Garden Picnic

Western Weyr - Rooftop Herb Garden
Soft grasses form a lawn central to this open air garden, producing a pleasant picnic space. Surrounding this greenery is a sanded and bordered path that wends around it and continues toward the front of the roof, where the pleasant aromas of cultivated herbs waft on the breeze. Rock gardens and low-hanging tropical trees form shelter from the elements, combined with an overhanging jut of the caldera wall, underneath which benches and sun chairs have been arrayed, rather like a natural gazebo.
Electric lights light the entrances as those on night duty come out to take over, moving quietly in the night so as not to disturb those sleeping about the Weyr.Winter has descended once again upon the Western island, though those from the north would never be able to tell it, but the short days and the cooler nights are painfully obvious to those born here.


It's early afternoon at Western, sunny skies with a bit of clouds. Not quite as hot and muggy as it's been the last couple of days. Perfect weather for a picnic! And as part of his job as Weyrwoman's assistant, Zsriston is getting lunch set up for her. The first set of course is getting the picnic supplies up to the garden, which is why he's toting a large basket rather awkwardly around with a rolled blanket over his shoulder. Finally choosing a good clear spot to set up the picnic, he sets the basket down on the ground, then goes about laying out the blanket.

Picnics are popular at Western these days - though Liandyn herself is simply enjoying the sun, taking advantage of a few hours down-time to stretch out in a sun-chair, soaking up a few rays before duty calls. At the sound of someone moving about, she pushes away the cloth protecting her eyes, peering quizically at Zsriston. "That is a picnic basket," she points out helpfully, pushing herself up on her elbows and watching him, head tilted. "Not that I blame you," she adds thoughtfully. "Nice day for it."

This is, admittedly, Enka's first venture to the garden. A busy weyrwoman is busy after all, but with such nice weather to be had, what better way to enjoy it than with a picnic? "My," the goldrider observes as she surveys the sight spread before her, "you are handy t'have around." Having an assistant surely is a good idea after all. The sound of the greenrider's voice is easily heard, and Enka glances in her direction. "Afternoon, Lia," she lifts a hand, fingers wiggling in greeting. "You eaten yet?"

Zsriston blinks a bit at Liandyn, in the middle of setting out plates and things for lunch. "Uh. Yeah, it is." He peers around. "It's for the weyrwoman, so I can't let you have any without her permission." The teen explains. "Blame me?" He tilts his head at the greenrider for a moment, then goes back to getting things ready. There's a wave to Enka as she heads over. "Lunch is ready!" See! He was useful! Though he was also excited to be getting a lunch out of it that didn't mean sticking around in the caverns.

"I wouldn't take any without her - or your - permission," Liandyn replies equiably, before twisting her head to eye Enka's arrival, breaking into a broad grin. "Afternoon, Weyrwoman," she replies pertly. "I've not eaten a thing," is added, with a theatrical sigh. "Your little pup there is all tempting me, too, with his picnic setting - and then goes and tells me I can't have any." Pouting comes quite natural to the greenrider, though she brightens almost before the expression hits. "You'll share, won't you?" she purrs at the goldrider.

"Share?" Enka arches a brow, a hint of a teasing smile twitching across her lips as she regards the other young woman, "would it be nice to share?" Of course it would, but is Enka seriously considering /not/ sharing? Obviously not, by the way she's moving her fingers in that old come-hither gesture at the greenrider. "Course I will. Can't eat all of this by myself," a glance is cast over the feast spread across the blankets. "Looks like the kitchen got raided," she remarks wryly, flicking a glance at Zsriston. "I heartily approve."

Zsriston grins. "Good. I heard the weyrwoman is scary when she's mad." Who exactly he's heard it from is a different story. Once everything is laid out properly and Enka has given the greenrider permission to help them partake, Zsriston goes about pouring them each a glass of juice. He grins a bit to Enka. "You'd be surprised at how well the line 'this is for the weyrwoman' works at keeping you out of trouble." He grins. "They even say that I'm a good lad and things like that." The teen laughs.

