Scavenger Hunt: A Hunt for Juice in the Hidden Past

Forgotten Records Room
Roughly cube-shaped, poorly lit, and still partially coated with a depressingly prevalent mess of dust and cobwebs, it's only immediately clear to the trained eye that this old records room has seen some recent renovation. There isn't a spare inch to be found between looming shelves of decaying hide and brittle paper along the left, back, and right walls, with some looming as high as fifteen feet before simply fading into inscrutable shadow. Scattered throughout the floor space of the large cavern between four tables, several mismatched chairs, and stacks of unsorted hide, various footsteps in the dust often combine to create trails of frequently traveled clear floor, with most of the prints themselves left by large, squared boots or much more delicate feline paws. In the right-hand back corner, just barely peeking out of the darkness, a single cot and pillow dressed in ratty sheets can be made out with a small pair of wooden crates shoved into the shadow that lingers beneath it.
Obvious exits:
Catacombs

Its a sunset in the spring at High Reaches, which means dinner has recently been served. And some candidates see fit to take a break from chores after the evening meal for a while. Tilla is no exception. SNEEZE! The noise arrives in the records room almost before the girl does. Lots of dust. But books…she needs to look at some old books, and this is probably the best place to do it. She goes over to one dusty table, wipes it off and sits down. One old crusty hide is gingerly placed on the table infront of her and she leans forward, peeering at it in the gloom.

Rozalija wanders into the dusty records room, moving through the darker hallways as if she were quite familiar with them. There's a soft hum coming from the candidate as she pushes her way in, immediately stopping as she lifts a glowbasket up high to illuminate more. "H-hello?" That's definitely surprise on her face as she spots someone else bent over a hide, and she turns to look back out the door as if deciding to move on. "S-sorry if I'm… bugging you, or anything."

Tilla starts up, hearing a somewhat familiar voice. "Oh! Hello…Rozalija, right? I think we may have met once.." she ponders, wrinkling her nose because theres still dust in it. "Nah, bugging? Eh! Aren't you.." she lowers her voice "You are I think…" She decides to not even speak aloud and instead to mutter and whisper, just in case. But, louder now, "I had heard a few rumors about things that went on a long time ago here..so I decided to come down here and read up on it." She grins.
You overhear Tilla mutter, "You're … my … … … you … me … … … We need … … … … … … happened … … … sometime in the past.." to Rozalija.

Rozalija nods her head quickly when her name is called. "Y-yes, that's me." Her cheeks darken a bit at the other candidate's words as she shuffles forward shyly now instead of backwards. "I… I think we have." She lifts the basket up and gives her a shy smile before lowering it again. "And you're… T-tilla." She seems quite certain about it, too. Her eyes scan the small room now before she presses her lips tightly together. "Oh!" And she hastily nods, lowering her voice this time to a soft voice. "I can help. I… I actually never thought about it. I come here to read all the time." She didn't seem to mind the dust much, as she sets the glowbasket on the same table.

Tilla grins. "Oh good. With two people, I bet we'll find lots of information, and much quicker than just one" She nods, standing up and grabbing a pile of hides and gingerly putting them beside Roza. "If you look at that pile and I'll start going through this pile..I'll bet we'll find something." But what something, she never does speak. She's being overly cautious with what she's saying for some reason.

Rozalija giggles softly at her words. "Oh, absolutely!" She still blushes at the tone of her voice, quick excited by the prospect of looking through musty old hides. She shifts the glow basket enough for the light to filter well over the hides so that they didn't have to strain before taking a seat next to the other candidate, staring at her pile. "W-well…" she starts, and then gives a good glance around. "J-just what exactly are we looking for, besides… history," she says the last word in such a soft whisper that it might even be difficult for Tilla to pick up. "T-there's a lot of people stepping down… stepping up… stepping down again."

Tilla tries to recall what she was searching for, exactly. "I think..I heard of someone dying from a fellis overdose..I think a gold rider? The details are hazy, and I only caught part of someones conversations in the Living Caverns. You hear alot by working in the kitchens, really." She smirks and winks as if to say 'you know what I mean?'

