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To my eyes, you're perfect. Lerian -L'rin/ Cycleth SA

Alyx
 

(( Keep away! )) Dardueth shrieked at her brother, throwing herself down to the sand even as he lunged towards her. (( The creature is mine! )) With a guttural hiss of noise, the green flailed and as she did, scooped up a pawful of the hot sand. Instinctively and without thinking she flung it at her brother, or more specifically, right towards his one good eye.


Sand impacted the bronze’s wide open eye and immediately he hissed, temporarily completely blind.  He started to shake his head wildly from side to side, panic starting to set in, {{ What did you do?  I can’t see!  I’m blind! }}


Wailing, he dashed off towards the candidates, running towards the only thing he could, that pull, that mind… he tripped over shells and stones and completely  knocked over one of the candidates, all in order to reach the only one that could help him.  {{ Please!  I’m blind!  I can’t see at all!  And I’m so hungry!  Lerian, save me! Save your Cycleth! }}

Lerian being one of the youngest on the sands, had been struggling to stay awake. This was something of a blessing, that and being short, well he'd been behind someone taller when Cycleth and his sister had killed the other candidate and maimed another. But as soon as the voice hit his mind, Lerian was completely awake. He pushed past the fella in front of him, sprinting across the shells and stones, as sure footed as a mountain goat.

Once close he dropped to his knees in front of the little bronze, cradling the head against his chest, and using the hem of his robes to very gently brush at Cycleth's good eye. 

"Easy big guy, easy." Some of the sand came away, but not enough. Thankfully dragonhealers and AWLM's were on hand, and a little bit of water later the sand was washed out.

Cycleth, now more comfortable blinked several times, then got his first look at his person, his world. He let out a relieved sigh and butted his head against the small boy's chest, almost knocking him over. The second headbutt, was much gentler. Cycleth hadn't realized his rider was so small. But he knew they both would grow. Together they would grow into...something. He wasn't sure, but it would be something great.

((You saved me. I can see, I knew you would. We will eat now?)) The last was a bit plaintive, his sister had stolen his food. Not that it has tasted very good. 

Lerian...no L'rin, now, Cycleth hummed with approval, as the boy stood, staying on the dragon's left side to guide him to the food. Once there he stood in front of the bucket, and wouldn't let Cycleth past no matter how he tried. He would be firm with the young one. He needed guidance.

"One at a time Cycleth, one at a time." The young bronze growled, but accepted the first bite, trying to push for another, but L'rin wouldn't give it till he'd chewed, and swallowed. Then the second bit was fed, by the third the bronze was resigned, mostly to the fact that he wouldn't be allowed to bury his face in the meat and gobble. As his stomach filled Cycleth began to relax more, and looked around, mostly turning to the left, as was expected.  He saw around him, various siblings, but only one other like him. Good only one rival then. Rival for what he wasn't sure of yet. But would they be rivals or friends? Then there was another bite of food, and the idea faded. Food was better.

Only then did reality seem to catch up to Lerian...no L'rin.. he'd impressed. Not only had he impressed, but he'd impressed a bronze. And not just any bronze at that. He was big, and dark, and looked like lightning was running through him. The only 'flaw' was his right eye. But to L'rin, it was no flaw. Just a part of this beautiful bronze that had chosen to spend his life with him. L'rin was so happy he could barely even think.

Cycleth felt mostly the same. Even small as his was right now. He'd been able to stand up to him, which Cycleth hadn't expected, yet somehow it pleased him. They would do great things together.

--
Have fun with any of my characters. Alyx, Lerian (candidates), Vayka (Healer), J'hen, D'vik, Teyra, Cotai (Riders), Rotasta (AWLM)


Re: Hatching - Wings of Vengeance (ATTN: Miacca/Aelloth, Isirdux)

Jerzy Tobin
 

There were Hatchlings...not everywhere. Each color caught her eye, whether bronze, brown, blue or green, they all had their strengths and would be beneficial for the Weyr. She honored that fact by examining each one carefully. Her gaze followed another pair that'd hatched, a bronze and green, fought over the Firelizard. The clearly motionless, dead firelizard not hanging from the green's mouth. All not soon enough the bronze was tearing off to find someone among the Candidates, leaving the green too...move on to even more horrific scenes, claws and teeth tearing into 2 other Candidates.

