Dawn at the Docks

Western Weyr - Docks
Wooden boardwalks lead out to where boats are tied to the dock. Once in a while a good sized ship will be docked here, unloading or loading various items.


The best — and perhaps only time — to catch a fisherman is early morning, just before the fish start biting (or schooling in the case of a boat with a seine net) when the boats are being prepared for the morning departure. Unfortunately, what's early for a fisherman is absolutely insanely early for anyone not of that profession. The sun is barely up, the sky is still just a little dark and the boats are being readied for the day. But it's better now than later, because too many fishing boats come in after dark, and the fishermen are tired, hungry and not inclined to talk. So, morning it is. Which means Enka's down here, stifling yawns as she makes her way along the dock, boots clunking a bit on the wooden boardwalk as she drags her feet, just a little.

To say Zi'on is not a morning person would be an understatement. The bronzer was actually a night owl, preferring to stay up all night and go to sleep at dawn than to hit the hay early and be up at first light. Which is plainly visible as he trots along behind Enka, echoing her yawn with one of his own. Since it's still chilly from the night before, he's wrapped up in a coat and a beanie type of hat. And he's looking scruffy and fishman-like. So maybe that would help. But he's hardly even awake. It's a surprise he hasn't fallen asleep standing up and flopped into the water. If Enka slows down he's like to bump right into her, or at least step on the backs of her heels.

Enka is not a morning person. Or suffice to say, she's not a this-early-in-the-morning person. The Weyrwoman keeps regular hours (mostly) but even still, it's too oh-Faranth-it's-too-early for her. She's muffled up in a coat herself, dressed snug and warm, with a scarf wrapped around her neck, and gloved hands shoved deep into fleece-lined pockets, and like Zi'on, the goldrider is wearing a hat, well, more of a hood rather. The woman's pace slows, just a tad, but not enough that the Weyrleader behind her would be likely to bump into her — unless he meant to do it, that is. "Too shardin' early," comes her groused remark, tilting her head to regard Zi'on behind her. "Why can't these people keep regular hours like everyone else?" this last is said sotto voce, meant for him alone. "We should start with him." She points at a guy with a small rickety fishing boat, Captain and crew all in one. The name of his boat: The Shipfish.

Zi'on mumbles something in reply to Enka. Oh the sacrifices they made for their jobs! Or something. It's like as not the bronzer had slept at Enka's last night, that way she would have an easier time rousing him out of bed. By just shoving him more or less. He doesn't bump into her, thankfully. "Because they're fishfolk. And fishfolk are… fishy." Not exactly the best quip in the book. Zi'on peers at the name of the boat. "Well now, isn't that clever." And by clever he means… it's not at all clever. Zi'on steps up to greet the fisherman. "Yo. How's business?" The fisherman might mistake Zi'on for a dockhand or a sell-fisher or something, right? Why he'd be toting along a woman is another question.

It's all about the sacrifices, definitely, Enka nods in agreement to that. And indeed, Zi'on likely had stayed over at Enka's. Probably because she'd invited him and he was always welcome there, and because it was easier to wake him up in the morning by shoving him or kicking him or stealing the covers or … being really naughty, but we won't say how. "Their brains are baked from bein' out on the water too long," Enka stifles a giggle, before she peers at the little fishing vessel and it's … uh, name. "Oh yes," there's a moment when she might almost sound serious, but a look at her and that wicked little smile of hers is enough to shatter any doubts on that score. "So clever he oughta name all the boats." She falls silent when Zi'on steps up and calls out to the fisherman who looks up from inspecting his nets. "'Owdy." comes his rough voice in return. "Bis'nuss a-been a mite bit slow. Fishun' be 'ard on a fella wit dem rumors floatun' 'round."

Zi'on was likely moaning and groaning. Either the good types or the bad types, depending. Distracting him with some naughtiness might have made waking up easier, but it would have made leaving the weyr a lot harder. "Heh. Maybe. And having to smell fish all the time." As the fisherman addresses him though Zi'on's voice slips into its own drawl. "Howdy. Ya'll mean that thar ghost ship they dun been talkin' 'bout down at the market? Hooee, I thought that was jus' a rumor started up ta scare off some'a the new fishfolk that're comin' in from the neighbor'n holds. Ya'll seen it?" Oi. Zi'on sounds more like his father than ever.

Enka probably /did/ do something naughty. And that's why she's still sleepy because she got up earlier to make sure they'd get out of the weyr on time. Probably. Who knew how a goldrider's thoughts worked. "I bet they can't smell at /all/," Enka comments, just as the fisherman starts talking again. "Did ya now?" the man squints a bit, hawks and clears his throat with a hoarse cough. "Ah 'taint saw nuthun' 'bout nae ghost ship," he continues on, "but thems scaredy-whers dun tha way keeps comun' inta mah fishun' area thinkun cause they sees it. Mun cannae drop a line o' net wi'out hookin onto 'is neighburs… " the guy pauses, squints over at Enka and seems to amend what he was going to say. "bait."

