Of Weyrleaders and Babies

Western Weyr - The Perfect Alibi
Though the outside of the building is made of stone, the inside has been covered in wood paneling to give it the feel of an old hunting lodge. The lodge itself is a long rectangular shape, with the door on the far left side of one of the longer edges. Across from the door against the opposite wall the bar extends until about halfway down the building, with the entrance to the latrine at the end of it. The bar itself looks much like the tables that spot the room, made of long slabs of polished stone with wooden legs. Behind it sit the shelves for liquor and the door leading into the kitchens. Two large kegs sit in the corner, one on top of the other. The tables are longer than usual, designed to sit six or eight. Only a handful can fit, leaving patrons to share the space. Booths with high backs adorn the free wall space for customers that needed slightly more privacy. The far right wall houses a large fireplace, and there's a fur rug laid out in front of it. Around the fireplace sit a semi-circle of throne-like chairs with high backs and lots of padding, also covered in fur. There are small tables around to hold drinks.
A dartboard hangs to the left of the fireplace on the wall, out of the way for patrons that would like to play. Decks of dragonpoker cards sit around as well as pairs of dice.


Winter in Western is nothing like winter in Fort or perhaps they are in ways. But it's not the weather that brings the Fortian Weyrleader to the western islands and for once it's not a visit entirely based on duty. It's late afternoon by the time Velokraeth arrives from Between, announcing his arrival politely to the watchdragon before seeking out Suldith to pass on a more personal message. The pale bronze stays airborne high above the Weyr until the request that Zi'on meets his rider is received and then he's veering off towards the markets, rather than landing in the bowls below. Swooping down in one of the more sparsely populated courtyards, Velokraeth again lingers only long enough for Th'ero to dismount and stash most of his riding gear before taking flight again to find some sunwashed spot to bask and observe the coming and goings of folk and dragons alike. As for the Fortian Weyrleader, he steps right for the Perfect Alibi without hesitation, though he's already unfastening some of his jacket. He'll wait just inside the door for Zi'on to arrive, not bothering with taking a seat until he's certain the Western Weyrleader is actually coming.

Zi'on has barely been out at all lately, so he wouldn't know the weather if someone asked. The furthest he's gone is to the caverns, and even then it was only to bring back food so him and Kiena remember to eat. But mostly it's just been back and forth between his office. So he's actually glad to be out for a while, after assuring Kiena he would NOT get drunk and would NOT be gone for more than a couple of hours and would come STRAIGHT home if she even got the slightest hint of feeling that she was overwhelmed. Suldith sets his rider down and finds a free spot close by to wait for him. Just in case. Zi'on meanwhile heads into the alibi. He's looking washed and clean shaven for once, his hair trimmed down to just a fuzz. There's a nod to Th'ero as he comes in and points to the chairs by the fireplace while he moves to the bar to get drinks. Beer beer beer! Then it's off to sit down. "Hello Uncle Th'ero!"

It's been a long time since Th'ero has visited Western or even with Zi'on. A long overdue meeting, really. But there is a reason why the Fortian Weyrleader just didn't go straight to the weyr Zi'on shares with Kiena. Possibly /reasons/ why. There is a brief look of relief when the Western Weyrleader finally shows, but soon it's schooled and hidden under a neutral look and a vague, friendly smile that falters when he's greeted with the perfectly logical title of 'uncle'. "I don't think I will ever get used to that concept," Th'ero drawls with mild sarcasm as he turns to follow Zi'on further into the Alibi, but not without picking up a rather sizeable pint of beer. Why not? "So I take it Kiena and the girls are faring well? Eliana and Ezsrisa?" Oh look, he /does/ read letters sent to him. Th'ero will set his drink down on the table, then sling his jacket over the back of his chair — probably one with a back that faces the wall and he can face the room itself. Old habits die hard.

Zi'on laughs at the look Th'ero gives him, followed by the comment. "You should see your sister breastfeeding." He pats the older weyrleader on the should before sitting down. "She's a mother now. It's weird to think about. I guess maybe I haven't had a chance to do much thinking. I spend most of my time sleeping or tending to fussy babies." Zi'on has to move his seat around so he can face Th'ero's. Then he settles into his seat and raises his glass to Th'ero before drinking. "Ah. Yep. Eliana and Ezsrisa. My family has this weird naming convention thing. I dunno if I ever told you. Has to start with E. But yeah, Kiena is doing well, the girls are all healthy and relatively happy." He laughs. "I guess. Kiena included in that mix. We weren't expecting twins obviously. It's a lot of work. Kiena is doing a good job though. She's not too cranky, even." He chuckles. "So what's been going on up your way?"