"Terrifying," Liandyn replies, as she swings off the sun-chair and makes her way to the blanket, sliding down to kneel upon it, hands on her thighs. "Why thank you, Weyrwoman Enka," she grins at the goldrider, "I appreciate the offer. Not exactly dressed for such exalted company," she adds wryly, glancing down at the two-piece bathing suit, "but I'm sure you'll forgive me the lapse, no?" Silvery-blue eyes flicker back to Zsriston, considering him, before she snickers. "I wonder if that line works better than 'this is for my wingleader' or 'this is for the Weyrlingmaster'? Both of those just get me /looks/." You know. Looks.

Enka flops down onto the blanket with something of graceless ease, a relaxed slide into a rather lazy cross-legged sprawl. "Tellin' tales are we?" there's another quirk of brows, her hands resting now on her hips, maock-outrage displayed in a teasing amused manner. "You aint seen me mad yet." Like really really mad. "Oh bother," her hand lifts, waving away Liandyn's words with a flicker of fingers. "Don't matter how you're dressed, y'know I don't stand on ceremony. 'Sides, after what you got for me," there's a twinkle of mischief in the goldrider's gray eyes just then, "I'd say joinin' me at lunch is but a feeble way of sayin' thank you. Not that I've had a chance t'use it just yet." Saving it, after all, for when the time is ripe. She accepts the juice with a grin at Zsriston. "Well, seems like you've found a novel way of gettin' out of trouble," in her name no less. There's a laugh, the goldrider winking at greenrider. "That's cause them givin' you looks /know/, dear." Hence the reason for those 'Looks.'

Zsriston is not about to wait for the ladies. He's hungry! And if no one will go first, he will. The teen starts assembling himself a sammich. "I'm Zsriston, by the way. I'm Enka's new assistant!" A title he seems to be pretty proud of. It meant that he just wasn't a weyrbrat doing chores, and that he didn't have to introduce himself as his father's son, either. He blinks at Enka then. "What'd she get for you?" Then to Lia. "What'd you get for her?" The teen doesn't really have much to say about Liandyn's attire. Whatever she wanted to wear, really. "Anyways the kitchen workers all said it was okay. They all think that Enka is pregnant." He says matter-of-factly.

"An outfit," Liandyn replies vaguely, eyes glittering with amusement as she regards Enka. "You know when you do use it, I'll be expecting a full, detailed report," she adds, reaching out pick up her juice, sipping at it. "Don't skimp on the description, either," she adds, a bit wickedly, before glancing at the teenager and clearing her throat. "So - Weyrwoman's assistant, eh? Lucky you. I'm just a wingrider. Hardly a title at all. Though," she adds casually, peering down into her glass, "I've been wondering if Weyrlingmaster's weyrmate has a better ring to it. They don't exactly make a knot for it, but I did get this nifty ring." One of her fingers taps, to draw attention to the silver-and-turquoise ring wrapped around it. "So," she adds, more brightly, "what do they know, with their knowing looks? I might be cuddled up to Ae'gus, but my cuddling with L'ton is strictly platonic. Absolutely nothing," and here she pauses, eyeing Zsriston and clearing her throat again, "about it."

It's a whoop of laughter that comes from the Weyrwoman then, her shoulders shaking with mirth, the juice in her hand looking very /very/ close to being jostled right out of the cup itself. "They think I'm …" she doesn't get it out, just laughing again all the harder before a gasp is taken, and she gulps hurriedly at her juice. "aint for a lack of tryin' anyway." she remarks then, smirking just a bit too smugly. "Believe me, when I am, the Weyr will know." Liandyn gets a sly little sideways glance, the goldrider's lips twitching again with amusement. "Don't worry," she comments to the greenrider, "you and I can take a nice day off, go down to a day spa down in Ierne, and have a nice chat about it." There's a brief nod before Enka seizes on the other bit of Liandyn's words and leans forward with avid excitement. "Weyrmate now, y'don't say?" a slow grin is spreading across her face, and she sets the glass aside, leaning forward to regard the ring. "Oughta hug you," she remarks, since that's generally what a lot of women tend to do when they hear good news about their friends. She does reach over and tousle Zsriston's hair though. "Gave him the job of bein' my assistant. Keeps him out of trouble," a look at the teen, "I hope." There's a wave. "Oh you know. They know." Whatever that means about the ones who know.

