there, arranging himself on the same general plane as Dtirae, managing to turn so he's even facing in roughly the same direction, basking in the bruised light at the end of the day. "Mhm," is all the comment Mathier has to the first matter, though the sideways look seems to speak volumes about how little he's buying that particular line. As to the matter of his punishing choice of scenery… He shrugs his crutchless shoulder and answers, "Fewer people to see me fall on my as-ahem. Out here. Plus - " He nods toward the aforementioned riot of colors happening along the western horizon, a definite perk.

Dtirae chuckles softly at the look given to her, inclining her head slightly. "I know it's likely hard to believe, but, there's truth in it. The more you do it, the easier it gets." Her hands are withdrawn from her back pocket and folded across her chest as she slowly turns her gaze back towards the sky, for a brief moment before returning to the man beside her. "True. It's not pleasant to fall in front of others." She agrees, and then, to the sky she smiles and nods her agreement. "I'd have to say the struggle is worth the view. I don't think I've seen you around before. New? Or stranded because of your leg?"

All the argument Mathier makes is in the silence, in the smile that accepts her comments and utterly fails to believe them. What are twenty-something men if not utterly convinced of their own rightness, after all. Dark eyes rest contentedly on the eye-candy of a sunset for a few seconds before sliding back sideways toward Dtirae again, bringing forth a low chuckle from the man while he answers, "Some combination of the two, yes. I am a trader - was a trader? Something like that. Having traded," with a cheesy glimmer behind the words, "my ability to travel for a crutch, I'm afraid the question of my employment is a big one." A questioning brow quirks, and her?

Dtirae shifts slightly, focusing all of her weight from one foot to the other. Eyelashes lower slightly as she considers the scene, still. The chuckle draws her gaze back towards him before she offers a smile. "A combination, hm. That's a shame." The mention of his profession has her looking him over once again with a far more critical eye before shoulders relax again and her hands move back to her back pockets. "If you are planning on staying once your leg is free, I'm sure I could find you some work." She offers in an idle tone. His quirked brow is given a teasing smile but she offers nothing in the way of information about herself.

The way he tugs at his collar, one can almost imagine that the blush cast on his cheeks by the rosy horizon is authentic rather than borrowed, and he affects something of a drawl to reply, "Why, madam, whatever would make you think I'm that kind of boy?" As though the work to which Dtirae alludes might be summed up as 'gigolo' and not something on the up-and-up like… er… stablehand or something equally mundane and safe. Mathier adds with another of those sidelong looks, "Did you have some particular niche that needs filling?" He pauses, squints, and decides to let that statement stand unqualified; if it sounds bad, it sounds bad, he'll cope.

Dtirae's brows lift in question, "what sort of boy?" Then, there's laughter and the woman shakes her head. "I can't say that someone has ever asked me that when I've talked about work before." The woman shifts, gesturing to the knot on her shoulder. "There's nothing in particular that needs to be filled. We could use some help with paperwork and that isn't too hard to do with a broken leg." Her tone takes a teasing tone. "Unless you'd prefer /that/ sort of work. Not that I can offer much help with that, however, I'm sure that's just as easy." More laughter follows before she allows herself to sober. "Though, you're certainly free to sit around until your leg is better before looking for some sort of work."

Knot. Face. Knot. Clear throat. Mathier drums up a quick, bright smile that at least makes light of his chagrin, rather than wallowing in it. "Ah, hallo then. We haven't met properly, have we? You're the Weyrwoman, and I'm the idiot that didn't recognize the Weyrwoman." He shifts his weight so that he can offer his right hand over for a handshake, totally foregoing the matter of what sort of work he might take - whether or not his leg is healed - at least for the moment.

Dtirae's laughter bubbles out, "we have not met properly. I've been occupied." Teasing continues as she winks at the man, "can't expect everyone to know my face. I haven't done anything worthwhile to have my picture plastered everywhere in the Weyr." The shifting is noted and she accepts his hand, slipping her own into his and grasping it firmly in the way of greeting. "Dtirae. You're free ta call me that. Or, if you're so inclined: ma'am. Whatever works for you, dear. Now, what should I call you? I'm sure you don't want to go by 'idiot who didn't recognize the Weyrwoman'?"

"'Dear' is nice." Mathier wobbles his head for a second over the terminology, like he's still trying it on for size, a laugh at the end of it to answer for the 'idiot' part. "Mm, if the shoe fits?" Beat. "Cast fits." The hobble that time is intentional, drawing purposeful attention to the busted leg, for comedic effect. "It's Math - Mathier, technically. Do you prefer 'ma'am?' Because, having stuck my foot in my mouth - " There's another cast joke in there, he's just sure of it. " - I'd rather not choke on it any harder."