Th'ero grimaces, "I'd rather not. Thanks." Because just the thought of that image hurts his brain. Shaking his head, he settles himself comfortably into his chair and picks up his pint of beer before leaning back. He's just about to take a sip of the drink, but hesitates, staring at Zi'on over the rim of the pint mug. "You haven't fostered?" he asks, rather bluntly as if completely surprised by that revelation. "Shards. So you and… Kiena too? You've both been tending both of them?" The concept seems to completely baffle the Fortian Weyrleader. When Zi'on lifts his glass though in what he assumes is a toast, he mimics it respectfully and then finally takes a generous pull of his beer. "I had wondered about the names, but I do remember you bringing it up. What with your… ah, extended family." Much extended. Th'ero gives the other younger Weyrleader a long look as he reports both on the twins health and Kiena's, as if seeking out any hint of anything else than the truth. "Good to hear then, that all seems to be going well despite the unexpected surprise." he murmurs and then frowns, "Mostly been wrapped up with duties, as usual. The Weyrlings are progressing well and Fort is well into winter now. Minor hiccups here and there, but nothing too pressing." So really, the bronzerider has no complaints though he seems to hesitate on something, letting his gaze drift elsewhere in the room as he nurses more of his beer.

Zi'on laughs. "You're welcome." The younger weyrleader is happily drinking away when Th'ero asks his question. He raises a brow at him. "What? Not yet, no. They're a little young. They should be with their mother for a little while at least." Blink. "Well, yeah. We're their parents, aren't we? Besides breastfeeding is good for them and helps Kiena lose any of the extra weight she put on. Not that it wouldn't just fall off eventually anyways. Even I'm almost back to normal. But most of that's because I keep forgetting to eat. Or I don't know how long it's been since I last ate." He rubs his head a bit. "Ever once in a while I catch Kiena giving one of the girls a loving look. So in a few more months we'll see what she has to say about the whole experience." Zi'on nods about duties and all. "Ah." Though he does leer at that hesitation. "But?"

Th'ero only gives Zi'on a lingering look, as if still not quite on the same page but the Fortian Weyrleader simply shrugs and goes back to idly nursing his drink. "I suppose you have a point there," he murmurs in a lower, quieter tone. He grimaces then, "I know little to nothing of the needs of a new mother or the whole… parenting affair. So forgive any blunders of mine." he mutters and snorts softly, "Which is why I'm surprised you did not foster or even hire help. Don't you both have duties? And the time to care for two…" Still breaking the poor older bronzerider's mind. He blinks then, "Really? Kiena has… adjusted, then?" And he doesn't sound so certain as Zi'on does. At his leer, Th'ero pretends not to notice and simply sets his now almost empty pint of beer down on the table, his fingers splayed over the top of it. "But?" he echoes, looking up at Zi'on again from under his knitted brows. Maybe he forgot his train of thought? "Oh, it's nothing. My mind… it tends to wander a bit these days." He lifts a hand to tap at his temple lightly to emphasize, but if the Western Weyrleader is smart enough, he'll know when the Fort Weyrleader and his own friend is bluffing and simply being a stubborn, cryptic ass again.

Zi'on shrugs. "I dunno. Eventually they'll have to be fostered. And we'll need a nanny soon so Kiena can get back to work. But it is possible for two riders to care for their own kids. Just probably not possible for us unless Kiena reduces down her duties. Because I can't, obviously." He takes a long draw from his beer. "Ila'den handles a lot of my meetings, I do what I can when I can. Kiena is off work for the time being. Eventually she'll have to go back. Or she'll murder me or go stircrazy in the weyr." He shrugs. "As much as Kiena is capable of adjusting? We're both just sort of on auto-mode most of the time. Baby cries, go pick it up, check diaper, feed, burp, cuddle, put baby back down when they're asleep. Rinse repeat." Zi'on is much slower at drinking his own beer, but he waves someone over to fill up Th'ero's. He peers at the older bronzer. "What, you got a brain tumor or something? What's the matter with you?" Zi'on hasn't really known Th'ero to be the daydreaming type.

