Castles in the Sky (Or Something)

Half Moon Bay Weyr - Candidates' Barracks
Carved from a natural bubble in the volcanic stone, this small dorm room has room enough to hold around two dozen occupants comfortably. Along the walls are stationed sets of cots and clothes presses, each made up to the standards of the weyrwoman. Above, the soft white light from electric lamps cast down during waking hours.


Why does Tanit have a wheelbarrow at this time in the evening? Perhaps the more important question is why said wheelbarrow is overflowing with blankets, sheets and pillows. She says absolutely nothing as she passes, Lime poking her head out of the box as the wheelbarrow is emptied and the dolphineer disappears, only to return with more, piling everything into a corner. NEVERMIND HER.

For his part, Zeltan is busy re-whitewashing the printed pages that cover the bottom of the bunk above his, sighing softly as he does so, shaking his head as it takes an extra layer to cover up some of the handwritten notes that have started to appear there. His work is paused, however, as Tanit appears, eyes flicking to the pile of blankets and pillows. As she reppears yet again with more, he sits up, leaning to watch her. "Shards, Tanit, what are you -doing-? I think Lime's box is probably comfortable enough.."

Either Tanit did not hear him, or else she’s just not answering, arranging two of the empty sets of bunk beds at an angle to each other and dragging the mattresses out and onto the ground. Next comes the pilfered laundry line which gets run between the upper bunk posts. Lime, pokes her head out from the box beneath Zeltan’s cot, eying her human, and then eyeing her other human, then sighing with a flick of her tail The kittens are still eating or she’d probably walk over to investigate herself.

And idle scritch goes to Lime's head as Zeltan goes to investigate instead, meandering over with his hands shoved in his pockets. Lingering a safe distance away for a moment, he watches Tanit work, before he is moving to flop onto the floor-mattresses. Laying on his back, with his hands behind his head, he peers up at Tanit with a grin. "Good idea, Tanit, finally a space wide enough for the two of us."

Tanit tugs a sheet loose that someone has painted rather frilly looking daisies on and throws it over one section of the rope adjusting it every so often until she’s perfectly satisfied with it. It is the second statement which draws sea-green eyes to the sprawling trader with a severe arch of one brow. “Could probably fit three or four of us in here, maybe even all at once.” Who pissed in her cheerios? Two sheets that look like they were made to be ship sails rather than sheets, (ok that might be an exaggeration) and spreads it over the ropes that are set up like rafters between the two bunks.

As sheets start to go up around him, Zeltan stares at Tanit for a moment, before his forehead starts to crease and he is frowning at her, shifting to sit up, and reach out a hand to try and brush lightly against the side of her calf. "You ok, Tanit?" He murmurs softly, before he is getting to his feet to start helping adjust the ship-sail-sheets across the ropes.

Tanit closes her eyes, possibly counts to ten, and then exhales softly. “I’m fine Zel.” Glancing back to her pile, and tugging the mattresses off two more bunks and a glow lantern, leaning the mattresses up against the backs of the bunks so a small seating area seems to form. “You seem to have quite the collection of notes accumulating.” A change of topic? Maybe. She continues wrestling until she’s satisfied with the matresses and two of the tent’s planned three walls are in place. The glow lantern is hung in the middle from the ceiling rope, and Tanit needs another moment to think before she pulls two more sheets and pins them to the last rope so a split door of sorts creates a prism shaped tent.

Freezing, Zeltan shrinks slightly in on himself as she answers, frowning and taking half a step back to watch her. "If you say so.." He finally murmurs, shaking his head, returning to watching her adjust things here and there to her liking. "Honestly, its… a little weird at this point." He admits with a murmur, glancing around the barracks to make sure none of the young "ladies" in question are in hearing range. "I mean, at first it was fun but.." He blushes and shakes his head, eyes slipping over the tent-fort she has created. "Good job.." He offers after a moment.

Pillows continue to be added after throwing down a blanket layer, and Tanit takes a moment to stop and reach a hand for his elbow, long enough to look him in the eye. “I’m fine Zel.” Warmer this time at least though perhaps a little more to convince herself than him. “But?” The dolphineer arching a brow as she tugs the last of the millions of pillows in, having happily completed said pillowfort. It is then and only then that Tanit flops down in her newly formed kingdom, and Lime comes over to inspect and give her seal of approval.

