Just Can't Win

Half Moon Bay Weyr - Fruit Garden
Situated just outside the weyr's bowl is a sprawling garden of fruit trees. Far too regimented to be considered an orchard, neat rows of trees dot what might be better called a courtyard, forming a neat, even grid of shade. Carefully contrived sunbeams dapple light onto the occasional bench, or tiny grottos where firelizards and small avians gather to pick at seed and offerings left in small bowls. In the far corner is tucked a fountain, its soft babbling heard throughout the space. This is mostly due to the garden's clever system of irrigation, trees kept watered despite the predominance of flagstones by a spiderweb of grooves that lead from the fountain into the trees. Water bubbles constantly through the little tunnels set into the stone before eventually being recycled into the lagoon somewhere beyond.

After the eggs were fondled, err touch a great many of the candidates dispersed off towards lunch. Catwin being on of them. Though she had taken hers to go and in the midst of eating her food, lost it to a wee little blue that had hatched late out of a nest. Said blue is now in a sling across Cat's chest as she slips off into the orchards to work on afternoon chores. At least here it's not as croweded with people and perhaps is safe enough. In hands are a couple of berry bskets which she has been charged with filling up.

Sevran is definitely one of those who fled the sands, this time before any unfortunate accidents could occur. But he's already eaten his lunch, and now he's just kinda… relaxing. Hanging out. Napping? Sure looks like it. He's found a cozy place in the shade and is sprawling, one arm draped over his eyes, the other resting on his chest, that gently lifts and falls with even breathing.

"J'en!" A female voice calling from behind the bronzerider brings him pause, half turning to glance backwards and waiting for the jogging rider to catch up to him. "What?" Hmm, yes, as emotionless as ever. She crisply salutes before dropping her hands to her knees, panting in an attempt to catch her breath. Whoever she was, her knot said bluerider at Half Moon Bay, and the patch on her jacket none other than Archipelago. Lifting a brow, J'en looks at her in silence for quite sometime, waiting patiently as to the reason for the interruption of is very special alone time and aloneness. The bluerider holds up a finger, panting a few more times before taking a deep breath and flashing a lot more than the brilliance of her smile. That there is a very impressive rack, yes, her half unzipped jacket proudly displaying more than enough cleavage. "Did you want to grab a drink later?" On a scale between one to ten, she was a thirteen. Easy. A beautiful heart shaped face with enormous aqua colored eyes, long bouncing curls of blonde hair around her shoulders, a body anyone would kill for. After a careful appraisal that certainly leaves her cheeks more than a bit flushed, "Nah. Ain't really interested in bein' yer next conquest, Xella. Nice try though, those are nice." Jerking a thumb at her boobage, he continues on his way, leaving the fuming woman cussing and stomping her foot like a spoiled teenager despite looking to be in her mid-twenties or so. "Yeah, yeah…" Hand dismissively waving over his shoulder in a back and forth motion before jamming it into the pocket of his jacket. Only after tossing a few more choice words questioning his manhood does she wing around and stomp off back the way she had come.

Having settled under a small tree with strands of shiny paper fluttering in it's branches to deter the avians, Catwin has set one basket down and is holding the other while picking the small ripe cherries off the tree. As bluerider calls out a certain riders name Catwin freezes a moment and peers off through the orchard. Well, this is unexpected. She looks around and low and behold, there is the current bane of exhistence. Err, her exhistence. She can't help but shake her head as the female rider crashes and burns, though she doesn't smirk or smile or anything about it. Just noting an occurance. Her eyes glance around again and then she blinks, is that a Sevran sleeping? Oh dear. She eyes him a moment, then the J'en and then shrugs a little, if it's his time off, who is she to wake him up and disturb it. Still, cherries must be picked and into the basket more go. She'll just keep a busy right now, though care is taken so as not to jostle the sleeping blue. Course, he's so full of meat, he's likely not to rise even if a meteor exploded overhead.