"But she can go back to her duties or her Craft if she chooses, can she not?" Th'ero asks dryly, smirking a little as Zi'on mentions the bluerider going stir crazy. Perhaps that same thought crossed the Fortian Weyrleader's mind? As the routine is outlined, he can only scrub at his face and simply exhale heavily. "Don't know how you can handle that. I'd… go mad. Simply put." he says in a soft tone, but honest all the same. "But it seems to suit you well enough. To each their own." As a server comes over to refill his beer, the Fortian Weyrleader nods his head in thanks before picking up the pint again. Th'ero has never been a slow drinker, though he seems fully capable of handling his alcohol. Thus the refill is not protested and the mug is toasted to Zi'on before he take the first sip of his second round. "Really?" he scoffs at the younger bronzerider's choice to scenarios. "Hardly. Can a man not be a little distracted?" he grumbles, already a touch defensive and obviously still unchanged even after all these Turns. He gives Zi'on another narrowed look, long and considering before his mouth presses down into a thin line and he takes another drink of his beer. But he mutters something just before that, purposely muffling it because /of course/ he's going to make it hard for him. It does sound strangely like the words 'Kimmila' though and… 'pregnant'? Hmm.

"When she presses me to go back we'll make the arrangements. The girls will only be this small once though. You can't get this time back later when I'm not weyrleader or she's a journeywoman. You know?" Zi'on says to Th'ero. "Though it's not a question of 'if'. Just 'when'." He laughs. "You wouldn't. That's what I thought, too, before Ezio was born. Spending all that time taking care of a baby? But sometimes it's hard to think about someone else handling your little ones. The twins were a lot smaller than Ezio and Ezsrian when they were born." Also they are girls. Though that part goes unsaid. And Zi'on is already feeling more protective of them. Zi'on continues to peer at Th'ero over his mug. "A man can be distracted. Most men are, but generally not you. At least not when we're here, alone, relatively speaking." Zi'on leans over closer to him. "What was that? You knocked up a greenrider?"

No, he wouldn't know. Or that's the look he's giving Zi'on right about then. Th'ero really is clueless over the concept of parenthood. Sure, he /thinks/ about it, wonders perhaps… and then completely balks and shuts down at the idea. It's not for him, not in the traditional sense most think. "I suppose. But so long as she's not… forced. Not that I think you will do such a thing." No caging the bluerider. The Fortian Weyrleader knows enough of his sister to at least remember that that is a very… unpleasant and bad idea. "Perhaps," he simply drawls and looking no less sold on the whole parenting bit but not about to fault Zi'on for his preferences. The bronzerider will just try not to look as baffled from now on. "Heh. Or so you think?" Th'ero murmurs, taking another sip of his beer and then almost choking on it when the Western Weyrleader leans in closer. Swallowing and then coughing to clear his throat, he levels the other bronzerider with a narrowed, incredulous look. "No, I did not. Thank Faranth and if fate favors me I /never/ will." Th'ero mutters and then exhales slowly, one corner of his mouth twitching up in the barest of smiles. Or is it a smirk? Figures he'd be hard to read even with the news he's about to share. "Kimmila's pregnant." he says softly and this time clear enough not to be misheard.

Zi'on was not about to deal with the unpleasantness of Kiena being trapped in the weyr. Not in any way. "She'll start to get antsy soon. I'm trying to get us into a routine where she can ease her way back into work. Giving her a couple of hours a day to go out and fly and do whatever she wants. If she doesn't suggest some form of nanny care or something soon I'll be worried. There's always some concern about that postpartum depression thing that happens to some women. And Kiena would never admit to feeling badly. You know how she is." So instead Zi'on has to set up little traps and look for signs she's not feeling herself. The bronzer laughs at Th'ero. "Good luck with that. At least Suldith doesn't chase many greens these days. Your dragon is a different story." Zi'on blinks at Th'ero then, like he's not sure if this is the older bronzer's idea of a 'joke'. Did Th'ero know how to joke? "HA! I knew it was only a matter of time! Congrats, man!" Zi'on will pick up Th'ero's hand to shake it. A hug would be awkward with them both sitting. "How far along is she? You hoping for a boy or a girl? Now after you have your kid you can come back and tell me how I ought to have done it." He grins. "Is it a big secret, or can I tell your sister?"

