Thieves among candidates!

Western Weyr - Candidate Dorm

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.

It's the dead of night in the candidate barracks. And Zi'on is skulking around the candidate barracks. He's an expert skulker really. He's gotten quite good at sneaking about undetected. Thankfully a chorus of snoring candidates helps to drown out the sound of him sneaking around. Or the sound of him whispering as he shakes Patori awake. "Hey… Pat. I need your help with something. It's super-urgent weyr business. Meet me outside the door." Then he's sliding over to Kelthero's cot. "Kelthero. Wake up. Shh. I need your help. Super-urgent weyr business. Come on outside." And so the bronzer is leading them outside the exit, where they can talk a little easier.

Patori is fast asleep with his face partly buried in his pillow, hair all dishevelled around his head in a reddish mop of tangles, angellic face composed into an expression of calm, lips just gently parted. And drooling slightly, on his pillow. Zzz. The blankets have been tossed mostly aside, pyjama shirt and pants tugged at odd angles over his frame from the tossing. Totally unaware of the sneaker, the shaking at first earns a muffles 'mrr' noise before eyes fly open with a, thankfully, soft /squeak/. He stares unseeing at Zi'on for a few seconds, and then blinkblinkblink. A hand comes up to rub curled fingers first over one eyes and then the other, before eyebrows draw together. He nevertheless nods and slips out of bed, peering over at the bronzerider as Kelthero is likewise woken, but padding to the barracks exit anyway, all fidgety and confused.

Kelthero had been enjoying a good night's rest for the first time since he was Searched and had to move into the barracks. So when Zi'on begins to shake him, the former guard takes a moment to wake up, grudgingly sitting up and scrubbing at his face. Eventually, his groggy thoughts clear enough that the bronzerider's words sink in and now the candidate is frowning in both concern and confusion. Not a word is said as he quietly slips out of his cot, pausing only to change from his sleeping clothes to yesterday's pants and tunic. Then he's following the bronzerider out and giving Patori a surprised glance when he notices that he's following along as well. Despite the oddity of the whole situation, Kelthero seems rather calm and then he's slipping out the exit with them.

Out in to the hall they go! Zi'on is looking intense. Which is surprisingly easy for him to do, despite his general silliness. The bronzer's own dark hair is tousled, and his five o'clock shadow is more like two AM beard. He looks at the two of them and says in a hushed tone. He's got what look to be a couple of sacks slung over his shoulder. "This has to be covert. We think that one or more of your fellow candidates may have been stealing." He pulls off one of the sacks and then reaches into it, pulling out three flashlights. Both candidates are handed one. Patori is handed the empty sack. "We need to take a peek through all the trunks without alerting everyone. Don't want a scene and all. Kelthero your job is to keep watch. No one comes in, and if someone looks like they might get up just flick your flashlight on and off. Pat, you're going to help me search." He motions Patori inside. No mention of -what- was stolen though.. at least not yet!

Patori peers all wide-eyed at Kelthero, looking up at both men nervously, and darting a glance back over his shoulder, to the rest of the sleeping barracks. Catching his bottom lip between his teeth, the boy nibbles it, shifting from one foot to the other before he stills. He'll just find some spot against the wall in th ehallway and lean back there, hands clasped behind him so he doesn't keep fidgeting with his shirtsleeves. There is some staring at Zi'on, maybe for the intense look the bronzer has, or maybe for the facial fuzz. Or those sacks. Maybe more for the sacks, really, the weyrbrat's head tilting curiously to one side. Green eyes widen even more at the suggestion that some of their fellows might have been stealing, mouth forming a little 'o' of surprise, with another darting glance back at the barracks. Patori takes the flashlight and the sack, holding them tightly, but without a word he offers a solemn nod to Zi'on. And puts on his best seriousface as he pads almost-silently after the bronzerider. Though Kelthero is given a nervous look, on the way.

Dressed in old clothes, with his hair a rumpled mess and looking scruffy all together, Kelthero gives Zi'on a half-awake glance once they're out in the safety of the hall. It isn't until the word "stealing" is uttered that the former guard suddenly snaps to it, sleepiness replaced by alertness in a blink of an eye. "Are you serious?" he says, careful to keep his voice low, just a bit above a whisper. They may be in the hall, but he knows better then to speak loudly. The lack of what was stolen passes unnoticed by Kelthero, as he's more focused on listening to the bronzerider's instructions. So he doesn't hesitate in grabbing the flashlight, holding it up and covering the one end as he tests it quickly before nodding his head. "Where do you want me to watch from?" he asks, before noticing the nervous looks from Patori. He gives the other candidate a reassuring smile, though Kelthero seems all business right now. It is then that he notices the sacks Zi'on is carrying and a flicker of doubt crosses his features. "What're those for? Was a lot stolen? Or just something big?"