Crash-and-burn blueriders are, from all appearances, completely missed by Sevran. Although, there's a pause in that rhythmic breathing, and a moment later he's lifting his arm off of his eyes, turning his head, and squinting in the general direction of voices. Ah. People. J'en is spotted first, having spoken, and then his eyes find Catwin, because she's just unlucky enough to be in line of sight. A sigh, a rub of his eyes with his fingers, and then he rocks himself upwards with a groan, stiff joints and muscles protesting to the movement. A yawn is covered with his hand, eyes squeezing shut. And then he just scoots himself backwards to find a tree to lean against, having met the limit of his willingness to move. "Hey," for Cat, cause she's closer.

With Xella off to throw her breasticles at someone else no doubt, J'en does eventually come across the two candidates, golden eyes sweeping over both in relative silence except perhaps the deepness of an inhale and its heavily sighed exhale. He legitimately had no reason to speak to either of them, and considering their track record it would probably be best if he didn't. To this effect, he changes the direction of his path, letting it redirect him away rather than toward. Candidacy was a special time where bonds were forged long before eggs began to rock, bonds that either broke or grew stronger after newborn hatchlings had made their choices.

One, two, three. Cherries into the basket they go. At the greeting, Catwin pauses and glances over towards Sevran. "Hey." It's said simply neither deflecting or welcoming, just simply polite. Sorta? Glance is tossed J'enwards again and then she blinks in the middle of picking another cherrie. He's heading the other way now and her brow furrows a little. Still, she's not going to complain. Nope. Not her. She did enough of that the other night. Shaking her head a little she glances back over Sevran "Good nap" she asks after a moment "Though I would think there might be more pleasant areas to fall asleep in." She brushes at the biting flies that are browsing around the fragrant cherries "And with less bugs as well."

More eye rubbing from the recently asleep candidate, and then a quick blink-blink into the sunshine. This time, retreating bronzerider's get a more thorough look, tracked as that change of direction is noted. Hm. Does Sevran still have to salute if he's walking… away? "Hm"? for Catwin, focusing on her again. "Eh… Well. It wasn't really my intention," and he rubs at the back of his neck as if her comment calls stiff muscles and tight knots into being. "But there are definitely worse places." Hands scrub over his face, then into his hair, attempting to straighten what is simply unmanageable. "Are you picking cherries?"

As if he could sense candidate-eyeballs on him, the bronzerider tosses a glance over his shoulder their way before he disappears amongst the fruit trees and out of sight. Just as he had no reason to be joining in on their conversation, neither of them had any to call after him or track him down. Not when he's so quick to add additional chores for the slightest of offenses, and throw down the gauntlet for the larger ones. Being quick to anger didn't help either, or his pension to avoid social situations and the most basic human contact. No, it was for the best that J'en is allowed to flee the scene in peace, and so Catwin and Sevran are left to enjoy their own warm winter afternoon at Half Moon Bay no less scathed than they already had been.

In more cherries go into the basket as Catwin listens to Sev "Well, it's been some long days, and I must admit, those eggs do seem to drain you a bit." she notes quietly "I would agree their are worse places indeed." she notes solomnly. As the first basket is finally filled she sets it down and gathers up the second one. As she does, she looks around a little and then hmms thoughfully as J'en seems to now be gone. She's not exactly one for idle gossip but sometimes things just sit and percolate in her head, as certain events add up and some actions seem all to familiar. "I wonder if something happened to him." she murmurs, not even realizing that she's spoken outloud. There's a look of concern and then she's shaking her head and goes back to the cherries. Got to get those baskets filled. As for the question, even though it should be obvious, Cat nods "I am, for the kitchens. Seems there's some special pies being baked. Not for general consumption." Which is kind of sad. Cherry pie would be quite a treat.

"That they do," Sevran agrees, a cynical look for the memory of a few eggs in particular. He rolls his head down, working fingers into the knot at the base of his neck, twisting head this way and that in an attempt to work it out. At her comment, he freezes briefly, eyes flashing around and then meeting Catwin with a curious look. "What do you mean?" he asks, eyebrows up. "Did you hear something?" Cherries are forgotten; dismissed with a little flick of his hand and a soft, "I prefer peach."