Clever man, to set subtle traps and not try to broach it directly with someone as touchy as Kiena. Th'ero has to admire that at least, though he nods his head. Yes, he knows the bluerider enough to know /some/ of her quirks. Though it's agreeable to say that Zi'on probably knows Kiena better than her own older brother. "Velokraeth has chased, but it seems his tactics no longer win him favors among the greens." he drawls and sounds clearly relieved by that. He cannot stop his bronze from chasing. "Thanks for reminding me of Velokraeth's quirks," Th'ero says in a rather dry, flat tone but takes the edge off by smirking faintly and nursing a little more of his beer. That gives Zi'on some time to sort out whether or not the Fortian Weyrleader finally found his funny bone though he snorts in the end and thankfully had just set his pint down, only to have his hand gripped by the other bronzerider. He returns the gesture, though looks a touch awkward. A hug would have been /very/ awkward and perhaps he's inwardly relieved Zi'on didn't go that route — yet. Th'ero nods his head to the congratulations, then frowns a little in thought. "Perhaps roughly three months? Maybe a little more. Can't be certain on the exact time. And well… either, I suppose. I have no preference." He chuckles dryly then and reclaiming his hand, he leans back heavily in his chair, "I'd prefer it if you didn't go spreading word around. But Kiena has the right to know." he murmurs. She is family, after all. And will likely tear them all apart if she finds out later.

Such things tend to happen when you're intimately involved with someone for a while. Though even though he looks tired, Zi'on seems to be in good spirits. He looks actually pretty happy. After all, he's got his little family with the bluerider that he's always wanted. "That seems to be the case as they age. Though there are always peaks and valleys. They don't try as hard with the greens after they've won a few golds I think." He laughs. "That's hardly a quirk. That would be like me saying you have a quirk for being shorter than I am. It's just part of who we are." Zi'on motions to their waitress to bring shots. "Three months. So not too far along then. Was it planned? Or was it just another bad batch of tea?" Zi'on grins. "This is exciting! But I will keep the news to myself, other than sharing it with your sister. That's great though, our kids will be close in age. Maybe we can foster them together?" When the waitress comes back with the shots, Zi'on picks up his and raises it. "To the fruit of out loins!" He laughs then before taking it. "Whew. So you ready to see the girls?"

"Hmm, perhaps. Or he is simply getting lazy and rather cocky considering his track record. For whatever reason, I am thankful Velokraeth has not won a flight in some time." Th'ero murmurs, honest to the very last word and even managing a faint, crooked smile for Zi'on's laughter. "True. But you have to admit, his appetites seem… endless. Have been since he was mature enough to understand." And it's been a struggle ever since for the bronzerider. Th'ero smirks again and shakes his head, "Not planned but simply… the timing. She was injured with a broken wrist," And why does he sound guilty? It's faint, but its there. "Which meant little to no Between and several weeks of straight-flight. Enough, I suppose…" For a pregnancy to catch. Nothing fancy, really. The Fortian Weyrleader's brows quirk up at Zi'on's choice of words. 'Exciting' might not be his top choice, right at this moment. "I'm… not sure about that. I was thinking of keeping our child within Fort when we foster it. But it's true, they will be only a few months apart." And he clearly hadn't thought of that. Oh dear. Eyeing the shots that are set down on the table, Th'ero takes a slow and steadying breath before taking his portion. His nose wrinkles a bit to Zi'on's choice of toast, but the older bronzerider has no retort other than to snort and knock back the shot. Which is then promptly chased by the rest of his beer. "See them?" Th'ero asks, slightly surprised. Maybe he hadn't expected that? "Kiena… do you think she'll mind?"

Zi'on chuckles a bit. "Don't let him catch you saying that. He might not like it so much." He grins then. "Sounds to me like you're the one pointing out his quirks! Anyways I wouldn't worry. If you're that concerned, next time you're in the records room, look up 'Dhonzayth' in the books." There's no other explanation given there. Th'ero was free to ask, or he could look it up and find out. "I see. She betweens enough where the tea isn't an issue, then? Kiena doesn't, being in Search and Rescue there's not generally a lot of need." It was mostly sweeps and drills. "Well, there's always time later to move them around when they're older. Though maybe Kiena wouldn't mind the twins being at Fort." Something tells Zi'on though there was a fat chance of that. If he could even stand the thought. The younger bronzer looks surprised at Th'ero's reaction to his suggestion. "Well… yeah. Isn't that why you're here? I'm sure Kiena can use a break. She's been by herself with the pair since I got here." Zi'on finishes off his beer. "Shards, what is it with you Irondells and being afraid of children? You should come visit -more- now. To acclimate yourself. Unless they teach you child care in guard training?" He laughs a bit. "We'll at least have plenty of baby stuff you can have once the girls are older."

