Chore Horror Stories

Half Moon Bay Weyr - Living Cavern
LHere is the center of Weyr life, the living caverns. These two main rooms were man-shaped from smaller caves, and are joined by a carved arch with depictions of dragons in flight and dolphins leaping in swirling waves. One room has many round stone and wooden tables and a stone fire-pit instead of a hearth. Over the round-walled, gas fired pit is a large conical hood made of polished bronze, with reliefs of dragons with their riders flying over ships guided by dolphins. This hood and chimney keeps the room smoke-free. Through the archway is an enormous hall, with long tables and benches, some carved from the rock floor, many crafted of wood. This room is a combination dining and meeting hall, and can seat over 300 comfortably. Above both rooms, angled shafts lined with polished metal bring in sunlight during the day. Electric lights also burn, day and night.


Ezrayl and Briari are arriving in the living caverns after a quick stop to the barracks. The day has faded into evening and the dinner rush is upon the Weyr, but it seems at least they have been dismissed of kitchen duties. Besides, no one wants Ez in the kitchen during dinner rush anymore. Once incident was all it took. Grabbing a plate of food, the red-haired guard glances around and eventually settles for a table in one of the quieter corner of the cavern.

The laundry is never -done-, but it seems to be caught up enough for the Candidates and a few laundresses to be released into the wilds - otherwise known as the living caverns. Aglaia is among them, plenty damp around the edges from the inevitable splashing of water. A chance to dry off for a bit is much appreciated - even if the food thing is, oddly, not foremost on her thoughts. She'll go pick up a plate with a few odds and ends, but it's nothing substantial. After a cursory, if searching, glance about the caverns, she spots Ezrayl and heads in her direction with slow, measured steps. Once she's close enough for conversation, she queries, "Hey, Ezrayl. Mind if I sit here for a bit?"

Settling in across from the guard, Briari shifts herself into place with a plate of food in front of her. Bread, stew and a mug of water. Her hair is still a bit damp from the quick swim and now pulled up into a pony tail to keep it from tangling about. "Hi, Aglaia." She say with a bright smile upon her face. "I don't mind if you join us if Ez doesn't." Already her foot is nudging a chair out for her.

"Hey, it's my fellow chef extraordinaire! Take a seat." Ezrayl actually throws a wide smile in Aglaia's direction before nodding towards the chair. "Everyone was wondering why you weren't in the kitchens too today. Apparently our faces have become known." She lowers her tone to sound a bit ominous with those last words, but it's apparently a joke considering the way her eyes are glinting. The guard reaches for a roll off her plate and tears a small piece off to throw into her mouth.

"Thanks," is angled to Briari and Ezrayl with a tilted grin. Aglaia takes the offered chair and settles in with a relieved sigh. "I just really needed to sit. It's been one of those days. Maybe not, you know, -that- bad," there's a bit of a shudder, "but bad." Her nose wrinkles just a little. "You know what the sad truth is? I really -can- cook. I'm not a Master or anything, but still. And it's not our fault that the thing turned out… well, like -that-. Dad's been laughing about it ever since I made the mistake of telling him." Ugh. She prods at her food with disinterest. "It's weird that they're still letting you work in there, though," is for Ezrayl. "Did you get kitchens, too?" That's angled for Briari with a sidelong look. "I didn't really look at the chores listing."

"Oh, I helped out a bit because I finished early with my chores. I got a fast jump on it, then found myself in the kitchen and figured I'd lend a hand since Zan' bailed on Ezrayl during the onion peeling." Briari says with a lift of her shoulders, then tucks into her stew, if anything to keep her mouth busy so not to ramble. "Mm. Is good." She mutters to herself.

Kyra makes her way into the living caverns with a piece of paper in her hand, of all things, looking it over thoughtfully while chewing on the stub of a pencil. She pauses at the sound of people's voices that she recognizes, looking along curiously only to toss a wave to everyone, along with a faint grin. She meanders on towards the table they all seem to be converging on, "Hey, guys. Talking about chores? I get to organize the storage room today." She holds up the piece of paper, which turns out to be a color-coded list of inventory. Fun fun. She folds it up and crams it into a pocket, then heads on over to get some food and drink, returning to steal the last chair at the table without really waiting to be invited. She's got klah, a bun with meat and lettuce on it, and three sweetrolls. Balanced.

