Dragons, Dolphins and Men

Half Moon Bay Weyr - Laundry Room
The laundry rooms has for a long time been the primary source of weyr gossip and stories. Many aunties hustle and bustle about the place, taking care of the weyr's steady supply of laundry. The room itself is large and has been divided into two halves. The main half is for actual washing and drying of clothes. The other half is for mending, sewing, sorting and folding.

Back in the laundry room again. Seems the seamstress decided that Kassala had nice stitching and asked for her return to help out with some repair work. Seated over to the side, the red head has a basket of clothing that need the odd repair from buttons replaced to small tears being repaired. With needle and thread, she's working on a button, listening to the various banter between the usual workers within the room, holding back the occasional laugh at things gossiped about.

It's good that Half Moon Bay is pretty warm even in its winter, because when Taline comes in to the laundries, she's wearing just an undershirt and a loose pair of twill pants, carrying an armful of what looks like it used to be a tunic at one point, and is now some heap of fabric covered in suds and dirt. And Taline's hair also looks awful. Actually, Taline looks kind of suds-y and dirt-y. She offers a weak, tired smile toward any familiar candidate faces, Kassala's included, as she trudges to a washbasin.

As another steps inside, Kassala looks up from her work, then grins as she spies Taline, "Looks like you had dragon washing duty.." She knows the look. Been there, done that! Setting her work aside, she rises from the chair she was sitting in, and moves over towards Taline, "Need some help? Want me to take that, and you can go get cleaned up and come back for them?"

"I sure did. I don't mind being wet, but …" Taline is smiling tiredly as she shrugs, at least. "Very different from washing dolphins. Most people don't even know you can wash dolphins, but dragons are …" She lets out a long sigh, and then concludes, "Dragons are big." This dragon was also pretty dirty, it seems. "Don't interrupt your own work, though, I can do it. It''s — not good — it's something, to hear that others get as … coated as me."

Kassala chuckles softly, "They are far bigger than the dolphins, aye. It's one of the first things we learned how to do at the school - how to wash.. and oil them." It's a task that she enjoys. "And no, not the only one that ends up filthy. At least you didn't get to the oiling." That's even messier! "It's okay. I don't mind giving you a hand, if you want?"

"No, I didn't really want to end up bathed in oil, even if it's great for the skin." Not normally an optimist, oil is one thing where Taline can find a silver lining. It's just a silver lining, though, not a true bright side. "I will not refuse assistance, there's probably a lot to be squeezed out." She pulls a face, because ew. And she doesn't even know exactly what kind of gunk is on her shirt.

"Once you get the hang of using the oil paddle, you don't get /too/ much on you." Kassala says, as if that is something to look forwards too. "The experience you get now, will go a long way if you Impress." At least then, the dragonets are small and easier to bathe and oil! "Come on then. If you want to hurry up and go wash up and change, you can bring what you're wearing back and get it all washed up at the same time?" If nothing else, she'll start on the things Taline's got now.

Taline seems to consider this for an unusually long moment, then nods once, curtly. "Okay. If you're sure you don't mind." And on that reassurance, Taline leaves behind her ransacked shirt and disappears, to return approximately twenty-minutes later in a different outfit, hair wrapped up in a scarf and not visible but dripping occasionally, carrying everything else she'd been wearing. Those pants hadn't been looking too good either, and one hem is fraying slightly.

"Nope, don't mind at all." Kassala assures the other candidate. With the tunic left with her, she goes about washing it, laughing with some of the washerwomen as she works with them, getting it as clean as possible. A rinse, and a wringing, she's hanging it up when Taline returns. "I bet you feel so much better now." Clean and dry always helps! "So, let me have that, and I'll get it all washed.." The worn areas will be noted, and the offer to fix them made by the red head. "A few stitches will have this hem fixed for you."

Taline does seem to be walking a little less draggily (she has also not been doing a drog, especially as candidates cannot drink) when she returns, and having dry clothes does make a big difference. She's a little smilier. Even if her hair's still wet. "Oh, they're old pants," she says weakly. "But thank you. For all your help. What can I do, now."

"No problem. We gotta help one another, right?" Kassala puts out there with a grin as she washes the pants, "How good are you with a needle? Or even ironing?" If Taline's up for either, she'll point her in that direction- no need to get wet again doing the wash! Once she's done, she'll set things to dry, then return to her earlier work with the button, "I know we've seen each other, but I don't remember your name right offhand.. I'm Kassala." As busy as they keep the candidates, it's a wonder any of them know each other's names!

"Taline. I'm pretty good at ironing." She doesn't bother actually saying anything about her ability to sew, mostly because she can dodge it by saying what she is good at, which means that she can just sidestep that entirely. If it leaves an opinion for Kassala to form, it's probably the correct opinion. "Do you shorten that to anything, or just Kassala?"

"I'll leave you to that then!" Kassala answers, laughing quietly, "I hate doing it myself, though will when need too. Some of the ranks make us iron the bandages and all before we roll them.." A good enough to hate it. When asked, she ohs, "Kass, if you like. I answer to either." Another few pulls of the needle through the holes of the button, and she's snipping the threads once it's tied off so she can move on to anther bit of sewing. "Where are you from?" She wonders, glancing towards Taline, "My family isjust outside of Southern Hold but I've been at the Draginhealing school for the last few turns."

