Caught.

Half Moon Bay Weyr - Lower Caverns

An oddly shaped cavern. Almost kidney shaped, with tunnels leading off to various parts of this side of the Weyr. Residential, craft and storage caverns mostly. Though one exit leads to the Candidate quarters, since with all their chores, it was thought to be a good idea to have them close to the Living Cavern and the Bowl, just to keep them from disturbing the rest of the Weyr in the mornings.


It's late. So late, it's actually better described as being really, really early, only a couple of hours before the sun is going to rise. Stifling a yawn, Sevran is making his way through the Weyr, walking as if he owns the place (because that's how you go unnoticed. Act like you belong there!) with a curiously absent shoulder knot. Out of the Bowl and into the tunnels, down various passageways as he works through a less direct route, and then around the corner and headed towards the Candidate Barracks; almost home free!

Unfortunately for Sevran, there's a figure leaning in the doorway of the barracks, though 'leaning' is perhaps a kind word - the bronzerider is occupying it, somehow consuming the small pocket of space despite the press of one shoulder against the doorjamb. The casual nature of one boot resting over the other is belied by crossed arms and a serious expression held on the usually-cheerful assistant weyrlingmaster's face. Thundercloud eyes take in Sevran's swagger, empty shoulder, yawn in a long sweep, lips pursing before parting to speak. "And just what hour do you call this, candidate?" One brow notches up, follow-up statement clear in his expression: this had better be good.

Ah, that pride that comes before the fall. Sevran, while maybe not smirking, certainly has an air of accomplishment about him, borne no doubt from the many previous occasions on which he has left and returned with no one the wiser. His subconscious is one step ahead of his waking mind, so it takes a moment for his brain to register the figure in the doorway, and connect it with the feeling of immediate and profound dread that settles in his stomach. Surprise and confusion, then dread and resignation. Damn it. Caught. A few steps more and he offers a sheepish, "Um…" and then no answer. Because really, what is he gonna say? "Sorry?"

Pride, meet scorn. R'hyn scoffs for that questionable apology, the tiny smile flickering at the corner of his mouth sarcastic at best. "Are you, though? Are you really?" There might be time enough to answer as the bronzerider looks the candidate over again, weighing words carefully before he says them. "Based on that ridiculous expression on your face, this wasn't the first time you've snuck out, and I'm willing to bet it wouldn't have been your last." And perhaps profound dread isn't enough, for the assistant weyrlingmaster finally moves, if only to uncross arms and raise fingers to tick off points. "Late nights. Missed lessons. Reported backtalk. And that's just the things I know about," he says, throwing 'no one the wiser' straight out the window, "So tell me. At what point did you stop taking this seriously?"

There is definitely dread. Cold. Icy. Skin-crawling dread. Sevran swallows nervously, and his eyes flash around the perimeter in a very prey-like way. The list of his transgressions has him wincing inside, and then outside, especially that last one. "That's not fair," he blurts out, biting his tongue too late. A deep breath. "I do take this seriously," he tries again, but he stops before offering any sort of excuse he may have, legitimate or otherwise. Too late for such things, and there's a hopeless sort of look that says he knows nothing will be good enough. At least he has the good sense not to try and argue his case. He'll just focus on looking guilty and really tiny.

R'hyn's brow lifts impossibly higher for blurted words, and though his hand might tuck right back into the fold of his posture, something about the bronzerider's person shifts. The man still doesn't look like anything remotely resembling mollified, but open derision takes a backseat to something that might be patience, voice losing its vicious edge with an honestly-curious, "Then what are you doing out here?" Head tilt. "Because I'm trying real hard not to let this all add up into something that gets you kicked out. People seem to like you, Sevran, and nobody wants to be the first to point fingers but the last thing I want and the last thing this weyr needs is tragedy at the hands of a weyrling that thinks rules are something meant to be broken." And maybe excuses are exactly what R'hyn is after, because he waits, or perhaps lets Sevran suffer under his scruitiny for a hot minute; it's hard to tell, but the opportunity is there nevertheless.

There's a pause; a weighty silence in which Sevran is processing what is being said and asked, and then works to form accurate statements regarding his need to violate this particular rule. Another swallow, eyes go to the wall to avoid that gaze, and he says flatly, "I don't sleep. I can't sleep in there," and though there's no gesture, it's quite clear what that 'where' is that he's talking about. "It's stifling. I… have dreams." Nightmares. "So I go out. Into the air. Somewhere I'm comfortable. Then I can sleep." At least a few hours. "And then I come back, and I catnap until they start getting up." A quick inhale, held, then exhaled. "I'm not skipping chores because I… don't want to do them. I'm skipping because I fall asleep." Pass out. He means pass out. In the barn. Or the storage cavern.

R'hyn listens in a patentedly patient manner, gaze still intent on Sevran's face but somehow less, leeched of its judgmental intensity. Thoughts come and go behind his eyes instead, internalizing information, parsing reactions, debating. Words play around the edges of pressed lips, most left unsaid before he finally finds enough of them to pull together to form a coherent, "Yeah. I have them too." Dreams. Nightmares. Said not to encourage discussion, but instead convey understanding as rigid posture finally eases on an exhale. A beat, two, in which R'hyn is very, very human from dark eyes to curved shoulders and then, "Do you have someone to talk to?" It's not prying, merely seeking generalized information with the sort of detachment that comes with his position, body finally shifting to stand. "If not, I recommend it. Doesn't have to be a professional, but there are those under the weyr's employ that I'm sure would be willing to listen and help if there's any to be given. In the meantime…" He pauses on a sigh, pushing one hand back through his hair. "I'm sure there's a way to work something out. Later lessons, or at least, make-ups for the important ones. I'll think on it." You know. At some hour that isn't zero-dark-thirty, with a weyr resting somnolent about them. "For now, you should probably get in there. Catnap. We'll talk tomorrow."

Whatever he was expecting, it was not understanding and compassion. Sevran stands mute for a long time, processing words and posture, until an exhale releases the tension held across his shoulders, and the icy dread that had been building starts to thaw. "Yeah," he has someone to talk to. But no elaboration. A glance towards the barracks, back to the bronzerider, and a quick, "Thanks," heartfelt and genuine. Relief. With a quick nod, Sevran hurries forward and pass, disappearing into the dark abyss of the candidate barracks to do as he is told.


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