Blood, flesh, torn hatching robes. Miacca clapped one hand over her mouth, holding back the horrified gasp that'd welled up into her throat at the scene. It happened, it really did, it wasn't the first time Candidates didn't clear out of the way. Still they were losing a Candidate all while the green made a bloody mess there on the Sands. Even after the green left the mess she'd made Miacca couldn't pull her hand away from her mouth, not trusting what sounds might've came out of it after that. But, uncaring about the injured Candidates, the Hatching went on, another pair of Dragonets hatching from their eggs. None of them came toward her though, and her mind, still reeling from the scene, took its time being pulled back onto the colorful marvels.

Once it did she began noticing that they seemed to be hatching only in pairs, slower than the last hatching. Slower than...well she couldn't remember another hatching like it but, then again, her brain kept hiccuping over the dragons that currently were wandering... Make that pouncing, she mentally amended, as some tunnelsnakes began attracting the Hatchlings attention.

Finally two greens hatched, one solid dark green, a stalker ready for the shadows in the Caverns. The other one, however, the olive green left the impression of a drab little creature that someone had puked other colors onto. On closer look though there were patterns to it that didn't strike Miacca as really puke like, but... After witnessing what happened to Ysolde & Sorho, the darker theme left her unable to quite place what those patterns were.

The darker green faded from her attention as she focused on those patterns, shaking her head to try seeing something other than grim impressions on that hide. Like brushstroke...some part of saw them now even if her brain still spun various less pleasant images, that at least weren't full of blood, flesh and torn cloth anymore. Except by now that green was coming closer, the markings growing more clear that they indeed look like brushstroke on that green sniffing at another Candidate. A scream broke through her current fixation and, though she didn't register the Candidate jerking away from the green, she saw the green jerk away.
None of this, not one bit of it, was anything like the stories Isirdux
had heard from his mother while growing up. None of it was like the
gossip spoken about among the crew of the ship, either. They had
never, ever mentioned baby dragons *mauling* candidates to death! He
had gagged and fought down the urge to throw up right then and there,
fought the urge to try and run away, lest that bloody green come after
him next. No, instead he stayed rooted where he stood, hunching down
a bit to try and be less noticeable. He was pretty damned sure he
didn't want any of *these* dragons to choose him!

So, needless to say that when another green dragonet - what was *that*
shade of green? - came over to him, and actually reared up and
scratched Isirdux through his robes, the boy screamed. He was going
to die next! No! No! No! No! He jerked away and fell over, the
green dragonet falling over his legs. He flung his arms up over his
face, bracing for the attack that was sure to come.

"Please! No!"


--
"Life is NOT a journey to the grave with the goal of arriving safely
in a prettily preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways in a
shower of gravel and party shards, thoroughly used, utterly exhausted,
and loudly proclaiming: "F*** ME, that Rocked!!" -unknown

Whizzy: Jerzy
Aim: Yue146


Mellifluous Lethality (SA Candidate Arciel)

Arciel
 

The keening cry of steel parting the air disturbed the silence of the early morning with a conclusive crack of impact against the abused surface of a pockmarked training dummy, scattering birds with shrill cries of indignation as splinters flew from the impact. Supervised by the patient gaze of a single early-morning Weyrguard willingly lured in by his own curiosity, Arciel stood shirtless in the early morning sun as he ran through his sword drills. A faint layer of perspiration already clung to his body, rivulets of moisture trailing along the contours of his musculature or along the asymmetrical ridges of scar tissue interspersed across his nineteen-year-old torso.

His bare feet dug stubbornly into the grass-bordered paving stones beneath them, toes curled and heels depressed by his distributed body weight to better grip the slightly uneven arena ground. The scrape of stone against his hardened soles offered no clear impediment to the blond Candidate as he danced back and then surged forwards, his latissimus dorsi back muscles tightening with exertion as he poured power into the calloused hands grasping the hilt of his bastard sword, the forty-three inch blade singing as it scythed in to punish the dummy with another vicious strike. Had the target been made of flesh and sinew, the blow would have cleaved deep into the upper rib cage of an average-sized male.

Instead Arciel pivoted off the heel of his right foot and shifted the grip of his hand-and-a-half bastard sword mid-strike, inverting the glimmering steel blade to perform a form-perfect upwards back-thrust at the sternum of his stationary target. With a flex of his deltoids, the lovingly sharpened weapon impacted the tortured wooden target with a sound like localised lightning; simulating a disturbingly accurate reminiscence of shattering bones as wood chips sailed into the air and the sword sunk three inches deep within the resistant target.