Sometimes, it is just wisest to let a woman build her blanket-fort home exactly the way she wants, without getting in the way, and it seems that Zeltan has decided that for sure, that time is now. Even after she tries to reassure him, Zeltan is lingering out of the way, and when she ducks inside, it is only when Lime inspects the structure that the trader is ducking in after the dolphineer. "They aren't you." He offers softly as he joins, sprawling on the pillow pile.

FOOF. Lime darts away inside as a rather fluffy mass is hurled at Zeltan’s face from somewhere behind Tanit’s head. Not with enough force to injure but she’s already laughing.
Whether it is a yelp or a curse, whatever the sound that escapes Zeltan is muffled as he catches the pillow to the face, his arms moving too slow to stop it. After a stunned moment, he peeks out from behind the pillow to narrow his gaze at her, holding the 'weapon' defensively. "Rude!" He manages, trying to keep a straight face.

“Well that’s what you get.” Tanit laughs, “For using one of the oldest lines in the book. Not that I’m not flattered of course.” Snagging another of the pillows and flinging it at him. “But what did you expect the purpose of a pillow fort was? Besides – I’m pretty sure if any of those girls see’s you in here with me you are going to wish they hadn’t.” Because… CRAZY happens.

Purpose? PILLOW FIGHTS DUH!

"Well, honestly, I can think of a -lot- of reasons to build a pillow fort in a barracks full of other people, none of which are throwing pillows at your friends." Zeltan replies quickly, even as he is waiting for her to let her guard down -just enough- before the pillow in his arms is headed back her direction, and an arm is flailing around behind him to find a replacement to use as a shield.

Tanit is laughing until she has a face full of downy goodness, and then she just freezes – staring at him. “You have just declared war.” More ammo found but this time, she moves in for closer combat. “Look, a pillow fight has been on my bucket list for ages.” And if the pillow misses, hopefully she’s close enough for a sneak attack- fingers going for the ticklish spots she knows about, or maybe in search of a ticklish spot while Lime just cleans her claws watching the silly humans.

"Wait, -I- declared war?!" Zeltan asks, legitimately shocked, the pillow shield raised to block the incoming projectile, though doing so leaves him blind, and caught unaware as she shifts to hand to hand combat. The pillow in his hands is pushed at her, trying to get some breathing space even as the tickling starts and his breathing turns to wheezing.

Pillow smooshed as it is against her face the muffled “Mfwh hu yfld” is probably ‘do you yield?’ but it’s hard to tell, given that whatever foul mood she’d been in earlier is mostly shaken off in fits of breathless, and pillowy laughter.

"I can't understaaaaand you…" Zeltan's voice takes on a slightly sing-songy tone to it then, even as the pillow is pulled back and he uses it to swat at her hands as he scoots away across the tent, face flushing as he laughs/wheezes/possibly dies.

Pwhaah. Pillow talking is not easy ok. That sounded better in her head. Zeltan may have earned himself a brief reprieve but not for ever, Tanit does take a moment to catch her breath before slowly encroaching on his space again. Only to seem to think better of it and flop onto her back waving a pillowcase in the air in surrender, at least for the moment. “Well, that answers the question of your ticklishness. I shall use this information only for eeevil.” Tanit pants.

The attack stops and Zeltan is left laying on his back, stretching his arms over his head as he attempts to catch his breath, turning to glance at Tanit as she surrenders, and comments on his ticklishness. "If you whisper a word of it to anyone.." Though who knows what he would actually threaten - or if he would follow through.

“You’ll do what?” She laughs, rolling over to prop herself up on elbows to study his expression, “The way I count it, I’m still ahead. No matter how many ways you add up the points.” Chin handing as her eyes shift back out to the barracks outside the haven of the newly constructed fort. “Though I think you are right, It’s nice to have the illusion of privacy in here even if the reality is impossible. It gets more and more crowded every day.”

"I haven't decided yet." Zeltan answers with a hrumph, glancing at her as she props herself up on her elbows. As she glances out towards the barracks, his eyes follow hers for a moment, but then, there is an evil smile, and he is taking advantage of her distraction to launch a pillow at her with a soft, round arching line of flight. "At least candidates don't grow larger and larger literally overnight." Hopefully.

Mmpfhs! As she gets thwacked with a pillow, shifting to one side to snag the projectile and lob it back at him. “This is what I get for allowing you to breathe. How ungrateful.” She teases, snagging up two more pillows and closing in with a grin. “True, and once the Weyrling staff started enforcing bathing It has smelled loads better in here.”