"Sounds like they've been working you pretty hard today." Ezrayl makes a bit of a face before chewing on some more bread. "They don't let me near the stoves or the ovens anymore, so no need to worry. Basically they stuck me in the back and told me to chop and peel onions all day." Despite that unpleasant memory, there's a smirk playing on the guard's lips. Her gaze drags upwards to the newly arrived Kyra, and that list. "Shit, that hurts my eyes. Better you than me though…I probably would have ended up making more of a mess than there was to begin with."

"Huh. Too bad laundry isn't a chore that could actually get done early," Aglaia observes with a slight pull of her mouth to one side. "Is that the stew you've got there?" The wave is caught in her peripheral vision and is returned deftly enough, the former bookkeeper offering a faint smile to Kyra. "I'll trade you, if you want. That's so much better than wrangling filthy laundry." The color coding on the list is noted, even if she doesn't get a lot of time to study it. "Hnh." And it's back to poking at her food as she turns her attention to Ezrayl. "There was an 'incident'," is an eye-roll-worthy recounting, "So we've been up to our necks in awful stuff. I'd practically leap on onion chopping duty all day at this point. Or even tuber peeling. But, hey, at least we won't have to do this forever, right?"

Nodding her head, Briari says, "Yes, this is the stew. It's pretty good today. Kind of salty, which isn't a bad thing." She eases down into the chair, then pulls out one next to her for Kyra, offering her a bright smile. "Hey, you. Sit next to me?" She taps her fork lightly against the inside of her bowl a few times to a beat that drifted through her head. "The color coordinated dots look like.. it'd work, right? Does it make it easier?"

"No kidding," Kyra supplies amiably for Ezrayl, though once she's sat down she's rather more interested in getting food in her face. She folds her legs beneath her and nods a bit to Briari, shrugging as she admits, "It does, really. It matches up with color coding in the storage room itself, so I barely have to read most stuff, just put it where it goes." Popping a diced tuber into her mouth, she looks curiously at Aglaia, eyebrows up, "…wait, an incident? And no thanks. It's pretty easy work, once you get used to it, just lots of lugging stuff around. You kind of zone out." She makes her eyes look blank for a second only to grin afterwards.

"An…incident, huh?" Ezrayl raises an eyebrow, clearly curious about what Aglaia might have been referring to. But before she can get a chance to ask, something catches the candidate's eye and she glances towards the caverns entrance. "Sorry, one of the guards is….I'll be back in a little bit." She grabs the roll she was working on and takes off!

"Ye-eah," is Aglaia's oh-so-helpful clarification. She nods to Briari about the stew with a thoughtful noise but, ultimately, she remains parked where she is. Her plate with its oddball assortment - bits of this and that with no rhyme or reason - will have to do. Ezrayl's hasty departure is met with a slight furrowing of her brow, but since the other Candidate doesn't look to be returning soon, she finally elaborates, "I don't know the details of what happened, but the words 'mucking duty' and 'disaster' were definitely involved." There's a beat, two, then: "Huh. The dot system- that's -really- nice. I like it a lot. It makes a lot more sense than expecting you to do a whole lot of extra work."

Ezrayl managed to slip away just in time! She returns to the table and manages to catch the last of Aglaia's story. "That…sounds disgusting. For them it's over when they finish mucking, but getting that out of clothes can't have been fun." The guard slips into her seat and raises a hand to wave when Kyra has to depart. Tag, you're in! "How much longer do you think we have before the eggs hatch?"

Continuing to eat, Briari glances back and forth between the pair as she listens. "Hopefully not too much longer. I'm anxious." Dipping her roll into her stew, she dabs up a bit of sauce, then pops it into her mouth.

"I'm not going to get a bath any time soon, either." Because if the clothes are that bad- well. Aglaia shudders and, ultimately, pushes her plate away for the time being. The talk of eggs results in a bit of lower lip-chewing, her features clouded with thought. "It can't be much longer, right? Just a couple of sevendays, maybe. And then we can put all of this behind us and move on." It's a faintly hopeful tone with undercurrents of dread. She's distracted only briefly by Kyra's departure, but the girl lapses into a silent, thoughtful state that clearly does nothing to her appetite.

Daranyl comes out from the kitchens with a steaming plate of meatrolls, which he slides onto the feeding trough table before collapsing into a seat at his sister's table with a groan, "Can' hatch fast 'nuff now." He scrubs thoughtfully at his face and groans, not explaining why, he just seems worn out.

"Chores are chores, I don't mind them much…but it'd be nice to either move on with dragons or get back to what I usually do." Ezrayl leans back in her chair and directs her gaze skywards for a few moments. Daran's appearance earns an immediate glance in his direction however. "What the hell happened to you? We're all trading horror stories from our chores…time to spill yours."