Zsriston scratches his head at Liandyn. "Like a dress or something?" The weyrbrat has built himself a massive sandwich, complete with every type of meat available and several layers. How he's going to get it into his mouth is another story, soon answered by him smooshing it down with the flat of his hand, then picking it up to take a big bite. He nods to Lia. "Mmhm." He eyes the ring for a second, then finally swallows down the food in his mouth. "What should I get a girl I like as a present if I don't have marks for something like that?" Jewelry, he means. There's a /look/ from the teen and a very wrinkled nose at the mention of cuddling up with his father. Followed by an, "Eeew." He blinks at Enka then. At all the laughing. "Ooh, you're not? Ah well. May as well let them think you are. You get better food that way."

"Keep it up, Enka," Liandyn remarks wryly, "and you will be." A comment that applies as much to herself as to the Weyrwoman - the fact of which has her sticking her nose in her glass again, on the pretext of drinking. "Or something," she finally replies to Zsriston, with a sly, sidelong glance at the goldrider. "Just a nice little something to wear when she's all cozy at home. Spa?" Brightening, she lifts her head, turning the glass in her fingers. "You mean, I can pay someone else to pamper me?" In ways, one presumes, she is not already pampered. "Nifty. Just say the word." Snickering, she shakes her head with a bounce of curls, then sends a sly glance to the teenager. "Got someone in mind?" she needles. "Well, there's some lovely bead jewelry down at the Market - wooden, glass, even some cheap plastic, but I wouldn't go with that if you're looking to impress someone. Not a ring," she adds, waggling a forefinger at him. "That's special. Try a bracelet or necklace." Just don't look for anything like what she's wearing - they're one of a kind. "You can hug me." She even manages a pathetic look at the other rider. "I like hugs." And then the ones who know can know more about… absolutely nothing.

Enka ducks her head suddenly, hiding amusement at that look from Zsriston, by focusing instead on assembling a rather decent spiced wherry sandwich for herself, deft fingers arranging the bread and meant and condiments just so before she settles it onto her plate and glances up again, with a droll little laugh. "Well," she admits wryly, "haven't been really tryin', if you get my meanin'." Sure, the greenrider probably does, oh most definitely. "But I full intend to keep it up. I aint a Holder gal after all," there's a cheerful wink before she's grinning at Zsriston. "Oh, definitely an or somethin'. " But she's not elaborating on detail, nope. "We'll do that," she beams over at Liandyn, a cheery smile given. "Oh, you could give all sorts of things," she remarks to the boy teen, quirking a brow at him. "The jewelry, like Liandyn said, or if you have any talent at whittlin' or paintin' or anythin', you could make her a gift. That wouldn't take very many marks." She does set her plate aside long enough to lean forward and wrap an arm around the greenrider. "Happy for you," comes the weyrwoman's remark, before she separates, and reaches for her plate again. "What, like they don't feed me good already?"

"Oh." Zsriston says. Clothes weren't really his thing. "Like a robe or something. What's a spa, then?" He shrugs a bit at Liandyn's question about having somone. "I dunno. Not really. Hm. Why not a ring?" What was the difference? Didn't girls just like shiney things? Zsriston ponders a bit over his sammich. "Uh… I dunno if I have any of those kinda talents. Maybe my dad can show me how to widdle things. He does that. He's probably got some wood, too." Zsriston's gotten about three quarters of the way through his sandwich and his eyes are starting to bug out a bit. Maybe it was too much? "I dunno, do they? I never got your lunch before. Usually when I go in to ask for food I get chased out by a bunch'a old aunties with rollin' pins." There's a pause from Zsriston, and then he belches. "Ah, there we go." And it's back to finishing off his sammich.

"Or something." Liandyn delicately leaves off the discussion of clothing, instead pouncing on the boy's question. "A spa," she explains, "is somewhere that people - mostly women, some men - go to relax." Her lips curve slightly, and she reaches out to snag a strip of spiced wherry, nibbling delicately at it. "Rings tend to be more significant," she explains, lifting her hand in explination. "Often, it's not just a gift, but a promise. Even if that's not how you intend it, that's often how it will be seen. So - start small. Neck. Wrists. Ankles." Though she smirks at mention of his father - yes, she's figured it out - she merely shakes her head, offering the choked comment of, "I'm certain he has plenty of wood." Ahem, indeed. "If you're just wanting to show a bit of interest - harmless flirtation - flowers are always nice. They're mutable," she explains, "eventually they'll wilt, so they can't be seen as any kind of promise, just an acknowledgement of simple feelings. Lilies, daisies, carnations…" She trails off, cheeks pinking slightly. Wot, hopeless romantic, she? Surely you jest. "I - uh… spent my time around a lot of girls," she ends, rather lamely.