Th'ero can only lift his hands up and spread them out in a helpless gesture, admiting defeat in the sense that it was he who started to nitpick Velokraeth's personality. "He already knows my opinion," he drawls, not fazed at all. There's another snort and shake of his head as he returns his hands back to where they were — crossed under his arms as they fold loosely across his chest. He knows enough of Dhonzayth and L'ton. No need for a history lesson. "Mhm, she is a very active rider and often Betweening." The Fortian Weyrleader describes crypitcally what his weyrmate's duties may be, but seems either not interested in elaborating or not entirely comfortable with the idea. So Zi'on can assume what he wishes, but the older bronzerider is remaining quiet and simply moving on to other discussions. "If our child comes of age and decides to move from Fort, that will be their choice. But for the time being, they will remain close." he murmurs and rather firmly, not to be entirely disrespectful to the Western Weyrleader. He does smile faintly though, "Perhaps." he drawls simply in relation to Kiena wanting to foist the twins off far away. Probably unlikely, despite her supposed detachment or slow acceptance of them. "Well… I came to visit yes but not linger long." Th'ero already seems a little tense, despite all the alcohol he just drank. He's… not going to be tending to his two nieces, is he? That could end bad. End worse if he somehow enrages his sister in the process. At least he can flee for the north again and leave Zi'on to damage control? "It's just how we Irondell's are," he drawls with another smirk, "And you know my duties are priority. I… will try to visit more often though. If /she/ is willing." Meaning Kiena.

"Mm. I bet she's very active." Zi'on says, his voice a little flat. To be honest during her days at Western he found Kimmila to be a rather lazy rider in terms of her actual duties. Whatever sort of arrangement she'd made with the old wingleader and perhaps Western's previous weyrleader hadn't been exactly renegotiated with Zi'on. The bronzer chuckles at Th'ero's formality. "It was only a thought, Th'ero. I moved three times before I came of age." Most of that was due to the situation with his parents, though. If they fostered the twins at Fort that would mean she'd have to visit Fort from time to time. And would risk bumping into her brother. Though through their kids would be a good way for Th'ero and Kiena to perhaps grow a little closer? Zi'on couldn't seem to make a dent in that chasm. "I won't make you change any diapers or anything. Relax." He chuckles a bit and stands up. "Well, we'll have to play it by ear. It's important to me that they get to know you." Zi'on pays for the drinks and then starts the trudge out.

Th'ero's eyes narrow considerably for Zi'on's flat reply, the older bronzerider visibly tensing a bit as he can sense a little more hidden there and obviously bristling defensively and protectively. "She is and she is one of my most valuable riders, despite our relationship. " he says in a firm but curt tone, warning the Western Weyrleader in a subtle way to be careful how he treads concerning the bluerider. That's his weyrmate too and now currently the mother-to-be of his only child. But wisely he cuts himself off there too, lest he begin to tread into dangerous waters with the younger Weyrleader. Smoothing a few of his ruffled feathers, Th'ero smirks, "I know." he murmurs simply. And that's perhaps a chasm Zi'on isn't meant to fill. Th'ero and Kiena likely will have to do that on their own or it simply won't ever be entirely mended. Best not to force it and simply be patient. "Why would it be important?" he drawls as he gets to his feet, surprisingly steady too considering. Slipping on his jacket, he fastens it and then begins to follow Zi'on out of the Alibi and back out into the Markets. This might be one long, awkward walk?

Zi'on just didn't understand what Kimmila did exactly. Or at least what she did while she was at Western. But it really wasn't any of his concern. He grins to Th'ero and humps the air a second. "Active." Now he's just teasing. Or asking for a punch. They head outside and Zi'on shoves his hands in his pockets. "Because. You're like a brother to me, and the only family I think Kiena will even consider talking to ever again." Zi'on doesn't intend to walk. That's why they had dragons! Besides, how often does one get to see two leading bronzes fly in formation? Even if both of them are somewhat small. Once they're at the weyr though, ZI'on oddly enough lands out in the bowl and takes the stairs up. When they're outside the door he stops. "You'd uh… better let me go in first. Warn her and all. Sorry. I'll be right back." And tell her to put some clothes on and all. Zi'on disappears into the weyr. "Kiena?" Suddenly Zi'on is feeling like he ought to have brought a peace offering.
[Western Weyr] Zi'on laughs. From one of my old coworkers on facebook: "The guy next to me at the doctors office just told me he's been taking metamucil for a week trying to get rid of his cough.. I sure hope he has his drug names confused."