Propping her chin up with her hand, Briari glances over to the others. "Am I the only one at the table who has done this before I take it?" She shifts her jaw in thought. "It's not that bad. I think the most nerve wracking part is when the last egg cracks and she chooses the girl standing next to you instead. You feel sore for a week or so, but then you get over it and go back to your usual day to day." This said mostly to Aglaia who looks worried. "I feel better prepared for a let down this time around. Just don't take it too personally if you don't get picked. It's not your fault, or anyone else's fault. It just means it's not the right time, yet."

Candidates! They filter in from all directions, as Keldan comes from the bowl. His arms stretch out above his head, reaching…/reaching/..and then he relaxes again, allowing them to flop at his sides. There's a faint grin though that traces across the teen's face, and he passes by one of the tables to grab a few bites to eat. Which ends up being a plate. "You wanna hear about /horror?/" He calls back over his shoulder, peering that way with slightly widening eyes. "Running /errands/ apparently means delivering love notes. To Narakin. Who has to read them..out loud. The whole thing. Damn thing was /graphic/. Geez. Man's like..a thousand turns old or something." He's chewing by the time he wanders back toward the other candidates though, shoulders lifting in a slow shrug. "Not so bad, really. Just means life gets back to normal, is all."

"I'm surprised the dragonhealers haven't kept us updated or anything. You'd think that'd be important for us to know." Aglaia's brow furrows a little as some mental note is made. She lifts her fingers in a wiggle-wave for Daranyl when he joins them, with a nod to echo Ezrayl's sentiments. Though: "If I didn't have to do my regular work on top of the chores, it wouldn't be half as bad, but- it could be worse." There's a glance angled at Briari when she speaks, with a shallow nod following. "I don't really… have hopes for it. I have work to get back to when it's all over with, one way or the other." One shoulder rises and falls, while she starts the game of picking at her plate again, but without any real pleasure. And then there's Keldan, whose arrival elicits a lopsided grin from the girl. "Well, as long as he didn't expect you to act out anything in the letters…" Because that? That would probably be worse.

Daranyl snorts and shrugs, "They'll tell us when it's time, I'm sure." He nods to Keldan, then looks at Ez, "Nothin'. Jus' tired 'n' bored all at once, yanno?" He glances at Bri, then shrugs, "Helps ta not expec' ta impress. Wouldn' say no, but I don' think they'll pick me. 'M jus'…" Just him, apparently. "Now, what'd I miss?"

"Acting out a love letter…now there's an idea. The next time you have to deliver one of those you should break out in an interpretative dance and tell him that you're usually a harper." Ezrayl snickers for a moment before taking another quick bite of her roll. Her gaze slowly shifts over to Daran and the words from him earn a decided frown from the guard. Instead of asking outright though, the red-head throws and arm around his shoulder and leans on her brother. "You know, we're going to have to have a talk later. About things." She'll throw a significant look in his direction before ruffling his hair and pulling back.

Keldan sets his plate down with a bit of a clatter, and sits. There's an /eyeing/ of his food though. Maybe his appetite has..waned somewhat. "Er..yeah, alright. Acting it out would've been. Ick." After a moment it seems, Keldan can return to his schedule of eating, breaking off a bit of a meatroll to pop into his mouth. "Yeah, I'm not dancing for that guy. You can have the honor. Not about to get him more riled up than he already is."

"That bad?" Aglaia won't press the matter with Keldan, though. Instead, she angles a look to Daranyl that's mostly empathetic. "I'm kind of in that same boat," she offers. "But- who knows. The dragons know what they're looking for - or maybe they just think they do." It's a curious thought, but not one she'll sink too deeply into. "Anyway. Some kind of mucking incident earlier, so I'd avoid the baths for the next little while." Details? Not forthcoming, not while she gets up to go get something else from the table. "Anyone want anything while I'm up?"

Daranyl's shoulders lift and fall, it's a comforting familiarity for him, commit to nothing. He gives his head a shake at the offer of getting him something, managing to elbow Ez in the side as he does, "Don' know whatcher talkin' 'bout, Ez." HE'S FINE! RAWR! "Do ya dance at all, Keldan? Jus' ta be clear on th' poin'."

"I'll pass the honor on to someone else, thanks." Ezrayl smirks and takes another bite of her roll, but soon that's being put down at the thought of bathes and runner much and…just ew. "Could you grab me some klah, Aglaia? I'll make the next food run." There's a faint smile for the other girl before Ez reaches over to nudge Daran's shoulder. Words? Nope, just a friendly nudge.