Arciel locked his jaw and ripped the sword out with an exertion of his biceps, ducking under an imaginary oberhau from an unseen enemy and launching himself sideways over the sweep of an imagined poleaxe. He landed in a roll, bare shoulder-flesh tearing on the unyielding stone of the ground below him as he came up to his feet. Ignoring the stinging of his shoulder as readily as one might dismiss the impediment of a minor insect’s stinger, his calves and thighs tightened for a heartbeat before he launched himself back at the dummy with a snarl of focus and concentrated violence of action.

A distance of seven feet was crossed in heartbeats and Arciel launched himself from his run into an aerial twist for greater striking force, unleashing a roar of effort as he poured every inch of his painstakingly curated musculature into a single destructive blow. Even with the greater resistance of a wooden frame and the lack of pliable flesh, his blade’s striking force was not to be denied and – succumbing to a number of carefully inflicted prior wounds to its neck – the dummy’s head detached from its body in a disturbing example of focused ultraviolence.

Arciel landed beside the dummy with a bend of the knees and a concerted downwards focus of his weight to the begrudgingly supportive stone underfoot, sliding perhaps two inches from the inertia of his landing and noting the stinging report of scraped soles as he turned back to examine his work. The dummy’s head had been cleanly severed, albeit at a slight angle, and the figure itself rocked faintly with the aftermath of the sheer force involved in the decapitation. Droplets of sweat rolled down Arciel’s chiselled features and snaked around the defined shape of his masculine jaw, dripping down to join the shimmering plethora already present on his steady-breathing chest as he looked down to examine the edge of his family blade.

A smile graced his handsome features when he noted the lack of strain or damage on the weapon, pleased by its retained edge and the relative ease – as compared to pig iron weapons of the same make – with which he’d beheaded the wooden target. His blue eyes, faintly illuminated in the sunlight of the morning, lifted to look expectantly to the observing Weyrguard. After a moment of consideration, the much older man offered a curt nod in response to the unasked question, and Arciel felt himself smiling in response.

It had become a habit to request the judgement of the experienced guardians of the Weyr on his drills, and thus far he had not experienced any disapproval. Given the standards to which they were held, he knew he would find no empty platitudes among the stern-faced collective that defended Arolos Weyr. It meant that their approval, when given, was never doubted – and it served to validate the strenuous training he put himself through each and every day. Rolling his shoulders to release some of the tension from his earlier exertion, Arciel shook out his arms one after the other while rotating the grip of his blade between them, and then shook out his legs from the thigh to the toes.

With that done he looked up at the Weyrguard and nodded, giving the veteran a signal they’d agreed upon earlier. With a nod in return, the guard stepped forwards and descended the stairs to the training arena, unsheathing a borrowed sword in the process and coming to a halt only when he stood several metres opposite Arciel. Once the older man was in position, Arciel bowed respectfully and received the same in return. “Thank you for your instruction,” Arciel said with honest gratitude, his strong baritone clear within the arena.

The sound of clashing steel filled the air moments later, and Arciel lost himself in the mellifluous lethality of swordplay.


Re: Hatching - Wings of Vengeance (ATTN: Miacca/Aelloth, Isirdux)

Mya L. R.
 

There were Hatchlings...not everywhere.  Each color caught her eye, whether bronze, brown, blue or green, they all had their strengths and would be beneficial for the Weyr.  She honored that fact by examining each one carefully.  Her gaze followed another pair that'd hatched, a bronze and green, fought over the Firelizard.  The clearly motionless, dead firelizard not hanging from the green's mouth.  All not soon enough the bronze was tearing off to find someone among the Candidates, leaving the green too...move on to even more horrific scenes, claws and teeth tearing into 2 other Candidates.

Blood, flesh, torn hatching robes.  Miacca clapped one hand over her mouth, holding back the horrified gasp that'd welled up into her throat at the scene.  It happened, it really did, it wasn't the first time Candidates didn't clear out of the way.  Still they were losing a Candidate all while the green made a bloody mess there on the Sands.  Even after the green left the mess she'd made Miacca couldn't pull her hand away from her mouth, not trusting what sounds might've came out of it after that.  But, uncaring about the injured Candidates, the Hatching went on, another pair of Dragonets hatching from their eggs.  None of them came toward her though, and her mind, still reeling from the scene, took its time being pulled back onto the colorful marvels.