Maybe that's why Zi'on was so sleepy. Bed late, very early rise… Enka really was in charge, so she could do as she saw fit really. The bronzer included. Zi'on grins to Enka and nods. They probably couldn't smell it, after a while. Everything ended up smelling like fish. Even their clothes after they washed them. "Well maybe I'll hire me a boat fer a day 'r two then. Make a little extra cash on th' side while they're all fishin' up 'round here. Could make a killin' headin' out that way if'n I'm the only man out there. Mah wench here'll help me hoist in th' nets, right?" Zi'on grins to Enka. "Which way they all comin' in from, then?"

It really explains a lot, doesn't it? Enka certainly would do the bronzer as she saw fit. Ahem. "Bet they've gone and lost their sense of smell after being overwhelmed with the stench of fish." she hangs back a bit, letting the bronzer do all the talking to the fisherman. He seemed to have everything in hand. "'Tis yer funeral if'n ye do," the captain of The Shipfish remarks, running a few more strands of net through his hands. "Nae that Ah care much fer rumors, but a mun's got eyes in 'is 'ead, ye ken. An' 'e sees folks actin' moit bit nervy, see." the man clears his throat again, missing the cheeky grin that Enka flashes at Zi'on when he mentions the nets. "But," the fisherman keeps on talking, "if'n ye tack 'ard t'starboard an' 'ead due south from 'ere, ye'll get to the place where Brud was fishun." He nods over at a boat nearby, this one larger with a few more men as crew. "Says 'e saw some ship. Didnae look loike an 'e sees 'afore." "Maybe we ought to talk to him." Enka speaks up then, leaning close to Zi'on. "See what he has to say."

Zi'on apparently is good at talking to fisher folk. That or he understands them and can speak their broken language. It was similar to the cotholdian his father spoke, for certain. The thick accent he'd done so well to avoid picking up, the one that comes out when he's drunk. Though some of what the fisherman says even the bronzer can't pick up. "I ain't 'fraid a' no ship. An' I dun believe'n ghosts, neither." Of course such things were easier to say, when he had a dragon circling overhead that was loaded up with firestone. And an entire weyr at his beck and call. "Aye, south. I got it." He gives a nod to Enka, then looks back to the fisherman. "Guess maybe 'll talk ta Brud then. Which one is he? Good luck out on them thar waters. Ya'll be fightin' over every last fish seems like ta me." And there might be some actual fighting. Zi'on wouldn't be surprised if more than a few boats ended up sunk by the end of the day. He looks to Enka then, once they've found out who Brud is or where to find him. "Guess that narrows it down a little bit then. Won't have to search the whole darn stretch of islands."

Poor Enka is apparently lost in translation. Despite her habit of dropping her 'g's and sometimes being lazy about her words, the goldrider is left blinking at the words that spill out of the fisherman's mouth. Because she can't understand any of it, much less half of it. Which is all to the well that Zi'on's the one doing all the talking. Maybe there was something to be said for fisherfolk and cothold folk. They were the same type of people. "We probably should have brought Kasira along," Enka leans in again towards Zi'on. "The way she talks, you'd think she'd fit right in." There's a loud cough from the fisherman, his net dropped onto the deck before he moves to unmoor the boat. "Yer a brave mun," he comments to the bronzer. "Braver'n meh. If'n ye wannae talk t' Brud, 'e's the tall feller wi' tha bald 'ead." The lines are coiled, and tossed to the deck. "Thankee, Ah intend to get me fair share of the catch." Even if it means the Shipfish will be responsible for sunken boats. Turning his back on the Weyrleaders, the man fusses over his departure, leaving Enka free to move up next to Zi'on. "Well, that's true. At least we have a direction now." Which is more than they had before.

Zi'on has actually never been to the cothold whose name he bears. He wasn't technically a Shipton, just of Shipton blood. But he did grow up around his father's drawl. It was almost a different language, really. "Who is Kasira?" He asks Enka under his breath. There's a nod to the fishman as he describes Brud. He'd give the man a hand, but he doesn't know much of anything about a boat, and doesn't want to get in the way or lose his 'disguise'. Instead the bronzer looks up and down the docks for a bald guy, moving out of earshot of the Shipfish's captain. "I guess we'll see what Brud has to say. Do you see him? Maybe I'll let you do the talking this time. Gimme your shirt, you can use your womanly ways on him." Zi'on laughs a bit.