Rozalija's eyes were rapidly scanning the hides, not quite in the best condition to be reading off of. She frowns a moment as she struggles through some that were difficult to read before looking up Tilla with wide eyes. "A W-weyrwoman? That's… That's sad." She leans over in the other candidate's direction, as if to look off her hides first before she nods slowly. "Y-yes, Weyrs seem to be very popular with gossip. I… I wonder how long ago that was. D-does it have to be s-something from a /long/ time ago? I've read more recent… stuff. High Reaches has had a lot of goldriders pass away." She keeps her voice low, not only for the sake of secrecy but for the topic of conversation as well.

Tilla shakes her head. "I dont think it has to be from a ton of turns ago..I can't remember if I heard when this happened.." She looks sad "Yea, I know. Its still a popular topic of conversation despite how long its been that Chey has been.." She gulps "Asleep. I just.." She fidgets "Call me morbidly curious but I had heard that alot of the weyrwomen had bad things happen to them and I wanted to see where this was recorded officially." She looks guilty, and continues "I guess its hard for me to believe that there might be a 'curse' or that so many bad things could happen to goldriders around here." She returns to peering down another hide from the stack infront of her. "Hm, I don't see it here..just Winter Festivals, clutches…ooh" She points "Seems someone named D'renn was a Weyrlingmaster and he was fired. But the part that explains why is all faded.." she squints.

What little good mood hides and records bring back to Rozalija quickly fades at the mention of the Weyrwoman. She swallows hard and then nods her head slowly. "Y-yes… I wouldn't be surprised, if there's a curse. T-the Weyrwoman before Chey passed away, too, just recently. The one from Telgar." She fingers through the records a bit, setting aside those that were inlegible beefore tilting her head towards Tilla. "M-maybe we can look up on the curse? I know another Weyrwoman… Py was her name? S-she died, too." The way she says it now is without emotion, like just shooting off a bunch of random information that didn't mean much. The mention of someone being fired has her leaning over again and trying to read off the hide as well before she giggles. "I wonder."

Tilla hmms. "Well, that's an idea. I guess thats sort of what I was looking for anyway. I guess." She bites her lip. "I guess I'm hoping I'd find some gold riders living very long lives and dying of old age?" She ehhehs, sheepishly. Hey, its possible! Not probable, but possible! She goes back to peering at her hides, intently. "Let me know if you find anything." She puts yet another hide in the 'read' pile and takes a new one from the 'unread' pile. "Lots of little things that have nothing to do with anything in the ones I've seen so far" She snorts "Someone flooded the bathroom? Glad I wasnt around then." She waves her hand across her nose in the Pee yeww gesture.

"I-I don't know… I haven't seen any about… dying from old age, unless you count Py." Rozalija giggles nervously and looks through her hides. Most were going in the 'worthless' pile as far as looking up information. "I-I heard she was really old, b-but she got sick." Again, a very informative tone, now half-distracted as she focuses on one hide in particular. This one was at least in better condition than many of the others. "I… I hope that wasn't on purpose. How awful of them if it was!" She wrinkles her nose as she looks at Tilla, agreeing with her sentiments. "T-there're some notes about candidates… pulling pranks." She goes dark, but sets it aside. "B-but there've been so many golds. I w-wonder what happened to them.."

Tilla agrees, "I haven't seen any either. But I haven't given up hope that maybe there's some..somewhere.." More and more hides are put in the read pile, and the girl takes out a particularly crusty hide with more dust than the rest, near the bottom of the pile. *CHOO* She sneezes again, but makes sure not to sneeze into Roza. Holding her breath, she dusts off the hide and holds the glow very closely to it. "Ohh..here's something. Its from about 40 turns ago.." She squints, and tries to read the very faded lettering. "Ava che? Avlache? Avalanche!" Ahha, she figured it out. "In the dows.." She shakes her head. "In the m..dows? Meadows! " She muses "I know there's some mountain meadows just outside the weyr." She traces her finger down the record, gingerly, as if it might crumble into nothing with too much poking. "Injured: Weyr-woman Nuff..Jr. Weyrwoman Lara." She nods,elated that she seems to be finding the information she wanted, yet guilty because its sad information. "Right under that, another death notice. Lara died of fellis overdose." She bites her lip. "Its all true. I guess I was hoping it wasnt." She shakes her head, sadly. "Do you see anything else about previous Weyrwomen in your pile, Roza?" she queries.