"That is simply how things are - war isn't fair, you know." Zeltan smirks, catching the pillow as it comes back in his direction, wrapping his arms around it to try and protect himself. "I wish I understood why they weren't, in the first place." He comments, even as his eyes track her carefully and he prepares for the attack.

“Who knows?” Comes in mock seriousness, flinging herself at him with both pillows cymbals style. One to either side of his head but is she successful? “The whole thing is weird, the eggs, the candidates – the reasons why seven gallons of syrup goes to the weyrlingmaster’s quarters every morning?” Maybe she made the last bit up?

If she just made it up as a distraction, it worked, because Zeltan is dropping his pillow a bit, just in time to get cymbal-pillowed, groaning a little as he curls up on himself. "Noooooo…" A soft whimper, and with his face pillowed, who knows how serious it is. "Tanit, noooo" There is a muffled 'plea'.

Both pillows drop, and she’s over in an instant all but pulling him into her lap in attempt to get a better look at his face. “Are you ok? Hey, let me see.” Coaxing and deeply apologetic as she tries gently to pry that pillow from his face. “I’m sorry Zel, let me see.”

Its a trap! As soon as the pillows are gone, and she is checking on him, it is easy to see that Zeltan is, in fact, perfectly ok - and wearing a wide grin as he peers up at her, lifting a hand to curl gently around her face.. while the other aims for a tickle-retaliation, looking stupidly proud of himself, though the attack thankfully only lasts for a moment.

Tanit is totally taken in. “Ok, maybe I deserved tha- ahahaha” Trailing off into a burst of breathless giggles. And when he lets up she’s just staring at him trying to catch her breath. “And maybe I deserved that too.” She will admit slowly reaching behind her for another pillow, stopping if and when he notices. “Are we even now and am I forgiven finally?”

"You are forgiven finally.." He agrees after a moment, though Zeltan's eyes narrow just a bit as he peers up at her. "But if you ever do that again…" Well, no need to put a serious damper on things. But even then, it seems that the trader-candidate is content to make her his pillow, despite the number of them in the fort, because he isn't moving.

“No, it was a bad joke to play, and could cause me serious trouble if I was ever really hurt.” She will admit. Quietly tugging that pillow over and raising an eyebrow at him as he makes himself perfectly comfortable using her as a pillow. “And just what – do you think you are doing?” Her lips quirking up at the corners despite the serious tone.

"Relaxing." Zeltan replies easily, smiling up at her, and absently reaching to try and stop the movement of the pillow behind her. "Its nice to have a bit of piece and quiet, and have something much nicer to stare at over my head than that awful.. book. If you want to call it that, I mean." He might argue the point. "This is more my view."

Tanit tugs at the pillow, but for now it’s progress is halted. “Well maybe if you weren’t sneaking off to the stables every day, people would be less inclined to provide you with reading materials?” She points out with a soft chuckle. She’s probably exaggerating. Probably. “ If you’d like I can go find one of your fan club members, I’m sure they will even feed you grapes.” Never mind that lime is slowly plodding over and attempting to plop herself upon the trader’s chest.

"If you know where I am, it is hardly sneaking off." Zeltan counters, though he doesn't protest -too- much, cause well, even he knows what that says about people. "You should tell my librarian I prefer women, see if the next round can be a little more interesting." But the mention of the fanclub results in a wrinkled nose - which vanishes as Lime settles in. "Hey Limey.." He offers cheerfully, moving to scratch her ears.

For his protests he just gets a look. “Hey, I saw the note from the Starcrafter when I was checking on Lime and the kittens. Zel.” Don’t try to kid a kidder – or something. But anything more is halted by the wisdom of the Lime who sprawls contentedly under ear scratches in a purring puddle. “Traitor.” Tanit notes shifting into a more comfortable position. “I can’t just dump him out of my lap now, thanks Lime.” The dolphineer gives a longsuffering sigh. “You have turned my cat against me, I hope you are proud.”

Thanks Lime - Zel owes you! As he continues to shower Lime with all sorts of attention and affection, he just tilts his head to smirk up at her. "I wouldn't go that far, I am just.. helping her get to know other people, and be a friendly cat." That is fair, right? "You're not thaaaat upset, right?"

Tanit sighs, leaning back into the pillows and snagging out a book. “I have other things to be annoyed with you over I suppose. Fine – you two win. This time.” And thus, Zeltan has earned himself a bit of peace and quiet and a pillow. At least until the business of being a candidate forces them back into the world outside the pillowfort.


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