Zi'on nods to the guard. Well, ex-guard? Kelthero candidate, now. Oh he's serious. Seriously making things up. "Right here should be good. Check the hallway real quick while we get started." About the sacks he adds. "Just a lot. New clothing, bedding.. that sort of thing. Whole shipment gone from the weavers." Zi'on was tempted to say it was something big, but then how could they get it in the barracks without anyone knowing? And where would they stash it? Him and Patori head back into the barracks and the bronzer stops him for a second, the serious look turning into a grin. "This isn't a mission. It's a raid. And the target is the ladies. And their undies. But feel free to use the other story if for some reason we get caught. Let's do this. Say I tricked you." No time for protesting! The bronzer flips on his flashlight and gets to work.

Patori stands a little straighter at that smile from Kelthero, the boy squaring his shoulders and trying (failingly) to emulate the guard's business-like attitude. Chin is lifted and a soft breath taken, though the other candidate's questions give him pause, that sack opened to peek inside, as if wondering the same. "..I, um, don't know if I can carry so much, if there is a lot," is mumbled under his breath, as if not wanting to admit this, though the sack is eyed a little more thoughtfully. Lifting his gaze, the weyrbrat continues to follow, bare feet making nary a sound on the cold stone floor. When Zi'on stops, the candidate straightens even more, totally trying to copy the rider's seriousness. Which has him blinking in confusion when the man grins. And then green eyes go wiide as the actual explanation is given, Pat opening his mouth as if to protest, and totally fidgeting again. At first, there is only a tinysqueak. "..But- b-but- um," is all he can get out, Zi'on already getting to work! The boy stands there, fingers tightening over the flashlight and the sack, nervous glance again sent over his shoulder at Kelthero. Teeth bite hard on his bottom lip there, briefly shifting his weight from one foot to the other in idecision, before he quite promptly scurries after Zi'on, opening the sack and doing like Kelthero did earlier, switching the flashlight on against his hand.

Whatever doubt Kelthero had, it seems to dwindle again by Zi'on's seriousness. He should trust the rider, right? So trust he does. There's a slight smirk when the "stolen" items are mentioned, the candidate shaking his head a little. "Pity. Never thought there'd be a thief among candidates." He says, tone still low. "And an /entire/ shipment? How where they not caught?" While usually one to keep questioning, he seems satisfied with Zi'on's explanation in the end. Probably helps that it's late in the night and the former guard would never doubt a rider's words. With a nod of his head in agreement, Kelthero turns to do what was asked of him, going right into an all-familiar task with hardly a skipped beat.

Zi'on gives Patori a pat on the shoulder, to comfort him into knowing he'll be able to carry whatever is coming his way. How much could underwear weigh, anyways? The guard's additional questions are ignored for the task at him. Zi'on didn't have time to think up those sorts of details! Since Patori seems to be following suit, things will go much faster. The bronzer is focusing on the candidates he knows first… Keely, Kiley, Raevella. Then he'll cycle around to as many of the other girls' things as he can. Until one of the candidates stirs more than he was expecting, and he gets spooked. Patori is waved back to the exit again. Zi'on will take Pat's sack (the one he's carrying) and both flashlights. There's a grin to both of them then. Certainly a different attitude than before! "Thanks guys." Then an even wider grin to Kelthero. "Guess what you're an accessory to!" The bronzer then zips off down the hall. Leaving the two to discuss what's just happened! Or not. Or to run and tell on the bronzer. Or not.

Patori casts some more nervous glances back at Kelthero, the weyrbrat chewing on his bottom lip even as he moves to help Zi'on with the filching of underpants. The pat on the shoulder, at least, has him moving a little faster, a little weyrbratty shadow stealthing about the barracks, peeking into clothes presses and pilfering panties. And oh hey, turns out Pat is pretty good at nabbing things, whisper-quest as he so carefully lifts lids and rummages, that sack he's carrying quickly filling. Constant darting glances are given every time he moves, and more than a few to where the guard is guarding at the entrance, brow furrowing every time he looks at him. But not a word more is uttered, the boy only stopping when he sees Zi'on waving. Hastily, the trunk he was looking at is closed quietly, and the boy hurries back to the hall. Handing over sack and flashlight, there's more fidgetting, and wide eyes watch the bronzer stealth away. There's a long, anxious look at Kelthero, and then suddenly Patori is zipping back to his cot, silently, to hide under the blankets. He was never here!

Kelthero has just finished a round of patrol, not that there was much to patrol to begin with. But no one is up at this hour, at least not in this corridor. So when Zi'on and Patori return, he's approaching them, mouth opening to ask the bronzerider a question only to falter into silence and simply look startled and dumbfounded as Zi'on zips off. Accessory? Suddenly, the former guard's expression changes entirely and he goes to round on poor Patori, all seriousness and maybe a little of fear. "What did he mean by that? We're an accessory to what?" he asks, voice raising a little before he can catch himself. Who knows what Kelthero will do if Patori tells the truth! Right now though, he seems mostly concerned in saving his own hide. But there will be no truth tonight, as Patori escapes him and the former guard is left in the hall with no answers. Cursing, Kelthero paces nervously for a moment and then slips back into the barracks as well, though doubtful he'll be sleeping.

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