The more she listens, the more Rozalija keeps glancing over towards Tilla. "Are… are you worried you'll be Impressing the gold dragon? A-as the next Weyrwoman… I'd worry, too." Her voice is soft, anxious, and then she breaks the mood by sneezing a few quick times right after the other girl. She wipes her nose with her sleep, glancing towards the rising dust from the hides. "F-faranth," she squeaks out, half-muffled, at the news. She holds out the one she had been reading earlier, having set it away from the others. "A-and here is something. A-about the weyrwoman that died of pneumonia. It's… it's just a Healer's report." But at least it was proof of something! And she places that aside before dropping her arms and frowning at their things and then dropping her voice real low again. "Do… do we really have to bring proof? E-everyone here knows about what happened to the Weyrwoman before C-chey."

Tilla pales. "Me? Oh nono. I am hoping that I don't. I just want a green..I don't want to be the weyr leader" She gulps. "But others have said that impressions are not /up/ to us they are up to the hatchling. I more worry about the more dominant types..like Rhaenyra. I could see her on a gold..she's really a take charge kind of lady" She gulps "If one of my friends were to get gold..and there is a curse..I wouldn't want anything to happen to them." She shakes her head.

Rozalija nods her head slowly towards Tilla. "Y-yes… That's what I've heard, too. It… it can be anything." Which makes Roza all twitching and uncomfortable. "I… I don't believe in curses, and my mother says that what happens… happens. L-like Impressing a dragon… or not." She presses her lips together and looks up curiously with a tilt of her head. "Rhaenyra? I… I know she's a Herder, too. But she went and… and disappeared from the Hall. N-no one knew where she went for a bit." She shakes her head a bit and sighs. "N-not really the taking charge girl." In her opinion, at least. She definitely was the get-stuff done type of apprentice and candidate, and never missed anything that had to be done. She goes scans through the rest of the files before setting them aside with a sigh. "Nothing."

Tilla frowns. "I must have given you the bad pile. And I thought /my/ pile had useless info" She sighs and props her forehead on one hand, exasperatedly. "Shards." She wishes she knew the time. "I better not stay down here too much longer in case they send someone after me" She shudders. Mad weyr staff were scary things. She rubs her arm gingerly from where she was slapped with a wet towel for being late to laundry duty the other day.

"These aren't taken care of for a reason," Rozalija says softly as she strokes the hides in almost a loving manner. "B-but I did find the Healer note…" Because she wanted to sound useful for something. She moves the papers aside, sorting them again into one proper pile and leaving out the one about Pyrene's death aside for the other candidate to take back. "I can… come back and look for more?" But then her eyes widen and she looks towards the entrance quickly. "Y-you're not… /skipping/ chores, are you?"

Tilla yipes "No, I'm not. I worked all day but they said that I could take a break about dinnertime. I think I was supposed to do a few things after dinner but they told me I could have several hours off. I got up early this morning..again." She yawns "Couldn't sleep..just feel restless lately for some reason. So I started chores early." She nods "Yeah! That healer record is good too." She reaches over and grabs it from the table, placing it in the pile with the avalanche information. Then, a realization. "You know..you're right. Maybe just looking for queenrider things is too depressing. I'm sure other big things happened to High Reaches other than that..you know, Gran told me a story about a metee..meteorr? A sky rock..lots of sky rocks falling and causing things all over Pern..I wonder what happened here during then?" She pokes about, moving some other hides from the unread pile to her immediate field of view.
Rozalija nods slowly, but her eyes shift towards the door as if she expects someone to finally burst in on them and blame her for helping someone skip chores. She's definitely always the accomplice, being dragged into things at the end. "W-well… if you were given a lot of time, then they… they shouldn't complain." She nods once again and then smiles shyly back to Tilla. "Well, it isn't that depressing… I think. I-I bet we can find more in recent files." She picks up a random hide from Tilla's pile at that new information. "Meteors, you mean?" Bookworm Roz at her best. "It… It must have caused a disaster!"