"You," Enka points her sandwich in Zsriston's direction, "are gettin' some good advice here," There's a momentary pause, the goldrider taking a bite of her food and chewing carefully for a while, "gals know what lots of other gals like so it pays to listen up. Flowers are definitely nice," she grins slightly, "and they won't cost you more than an afternoon, no—" she reconsiders this, "a mornin' of pickin' 'em when the dew's still on 'em. Just gotta know which ones look nice and which ones don't look much better than weeds." she pauses, chuckling. "Well of course they feed me nicely. Aint a feast like this, but I don't get chased out of the kitchen when I go askin' for a meal."

"They can't just go home to relax? Or to the beach or somethin'?" Zsriston asks Lia. "When I want to relax I go back to ma's weyr in Telgar sometimes. If the twins aren't there it's relaxin'." The twins being his younger full-blood siblings that live with his mother. "A promise? Like you won't tell a secret or something? Or that you won't give things to other girls? Hm." He scratches his head again. "Flowers are easy! I saw some over near the cavern entrance. Only pick them in the mornin'? Okay… Can't I just ask her to be my girlfriend if I'm interested? I gotta get her a present?" Likely the flowers Zsriston saw were weeds. But girls were starting to sound like a lot of work. The weyrbrat grabs a bubbly from the spread and carefully wraps it up in a series of napkins now that he's finished his sandwich.

"Of course you can," Liandyn replies, as she nibbles on her wherry. "My home is quite relaxing - especially now," she adds, with a sly glance at Enka. "But sometimes, a girl just likes to be… pampered. And there's plenty of pampering at a spa. A whole day of people doing everything they can to relax you short of - though," she adds, lips pursing, "I've heard you can get that too." Sniff. "Not that we need that," she adds, with another smirk. "Well," she adds, frowning at Zsriston, "you /could/ just ask her - but you get back what you put into it. You want a girl, you've got to work for it a bit, see? Otherwise, she'll think you're not serious." There's a lot of rules surrounding courtships, poor boy. "Of course," she adds musingly, "when I was your age, the boys usually let a girl know they liked them by pulling her hair and chasing her with handsful of bugs." Because that was ever so long ago.

Enka looks amused then, leaning somewhat back, one hand outflung to brace her as she sets the plate and nearly-finished sandwich off to the side. "Where's the fun in that?" she asks the teen, lips twitching into a droll little grin at Liandyn's words, "well, there is /fun/ and there's fun. At least goin' to a spa is for a gal to make herself feel good." Another look at Liandyn, "some do, I've heard, but we aint gonna go there for that." Nope, easy enough to have for the asking as it is. "They treat you good, like a lady holder on her weddin' day or somethin'." Pampering, see. "They'd go teasin'," she nods again, not much more into her adulthood than the greenrider, "make fun of her, that kinda thing." Not that Enka's encouraging this, nope.

Now that one pie is wrapped up nicely, Zsriston takes another pie to actually eat. "I thought you had a boyfriend and a weyrmate for that kind of thing?" Zsriston isn't totally oblivious, but he's starting to get confused at all the innuendo. Now he's hearing things where he shouldn't be. "Well that just sounds like a lot of work. What do girls do if they want to show a boy their interested?" He rolls his eyes then. "I'm a little bit too mature for bugs." He states matter-of-factly, puffing out his chest a bit. "I'm old enough to impress now."

"Indeed we do," Liandyn purrs softly, "which is why we don't need that. But - it's offered, none the less." She shrugs one bare shoulder, popping the last of her wherry in her mouth. "Old enough to Stand, are you?" Her eyes flicker to Enka, grin deepening. "Will you be out there, then, when Mir lays her eggs? You'll break the Weyrwoman's heart," she predicts, "if she has to go find another assistant. I'd apply, but I think L'ton might get a bit grumbly." Snickering, she shakes her head. "What do girls do? They make eyes," and she sends a big-eyed, longing look at the boy, fluttering her pale lashes outrageously. "They flirt - when you hear a girl telling you what a handsome young man you are, beware - she's stalking you." A pause. "They might just arrange situations for you to help them out of." Cough.

