The beach here is of a fine, glittering black sand... volcanic sand, remnants of a long-past eruption. The beach is fairly wide, which is a good thing since many of the Weyr's dragons like to come here and lounge in the sun. The crystal blue waters of the ocean roll up in gentle hissing waves on the shoreline, sometimes leaving shells or other treasures from the sea in their wake. On the north and south ends of the beach, the cliff from the plateau retreats into the forest, and trees flank the beaches.
It is an autumn evening.
To the north, you see a blue dragon.
Curled up in the sand are ten firelizards.
You see drink tray here.
Plateau Hillside Path North Beach Pier Water South Beach Smithy
Autumn in Ista Weyr can be fairly idyllic, really: crisp-cool without being cold, tonight there's a mild breeze in off the water as the sun makes its way toward the horizon. Out for an end of day airing, then: Siraji has (likely with help) gotten the baby cage set up well above the high-tide mark, and is camped out on a blanket beside. There is a long lead tied to one of the cage's wooden-dowel bars, and on the far end is Dipshit, barking occasional challenge at the waves when not finding something dead to roll in. Occupying their well-fashioned wooden enclosure, then: Tussinji, absorbed in the challenge of attempting to gum the dog's lead free of its knot, and Mirajin, fretting and fussing when his brother's fist leaves his mouth to join the fray. Despite the fact that she is obviously supposed to be relaxing while baby-minding, Saji's hands are not idle: she is busy measuring and cutting strips of leather, occasionally checking something in a ledger wedged under her hip.
The figure that comes along the beach isn't exactly a well-known face around the Weyr, unless one is interested in herdbeasts. Still, the stumpy gait of Django is distinctive, aided as it is by his carved walking staff. The blonde picks his way along the edge of the beach, apparently gathering what driftwood he can find. He stoops, occasionally, to pluck a piece from a tangle of dried seaweed and examine it. Some get slipped into a bag slung across his chest, others are tossed aside with little ceremony. The sight of the trader family enjoying the evening interrupts his work, and he bobs his head in greeting as he approaches. "Evening," he chuffs. "Saji, wasn't it?"
Over a turn as one of the Weyr's guard combined with her official duties as her caravan's bouncer has Saji alert to Django's approach; being Siraji, though, it's a casually focused sort of observation. Casual until she's addressed, at least, and Dipshit comes yap-howling up from his latest surf-battle to thwappita-tail all around Django's feet. Saji's response is much more discerning: a sharp-edged hook of a smile and a, "Y'might have better luck on one'f the less-popular stretches," paired with a chin-jerk nod toward the farther beaches.
Django is unbothered by boisterous canines, although he braces his weight against his staff a bit when the dog comes bounding up. "I'm heading in that direction," he replies, his eyes following the indicated trajectory. "But it doesn't hurt to look everywhere. Never know what you might find." The children in the cage get a slow gaze that shifts to the work in Siraji's hands. The leather gets an appraising sort of look, although it's a bit distant. "Your van seem to have made good time coming down," he notes as he shifts his weight once the danger of being bowled over is gone. Then he's offering a small grin. "Even from Igen. Have you been here very long?"
Dipshit, aptly named, rolllllllls over onto his back and wiggles around, obviously having decided that this is the best way to achieve pettings; Saji, expressive, rolls her eyes at him. "We're efficient," she answers, with a slightly more genuine flash of a smile; it settles back into something more neutral as she sets aside her work to go fend Tussin away from the dog's leash, now that he's made some headway into loosening the knotted leather. "We've been here a bit. Don't all travel at once, either."
"Efficiency is good," Django says, his grin widening a bit. "Especially on the road. Smart way to do it, too. Less chaos, I imagine." He watches silently as the woman fusses over her caged children, and leans on his staff almost laconically. "Everyone does what works best for them, though. What works for one doesn't necessarily work for another, and all of that." Apparently, Dipshit's efforts aren't in vain as the blonde extends his lean to offer light scritches along the ridge of the canine's ribs. "You stay through the winter, right?" He pats his bag meaningfully. "I might have some things to trade with you by the time you're ready to roll out."