Once it did she began noticing that they seemed to be hatching only in pairs, slower than the last hatching.  Slower than...well she couldn't remember another hatching like it but, then again, her brain kept hiccuping over the dragons that currently were wandering...  Make that pouncing, she mentally amended, as some tunnelsnakes began attracting the Hatchlings attention.  

Finally two greens hatched, one solid dark green, a stalker ready for the shadows in the Caverns.  The other one, however, the olive green left the impression of a drab little creature that someone had puked other colors onto.  On closer look though there were patterns to it that didn't strike Miacca as really puke like, but...  After witnessing what happened to Ysolde & Sorho, the darker theme left her unable to quite place what those patterns were.

The darker green faded from her attention as she focused on those patterns, shaking her head to try seeing something other than grim impressions on that hide.  Like brushstroke...some part of saw them now even if her brain still spun various less pleasant images, that at least weren't full of blood, flesh and torn cloth anymore.  Except by now that green was coming closer, the markings growing more clear that they indeed look like brushstroke on that green sniffing at another Candidate.  A scream broke through her current fixation and, though she didn't register the Candidate jerking away from the green, she saw the green jerk away.

On Sat, Sep 5, 2020 at 4:30 PM sailyn2 <empressoftheworld@...> wrote:
((Maybe they’re wrongdoers,)) Aelloth suggested. She walked up to the nearest Candidate and reared up to sniff at him. Normally the faint points of scratching where her claws connected underneath the thin fabric might not have been that scary, but after that kid was mauled at the beginning, the boy screamed and fell back. Aelloth screeched and pulled back in return.
 

((I found one! I found a wrongdoer! ~~Miacca~~! Help me capture this wrong doer!)) She stood there half over the poor victim Canddiate’s legs and wagged her body happily.


Miacca sucked in a breath, that voice resounding inside her head felt like it'd been there from even before the green addressed her.  The presence they carried felt like the fixation she'd had on those patterns playing over the green's hide.  Or it was a new fixation replacing the first, she couldn't identify which!

The hand dropped from her mouth as she found words that weren't in need of being held back.  "Aelloth...Aelloth..."

Aelloth stayed over the Candidate's leg, with another wiggle, anticipating the moment she get to capture the wrongdoer.  Yet Her's didn't move!  The young woman just stood there staring at Aelloth like she'd never seen her green before.  All while Aelloth could feel sensation from Miacca like she'd always seen her.  {{Quickly before it gets away!  Who *knows* what it'll do if we don't get to it!}}  The green raised one forefoot and impatiently slashed claws downward,digging them viciously deep into the sand beside the accused's leg.


-- 
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Member Name: MyaL
Discord: Neffeyn#8723


Hard On The Healers Attn Shalia

Laura Walker
 

Watching and not moving was maybe the most difficult thing Cremsden could ever do. Healers got trained for this, Healers practiced this, Healers reminded each other of this before every sharding Hatching. A Healer in the wrong place risked a dragon. More, a Healer in the wrong place risked being torn limb from limb himself. And Cremsden was certainly old enough to know better, had nearly made that mistake once with Elphith.

 

Shells, though, he could see  the boy bleeding out. Seconds felt like hours, Cremsden bit down on his lower lip until his mouth tasted of blood unable to look away. 

 

You go now, you risk the dragon and yourself. You know this.

 

He knew it, but Faranth, just watching.. With a curse his legs started to move despite himself, pressing forward, desperate to intervene.

 

Cuylar almost did not see Cremsden moving, so focused was he himself on waiting for that critical moment when the little green – it was hard to think of her as little with what she was doing – had tired and moved on.

 

But he did see. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw the movement, and his arms snapped out before he even saw who it was to grab onto a shirt, an arm, whatever he could get.

 

"Are you daft, you'll kill them both and yourself – oh, it's you. Shells! What are you thinking?"


“If we go now we could save him.” Cremsden’s gaze was still fixed on the injured boy, unable to look away. He pulled on his captured arm, trying to free himself. “We can’t just let this happen.”


Cuylar stepped closer without letting Cremsden get any further away and pulled him close as much as he could.


"He's already dead." Even if they went now, there was no way the boy could hope to live. Even if they had him a moment after she had sunk those claws into the boy's gut. Cuylar would try. But not now, not yet.


"She'll kill you, too."


Truth hurt. Cremsden exhaled shakily, still watching, watching as the kid -- shells, he had apprentices older than that -- flailed at the green with one arm. There was another kid, a girl, on the Sands and shells, that amount of blood should really still be in the body not outside of it. 