"Because not everyone has a weyrmate or a boyfriend," Enka supplies blithely enough, shifting her weight forward to snag a bubbly pie — her favorite treat of all — and nibble on it between comments. "Some people just go around lookin' for that kind of thing, and some other people are willin' to provide it." Luckily, this is a conversation with a weyrbrat, so it's nothing new entirely. There's a brief glance at Zsriston when Liandyn asks her question, and then Enka's chuckling softly. "Fine errand boy you'd make," she teases the greenrider, "or errand gal, rather. 'Sides, I think you're busy enough, hmm?" She pauses, brushing the remains of bubbly pie crust from her fingers. "It's easier for girls, I think," she admits, gaze shifting between the younger teen and the older, "maybe it's just because of who we are." she grins wryly. "Girls can be pretty resourceful, and guys fall for it." a wink. "we're more suspicious when it comes the other way around, but …" her sudden blissful sigh is unmistakeable. "We are not immune to the attention."

"What if I went to a spa? Could I get that?" Hey, it sounds a lot easier and nicer than having a girlfriend! He may or may not know exactly what 'that' implies, but it all sounds good in theory. "Uh, I dunno. My dad hasn't told me to go stand since I haven't been in trouble lately." The weyrbrat narrows his eyes at Liandyn's look. "I don't think I've ever saw a girl look at me like that. So if I wanna show her I like I gotta go out and get her presents and make her things, but if she wants to show me she's gotta trick me into doing things that I don't want to do? Sounds like it's a -lot- easier for girls." This whole relationship thing was starting to sound one-sided! He sighs a bit. "How many presents do I gotta give her before I can kiss her?"

"Ah - no, I think you'd need a few more turns on you yet," Liandyn replies, grinning slightly. "Trust me, by the time you're ready for that, you won't need a professional." She reaches out to ruffle a hand through his hair. "Just remember - the relationship's all about the girl. You play your cards right, you'll get everything you want for a minimum of fuss - your fuss, mind you." She snickers, lifting her gaze to Enka briefly, winking at the goldrider, before she abruptly bursts out laughing. "There's no set number, pup. It depends on the girl, and the kind of kiss you want. Some girls will give you a kiss just for a flower, some wait for a ring. Gotta know what kind of girl you're after before you can determine that."

"Usually they'd expect some marks for it," Enka observes dryly, reaching for yet another bubbly pie. My the gal does love her sweet treats after all. "So you probably wouldn't want to go /there/ specifically looking for it," she casts a sideways glance towards Liandyn and giggling then with her attention fixed once more back on Zsriston, "and I'd hope that bein' my assistant keeps you out of that kind of trouble for a while." Otherwise, it'd likely be the candidate knot for him again. "I don't think she'd /trick/ you exactly," Enka remarks then, "although I seem to recall you suggestin' I ought to trick my boyfriend into comin' after we had our fight," She's suddenly silent, a hand hovering over the bubbly pie, "The letter worked by the way. I owe you somethin' as a way of thankin' you. Still girls do have it easier." Her hand finally closes around the bubbly pie and she sits back, turning just a bit pink. "Just gotta find the right gal," she remarks, "who has her own set price for when she's gonna kiss you. And you'd never know when. More fun and surprisin' that way."

Zsriston looks between the two of them. "Oh. I guess you gotta pay either way. Might be easier just to make a girl somethin'." He sighs. "This all sounds like a lot of hard work. It better be worth it." After all, he didn't know yet if it was or it wasn't. He peers at the two of them. "I can't wait until a ring for a kiss. I don't have those kinds of marks." Then he turns his attention to Enka. "You didn't end up trickin' him anyways I thought." He shrugs. "I thought you were supposed to try out a few girls before pickin' one? I'm too young for a weyrmate or anythin' like that." And too dragon-less. "I just want a girl who isn't mean or icky that I can kiss." Not to set his standards too high, or anything.