Keldan leans forward on an arm slightly, shifting his weight in Daranyl's direction when he's questioned. "Why, you wanna dance?" He smiles just a bit though and settles back, waving his meatroll instead. "I have, on occasion, danced. Not my favorite thing to do, I assure you." The waving food is then chomped on, shaking his head when Aglaia gets up. He has all that he needs, right there! Still, there's a frown by the time he swallows. "And here I was, hoping to eat and get cleaned up.. Maybe it's not so bad..now?"

"Done and done," Aglaia intones for Ezrayl, only for a tilted grin to pop up at Keldan's concern. "It might be okay-ish, but I'd probably give it another hour at the least… unless you're the gambling sort." And then she's off to acquire beverages, only to return a short time later with a small platter. One mug of klah, one of tea, and a couple of pots for cream and sweetener. Not for her, as it turns out, but they're there for general use. She sinks into her chair, cradles her cup of tea in both hands and blows on it thoughtfully for a while.

Daranyl snorts derisively at Keldan, though Ez can certainly a bit of reddish pink bubbling up around the hunter's ears, and mutters, "No' with ya, certainly. Yer sis'er, maybe." The look he passes to Ez speaks volumes without saying a word. A goodly part of him is just frustrated and bored and tired, but another part is wound tight as a spring and ready to snap.

"Thank you," Ezrayl shoots Aglaia a wide grin before taking the mug of klah and having a long sip. Her gaze moves from Keldan to Daranyl and then back again before she sighs and tugs at a strand of her brother's hair. "We're going to go spar after this, no excuses." It's her way of letting him work out any frustration he has. After all, she can take hits and she'd kill him herself if he tried to hold back.

"You're welcome to try and ask her.." Keldan shrugs his shoulders at that though. How successful Daranyl might be with the prospect of dancing is anyone's guess. He's quickly done with the eating thing though, offering another slight grin. "As fun as /that/ part sounds, I think I'm gonna go check out the baths. You know..just to make sure. Carefully." He's on his feet a moment later, giving a vague wave in his wake.

"My pleasure," Aglaia replies to Ezrayl. The momentary withdrawal from her reverie is precisely that: momentary. Something leads her right back into that thinking place and her furrowed brow is some indication of how far down she's gone. There's another surfacing when Keldan speaks and she nods, offering a faint smile. "Good luck out there," is tossed out and, soon enough, she's pushing to her feet and retrieving her plate. "I probably should go see if any firelizards brought 'presents' for me to work on anyway. Take care, you two," is clearly for Ezrayl and Daranyl.

Daranyl shrugs again, "Can' do nothin' while we're candidates anyway, migh' as well jus' be a gennleman." He glances at Ez, then groans softly again, "Shards, Ez. Yer gonna embarrass me in fron' of everyone." Grumble playful grumble. "Wha's wrong, Glaia?" It may be too late to ask, but he does anyway.

"See you around, Keldan." Ezrayl lifts a hand to wave after the departing candidate before glancing to Aglaia with a furrowed brow. "Take care…" The words are said a bit quietly, as if she really isn't sure about them. She leaves the questioning to Daran though, he's a lot better at that kind of stuff.

The dark-haired girl rolls a shoulder and tilts her head to consider Daranyl from the corner of an eye. The question seems to be enough to stall her departure, even if she's not exactly prepared to reclaim her seat. "My brother's the same as your sister," she observes as a sidebar matter, one corner of her mouth pitched up in a half-smile that withers away a moment later. "Anyway. It's- just a lot of messy business. Up here." The tea is lifted to indicate her head. "Hopefully, the hatching will come quickly so all of that will be cleared out, one way or the other. Or not. I don't really know." It's clearly not something to be discussed at the moment and she wrinkles her nose a bit. "Anyway, I'll see you two around later."

"'S another while yet, I think." Daranyl's tone is sympathetic to her plight, at least, "Don' let it ruin ya." He takes in a breath and lets it out slowly, "I don' know wha' I'm even doin', Ez. 'M bored."

"Your brother? I can't tell if that's a good thing or a bad thing…but I'll see you around." Ezrayl lifts a hand towards Aglaia and shoots the other girl a smile. It's only after she's gone that the guard lets her gaze slide back to Daranyl. "You're holding out on the chance that you've got a dragon, there's nothing wrong with having a little boredom in your life. Faranth, after all these turns it's kind of nice to not have to be on our toes all the time." Though she misses it too.


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