She was an experienced and dutiful rider to her Wing, it was simply the drills that she had issue with. In all other matters, she was a good rider and still is. And it was Zi'on's concern, as he's Weyrleader of Western just as Th'ero has to be concerned over the Fortian riders. Oh, the joys? The Fortian Weyrleader's brows lift in incredulous surprise as the younger bronzerider gestures like that, a slight flush reaching his cheeks at the teasing. "Zi'on!" he growls in a low warning, clearly still a little too ruffled to take any joking lightly. The young bronzerider may not get punched, but if they reach a particular narrow path, he may find himself suddenly nudged or tripped up. But surely that's just an accident, right? Th'ero frowns heavily, staring off ahead as they venture outside. "It's doubtful she'd speak to what family remains in Irondell," he agrees in a low murmur, "And… family means much to you, doesn't it?" Something that almost seems an alien concept to the older bronzerider. Velokraeth will land in the bowl too, leaving Th'ero to follow Zi'on up the stairs as well though it's obvious the Fortian Weyrleader lingers a little behind. "Certainly." he murmurs when he's left to wait and as Zi'on goes inside, Kiena will be curled up on the couch and without the twins at hand. "Ujinath tells me Velokraeth is here." she greets her weyrmate flatly and entirely skips the greeting stage. "So. Business or pleasure? He come to gawk?"

Zi'on just grins at Th'ero. "What? Now that she's pregnant you two can't deny you're doin' it." He says in a low voice, so no one else can overhear. The older bronzer just gets a laugh when he nudges the younger. There's a shrug for his question. "Some family does. I'm rather fond of you Irondells. Riders have a lot of family. And I don't just mean someone like me. You've got the people you're related to, then the weyr at large." Zi'on slips inside and leaves poor Th'ero to wait. "Yep." He confirms Ujinath's observation. "He's come to see his nieces. You're free to hide if you don't want to see him. Or go out. I don't think he'll stay long. He looks more frightened of kids than you were." Zi'on cleans up as much as he can in about thirty seconds, then heads to the door unless Kiena is telling him not to.

"That doesn't mean I /flaunt/ it," Th'ero grumbles, still a little bristled from the previous conversations and the teasing from Zi'on. Seems he still is an uptight bastard when he's in a mood. But that broodiness is gone for a rather shocked look that has him almost reeling. "Fond… of the Irondells? Have you MET the rest of Kiena's family or has she even spoken of them to you?" he asks, features blank with utter shock until with a firm shake of his head he snaps out of it and he's frowning again. "I suppose so." he agrees, though doesn't seem quite to believe it. The Fortian Weyrleader makes himself as comfortable as he can, trying not to look too awkward standing outside of the Western Weyrleader's weyr. Inside, Kiena only glares narrowly at Zi'on and then snorts, "Well, they've just been fed and put down to sleep. You wake 'em, it's on your head." So that may explain why the bluerider is so moody and grumpy. She's probably a little frayed and sore and too stubborn to outrightly admit it. Or it could be because it's her turnday (or was). So her poor weyrmate gets lashed at. "I'll take Ujinath for some flying." she tells him and slips from the couch to grab her flight gear. "You two have fun," she drawls with obvious sarcasm and with one last lingering look on Zi'on that's a little less glaring she's gone.

Zi'on sighs. "Well, fine. I'm fond of -you two-. Let the rest of them do whatever they'd like, but I'd like the Irondells I know to stick around a while." Meanwhile, inside, Zi'on is being lashed at as he suspected he might be. Though he's clearly forgotten about her turnday, or just not realized it what with all the excitement lately. And the babies. "Fair enough." He says about waking the twins. "Alright." Is all he really manages to get out before Kiena is leaving. The only response she gets from him is a pout. Zi'on opens up the door and waves Th'ero in then. "She's gone out for a fly. The twins are put down to bed and fed, so we're in good shape." He moves into the bedroom and opens up a couple of glowbaskets so Th'ero can take a look at them. Then he reaches in to pick up Ezsrisa, since she's the less fussy of the two. "C'mere sweetie… Shh. Let's go sit with Uncle Th'ero for a little while."

Th'ero no doubt knows where Kiena has gone, having seen Ujinath leave with her mounted up on his neck. Regardless, as Zi'on opens the door, he nods his head and steps inside. Relieved now to be out of the public eye, he's no less relaxed though with the awkwardness of being in the weyr his sister shares with the Western Weyrleader. That and he's about to be face to face to twin infants. "Figured as much," Th'ero murmurs. "Sorry. You know she's bound to leave if I arrive." They're like oil and water, after all. Slowly, he'll follow Zi'on to the back though he hesitates and lingers by the doorway of the bedroom. Somehow, it's as if the Fortian Weyrleader doesn't feel comfortable stepping that far inside. But he can see enough from his vantage point, even if he has to lift and crane his head slightly. Huh. So there are really two of them. He grimaces a bit for being called uncle again, but doesn't correct the younger bronzerider this time. "Who are you holding?" he asks. How can he tell?