"I tried to trick mine," Liandyn muses, tracing the rim of her glass with a finger. "Your father put an end to that - or rather, Dhonzayth did," she adds, with a wrinkle of her nose. "Should be grateful - he was right, but still. You have no idea how much work the girl actually puts in. She's got to make you see that you want to spend all your time and marks on her." She sighs. "Sometimes, you start to feel like it's not worth it." Her eyes flicker down to the ring on her finger, and a faint, pleased smile touches her lips. "And sometimes, you know it is." Coughing, she brings her attention back to the boy. "Tell you what - you find a girl you like, you come to me. I've got a few things I can sell you for a reasonable price - or trade you for some chores, that'll make you the most popular boy in the Weyr."

Enka licks at her fingers, the last of that second bubbly pie having disappeared between her lips in a rather progressive fashion. "No," she remarks, smiling vaguely, although she does seem to be doing her level best not to laugh, "I didn't. I just wrote my feelings down." Ahem, intimate details. "The little heart doodles and the sketch didn't seem to hurt either." She's /not/ going to elaborate further though. Her glass of juice is retrieved, sipped at, as Enka regards Liandyn for a moment, although the goldrider says nothing. "No," she finally comments, shaking her head at Zsriston, "you wouldn't want to do that. At least not two girls together at the same time. They might get jealous, and fight — you." Don't say she didn't warn him. Liandyn's comments however get an approving nod. "Seems fair enough."

Zsriston blinks at Lia. "Oh? Uh… how do you trick one, anyways? Or were you like, all falling out of the sky and trying to get him to rescue you or something? Hm." He says about the girls having to work hard, too. "Well, if you say so. I guess I can pick up a few extra chores if I find a girl I like." And she's worth the extra chores, of course. He nods to Enka. "That's good then, right? You won't have to drink any more of that nasty boozewater?" The teen idly stuffs some left over meat into his mouth to munch on. "Well yeah, not at the same time or anythin'. One girl sounds like enough work, shards." He breathes out an exasperated sigh.

"Hah." Looking vastly amused, Liandyn sets her glass aside, then places her palms on the ground, shaking her head. "I'll tell you the story when you're a bit older, pup," she replies, grinning cheekily at him. "And like I said - you find a girl you want to spend the time to get to know, come look me up. I'll help you win her." Eyes twinkling, she leans forward - not so quickly that he can't evade her should he choose - as if to plant a quick kiss on his cheek, then, with a laugh, pushes herself to her feet. "Time's up for me, my Zusa says she's gotten our next flight plan from Dhonzayth. I need to go change and get back on my sweeps." Ruffling the boy's hair again, she winks at Enka. "See you later, Weyrwoman. And you, Zsriston," she adds with another wink for the teenager, before she steps around the blanket and towards the lift.

"Oh shells, no." Enka nods her head, "I sent Sunny, Quake and Barq off with the last couple bottles of it to chuck into /between/. Won't ever try and chug down that swill again." Nah, she's drunk on something else. Love, punch-drunk on love. Yeah, that's it. Her left over juice is drained off, the goldrider regarding any further delicacies of the picnic feast thoughtfully, and then she's waving a hand to the departing greenrider. "Back to work it seems," Her lips twitch into a wry amused smile at the kiss bestowed upon the teen by the greenrider. "See," she teases gently, "sometimes it doesn't take much at all." She too is starting to stand. "Dare say I'd ought to get back to that paperwork. Got some sortin' you can help me with." a pause, and a grin. "And we've got that party tonight for A'ven's daughter and all the fosterlings. Faranth, I am gonna like that one." More goodies to nibble on, after all.

Zsriston pouts a bit at Lia. "Aw… fine then. Be like that." He says about the story. Ten he nods a bit with a shrug. "Yeah. When I find a girl." There's a blink from Zsriston as Lia leans over to kiss him on the cheek. He pinkens a bit. "I… er… Alright then… see ya." He blinks at her as she walks off. Women! Honestly! The more he knew about them the more confusing they seemed. "Aw. I was gonna ask you if I could have it." He peers. "For pranks. I used to clean the games room and some of them old bastards in there need something to wake them up in the mornings." He nods to both of them. "Guess I'll clean up here then. I'll be back once I'm done." He says to Enka. "See ya later." There's a brief wave from the boy, and then he starts to tidy things back into the basket.

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