Oh, Catwin. Catwin. Catwin. Everything had been going just so swimmingly too. The sky was clear, the afternoon bright with a cool breeze coming up off the water, the avians were chirping in the trees, there was ripened fruit begging to be plucked, and J'en was no where in sight. Except, he'd swung back around for some reason or another, maybe because it dawned on him that one of the two candidates did deserve to be reprimanded. Whatever the reason, he's stealthily leaned himself behind a thick-trunked tree well within earshot, hands in his pockets and head bowed. Out of sight surely, but certainly not out of mind, considering he seems to have come up as a topic of conversation.

"What do I mean?" Catwin blinks and then she goes still a moment, brows furrowed. "Oh." is finally said. "I was just thinking. I didn't realize I'd said that outloud." She lets out a little bit of a sigh and then she's looking around "No, I don't think I did hear something. Maybe it was Curacao here that you heard. I've noticed he snores sometimes." she murmurs. More cherries are picked and placed in the basket. She's silent though, how to explain what she was thinking, without explaining why she got to thinking. Then she just shakes her head "It's likely nothing I suppose. Probably just the way he as always been. Though it does make you wonder what kind of a child he might have been."

Sevran rolls his eyes, a rather immature expression on a rather serious face. "Cat. I meant, did you hear something around the Weyr. Gossip." Honestly. "I'm paying this 'brat who's supposed to be giving me the inside scoup. Or rather, I would be paying if they were giving me anything." So far. Dry. There's a tilt of his head, fingers giving a final rub to the back of his neck before he drops his hands to the grass. Lips press into a thin line, but no opinions are offered about J'en-the-child, just a half-hearted shrug.

"I can enlighten ya, if yer that curious." Apparently J'en had heard enough, stepping out of his hiding spot as if he'd just so happened to be wandering along and stumbled upon them again, hands tucked away casually into his jacket pockets. A jacket that was unzipped now, hanging open, the blood red tank top beneath fitting him flatteringly but not tight. It's the tree that Sevran was sitting against that he decides to lean upon now, using just one shoulder, golden eyes trained down upon Catwin and her cherry picking. Expressonless, flat of tone, there is not a thing about his body language either that reveals how he might actually be feeling about being talked about, or whom was doing the talking.

Shaking her head a little Catwin "Murmurs, not so much gossip, just observations really. His actions, his, " There's a pause as she thinks back to seeing him on the beach that one time. She frowns a moment and then shakes her head a little "Just wondering." she notes softly as she starts picking more cherries. "Careful with deals made with weyrbrats. Some of them can be quite ingenious when it comes to collecting that which is due them." she advises and then she pales at the all too familiar voice. She closes her eyes a moment and then she's turning around and gives him a salute. Sad thing about saluting and picking cherries is that the two of them don't often go well together. Small handful is subsequently squished, shooting cherry juice out, or smacking Catwin in the face as they fly out of her hand as it flattens. "Greetings, Bronzerider J'en." A pause as a cold chill runs down her spine. At least the long sleeves and long skirt all hide the goosebumps that run the length of her. Curiosoty killed the Cat.
She opens her mouth to say something, closes it. Her lips thin little and then she shakes her head "No, sir."

And now he'll add 'undignifed snort' to the list of immature responses. "They're only due what they're owed if they give me what I asked for." Which so far, has been nothing. Sevran shrugs again, turning it into a roll of his shoulders. And then there's that voice. That voice. There's a quick clearing of his throat, a flash of grey eyes up to the bronzerider, then a flick of a gaze towards Catwin. Erm. He shifts, lifting an arm and giving a decent salute, a quick ,"sir," even as poor Cat is squishing cherries all over herself. Oh dear. As for him? There are just no words. Really. Just a squinty-eyed gaze upward at the looming bronzerider.