"Ah, but, dear is normally reserved for teasing or a weyrmate." More teasing, perhaps? Dtirae simply gives him a look with amusement lingering in her gaze. "You have a rather awful opinion of yourself if you're willing to indulge me n calling you that." Another chuckle. "Math, then. Not that I enjoy math, it drives me rather crazy. And no, I prefer my name. Unless the situation warrants being formal, then ma'am is more than acceptable." She pauses, considering before she notes. "You must love the taste of your cast with how often your foot seems to be in your mouth, as you say."

Mathier, trying to salvage his dignity (and doing a poor job of it, admittedly), "No one does," like math. "I like to throw it out there so people will be pleasantly surprised when it turns out that I'm not a tedious pain in the - " Ahem. The comment about the taste of his cast gets a chuckle, small but genuine, and he scuffs it lightly across the gravel underfoot, just a quick swipe that doesn't give the grit the chance to get stuck. "Don't knock it until you've tried, suppose?"

"It isn't the easiest of subjects to get along with. So, if you're easy to get along with, then I'll be quite happy to call you Math." More teasing on the Weyrwoman's part, likely because the target is a little too easy. Poor man. "Can't say I'd like to give that a try, either. Not a fan of the 'foot' flavor." The woman chuckles and draws back, shifting on her feet just a little more before settling into a more comfortable position. "So, are you looking for work or are you taking it easy?" She'll throw him a line, it seems, and deviate away from teasing.

Adjusting the crutch into his armpit, Mathier turns to squint at the sunset that's now gone from livid to gray, soon to transition into that colorless twilight that precedes darkness. As if inspired by that vision, his smile tugs without the self-deprecating wryness for a second, and then slips away along with a one-shouldered shrug. "I haven't worked that part out yet, but I'll definitely keep you posted?" He squints dubiously at his own uncertainty, the smile twinging back into that half-humorous territory once more, like he's aware this all sounds a little… buh.

Dtirae sighs softly, perhaps at the colorful sky is going colorless but her gaze lingers there and she lingers in silence for as long as it lasts between them. His answer is met with an idle nod before grey eyes consider him again. "Do. Let me know what sort of things you're interested in and I'll see that you get somewhere that you'd enjoy. Work is easier when you enjoy it." A smile is given in his direction before she peers back over the lake. "What sort of trading did your caravan do? Or, were you a solo trader?"

Some people are just patently uncomfortable talking about their pasts, and Mathier seems to be just such a person. The question is totally reasonable, especially considering that he seems to be some sort of freeloader at what's ultimately Dtirae's Weyr, but he winds up looking down for a second, answering vaguely, "Worked aboard a ship. Until." The leg. "Clearly, I have some soul-searching to do. And, unless you're going to go back to calling me dear…?" He glances over - yes/no? No, presumably.

Dtirae hums thoughtfully. "I can imagine it'd be hard to work on a ship with a broken leg." There's an idle nod, one that is understanding while also considering. "Well, you're certainly free to make the Weyr your home until you figure out what you want, or if you decide to stay. Not one for turning others away so long as they don't give me reason to." She's reasonable! "Hmm? Will calling you dear get me some answers?"

"They don't call them sea leg/s/ for nothing," Mathier answers amiably, lowering his head afterward in a gesture of gratitude for her permission to loiter. "I was quite ready to pay, but if you're extending an offer of generosity…" He trails off with the beam of a smile, and positions his weight appropriately back onto the crutch, preparing to put himself into motion again - the cumbersome task if making his way back along the gravelly shoreline. He pauses before he's gone more than a step (hobble?) or two and cocks his head to consider her question, finally answering, "Probably not? But it would at least make it sound more pleasant while you were asking, mm?"

"That's /true/. I'm sorry about your leg." Dtirae offers, it's softer and lacking the humor previous statements have held. Her gaze shifts and she focuses on him entirely. "So long as you find your way and if you decide to stay, take up a job, then I think that'll be enough. Well, if you break anything, you'll have to pay for that." A grin settles on her lips and then she watches him start on his way back. There's hesitation there, but she remains where she stands. When his answer comes, the woman chuckles. "Then, I suppose your answer is no. It was nice meeting you, Math."

Mathier assures, "It's all right. Wasn't your fault." About his leg. It's not said in the dismissive, brusque way commonly employed when a man's pride won't accept a woman's sympathy, rather twinged with gratitude in a 'thanks for your condolences' way. He can only teeter his head in response to the latter - his answer pretty much is no, yeah - and add a strained-sounding, "And you, Dtirae." Strained 'cause he really hasn't got the hang of that crutch yet. Next time, he'll probably attempt to remember that he looks cooler when he's not a body at rest.

'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.