Breathe in. Breathe out. Feel every muscle straining to break away from Cuylar despite the fact that Cuylar was undoubtedly right, that right now was not the time.


There were two kids over there hurting. If he went.. He could at least make the hurting stop faster. Cremsden’s knuckles were white, hand clenched around his bag. “Feck.” An entire audience of people, just standing and sitting still, watching children die. “Let me help, Cuylar.”


"We'll both go as soon as she leaves him," said Cuylar. "The girl," he saw her, too, "needs our help, too. We'll go. Just as soon as she lets him go, please, I can't let her kill you, please."


Another shaky breath and Cremsden nodded, stopped pulling against Cuylar’s hand. “You go to the girl,” he directed. “I’ll take the boy if--” One drop of fellis for pain, two for drowsiness, five to stop pain in such a way that the patient never felt anything again. The supplies were there in his bag. He hadn’t thought he’d need them for a Hatching. “I’ll do it, if needed.”


Cuylar nodded. And then slowly released his grip on Cremsden. At least, he thought, if Cremsden went anyway, Cuylar might have delayed him long enough that the killer green would have lost interest. She would not even remember. She would forget entirely how she drained the life out of this boy. He knew for a fact that her rider and all of the others who saw this never would.


Cremsden stayed, though it was easy to feel his alertness, like a runner waiting for a starting shot. The moment the little green released her grip he was off, bolting at a speed he hadn’t even known he was capable of, racing towards them before the boy had even hit the Sands. Hoping to get there in time for him to still be alive, or hoping that his pain had stopped already? He wasn’t sure himself. The first was..pointless, and yet still purest instinct.


And as instructed, Cuylar led the charge to help the girl. She was in no small amount of danger herself with the blood she was losing. But they would get a tourniquet on it and get her off the Sands, and she would be fine.


Cremsden… might need some help with not drinking later. Or maybe one drink would not hurt.


Was the boy alive? Most likely not but time wasted checking was time a patient was in immeasurable amounts of pain. Cremsden’s face was grim but his hands were steady, administering the required amount of fellis, gently closing the lad’s eyes before he gave the nod to those who had already arrived with a stretcher. Other people would get them back to the Infirmary, would decide what needed to be done with the girl (those arms, could they save those arms) and do..whatever respectfully needed to be done with what was now only a body. Their job was only the immediate triage, what needed to be done to safely remove a Candidate from the Sands.


((You need to get to the upper cavern. There's been another injury,)) Elphith said urgently to Cuylar, and he was moving before she finished.


"You and you, come with me. There's been another injury upstairs." Shells. What was this Hatching? This clutch, this Turn?


"Cremsden! Can you come? There's another one," he called to Cremsden.


“Shards, you’re kidding?” But Cremsden was standing up as he said it, wiping sweat away from his forehead with a bloody hand. Shells, they all looked like they’d attended a murder already - and in a way they had. “Right, where to?” His voice sounded surprisingly calm as he followed along, ready now for-- well, just about anything really.



--

Blackadder: I mean, what about the people that do all the work?
Baldrick: The servants.
Blackadder: No, me; *I'm* the people who do all the work.


Hatching Feast - Such As It Is atten: ALL #HatchingForeth2020

sailyn2
 

Normally there was a big feast after Hatching. The people who had watched needed to be fed and loved ones wanted one last chance to see the new Weyrlings. Not this time. After everything that had happened, including a night Hatching, a large feast was taken off the table. Instead, a small breakfast was arranged for anyone in the Weyr, but no one was brought in from outside the Weyr. The Candidates were off their forced seclusion, but warned against overindulging. The older Weyrlings who were off close watching could go for an hour or two before they needed to be back to their lessons. The newest Weyrlings were given permission to go for a short period so long as their dragons fell asleep. They could see their friends and family, but no touching was allowed.

OOC: Feel free to have your Weyrlings or Candidates go to the feast, but stay within the rules. IA = IC


I Should Be There JP M'gal/Kassia #HatchingForeth2020

sailyn2
 

The hum from Foreth went up and then caught through the Weyr as night fell around them. The time was weird, but more than that it was inconvenient. Kassia had been battling headaches and the pain in her arm for the past couple of days. The Healers still wouldn’t let her out of the Infirmary and she certainly wasn’t cleared to go see the Hatching. If she thought she wouldn’t just be a distraction, she might have fought to go anyway.