J'en is patient, oh so very, coming to cross his arms loosely over his middle as he waits. Waits past paling, spine-shivering and cherry squishing salutes. Though a single brow does twitch upwards minutely where it tapers down for the overly formal greeting full of unnecessary sorts of things, such as bronzerider. The gaping might even be noted, as well as Catwin's thinning lips before she seems to make her decision to shake her head and drop a sir in there for good measure. "Wise," he states, somehow able to make his voice sound even flatter. Dropping his gaze to Sevran long enough to catch his salute and quickly delivered 'sir', then tosses it back Catwin's way, shoving himself up off the tree. Without breaking eye contact, he reaches down and wraps fingers around the back of the male candidate's collar, hauling him up to his feet no matter how much he might flail as a result. Squinty-eye him will you? J'en thinks not. "Probably best if ya keep yer nose outta where it dun belong." Now Sevran becomes his focus, golden eyes incredibly slowly and dangerously his direction. "As for ya, dun think I ain't noticed 'ow many off days ya seem to 'ave compared to yer fellow candidates."

Catwin gets a sympathetic look, but there's not much poor Sevran can do. Other than commiserate with her? And then he's being unceremoniously hauled to his feet, by his collar, no less. There is, indeed, a bit flailing of limbs as Sevran tries to keep his balance and avoid whacking the bronzerider on his way up. Cause that would go over so very well. But really, he just can't help it. Even in the face of intimidating Wingleaders, Sevran cannot help the little lift to the corner of his mouth, the twinkle of hidden amusement in his grey eyes, the quirk of his eyebrow. As a response, he chooses what is probably by far the safest option. Silence.

At least she limited all the things that might have popped into her head with just bronzerider. Catwin stands there. Quietly and with a wary look in her eyes. That is until he's reaching for Sevran. Then, there's almost a look of panic that cross her face as J'en hauls up Sevran. That slight widening of eyes, the flare of the nostils and even more paling in the face. In fact there is even an involuntary step back and a sharp intake of breath as the other candidate does indeed flail. Slight smile, twinkle of amusement, none of that is noticed. Nothing but the dead silence and then she can't stop herself and she blurts out as a cold sweat breaks out on her face "Don't hurt him!"

Once Sevran's standing properly, all of that arm waggling and not hitting him while doing it over with, J'en purposely keeps him scruffed so that he can't escape his doom. Lashes lower for that eye-twinkling mini-smirk, giving him little bit of a shake for good measure. Eyebrow quirk, indeed. So distracted he was with disciplining unscrupulous male candidates, he misses most of what was happening Catwin's way, that is until she betrays herself with her exclamation. "The fu…'urt 'im?" Brows lift faintly in unison, looking between the two candidate with most of the suspicion landing on Sevran for some reason. That was not a warm fuzzy feeling that should be growing in the pit of the butcher's stomach, seeing as the bronzerider looked about ready to filet him the spot. "Ya've been busy." he says low, utterly deadpan but with so many meanings they might all be lost. His grip loosing on Sevran's tunic, he gives him a non-too-gentle shove Catwin's way. "…'ave at it, then." Turning on his heel, he wanders out unhurried, but gives not a single glance backwards.

Catwin lets out a yelp as a Sevran is is shoved her way and she's backing up away from incoming Candidate. Sorry Sev, no return catches from this side. There's still paniked breathing coming from Cat but she starts to get it undercontrol. Eyes shift towards J'en and him leaving and then she's shaking her head, gathering her cherries and heading back to the Weyr via a different route than J'en. She's gathered in on herself, shoulders inwards, head down and trying to make as small a target of her already small stature and she's moving as quickly in a fast walk as her little legs will take her.

That eyebrow quirk quickly goes from amused to surprised, and humor is gone the moment Cat speaks. Huh?? Frown. Sevran's eyes pin on Catwin with an unreadable expression, because that was rather… unexpected. And then there's an icy chill down the back of his spin and a look of honest fear. And then surprise, because now he's being shoved. And Cat is so not helpful on the catching part. Thankfully, he doesn't hit the dirt, but he does take a few wobbly steps. And before he can really wrap his head around things, there's a bronzerider going one way, and a Catwin going the other. And Sevran is standing in the Garden, with a very WTF look on his face. Alone once again.

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