An Eggcellent Picnic

Half Moon Bay Weyr - Rooftop Patio
This roof patio extends over the part of the living caverns that juts out into the bowl. A set of stairs has been carefully hewn from the rock, leading up to a flat expanse that is covered with normal dirt and topsoil. Trees and flowers grow in this section of the created gardens turn-round, all carefully trimmed and cultivated by the weyr staff. There are several benches scattered about, each secluded and private due to the surrounding foliage. A stone path winds through the expanse, leading to the other parts of the gardens.


Winter's rains have diminished for the moment — the sky overhead is cloudy, and it would be oppressive if not for the breeze stirring the berry bushes on the terrace. It's a little late for lunch, but candidates can have somewhat odd schedules, and so it is for a small group of them. Nadarya and Citayzleat have appropriated several old blankets, and there's a spread of food in the middle of them. Sitting cross-legged with her plate on the low wall of a garden bed, Cita speaks animatedly, waving a particularly large barbequed rib around imperiously. "Anyways, after she stopped throwing up, she said I could switch all my remaining kitchen duties for anything else." The healer huffs, and tears a large bite off of the rib, gnawing mutinously. "Told them so." She mumbles, piling another heap of pickled vegetables on the side of her plate.

And here is Sevran, one of that group that's taken to lunch out of doors now that the weather wants to cooperate. Plate loaded with so much that it's become an indistinguishable mass. That he'll probably eat just like that, all mushed together. He's passing Cita at just the right time to catch those comments, and his ears perk up a bit. Body turns, changing its path and taking him straight to the pair by the wall. It's not a far journey, seeing as he's close enough to overhear them, and he seems to have no qualms about interrupting by asking, "What did you do?" of Cita, a curious look on his face. At least he gives a little nod to Nadarya as well, acknowledging her.

Nadarya's cool look might be a little rude, but it's par for the course for Nady, who Cita's roundly ignoring. She swallows a bite of pickled fingerroot and waves her fork a little in greeting to Sev, gesturing that he's welcome to join them. "I'm not actually sure. Cook took one bite of the stew and it came right back up, immediately." The candidate muses, lips pursed out a little thoughtfully. "She talked with the Weyrlingmasters, though." Cita grins, crooked and amused, and maybe a little smug. Pausing to shove another massive bite of vegetables into her mouth, the healer-candidate hums around the bite, attempting to smile. It doesn't work well. "I oughta figure something out on the crossbow." Because that would go real well. "What do you have today?"

Eyebrows fly skyward, and Sevran gives a skeptical look to his own plate. Not that the cooks would dare serve something that didn't muster up. But one can never be too careful. At the invitation, he'll carefully settle himself in the grass, managing to cross his legs and find a seat without losing his plate or dumping it on anyone. Talent. "Well. I guess cooking's not for everyone," he offers helpfully. "They don't let me cook anything. They just send me straight to the chopping block." To hack away at dead meat, probably. Somehow, between the plate and his hand, there is a set of cutlery, which he uses to start cutting up whatever's too big to stuff in his mouth as-is. And again, with the eyebrows as he asks, "Crossbow? Really? Um. Didn't know you hunted." Furrowed eyebrows as he considers Cita carefully. "Fish. Lots of fish. Gutting mostly." And something about the way he says it may lead some to believe he rather enjoyed the gruesome task. "Done with most of it already."

Cita happily eats her way through her plate of food, pausing occasionally to tear a massive bite of bread off of the roll balanced precariously on the edge of her plate. "Nice." She compliments the sitting-not-spilling technique, then hums again, waggling her head agreeably. "It's not. I can fix a lot of things, animate or not, but maybe I oughtn't have used so many herbs…" The candidate trails, still looking thoughtful, but she shrugs it off quickly enough. It can't be helped, now can it. She can sure put away her food, though, with the ferocity of a hungry wherry. "Choppings not so bad." Cita agrees, then huffs, eyebrows raising skyward pointedly. "I don't. But do they listen…" No, no they do not. No matter how many of them she's nearly taken out with it. "Gutting?" This turns the healer-candidate's half-smile into a mostly-frown, lips turned downwards. "Ugh. I can handle human, if I have to, but fish guts smell. How can you look so cheerful?" She grins. "I'm on maintenance. The radios are really interesting on the inside, when you're dusting 'em."

