Rou'x in the Radio Room with ... a Job

Western Weyr - Weyrwoman's Office
Behind stout, ornately carved hardwood double doors decorated with fancy brass handles and a stout bolting lock, the Weyrwoman's office is a sanctum of paperwork, bureaucracy and lots of red tape. It is here that much of the running of the Weyr takes place — where the meetings of the domestic side of the Weyr are held and daily matters are handled between the Senior and her juniors as well as the Headwoman's staff. The walls, painted a cheerful soothing shade of sage green, are adorned with paintings and tapestries of life around the Weyr. To one side, a large desk of skybroom wood holds court, piled with paper, and file folders — the heavily padded chair behind it meant for the comfort of the working weyrwoman, along with chairs for visitors and guests set in front of it. Part of the desk is curving away, this holding a small computer that can be used for word processing and file entry. Along one wall, a row of short bookshelves hold scrolls, books and other means of record keeping; the oldest and most fragile of the relics being kept behind glass casings. Hand-woven carpets cover the floors, buffering the feel of hard stone and giving a softer feeling to the room. A sideboard on the wall opposite the entrance is kept stocked with drinks for refreshment, and a comfortable couch with a side table and an ornate reading lamp can be found in the middle of the room.

It's mid-morning, and Rou'x is responding to a summons. She's a little long in the time it takes to turn up, but the reason for that is evident when she puts in her appearance, as she's clearly made at least some degree of an effort to smarten up. She's without her hat, wearing a slightly less battered riding jacket and leathers combination, with a shirt that's cleanly pressed and boots that are shined… somewhat, anyway. Indianath informs Miraneith of her approach before Rou'x knocks on the doors to the office, leaving the brownrider to fiddle with the end of her thick braid as she waits to be called in.

Enka was really supposed to be working, but Faranth, if it isn't difficult to concentrate right now. Especially with Miraneith bestirring herself on her ledge at a time she'd normally be asleep — which is how the queen is able to pass along the forewarning of Indianath's announcement of his rider. Enka had been sitting at her desk, elbows propped akimbo on the desk, and her chin sunk upon her palms, sighing happily at internal thoughts — of what, who knows, but at the sound of the knock at the door, she's frenzied into action, a flurry of movement that knocks over the cup holding her pens, sending them clattering and scattering all over the floor. A muffled muttered curse from the Weyrwoman is followed by a brisk "Come in" that's perhaps just too brisk, and an octave too high. Scrambling to set her desk to rights, and failing, Enka resorts to clamping a forearm down across the paperwork spread out before her, leaning casually.

Rou'x steps inside, pushing the door closed behind her and approaching the desk on which the Weyrwoman's leaning with a wary eye at the scattered pens. Other than a few sidelong glances at them, though, the brownrider remains stoic, her expression schooled to a calm neutrality. She stops a few paces before the desk and stands at ease - feet planted hip-distance apart, hands clasped behind her back and her gaze fixed somewhere a few inches to the side of and behind Enka's own. "You called me, ma'am?"

A pen rolls across the desk, *ka-thud* *ka-thud* and Enka snatches for it, misses and the cylindrical object clatters onto the floor to lie with the rest of them. Well, so much for trying for the casual-everything's-all-right facade, and heaving a sigh, Enka pushes backwards into her chair to fix Rou'x with a careful scrutinizing look. Well, the brownrider certainly looks all shipshape and bristol fashion. Which is more than the same could be said for the flustered, clearly bothered Weyrwoman, damn gold dragons and their proddy cycles. "Yes," she replies evenly. "I did. Please, have a seat." she gestures to one of the chairs. "There's much to talk about, I think."

There's only the tiniest of twitches as Rou'x's brow tweaks up in response to the pen-grabbing, as she otherwise works hard to keep as expressionless as possible. When she's invited to sit she nods, the corner of her mouth curving up ever so slightly as she steps forward, pulls the gestured-to chair to an angle that she likes, and settles down on the edge of the seat. Her hands rest in her lap, lightly clasped, all /too/ stiff in comparison to her typically over-casual style. "Yes, ma'am," she says eventually, still keeping that carefully schooled expression, and with her eyes focused on some distant point.

