Candidates In Exile (Day 2)

Emerald Isle - Sunset Beach
Soft pink sand lays along this stretch of seaside like a comfortable blanket. Its hue is a soft one and comforting to look upon, as is the smooth aquamarine of the ocean. Although the beach is beautiful at all times or day and night, it is the most profound at sunset when the sky is painted with the soft pastel colours of a setting sun. Dramatic reds, pinks and peachs stretch into one another, the seperate colours' boundaries left undefined, but as it gets darker you can notice a light purple continuely creeping into the others. Even the pink sand's shade changes, ranging from containing an almost fiery element to being a smooth pinkish purple.


It's only the second day of candidates on the island, and Naeda has already deteroriated significantly. Her hair is a mess and her clothes are tattered and wet. Both sleeves have been torn off and fashioned into grips for her crudely whittled spears. She sits near a low-burning fire, one of those sharpened sticks laying beside her. She's nibbling on a blackened chunk of meat on a stick, something that looks like it was likely a fish. She looks fairly miserable.

Rhysanna did - eventually - make it back to 'camp' yesterday, though she was gone for long enough that some of the candidates began to wonder about her. It doesn't look like she's had much sleep, her arms and legs are scratched up, and, without a hairbrush, those long curls are unpleasantly tangled, but she's still alive and breathing. A new armload of driftwood gets dumped onto the ground beside the fire; Rhysa's dark eyes consider Naeda, then turn away, though she doesn't leave.

Naeda looks up at Rhysanna when she becomes aware of her fellow candidate's approach. She is silent for a moment, perhaps uncertain what to say. She's just about to take another bite of her blackened fish, but stops just in time. She holds out the little kebab towards Rhysanna. "Want the rest of this?" She offers, if a little reluctantly.

Lemmiwinks jumps out of the brush, runs up, and swipes the kebob from Naeda's hands! Before anyone can do anything, he is gone. The little jerk! And Rhysa is left to starve.

The sound of Naeda's voice has Rhysanna's gaze turning back towards her, her mouth opening. Before she gets the chance to accept - or refuse! - the other candidate's offering, it's gone. Is the dark-haired candidate about to cry? But no: she swallows, pulls her shoulders back and says, trying to sound amused, "Well, there goes that. Do you think they're really going to leave us out here for a sevenday or more?"

Naeda looks wide-eyed when the gerbil steals her hard-earned meal. "Oh no you don't!" She leaps to her feet, spear in hand, and hurls it at the fleeing gerbil. Of course, her poorly whittled spears are meant for fishing, not throwing, and they're barely even passable at their intended purpose. The stick falls far short of the brush, leaving Naeda looking sullen. She sighs as she retrieves the stick. "Yes. Yes I do." She declares as she sinks back beside the fire. "… I'll catch another one. Just… give me a minute." A heavy sigh follows. "… Did you find anything edible? Or any sign of Sorel and the others?"

It's warm out, but still, Rhysanna stays by the fire, as if, even in its present state, the heat is comforting. She swallows, though her mouth thins abruptly at mention of Sorel. "Do you want to try and show me how? So I can help?" And, with a sigh, "I found some fruit trees. I couldn't carry fruit and wood, though, so…" She gestures, helplessly, towards the load of wood she's just brought back. "I hate this place. I only like beaches when I can get rid of all the sand and sleep in a comfortable bed, afterwards."

"I'm with you there. This is definitely not a fun beach." Naeda says with a little grumble. She sticks to her own spot by the fire, despite how unnecessary it is in the heat. The offer of help is considered for a moment. "… It would be easier with a second pair of hands, but…" She looks up at the sky, and points towards clouds on the horizon. "I'm worried it may rain. And we still don't even have the beginnings of a proper shelter. I can keep the fish coming, but if we're all fishing, then we'll have no water, no shelter, and no fire to cook the fish over. What we really need is everyone working together. We can survive apart, but it'll be miserable." She frowns, looking into the flames. "… I'm sorry about yesterday. I thought I could steer Sorel's anger in a productive direction. That was stupid of me. Forgive me?"

Rhysanna's gaze follows Naeda's towards the clouds, and what she sees leaves her to involuntarily shiver. It's the latter comment that she answers, though, and in a voice that is sturdily stable, despite whatever lingering emotions she's feeling. "It's fine. I… get what you were trying to do. I get all of it, really." She worries at her lip with her teeth, peeling back dried skin. "I think Sorel's just an angry person. Not that I can blame him for being upset, right now. I'm just… tired of it." She sounds it… though that could have something to do with the 'sleeping on a beach' thing.