"I wouldn't say that th' efficiency means there's less /chaos/," Saji answers, once Tussin's attention has been transferred from freeing his cohort to teething on a carved block, and from there to trying to graspy-hand grab at mildly-fussy Miraj's face. Or hair. It's a little hard to tell what his aim is, really. Saji picks up her work again with a minimum of fuss, and finishes responding with, "Just controlled. Chaos." She glances down at the ledger again, makes a mark on the leather after a moment's thought. "We're employed at th' Weyr through th' winter," she answers, expression satisfied, "but we gig at th' holds and keep up the trade around th' Island as well. Look forward t' seein' your wares."
Dipshit, meanwhile, writhes happily under Django's attentions.
"Controlled chaos is the best kind," Django says with a chuff of laughter that's aimed mostly at Dipshit's happy wriggling. "If you've got to have it, I mean. The other kind is just...unnecessary." He straightens, and leans on his staff, watching the woman work a moment longer. "You won't be disappointed," he says in response to Saji's remarks about his wares. "I don't do as much fine carving as I'd like, but I make these little cabinet boxes that are popular with some of the ladies of the Hold." He tilts his head, watching Tussin teeth for a moment. "I can make those, too," he says, indicating the block. "Or little animal figures that are similar. I've enough broomwood scraps to make a few."
"So can I," Saji says of the carved block, her grin proprietary and a little habitually sharp. "And do. Most of the trade we do in carving goes through me." There's a rub of her hand against the wood of the babies' cage, followed by a pat and a tug at Dipshit's lead to re-secure it. "Small stuff. Not," there's a vague sketch of her hand, "cabinetry. Wagons." Now that he's no longer being petted, Dipshit begins to whine, interspersing it with the occasional 'woof' to try to re-capture Django's attention. "Work in leather, too."
"Ah." Django's recognition of the work is a soft exhalation into the evening air. "There's no lack of carvers among traders it seems," he says with a wry twist to his mouth. "I've not attempted a wagon," he confesses. "You'd think it would be easy, but there's a knack to making one that won't rattle apart. I haven't figured it out, yet." Dipshit's whining gets a look that is clearly one that is unique to dog lovers; it's both patient and exasperated at once. "The boxes and chests are good enough, until I do." He glances at the leather strips, and wrinkles his nose. "What sort of things do you make in leather, then? I might have a use for some new tack, should we decide to trade."
"Wood an' knives are pretty easy t' find. No lack of wood-carvers /not/ among traders, either." Saji huffs a breath, shakes her head. "Wagon's more than just a box on wheels. Wouldn't even dream of puttin' my hand t' one, not without turns more experience." Decades, even. When Dipshit's whining doesn't earn him more pettings, she gives him an exasperated, slightly edgy look, and whistles sharply to bring him bounding back toward her and the boys. "Mostly small," she admits, "specialized. Bracelets, belts; can turn in a decent pair of 'riding straps, given time and materials. Pouches. Made harnesses for th' boys, but we've just gotten those re-worked. Don' know that I'd sell 'em, yet. Tack--" she grins, shifts her shoulders before pulling the ledger out from under her and closing it. "Mostly leave that to th' experts. Wouldn't know th' first thing about saddles, an' most of what I know 'bout bridles comes from repair-work, not creation."
"I had the thought I might try it, when I first landed in Ista," Django admits of wagon-making, lifting his apparently gimpy foot and knocking it lightly with his staff. "After some advice from a friend, I had to re-think it. Doesn't mean I'm not trying to figure it out, though." The inventory of Siraji's crafting is absorbed with a neutral expression, although his mouth tugs downwards towards the end. "Ah, well. I'm sure I could find a use for those other things, maybe," he offers, and squints into the gloom. "Come by the Hold in a month or so, and we'll see what catches the other's eye." He shifts his weight, then, and pushes himself upright. "As for me, I'd better be getting along, if I want to find anything else before it's too dark. It was nice seeing you again. My thanks again for your hospitality in the desert." Offering a small bow, he starts gimping off towards the farther stretches, tossing a wave and an almost-cheery "Till we meet again!" over his shoulder.
"Until then!" is Siraji's farewell, as Django takes his leave; she gauges the level of the sun in the sky, then reaches behind the baby-cage to disturb a tiny, sleeping green, and send her winging off. That taken care of, she also extracts a set of straps -- much, much smaller than would ever fit a dragon -- and puts them on; harnessed, she sets to the task of collecting two small boys and breaking down the baby-cage. She is joined, after a while, by a lanky-tall, dark-haired young man and another slightly more sturdily built with muddy-ginger hair; together, the three of them wrangle babies, cage, and over-enthused beagle off the beach and back toward camp on the plateau.