Enka misses that tiny lip twitch, her attention focused on maintaining her cool — and failing, as it were — before she watches the brownrider take her seat. "You'd think," she quips, "that after all this time, I'd be gettin' used to this. Usually am. But with Shadhavarth on her toes too…" the goldrider sighs, shrugs and creases her lips into a thin smile. "'Least we sent Liora away before everythin' went crazy." A pause. "Are you settlin' in again? Everythin' goin' all right for you?" Maybe it's small talk, and slightly inane, but Enka doesn't want to jump into the heavy topics just yet.

"Yes ma'am, I saw Liora leavin'." Behind her flat tone and the Southern lilt that softens her natural Reachian brogue, there's just a hint of relief; perhaps Rou'x's pleased by that turn of events as it means her gold-loving lifemate has no chance of catching the woman's dragon again. "Miraneith n' Shadhavarth look to be in fine health, ma'am." In other words, she's seen the signs of what's making the Weyrwoman so flustered. The questions that follow cause Rou'x's brow to crease in a frown, and she looks down for a moment to where her hands are clasped in her lap. "No, ma'am. Not really. I feel I've half the Weyr hatin' me, n' I ain't been able t' look at no-one in Archipelago. Truth be told, ma'am, it's hard t'think there's still somewhere f' me here."

"Hard to miss, yes," Enka agrees. "Bein' as she was out in the middle of the Bowl gettin' packed up. But she's out of our hair now, and that's a great deal of relief." Enka fidgets a little in her chair. "I'm sure that Iris and I would agree with you, fine fettle and excellent health for both dragons." Those signs aren't hard to miss after all, not with Miraneith out on her ledge, flaunting her shininess. "I see," Enka begins at Rou'x words, digesting the comments with thoughtfulness. It's hard to say what comes next, after all, someone /died/ and brushing that off as something minor would be entirely rude to the brownrider before her. "It is too shame that you aint settlin' in the same as before, but …" she pauses, leaning forward to steeple her fingers together beneath her chin. "When you say that about it bein' hard, what … would you do otherwise?"

Rou'x's quiet for a long moment, staring at some spot near the base of one of the desks's legs. Her lips purse and her brow furrows, and eventually she shrugs. It's a defeated sort of gesture, accompanied by a sigh. "Ain't gotta clue, ma'am. I been spendin' the last turn trawlin' Southern n' diggin' up old ancient places n' shi—/stuff/ like that, but it were alright doin' that temporary. Couldn't do it all th' time, n' I missed home." One shoulder is shrugged, and she sighs again. "There's some reckin I oughtn't've come back, but there ain't nowhere else for me t'go to, ma'am."

Enka brows lift at the brownrider's words about digging up old artifacts and whatnot. "Were you?" she asks, interest piqued for a moment or two. "I imagine it must have been different than anythin' you were used to, did you find anythin' interestin' or was it all just old dusty ruins with nothin' to show for it?" On the other hand, that did sound like intense work, and a way of well … keeping the hands busy to distract the mind. "So y'came home. Aint no place like home." A sentiment that Enka certainly shares, and her words aren't meant to sting or barb in any way. "And those same folks who might reckon you ought not show your face around here would be likly to stick their own mothers with a pin just to be a grouchy wher," Enka comments. "Can't stand to see anyone try and make up for things. Prove 'em wrong." Is it a challenge? "Show 'em you got as much right to be here as them."