Enka grew up her entire life in a Weyr (well, just like Zi'on, so she really can't claim any distinction) and Weyrs were a pretty good melting pot when it came to accents, most people tended not to have one as a result. "Bluerider," comes her answer. "Seamount Wing." her voice is equally low, a slight grin at Zi'on for a moment as they leave the Shipfish and her captain to his preparations. "Grew up in some back of beyond place, I can barely understand her." There's a shrug, Enka glancing towards the boat in question. There are several tall men, but none of them are bald. At least, it appears so until one of them removes his cap. Bald as a dragon's egg. "That must be him." she points a bit, before that hand smacks lightly and playfully against Zi'on's shoulder. "I ain't flashin' my chest at him," she retorts, "Everyone else would see, and they aint givin' information." Then again, they might. "I'll talk to him though." It's still a bit cold, but the goldrider tugs off her hat, shaking her head to let her hair blow free, pulling a strand over her shoulder to toy with absently. "Excuse me," she pauses at the edge of the dock overlooking the boat. "Be needin' to talk to Brud, fellow over there sent me," she tilts her head to indicate the Shipfish, all innocence gleaned from turns as a Weyrbrat as well as the charm learned from being a Weyrwoman needing to flatter holders.

They were, that was true. That was part of the reason Zi'on didn't talk like his father. He'd heard plenty of other voices growing up. Though occasionally that drawl does slip out. "Hm. Can't say I know her, I guess. Probably have seen her, but never heard her talk." Zi'on thinks he'd remember someone talking strange. Zi'on grins to Enka as she smacks at him. "Aw. But then I'd get to see them, too." All of the fishermen would probably start talking then, but not about anything that Enka wanted to hear about. "are you saying if we get him alone you'll flash him? He might like to hear that." Zi'on chuckles a bit. While Enka talks, he wanders off to chat with one of the other fishermen. The fisherman Enka addresses gets Brud's attention and he moves over to the side of the boat closest to where she is. "Why hello there little lady. How can Brud help you today?" He flashes her a smile, complete with a couple of gold teeth.

"Be glad that you didn't," Enka comments dryly to Zi'on, the topic of the conversation briefly turned towards a bluerider with a rather … frightful atrocious accent. "I'm wonderin' how she manages sometimes, but maybe all she needs to do is flash some paper or somethin' at the people she gets supplies from and that explains it all." That was true, the bronzer definitely would remember someone talking strange. "Darlin'," Enka gives Zi'on a wicked little smile, "you get to see them any time you like," as recently as this morning, probably. "And it's cold out here. I'm not sure that would be such a good idea, unless you were plannin' to keep me warm." Which might get the fishermen on the docks really worked up and willing to converse, but they wouldn't be talking about the things the Weyrleaders want to know. "Maybe if we get him alone," Enka does snicker a bit at that. "he might just see somethin' he probably would love to see." Separated then for the moment, it's now Enka on center stage talking to the bald fisherman. "Well, dearie," she props a hand along her hip, still running absent fingers through that lock of hair curled over her shoulder, "Fellow over there told me you were fishin' in the waters south of here and saw somethin' out there. Want to tell me what it was." She gives him a sweet little smile. "Let's just say, I have a taste for hearin' about … adventure."

Zi'on shrugs. "Da got on well enough. Though I guess he's not bad enough you can't understand him. I guess the important words are all that matters. Fruit, tubers, pants, crate. You know." Zi'on grins to Enka then. "Well I want to see them now." He whines at her. "I might could keep you warm." Though he'd rather do it back where it is warm. Or at least warmer. Where they could crawl under the covers if they needed to. Zi'on laughs. "Well, don't tease him too much." Zi'on isn't too far, but he's out of direct line of sight. That way if Enka works her wiles, he's not around to get in her way. Burd looks at least amused by Enka, though at the mention of the fishing in the south he frowns. "Now why would a sweet thing like you want to know about something like that? Alls I can say is there ain't nothin' down there that the likes of you want to get involved in, sweetcheeks. Normally I'd toss up the whole experience of seein' a ghost ship to the booze and the breeze, but this ship almost run aground near where I was fishin'. My boat got caught in 'er wake, and drug under. She almost drowned me! Them rumors 'bought her floatin' over the water ain't true though. Far as I c'n tell she's a real ship. Though I didn't see no one on it so far as I c'n remember. That's what's strange 'bout it. Don't make the usual moans and creeks like a normal ship neither. It's real silent and fast as I ever seen." He eyes Enka then. "Whatever it is, it ain't out there to share the water but any rights." Then he grins to her. "But old Burd'd be happy to show ya 'round these waters. Jus' me an' you and a bottle o' fine wine out on the water at sunset…"