Zi'on figured as much, but it never hurt to be explicit. Th'ero never seemed that awkward in the weyr before. Though he's probably not caught Kiena at home here before either. "Don't be sorry. She's sore at me about something anyways it seems like." At Th'ero's further reluctance to come in, Zi'on chuckles. "You won't catch our cooties coming into the bedroom, Th'ero." Besides, Kiena and Zi'on mostly do it on the couch. Which is where Zi'on is heading since Th'ero doesn't want to go that far. "This is Ezsrisa. She was first… I think. She looks more like me. More pronounced dimples. Longer face a bit. It's difficult to tell them apart though. I've had practice." The baby squirms a bit, but doesn't wake up yet. Even as Zi'on moves to sit on the couch. "She's less fussy than her sister. You wanna hold her?"

It becomes awkward when it's your estranged sister's home? Who knows what makes Th'ero hesitant but an awful lot does. Best way to deal with it is exactly what Zi'on is doing now: simply pretending the Fortian Weyrleader isn't that awkward or reluctant or — you insult him a little, in a teasing way. The older bronzerider snorts, "I know that. I'm just trying to be respectable." he drawls quietly, knowing full well not to dare raise his voice. Slowly, he strides over to where Zi'on settles on the couch but he does not take a seat next to the younger bronzerider. He simply moves in a touch closer to peer down at the small bundle that is Ezsrisa and one of his nieces. "You can already note so much in their features?" he murmurs, likely trying to see all that Zi'on just outlined and failing… though he sees some of both his sister and the bronzerider there. Subtle, but there. Th'ero straightens then and almost steps back but doesn't. "I'm… not so sure about that. I'll probably make her cry."

Zi'on wasn't looking to insult him. Really he's surprised by the man's reluctance. Mostly because he doesn't feel the same sort of awkwardness when in other people's weyrs or whatnot. Zi'on just offers Th'ero an easy smile. "I'm not that easily offended." Kiena on the other hand… "When you see them side by side every day, sure. I just hope they get Kiena's nose." He wrinkles his own. A gift from his father, no doubt. "Probably." Zi'on affirms with a laugh. "But it's better to get used to that now. Unless you two plan to foster right off. You can go home and brag to Kimmila how you're already practicing to be a good father. Or something." Did stuff like that work on Kimmila? "Just a couple of minutes, before Kiena comes back."

"Why her nose?" Th'ero has to ask, simply because to comment baffles him a bit. But this whole situation has him on edge. Something as simple as seeing the twins has put him in a rather conflicted mood. Too much to absorb? "We do plan to foster," he says in a cryptic manner, "And this is not something I'd… brag about." So no, stuff like that probably does not work. Least of all bragging about babies. "Fine." The Fortian Weyrleader gives in, though when he sits down he's obviously tense and not entirely comfortable. "So… do I, what do I do?" At least he's holding out his arms slightly?

Zi'on pokes his own nose. "Because hers is small and cute and mine his huge and takes up most of my face." He rocks his daughter a bit. "You plan to faster as soon as they're born? What's the point in having one then?" Zi'on can't see Th'ero bragging about anything. Once Th'ero is sitting, Zi'on gets up with the baby. "Just put your arms sort of like this." He nudges them a bit into position, then fits the baby into them, letting her go once he's sure Th'ero isn't going to drop her. There's some whimpering and she squirms around to get comfortable, and she looks up at Th'ero. "And that's it. You have a baby now." Zi'on chuckles.

Th'ero only sighs and from the grimace that twists his features, it's not the first time he's had that question plied to him and the Weyrleader is growing tired from having it foisted at him too to judge by his rather clipped tone and reply to Zi'on, "Why does it matter? It's not as though the child will be unloved and forgotten. I am simply being realistic and so is Kimmila. /Neither/ of us have the time to raise an infant child, not with our duties. Am I to be vilified for the remainder of my days because I simply choose what I feel is the best for /my/ child and sanity? Not to mention a tradition followed by riders from Turns and ages past!" he goes on to vent. Clearly, the Western Weyrleader hit a sore spot with the older bronzerider. There is far more to it than that, but he's not about to elaborate, looking as though he regrets his outburst enough as it is. "Sorry." he mumbles half apologetically. As Ezsrisa is passed to him (and now that he's better prepared to receive her), Th'ero doesn't drop her, but he's so obviously tense and overcautious. Even more so when she stares up at him and he can only stare at her blankly. It lasts just a few minutes, but the bronzerider can only handle so much before he's passing her back to Zi'on or at least gesturing somehow that he wishes to.