"Coupla interestin' bits that I sold off, but it were mostly just excavatin' buildin's n' stuff, really." Hard, slow work that someone with a lack of patience such as Rou'x would probably struggle with, except the opposite seems to be true. "I saw a Healer for a while. Well. I say 'saw'," her nose wrinkles as she thinks about it, a crooked grin curving her lips to suggest there was a lot more to it than merely a patient-healer relationship. "He told me a lotta things about me that I din't know. Gave me a lotta reasons for why I…" Rou'x blushes in embarrassment, dropping her gaze. "For what happened b'froe I left. All've it. An' I din't do no-one no favours then, ma'am, just like I ain't got no way now t'show 'em why I oughta be here."

"Interestin'," Enka remarks on the topic of artifacts and ancient ruins. "Kept you busy, I imagine?" Up go those brows again at the mention of the healer, and that crooked grin which has Enka regarding the brownrider with careful scrutiny. She's as good as anyone at reading into things beyond the level of face value — shells, she was good /at/ that sort of double entendre. "My brother's a healer," she remarks. "They're good at doin' that kind of thing, tellin' ya stuff and that kind of thing. I always figured it was best just to smile and nod with 'em. But maybe it was different for you." There's a thump as Enka jumps to her feet, hands coming down on her desk. "So that it then, you're just givin' up or somethin'? Aint got nothin' to show anyone why you ought to be here? Find a way." Hardliner Weyrwoman here. Do or die, apparently.

"With all due respect, Weyrwoman," Rou'x looks surprised when Enka gets to her feet, sitting up a little straighter when she slams down on the desk, "what I did were inexcusable, n' I'm bein' too held up by pride t'go back n' join my wingmates, even if A'wrn were gonna accept me back. I ain't even spoken t' him, yet." Her hands rest on her knees, and she, too, looks ready to make a move… though she's silent, while her jaw takes on a more determined set that is somewhat conflicting with her earlier sheepish, defeated attitude. "Honestly, ma'am? I were a fuckin' /good/ wingleader. I screwed up once n' like F'rel were tellin' me for months, I been beatin' m'self raw over how damned awful I feel for fuckin' up that one - /one/ - time. But if I were t' come on back here after bein' gone for the better part've a turn n' demand my knot back t' show people I'm worth it, I reckon I woulda been shown out in wi' far less pomp than Liora got."

"You see!" Enka waves a hand around with some flourish, clearly getting agitated to the point of exasperation. "You haven't even talked to A'wrn yet, so how doyou know if he was willin' to have you back or not? And if it's pride holdin' you back…" she pauses, opens her mouth as if she might say more, and then snaps her lips shut. Clearly, there wasn't anything to say without saying it diplomatically, and Enka's just too keyed up right now to soften any kind of blow or smooth things over. Tipping herself off the desk, she slumps back into her chair, fixing Rou'x with a stare. "To be told," she admits, "Liora would be gettin' the better part of the deal if you were talkin' about makin' things all nice and flowery for the sake of appearances. Nobody would just let you get that knot back, just for nothin'. I'm sorry." There's a breath taken, released slowly. "Do you want me to talk to him, A'wrn, I mean, and sound him out? Do you want to go back to your old wing or are you willin' to try somethin' else? What exactly do you want?"

Rou'x's stiffness eases up a bit as she slumps in her chair when Enka sits back down. Then she leans forward with her elbows on her knees and her face in her hands, breathing noisily into her palms, before speaking into them. "It ain't so much A'wrn, ma'am, as everyone else in Archipelago. I led someone t'death. They ain't gonna want t' trust me in their ranks, are they? An' I ain't no Seamount rider, nor'm I an example f' weyrlin's to follow." She scrubs her hands over her face, causing her berry-brown cheeks to flush a little. Then she rests her chin in her hands, fingers covering her mouth as she looks back at Enka. "I ain't got no clue what I want. I ain't got no clue what I can /do/."