A quick grin for the compliment, a little nod of his head as a 'thank you', and then there are a few hasty forkfuls of food stuffed into his mouth, though Sevran has enough sense to chew with his mouth closed and wait before talking. Manners or something like them. Thoughtful, then an amused snort for the illumination as to why her stew failed. "Yeah. They don't even try. I just get to do all the cutting; mostly meat. Sometimes lifting of things. I still don't like it." Kitchens. Not his favorite places. Another forkful vanishes, though he chews it rather quickly if just so he can ask, "You've at least shot one before, right? On purpose, I mean?" Another furrow of his eyebrows and careful consideration. "I mean, I'm sure part of this whole thing is to get a range of skills, but really. Would they send an unskilled person out with a crossbow and no safety skills?" He's making some assumptions there, for sure. As for fish gutting? He just flashes a grin just shy of 'smirk' and says, "It's what I do. Or did, rather. Although I used to gut much bigger things. Fish are easy. And the smell washes out." Beat. "Do you have to dust the inside of them? How does the dust get in?" Maybe he's got the wrong idea here.

Cita inclines her head gracefully, while Nadarya snorts, rolling her eyes and smirking. She's too busy eating to make a snarky comment, but smirks when Cita eyes her anyways, unrepentant. "I don't blame you. It's hot, and smells like so many things in there. I'd much rather be in the radio tower." Contentedly, the candidate stretches a little, kicking her legs out in front of her and leaning back on the low wall. "Oh, sure. I was a candidate before, they made me hunt then, too…I've studied too many complicated procedures since then." One shoulder shrugs, and Cita gnaws a little mutinously on the remnants of the rib, then pitches her voice low to mimic somebody. "'What if you Impress, and your dragon is knocked unconscious in the middle of nowhere?'" She exaggerates, and truly, the face she's making is probably horribly offensive to somebody. "'You need to know this, stop making that face at me!'" Eyes roll, and the candidate waves her meatless rib absently. "The big ones, I can maybe see. It just kind of comes out all at once. Aren't fish more difficult? Ugh. Try extracting their organs without damaging any." This deserves a massive bite of the vegetables, chewed slowly, while she shrugs helplessly. "Crack between the casing's door and inside? There's a lot in there."

There is a decidedly not nice look being leveled at Nadarya, but Sevran will just bite his tongue rather than let known his thoughts. A giant forkful vanishes, making talk impossible for at least a few heartbeats. Shrug of his shoulders for the kitchen, but they skyward eyebrows for the admission of previously Standing. Swallow. "Did you? Oh good. Cause I've got questions and so far, everyone I've asked only stood the once." So Cita gets to be interviewed. At least he settles the fork for a moment so he can talk without the distraction of food. "Those eggs. Do they always feel like they wanna kill you when you touch 'em?" This is a very pressing question, apparently. But at least he relaxes a little knowing she's hunted before. And apparently not seriously maimed anyone in the past. We hope. A snort. "Ok. How often are dragons knocked unconscious? And I think I'd be more worried about whatever did the knocking. Cause it sounds like if it can knock out my dragon, I'm dead already." And fish? Shrug. "I just reach in and yank it all out in one go."

Cita is doggedly ignoring Nadarya, who has a mean stare on her, still leveled at Sev. "You'll need to buy me a drink first, honey." The older candidate starts, and there goes Cita, casting eyes towards the cloudy heavens. Maybe the clouds will give her strength. "Only once? Me and Nady stood a few turns back, yeah. They really have only been one once?" This gets a thoughtful look, as she slowly changes from speaking loudly over any potential interruption from Nadarya to a quieter tone. The questioning doesn't seem to bother the healer-candidate, as she finishes off her roll with a curious tilt of her head. "No." Mouth full of bread or no, that's pretty important. "No, they…don't. Xermiltoth's egg was a lot like he is now, though. Bright. Gold all over. I don't know if that's how it always is, though." She casts a glance off across the bowl, foot wiggling anxiously. Quiet for a moment, but then the candidate starts again, slow and wary. "I hope not. Some of the eggs were really." Pause. War between automatic love for her friend's offspring and, well, sheer terror of at least one of them. "A lot." A disheartened kind of shrug, and Cita continues, lips quirking just a little. "That's what I said, but I still have to go out and miss every shot but the ones I didn't mean to take." HUFF.

If he's confused by that statement, he's gonna pretend he's not and just play it cool. And now his ignore is in full swing. Bye, Nadayra. More food shoveling, though his pace is beginning to slow as his stomach fills. A quick nod-nod for the 'once ' comment. A swallow. "Well, I've mostly only asked other candidates, and haven't come across any that've Stood before," he explains without a hint of sheepishness. But those eggs there? Sevran has no such social obligations to love any of those ovoids cooking on the Sands. So he'll flat out say it. "They're freaking scary." Beat. "Terrifying. The one that's like death?" Shudder. "And the one that wants to burn you? And then drown you? And then burn you again? Yeah. Sounds like he'll be a doll." And since she's seemed to confirm his fears, he's going to take a moment and just… concentrate on eating. Yes. Eating. Attention on his plate as he methodically pushes and picks up food. "Hrm."