Zi'on blinks. That's the sort of response he expects from Kiena, not from her brother. He squints at him. "Sheesh. Sorry I brought it up. Do whatever you want. It's not really any of my business how you decide to raise your kids. If you don't think you can, then foster them. It's better that way anyways if you want my opinion. But don't hide behind your duties like they're preventing you from living the life you want." Zi'on will take Ezsrisa back as soon as Th'ero decides he's done with her. Maybe it's starting to sink in that Th'ero wasn't looking to take to fatherhood like he has. And Zi'on will just have to accept that. He sighs a bit as she starts to fuss. There's only so much baby passing even a quiet baby can take! He rocks her a bit in his arms.

Did Zi'on forget that Th'ero has a temper too and likely one far worse than Kiena's? Kiena is all heat and bluster. Her brother however — he's far more vicious and cruel in ways that would likely shock the younger bronzerider if he ever pushed him that far. But usually by that point, there'd be some fists flying, so perhaps not exactly all in words. But it's been ages and ages since the Fortian Weyrleader has lost control like that and because Zi'on is a friend and his sister's weyrmate… he's likely safe. But not from a mild (in Th'ero's case) verbal lashing. "Well, it IS a rather rude thing to ask," he mutters in his defense. "And I'm getting rather tired of hearing it. I'm sorry I snapped at you, but it's just… been a bit difficult to absorb. That's all." Not really an excuse or an apology, but there it is. He relaxes a little as the younger bronzerider seems to understand, at least until mentioning the hiding. "I am /not/ hiding behind my duties. I never intended to raise a family. I knew it could happen, I was not that foolish. But my first duty is to Fort Weyr. I am a Weyrleader. There is no other way." he murmurs and it's clear then that Th'ero is quite different from Zi'on in that respect. The Fortian Weyrleader respects the other bronzerider's choices and opinions, but they are not for him. "I should probably go." Th'ero says as the little one begins to fuss. "I don't want to keep Kiena away for too long and I should be getting back to Fort Weyr before the hour grows too late."

Zi'on frowns at Th'ero. "Sorry. I didn't mean it to be rude. But it doesn't sound like either of you really want a kid. You won't give up even some of your duties for a month or two. But it's your choice. To be honest, when you talk like that about being weyrleader and this and that you sound like you're trying to tell me I'm slacking because I want to spend time with my kids. And I find that to be a little rude. We have our differences of opinion. Let's just leave it at that." Before either of them starts to say things they don't mean. Zi'on gets up to walk the baby around a bit and try to calm her before she wakes up her sister. He nods to Th'ero. "Mm. I have to get her back to bed before Kiena comes home, or I'll soon have three fussy Irondell ladies in my weyr."

"I never intended to come off like that," Th'ero murmurs. "I was simply stating how /I/ am. Nothing more." But he does nod his head in agreement to Zi'on. Agree to disagree, if that is the younger Weyrleader's preference. Standing, the Fortian Weyrleader straightens his jacket a bit and begins to fasten it up again, though truly the weather outside is not that cold. Not here in Western, anyways. "Then I won't keep you. Kiena is enough to handle on her own," he muses though it seems to fall a little flat. Taking a few steps towards the door, Th'ero pauses to glance back to Zi'on, "Thanks for agreeing to meet with me. And for letting me see my nieces. If time permits or if Kiena is favorable to it, I'll return again to visit. Take care." And then he too, is gone and just as swiftly as his blueriding sister earlier as he seeks out Velokraeth and the pale bronze is seen taking off and disappearing Between back to Fort Weyr.

If Th'ero thinks he's getting out that easily he's got another thing coming to him. Clearly Zi'on is fine agreeing to disagree. And it doesn't seem like he's holding any grudges either. The younger bronzer moves over to give Th'ero a one-armed hug. Awkward! Now he has to touch Zi'on, too! "You should come back before we send them off. Hopefully Kiena will eventually be more hospitable. See ya, Th'ero." And Zi'on is off to find a soothie for his poor baby and hopefully get her back to sleep. Though Kiena probably won't wait for her to be calm, since she can probably see Th'ero heading off. Eventually Zi'on will just sigh and lay down with the baby on his chest and hopes that eventually she cry herself out.

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