"I'd say you have a problem there then," Enka observes, "if the entire wing 'aint likely to trust you again at the moment. Although it does put me to mind of what it could have been like in the old days. Must've been rough bein' a wingleader when Thread was fallin', bet there was plenty of deaths. I know it 'aint like to be any sort of consolation, but you're welcome to visit the records room, or go to another Weyr or down to Landing if you can't find anythin' there, and read about it. Maybe you'll get some kind of closure or somethin'." the goldrider shakes her head. "Wasn't even thinkin' of puttin' you with the weyrlings. Doesn't seem like the kind of thing Indianath'd go for, no? Unless he had nothin' else. But … if you don't want to fly with Seamount, then maybe you could spend time with the watchriders, and do duty up on the Rim for a while to settle in. And elevator duty. Probably would be terribly borin' though, not sure if I could offer anythin' better. But you don't need to make up your mind all at once."

"Indy'd be alright teachin' 'em, but he'd get bored. /I'd/ get bored, even if I were the shinin' example o' what a rider oughta be." Rou'x shifts from talking into her hands to leaning on one, resting her cheek against it and softly huffing in exasperation. She doesn't seem all too taken by the suggestion of being a watchrider; her nose twitches in displeasure that she can't quite mask. "I'm not sure that's us, ma'am. Sittin' about, doin' nothin'? It's alright if it's for relaxin', but if that's a full-on job, it ain't no challenge nor nothin'. I reckon we'd go stir crazy in a sevenday… but I ain't really got many choices, have I?" Her fingers drum against her cheek and she stares at the desk in front of her, thoughtfully. Then something hits her, and she sits up a little straighter. "Unless… what if I were t'work the radio room? I know howta do that, n' I were gettin' pretty good at readin' them weather reports n' stuff t' predict where the bad stuff were comin' from so's we could be ready for it, n' I could be in touch wi' A'wrn to pass the info onta him, mebbe it'll help us t' build back a relationship somewhat."

Enka nods slightly. "And there's no point in makin' you bored." the woman comments, although she certainly does not agree — nor disagree — with the assessment of the brownrider regarding less-than-stellar examples of riderdom. That's just being diplomatic. "And if you're that opposed to bein' a watchrider, then there's no need to force you into doin' somethin' like that. Shells, I know I'd probably go stir crazy if it were me in your shoes and sittin' around on the Rim just watchin' for nothin' that happens." There's a long pause, Enka mulling over the idea of Rou'x in the radio room before she nods in firm decision. "I know I don't spend a lot of time in there," she remarks, "and it's empty most of the time, bein' as there's never someone decently trained, but if you want to take over the duty there, you certainly may. You can help your wing that way, gives you a place and a job to do, and you've got a chance at workin' back into everyone's good graces. When are you plannin' to start?"

Rou'x can't help the crooked grin that curves up one corner of her mouth as a result of Enka confirming her vocation choice. "First thing tomorrow mornin', I'll get in n' start right off then, relieving whoever's in there - if anyone." Now her forwards lean is less of a slump and more enthusiastic, as a new sense of energy runs through her to replace the dejected aura she had previously. "Thanks, Enka. Y'know, I reckon I can do damned good in there - it ain't gonna feel quite as good as leadin' did, but it's the sorta thing I can put my head into, n' that's /exactly/ what I need." She never was the layabout lazy type, after all. "Can I ask one thing though? Like a favour, almost? Can y'have someone tell A'wrn and the rest've the wing? Mebbe not speak t'him like we mentioned earlier, just mebbe…" Rou'x shrugs a shoulder. "Mebbe just let'm know that I ain't all that bad n' that it were a mistake anyone could make, or summat?"