Cita, too, is ignoring Nady's I-win preening, though she doesn't seem to be slowing down much on the fooding. "Huh." Cita considers this, foot wiggling some more as she takes a sip of a large glass of fruit juice. "I guess maybe most are smart enough to say 'No', the second time 'round." The healer laughs, making a face at the berry bushes behind her. They aren't real sympathetic. Neither is Sev, but Cita doesn't actually look like she blames him, nodding along with his assessment solemnly. "The one like death was," Deep breath. It doesn't seem to help. "Awful. I couldn't sleep." This, it seems, just irritates the candidate, who slows down eating enough to cross her arms over her chest. "The burning one —" The description of it is enough to get a bark of laughter. "Maybe it'll be the meekest of them. You never know, do you. It could be that they just develop and need to get all their bad traits out first." She nods, and starts to shovel the last of her vegetables into her mouth, foot still a-wigglin'. "Probably too late to run, now." 'Pawlf ooateoo rubow' is what she says, but well, same difference.

A snort and a quick, "I never sleep anyways," admission that is quickly followed by another bite of food, though at least this time it's a smaller bite than before. Much easier to chew through in a respectable amount of time. "I dunno. I mean, I guess we are making a lot of assumptions considerin' these are creatures that haven't even seen the outside world. What do they really know of what they're projecting?" But maybe that's a question best left for the dragonhealers. Or maybe the philosphers. Sevran will just shrug his shoulders again, cause it's a thing now, and say, "Yeah, I'd say," about running. He speaks 'stuffed-mouth' fluently, maybe. "I mean. I at least wanna say I Stood if I'm gonna suffer through these chores."

"I can get you something for that." Cita offers automatically, because she's a healer and it's second-nature, but she doesn't seem to expect anything of it. The next bit gets a nodding kind of acceptance, and the candidate taps her final rib against her plate, gazing into the middle distance. "They probably don't know anything. They're just little. Babies don't know any better, right? Still…" She smiles again, halfway, then tears off another bite of the rib meat. It's easier to eat your way through enough food for two people than to contemplate that too much, anyhow. And Sev speaks food-mouth anyways, so it's win-win. "Right," Cita agrees, pausing in her mad dash of eating to take a breath. "Might as well see it through, make it worth all the sharding early mornings and chores." Grumble. Footkick. "Maybe the dragonets will behave, even." She sounds real sure of it. Comforting, this one.

There's a pause, a heartbeat between which the offer is made and Sevran considers it. A second heartbeat, and he says, "Actually, that would be great," to her offer of sleep-drugs. At least, that's what he's hoping was being offered. "Cause I'm kinda tired." Literally? Figuratively? Both, probably. As they work through the particulars of un-born baby thoughts, he'll cling to the idea tightly and decide, "That's gotta be it. Yeah. They just dunno what they're doing cause they're babies. They don't really wanna kill us." Yup. That's that, then. Settled. And then another voice, calling through the garden with a high pitch and inquisitive tone. It has Sevran's head snapping up and looking around. Figure spotted, a grin breaks out across his face. He hastily wipes his fingers against his pants (cause no napkin, yo) and offers a quick, "Sorry to run. Cita, thank you for the chat really," even if he's still on full-ignore mode for Nadayra and refuses to acknowledge her now, "I gotta dash. It's my sister," he says in a rush, an attempt to apologize and explain why he's abandoning them so suddenly. "She usually—well, let's just say this is rare." And he wants to go see her. Enough that he's willing to be rude to do it. "But, I'll swing by the infirmary later, OK?" for drugs.

Cita doesn't startle, but she does smile, bright and sunny, when the other candidate actually accepts the offer. She gets it under control quickly, but still makes a happy humming kind of noise, nodding. "That happens if you can't sleep. I've been making a recipe of them for a few turns now, it works, and quick too." She murmurs, apparently happy to continue the game of ignoring Nadarya. Nadarya also seems to be enjoying the game, or possibly she's napping. One. "They surely don't want to kill us." The healer-candidate agrees, stoutly. Definitely agreed. That's how it is, no sense in worrying, or any wetting of pants come hatching time, nope. The grin from Sev gets raised eyebrows and an amused look from Cita — the expression softens for the explanation though, and she inclines her head, smiling. "Go! I'd ditch you guys for my sisters, too." She snickers, wiggling fingers in farewell. Or well. A forkful of vegetables, anyhow. "I'll have it ready!"


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