"I don't mind it." Ironing keeps Taline away from things like sewing and folding. She hates folding with a kind of visceral passion, and while she has childhood scars sort of reasons for loathing it so, woe betide anyone who lives with her and is concerned about what sort of space her clothing fills. "I'm a dolphineer," she says, instead of answering the actual question, "Wait, dragonhealing? Bandages? How big are the bandages you're ironing? How big are the irons?" Taline is most definitely imagining multiple people rolling a single bandage now.

"Do you have a dolphin partner?" She's heard of that, though she's not had the chance to really get to know any dolphineers before. As Taline cues in on the size of bandages, Kassala laughs quietly, "Big. Sometimes as wide as bedsheets, but really long. Ironing them makes them fold up easier…" Fixing a tear in a shirt, she gets the pieces lined up and prepares to stitch them together with neat little stitches, "They said when thread was falling, the bandages could be even bigger. Not too often we get injuries as bad as those that they would have gotten.." When thread fell and ate into everything living.

"Of course not," Taline says almost instantly, sounding surprised, though she manages to correct to a more friendly-toned, explanatory, "Partnered dolphineers can't Impress; they're required," not given the option to, outright required, "to refuse Search, and here I am. I forget not everyone knows that, sometimes," tiny, self-deprecating shrug as she flattens something across the ironing board and allows the topic to float back to the HUGE BANDAGES. "Oh." Inhale, exhale, "That's what I was afraid of. I was hoping that I had been — that my mental image was an exaggeration."

Kassala ohs, "I didn't.. which I guess makes sense. It's not quite the same as being Impressed by a dragon, but I guess there's a certain closeness between a dolphineer and their dolphin?" Learn something new every day! Still, she chuckles, "Nope. Not at all. We do the same things for dragons, that healers do for us. So most of the things they use, we do… only.. a lot of it is bigger." And yet she loves the work she does!

"Well, yes. You are together constantly. You can't ruin that bond for candidacy or weyrlinghood or some other job — there's no room in your life for a dragon. Partnering is an absolute dedication to the work." And therefore Taline hadn't even attempted to take that step, so far. "I'm trying not to imagine how you pull a dragon tooth."

This gives something for Kassala to consider, a slow nod of her head given, "I can see how it would get messed up, though.. " She glances to Talina, "I heard that partners don't always stay together. Is that true?" A dolphin can decide to break a partnership if they wish. Again, that quick smiles comes, "Very very carefully!"

Taline can't speak to experience here, but she tries to wing it as authoritatively as possible: "I've heard, though I've never seen. The dolphin can leave, or the human can die, or the dolphin can die … I've never heard of a human breaking a partnership." Again, she shrugs, and returns to her nonchalant ironing — for about two seconds before she's trying not to break down into fits of horrified giggling. "I … that just sounds … may dragons never get tooth infections."

"I see…" Kassala says after a moment of consideration of Taline's words. She starts to ask something, but decides against it. Instead, she begins to laugh further, "They do occasionally. The older ones here and there. Always good to have a gold nearby to help during that time." Otherwise, those dragonhealers could end up being chomped!

"I … can imagine." Taline winces sympathetically, both for the healers involved and for the dragons themselves. Having teeth pulled is one of the most unpleasant experiences in human existence, and dragons with their giant heads … "But dragons usually consent to medical procedures and don't try to run off citing that it will just be fine? Dolphins do that. Always. With everything."

Kassala snorts at that, "Yeaaah… no.. they can and do. The bronzes and golds help out in that regard. Tell them to stay put or even to allow us to see them. They're like people in their own way.." A wry smile is given as she studies Taline, "You know how you get those people who will insist they're doing fine, even if they're bleeding? Dragon can be the same way. "

"I think I am one of those people," Taline admits with a laugh, and carefully does not burn her finger with the iron and then ignore it, though no doubt she's done something similar in the past. "So I know those people very well. At least you have the option of golds — I wish there were such a way to do that with, say, difficult little siblings." She does have a scar on one finger and it is not as a result of an iron.

Kassala chuckles softly, "So, in other words, if we see you get hurt, we should sit on you till the healer gets to the dorm?" She asks it ever so innocently as well! "Tell me about it. I have a few older brothers… and then there's Riohra." She rolls her eyes a little at the mention of the hunter. "Men are the worse."

"Little brothers," Taline says firmly, raising the hand that had been holding a piece of linen down on the ironing board in order to show her scarred ring fingertip. That is all that needs saying, yes? "I have older brothers as well, but they have not ever tried to bite me in order to avoid medications." Just in case it wasn't all that needed saying. Taline leaves a few minutes of ironing silence before she pipes up again, "Men are a nuisance."

Kassala peers at the finger held up, and when the explanation comes, she winces, "Ouch. Wow… Yep, I'da sat on him, and worn gloves.." As if that might help? Maybe. Shaking her head, she goes to put in a few stitches before glancing up, "That they can be, yeah.. quite a bit of a nuisance." A few more stitches, and that shirt can be set into the pile of those fixed. Curling her hands into fists a few times to stretch the fingers, she's soon reaching for another shirt, searching it over for what needs fixing, and finding it's missing all but two buttons, "What did they do.. rip it off??" They're in a weyr, it could happen!

Squinting, Taline has to set the iron aside and actually turn her head to give how the shirt is missing its buttons a funny look at an angle. "Is … I mean, maybe they fell off one by one and it just took a long time to get around to…" One can hope, right? One can hope, and one can iron until there is no ironing left to iron.

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