Enka chuckles softly. "And I suppose wordless gruntin' and gestures could get the message across pretty quick too," the goldrider muses a bit. "But yeah, just a few words are needed when dealin' with holders. And at other Weyrs, could always get your dragon to do the talkin'." There's a twitch of her lips, Enka stifling a giggle at the bronzer's expense. "Well you can just keep on rememberin' what they look like and just keep on thinkin' that you'll keep me nice and warm, and I'll make it worth your while." Later, of course, where it's nice and warm and they have the benefit of bedcovers to huddle under after all the activity is over. "Won't try to break him," she tips her head Brud's way, "least not by much." Of course with the bronzer just out of sight, it's Enka's job to keep the fisherman talking, and she tugs a bit at her coat fastenings. "It sounds positively dangerous," her voice drops slightly, almost a whisper of anticipation. "Fishin' in treacherous waters with a ghost ship on the sea." His words draw her attention, avid interest in Enka's eyes as she takes in what he says before he's well, propositioning her, isn't it? "Well aint you a sweet fellow," the goldrider tugs a bit at her coat again, loosening it just a tad. "Fine offer like that, it's enough to make a gal quiver." Her smile is wicked sweet then, "but I'm afraid you just aint my type darlin'." There's a flick of her hand through her own hair.

Zi'on nods with a chuckle to Enka. "Guess I will just have to keep remembering." Clearly the bronze is awake now, at least! Where is he heading? Well, it's likely he's found the only saltwife down by the docks this morning and has gone over to chat her up. Or he's just going to chew the fat with the sailors. Burd isn't hard to keep talking, as Enka has likely noticed. Since he seems to give her the whole story right off. Nor does he seem like the type to lie, but whether he embellished a bit or not is hard to say. "You bet it's trecher'us. So don't go out there thinkin' to get a close up of the ghost ship. I don' want to find your pretty face floatin' up in the water next time I'm sailing 'round." He does look a little disappointed when she turns down his offer for a boat ride. "Ah, that's a shame. Well, I'm here every mornin' if'n you change you mind." He wraggles his eyebrows at her and flashes her those gold teeth.

"I think you could at least wait a little while," Enka grins teasingly at Zi'on. Awake is definitely a good thing, that was for sure. And he's off chatting while Enka works her wiles, excellent. There was something for having a pretty face, at least she got the straight story right out, although there might be some exaggerating along the way. Like his boat, is that new or something? "My," Enka flutters her eyelashes a bit, smiling serenely. "you must have such a dangerous job, so amazin' that you keep venturin' out into deadly waters to bring us a good catch. Oughta thank you for it, but I'm afraid I wouldn't know when to stop if I did." And besides, he's not her type, eh? With that other flash of gold teeth, the goldrider blows a kiss at Brud. "If I change my mind, I'll be sure and catch ya up." And there she goes, moving away with a deliberate little wiggle-walk until she's gotten far enough to meander to Zi'on's side. "Got the story," she says, voice low. "Whole deal. Says it's real all right, sure aint floatin' the way the rumors say."

Maybe he bought a new one. Or is renting this one. Or maybe it was a different boat. Was he the captain of this boat? Burd grins to Enka and steps up on the rail, so he can lean closer to Enka. "How about a little sugar on Burd's cheek? They say it's good luck for a gal to be kissin' a sailor before he sets out." A likely story. Whether or not Enka decides to give Burd some sugar or not is up to her. Either way she's likely heading back to where Zi'on is, tossing rocks at some annoying birds. "Eh? Didn't think it was flying, unless they spotted a dragon. So is the ship real then? Should we rent a boat or something? Or find someplace in the bushes for you and your sailor?" He laughs.

Maybe he did buy a new one. Or rented it. Or maybe he wasn't even the captain at all. Who knew. Enka tosses Burd a look over her shoulder, blowing another kiss in his direction but not actually kissing him. He'll just have to hope that two air kisses were good luck. Joining Zi'on where he's harassing the birds — damned birds — she leans towards him. "Wouldn't think it was a dragon, unless it was that wierdo gold that ran away a while back, bet she'd be a good ghost ship." there's a dry chuckle from the weyrwoman. "Ayep, ship's real enough accordin' to Burd. So we got an answer. South of here. Probably should send a sweeprider or two out that way." she suggests, before poking playfully at his shoulder. "Shells, man, it's still shardin' cold out. I aint crawlin' into no bushes with no sailors, but a pirate now," she sidles up next to the bronzer, "would be just the thing." Preferably not in any bushes though. Where are those bedcovers when you need 'em?

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