"On that, I agree with you completely." Naeda syas with a heavy sigh. "… When I get angry, I try to use it to motivate myself. Y'know, steer it towards a problem I /can/ handle, rather than raging about something out of my control. I guess I was hoping Sorel was like that, too." She shakes her head. "And as much as we could use another pair of hands… or, well, single hand in his case… it might be better that he's off by himself cooling down for a while." She gives Rhysanna a sympathetic look. "… The best we can do is make this as livable as we can, the two of us. And shelter will help. We need some sort of roof before the rain gets here. And if we could maybe gather some leaves, try to make some sort of bedding… what do you think?"

"I mope and dwell," admits Rhysanna, who sounds a little guilty about that. "Or write about it at great length in my diary, but I don't have it with me, and…" That seems to make her uncomfortable: the lack of diary. Straightening, she continues, "I think you're right. We'll leave him alone, and… be productive and useful. I found some trees with really big leaves, and there are some where the bark peels off; I bet we could try and use some of those? By the time they come to pick us up, we'll have shelter so comfortable we won't want to go back to chores." No, she doesn't believe that.

Naeda doesn't either. But she can pretend. She clearly wants to be encouraging. "Yeah. We'll show them." She tries to sound like she believes it, but really isn't all that convincing. "That sounds like a great start. Do you think you could get started on a shelter and bedding while I catch more fish?" She grins a bit, tiredly. "I emptied out one of those knapsacks. You could pack it with fruit, if you find more. Fruit, fish… we could have a pretty alright dinner." She frowns. "I just wish we had tubers, or bread or something. Something filling."

Rhysanna grimaces, admitting, "I ate a bunch of fruit earlier, and I'm still hungry." And that stupid rodent stole her fish: life is so unfair. "But the fish might taste better if we cook it with the fruit, and that'd be a start." She turns her hands over, warming them in front of the still-not-exactly-burning-brightly fire. "I'll see what I can find, though," she promises. "Getting soaked in the rain is probably the last thing we need. Except," she pauses, turning her attention back towards those clouds. "They don't look like major storm clouds, right?"

"Unfortunately, no." Naeda pouts. "If it was a real dangerous storm, they'd come and rescue us. But if it's just an unpleasant downpour? They won't lose any sleep over making us endure that." Naeda eyes the wood Rhysanna collected earlier, finding a suitable piece and carefully laying it atop the fire, hoping to strengthen it a little. "I haven't eaten anything but the fish since we got here." She looks out at the waves, frowning. "… I think I maybe saw a manta earlier this morning. Maybe I could catch one."

The glance Rhysanna aims towards the sky is a dark, scowling one; stormy of its own accord. "Do you think, if we Impress, we'll be gleeful about sending the next group of candidates out here?" she wonders. Talking is not helping her get any work done, and yet she's lingering. Sort of lingering: at least she's turned to go and find the previously mentioned knapsack. "I'd like to think we'd be nicer than that. Is there anything else we could be collecting? Like… can you eat seaweed?"

"Probably." Naeda replies to that question. "Candidates play pranks or do something to tick off the riders. Then the riders send the candidates out here and have a good laugh. It's the way of things. The future will be no different." Despite all her talk of work, Naeda seems in need of a little rest herself. "I know you /can/ eat seaweed, but I think there's some special way you're supposed to prepare it… I dunno. I'm a terrible cook. I've just been roasting the fish over the fire until it starts to blacken. I wish we had a little salt, or lemon, or something." Another sigh. "Fruit, water, and materials for shelter. If you can take care of that, I promise I'll catch as many fish as I can."

Rhysanna's sniff is one of distaste. She will never do anything like that. Really. "There's a beautiful little pool," she says, abruptly. "Where the fresh water is. Wouldn't it be nice to get as clean as we possibly can, without soap?" Her expression turns earnestly dreamy, her tone eager. "What do you say… we do as much as we can, and then we go for a proper swim? We'll feel better after we're fed and clean, I'm sure of it."

Naeda goes wide-eyed, clearly liking this idea quite a bit. "/Yes/. Shards, I feel filthy. Can't even remember the last time I went this long without a real bath. We've definitely earned it." She nods her head, finding her motivation. "Okay. We get all the food we can and make what progress we can on a shelter. Then, after we've eaten, we reward ourselves with a bath. Deal?"

"Deal," confirms Rhysanna, who hoists that knapsack over her shoulder and turns to glance over her shoulder at the forest. "I'll see who else I can round up on my way; anything to make the job go more quickly… though I won't invite them all to our bath." There's her smile, back again after the dormancy of it, this past twenty-four hours or so. "See you soon."

"Just the cute ones." Naeda says with a wink and a grin. Feeling more motivated with the promise of a bath, she takes up her spear and gets to her feet again. "Okay. Get ready for some big delicious fish when you're back!" Off towards the water she goes.


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