Libby sat on her bed, reading. She had recently gotten her hands on some new first aid book and was tearing through it. First read through was always the fastest. She'd pick up all the details later. She was engrossed in an illustration on the page, fascinated by both depiction of the injury and the author's recommended initial management. Admiring the lines of the drawing, it took several fractions of time adding up for her to register the sliding feeling on her arm, look at it, and scream. Snake! Tunnelsnake!
It turned and hissed at her, sharp teeth menacing. Where had it come from? She leapt from the bed, screams continuing. She glanced up at the wall, backing up, but as reluctant as she was to look away from the monster on her bed, she saw movement and had to look. The wall wriggled and melted into tunnelsnakes. She felt her breath to yell again and then silence. Nothing.
She sat up in bed screaming still. Not taking time to question or look at the wall, she sprinted out of the bedroom, medical book fluttering to the floor with a thunk, pages splayed. Her warm night gown swirled as she flung herself into the hallway, legs shaking but needing to move.
Post by Ghost of Fire (Fëanáro) on Aug 27, 2016 16:59:48 GMT -8
Night. A time of peace and quiet, even in the busiest of Holds. Certainly, it appeared to be so for the young man resting asleep at a desk. He knew better than to do that, was usually much better about avoiding it. He'd put several things off though, and the net effect was that he had been stuck late at the desk and fallen asleep, his night-black canine curled at his feet. His three firelizards were curled up in tight little shiny balls around the paper, the aurora close to the young man's hand where it could easily retreat if needed.
Thus was the scene, that is, until a scream shattered the night. The youth's head shot up, eyes snapping open, pupils dilating, nostrils flaring in ancient instinct. Firelizards echoed the motion, and the canine stiffened, lips peeling back. It wasn't a threat though, not really, just a woman running as if she fled for her very life.
It was perhaps the truest testimony of how far the youth had come in his time at the Weyr that he did not immediately retreat in fear. Indeed, he sprang to his feet, but not to flee, not yet.
"Ma'am, hey, easy, what's wrong?" Only the slightest quiver in that voice suggested the difficulty with which they still came. The penalties for speaking out of turn had once been prohibitive.
Seeing a path of escape, and something to put between her and the danger, Libby fled into the now open door, slammed it shut and wedged herself into the corner. Stopping, she was straight upright only to soon slump. Her chest heaved. Loose hairs settled. She stared at the youth whose room she had stumbled into. Her mind grasped. Dog. Flitts. Man. Escape. Terror.
"T-tunnelsnakes..." she whispered, last S hissing.
Post by Ghost of Fire (Fëanáro) on Aug 27, 2016 20:07:07 GMT -8
It wasn't what T'ruk had expected. Of course, he was new to this whole 'socializing' thing (and so it didn't occur to him exactly how far outside of normal parameters this situation truly was). Without thinking, he scrambled up, his slightly too long limbs tangling on themselves briefly as he tried to step forward in the same movement. Strange, when had he gotten so tall?
You've been tall, for a human, for a long time, Azeriuth pointed out.
A smile touched T'ruk's lips briefly. "Where at?" he asked. Tunnelsnakes didn't particularly scare him, one of his duties in the Hold, once he'd gotten old enough, had been hunting the things. Sure, he didn't have anything right within reach, but he knew where the weapons were.
"WW...wwhere?" Libby stammered at the unruffled face in front of her. He clearly did not comprehend the magnitude and terror of tunnelsnakes. So, still tired, and reeling from an experience she knew was real and also knew was not, she stared. Her initial running shock had rushed away and left her in a now deflated heap in the corner. Honestly, if left alone she might very well fall back asleep.
Post by Ghost of Fire (Fëanáro) on Aug 27, 2016 21:21:00 GMT -8
Breathe, now, what would Rallin do?
The thought, question, floated through T'ruk's mind. Of course, he didn't know what the answer to it was, but he did know it didn't include drawing back and retreating. Unfortunately, because that was what he wanted to do.
Maybe... what about...
A sudden image from Guyaky, as the aurora blinked and scoped the hall and near rooms. No tunnelsnakes, nor sign of them. Not quite certain it was the right thing to say, but knowing he had to say something, T'ruk swallowed and spoke, "Would you like to sleep here for a bit?"
Libby attempted a blink. Or maybe she only thought she blinked. "Mmph? Sleep?" she mumbled, slumping a little further. Her arms ached. Her feet were cold. It all barely registered. She held aloft, as she could, a hand for help up. To some place to sleep. Somewhere. Soft surface or not, she'd be a warm lump somewhere soon.
Post by Ghost of Fire (Fëanáro) on Aug 27, 2016 21:56:09 GMT -8
Why, why, why did no interaction ever follow the rules? Why couldn't the rules be more comprehensive? Shardit, what was he supposed to do here?! Slowly, T'ruk reached out to catch the woman's hand to pull her up. There was a pile of blankets in the corner, where Sinok would sometimes curl up, but they were plenty soft, and perfectly acceptable (in T'ruk's opinion at least) for a human's bed.
Post by Ghost of Fire (Fëanáro) on Aug 27, 2016 22:18:45 GMT -8
Smiling slightly, a compound of relief (that his plan had worked) and a certain sympathy, for he'd been for a long time the person to whom any flat surface was good enough for a bed, T'ruk laid the woman down on the blankets.
A quiet whistle summoned the rest of his firelizards and he slipped out into the hall. He might as well check for tunnelsnakes, just in case.