"Near as I recall," and the Weyrwoman can recall things pretty well, "aint nobody in there right now, so if you wanted to start tomorrow mornin' bright and early, you wouldn't have to fight for the best chair." there's a wry smile on the goldrider's face as she leans back into her chair, arms criss-crossed over her lap. "For what it's worth," she remarks, "I think you'll do a grand job workin' in there, and maybe it'll help you feel better about everythin' that's happened. It's a job, and aint no piddly little make-work because we didn't feel like lettin' you do anything." Ahem, the kind of thing /Liora/ gets, see. "I'll have someone go tell 'im," she adds. "Won't go talkin' to him myself, or tell the rest of the wing, but I'll make sure that whoever speaks to him lets him know that you are a good person and people make mistakes. We're not perfect, after all." She fidgets a little. "Ought to make a note of it so I don't forget, with Shadhavarth more likely to rise before Mir, I've sent her and Iris off. And without Liora and her … little tasks." Read as makework, "I'm swamped with work. So off you go then, and I'm hopin' that this makes you feel better, Brownrider Rou'x."

"It makes me feel a whole lot better, ma'am. Ain't nothin' worser than not knowin' where y'stand in your own home, y'know? An' if you wanta send any've that stuff you've got my way, I can mebbe help wi' some've the smaller tasks? I got well good at paperwork when I were headin' up the wing." That doesn't mean Rou'x loves doing it, but given what's just gone down she's willing to help out as she can. "Indianath were commentin' on how well Miraneith were lookin'… he's a bit disappointed thatcha sent two goldriders off. I reckon he were hopin' on his chances've bein' a daddy again. I reckon we both wanna prove he's got better in 'im than what that last clutch he sired were." Clearly Rou has ever confidence that her boy's capable of more. She slaps her hands down on her thighs then, and stands up to salute Enka. "It feels good t'have a purpose again, Weyrwoman. Thanks. Wouldja need me for anythin' else now?"

Enka's smile is genuine, relaxed as she is for a moment or two. "Mir's lookin' entirely too good for her own good," she replies drolly, and then chuckles. "Well, I am sorry that it was disappointin' for him, but we're humorin' Ila'den I suppose, at shippin' him, Iris and the dragons off. See if that makes things better or somethin'. And Liora…" she pauses, and shrugs. "Dragonhealers have orders to look Orraeloth over, see what's goin' on with her. Though I suppose he'd want to stay away from Orraeloth the next time, if there ever is a next time for her. I know it was Liora's fault for lettin' that dragon gorge, but …" she shrugs, and trails off. "Y'never know, he might have a chance again in the future." The salute is returned, two fingers tipped off her forehead in a jaunty sort of acknowledgement. "Good, gladd to hear you're happy to be workin' again. Since I don't need anythin' else, you could take the rest of the day off, and relax if you wanted to. Or at least go over to the radio room and make sure everythin' is still workin'."

"Not havin' a purpose drives me mad, ma'am, you've just saved my sanity." Rou'x grins, even giving the Weyrwoman a playful wink. "I think I'll go straight on to the radio room, just to check everythin's workin' proper. I've been tinkering wi' electronics a bit this part turn, I reckon I might be able t'get anythin' not workin' back inta proper shape - or at least I'll know if someone's gotta be called in t' fix it for me. I'll let you know, shall I?" She stands at ease, slipping her hands into her pockets and rocking back on her heels. "I'm gonna prove 'em all wrong, y'know. I'll show you I were worth givin' that knot to in the first place." Nodding her head determinedly, she then tilts her head towards the door. "Permission t'go start workin', ma'am?"

"Well, you are quite welcome." Enka replies in turn, "I'd hate to have an insane brownrider runnin' around. It frightens the tourists, don'tcha know." the woman returns that wink, chuckling a little as she reaches down to retrieve her scattered pens. "You do that," the goldrider's head pops up over the edge of the desk. "Make sure everythin' is set up and ready for you to go to work tomorrow, and we'll let the dragonpoker cards fall where they may." There's a somewhat airy wave of her hand, clear signs for dismissal as Enka ducks back below the desktop to finish cleaning up the mess she'd made earlier.

"Where they may," Rou'x echoes with a firm nod of her head. "I'll report back once I've got somethin' t' say, ma'am. Have a good day." After another sharp salute, the brownrider turns on her heel to clip her way across the office, and out to her newly assigned post.

Add a New Comment
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License