Tilla nods, more enthusiastic now. "Yeah! Meteors! Rocks raining down from the sky!" She illustrates with her hands, up and down in a splattering motion with her fingers waving to simulate flames. "Pow! FOOMFH!" She grins. She should get paid as a sound effects girl. But then, more seriously "Gran told me things were flooding..and mud slides..everything..nature in chaos.." She looks out into space as if imagining the scene. "More recent files?" She shuffles around in her hide pile. "Got some here too"

Rozalija can't help but giggle at the other girl's enthusiasm, turning into snorts as she makes sure to give a vivid image of the explosions. "I-I bet it was still a very scary time. Not only Thread to worry about falling, but… but meteors, too!" She gives a shudder and then looks to those better preserved hides with a nod. "Yes, those too. But it sounds like the meteors would have been awhile ago. Let me check those to see if there's anything written about the more recent Weyrwomans." She was still curious about that subject, afterall, and seemed determined to find something!

Tilla nods "Right! Thanks! I can see we're alike because I always want more knowledge..and to know whats what." She grins. "Yeah, Thread times too.." She looks wistful as she remembers the nights when she was hold bound with mom and Gran while Gran told her stories and sang her songs until she fell asleep. *shake shake* She clears her head, returning to the present task at hand. Hunching over the records, she pulls one of the glows close, and scans each record quickly.

"We can't let all the knowledge go to waste… s-so much stuff to learn." Rozalija doesn't stutter much, but her voice is still soft and wistful. She smiles at the hides and nods slowly back to the other girl. "My mother doesn't like the Interval, she told me. It's her excuse why she drinks." But the tone of her voice suggests that the candidate doesn't believe it. She sighs and returns to the hides, moving one over finally when she reads fire in the skies. "It could just be a random meteor shower notation, but…"

Tilla gives a concerned look when she picks up on Roza's parental pain. But..she says nothing further on that, not wanting to pry. "Well yeah, interval but that means we have to be creative, right?" She taps one index finger on the side of her head to demonstrate that she means with ideas. "There's still lots of Pern to explore, especially for dragonriders that might be hard to finish mapping out to when Thread was falling, ya know?" Hmm. "Maybe a random meteor notation but from what Gran said it was /big/ things were happening…something about Fort Weyr being pretty hard hit.." She muses stroking her chin before poring over the next record.

Rozalija giggles softly and shakes her head. "I-I like the Interval. It's more… peaceful." She looks around the room again, as if searching for listening ears before she returns her attention to Tilla. "W-well… There are some riders that miss Thread." She shrugs her shoulders helplessly at that notion. "I… Well, if I were to I-Impress, then I wouldn't really care." Her cheeks darken a bit at the idea and then she nods down to the hide, setting it aside. "True. M-maybe some records closer to its date." And she looks for the key words as she searches, quiet just for a moment before sighing. "We… we might have enough with the goldriders and the fellis overdose."

Tilla nods..and yawns. Uhoh, she's getting tired and she still has some chores to finish! "Maybe you're right..but you know, I'd love to meet with you again sometime so we can read about the meteor shower. I love learning things." She gathers up the hides into a neat pile, and places them carefully into her sketchbook, between the front page and the cover, for protection. "I should probably get back to finishing my chores anyway.." she looks around nervously and has /no/ idea how much time has passed. "Thanks for searching the records with me, Roza! Glad to get to know you better too!" She waves and makes her exit.

That yawn was contagious, because Rozalija was soon mirroring the other girl with her own. "Oh! D-definitely." She grins broadly at Tilla before nodding a few times. "I can… look around a bit longer. Maybe ask the Weyr Harper about it, too, if they have other records." There's excitement in her tone of voice as she gathers the useless pile that didn't say much to her and gets up to put them aside. "I… I really hope you don't get in t-trouble being down here so long, Tilla. But it was nice to have company." She smiles again as she waves after her, already bending to collect more hides for scanning purposes.

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