Helpless to do anything, even to fully control Foreth, Kassia laid there with a lot of time and imagination on hand.


{{Kassia needs you with her,}} Ozayith said as he started to hum.


“But the eggs…”


{{I’ll be here, in front of the Caverns, watching. Guarding. Talith and Truenoth know I’m here. Go.}}


M’gal went. Truth be told, he’d rather be with Kassia anyway, but he was still worried about the eggs and what could happen. Though, if they were ready to Hatch anyway, he supposed that if something dire occurred, the dragons might still be saved. He sent a tendril of that thought to Ozayith but met only stubborn silence. 


Entering the Infirmary, he quickly went to Kassia’s side. “Hey, sweetling, how are you doing? Other than the obvious, of course.”


Kassia had spent much of the last few days trying to sleep. Partly for nothing to do, partly because she wasn’t getting great sleep with everything hurting. With the humming she’d asked for help to get propped up while she listened in on what Foreth could pass along considering that she was fairly busy. By the time M’gal got to her, Foreth was already calling for her selection of girls to come up to the Upper Caverns.


Kassia blinked the image away as her weyrmate came into the room. She wasn’t sure if anyone would come. Sh’ain couldn’t with his duties to the Candidates. B’lin might be roped in to help with the Weyrlings. And M’gal might have to be there due to his Ranker’s duties. So she was happy to see M’gal walk into the room. 


“You came,” she said, holding out her good arm and hand.


Clasping her hand, M’gal bent down for a kiss, and took a chair. Rank had its privileges, and Kassia’s small room in the infirmary had a few better comforts than most of the others. Still holding her hand, he nodded.


“Ozayith is at the entrance of the Sands, where he can watch. I’d like him to be in there, but with the Candidates, and the sires, there’s not a lot of room. But this way what he can see while looking in, he can relay to us.” He shot her a wry grin.


“It’s not as good as being there, but it’s something. If Foreth will allow Oz to speak to you, he can let you see what’s going on. Otherwise I’ll have to describe everything.”


“Foreth was the one that decided to split up the Clutch,” she said. “I understand her reasoning, but she forfeits her chance to say ‘no’. She’s busy anyway. She’s calling up the girls she wants from those that saw the eggs.” Kassia didn’t dare say out loud where anyone, maybe even M’gal, could know that she couldn’t stop the Queen from doing it. Better to let them think that Kassia agreed with her dragon than that she couldn’t entirely control her in that moment.


“Every once in a while she lets me know what’s going on or shows me a glimpse, but that’s all I’m getting. I imagine once the golds Hatch she’ll want me to see.”


“Well, with the golds being on the second Grounds, Oz can’t really see those as well anyway. So he’ll just show you the majority.” M’gal didn’t have any favorites amongst the girls. Most of them seemed to be gold-diggers anyway, just wanting the prestige. He almost wished that those would be the ones to Impress gold--it would serve them right.


“Did Foreth call all the girls in your family up?” he asked. “I feel bad for Shalia; I know she wants blue and I think she’ll be a great bluerider. She’s the type of person I almost wish could ride a brown.” Almost.


“She did,” Kassia nodded and was glad that her head didn’t hurt more. She was glad she could look at him, as well. The first two days her eyes had been very sensitive. Now they were only a little sensitive. “Though, I’d say she’d actually be a great gold rider. If she wanted to be one. She’s not mine, but she’s got the fire like she’s mine. More so than Kashara or Rassia.”


M’gal nodded. He hadn’t gotten to know Kashara or Rassia that well yet. Probably due to being busy, and since they were Candidates, he didn’t see the Canididates often. He saw Shalia because of R’tal, and he used to see Sarati with Shalia. Still did, for that matter.


“Well, if your daughters Impress gold, in my opinion I think they’d need to switch Weyrs. I just can’t imagine Ozayith catching one of their golds. Though I guess we could leave.” He waved his hand. “That would be better anyway.” He went silent.


“Let’s cross that bridge when we come to it,” Kassia said. She squeezed his hand. “Foreth is only telling me what’s going on in the Upper Caverns. And barely at that. Can you have Ozayith show me or you tell me?”


Ozayith immediately opened a link from his mind to Kassia’s so she could see the Lightning in a Bottle egg  shake, vibrate and Hatch into a little blue. 


“It’s a blue,” M’gal said. “And he seems healthy, though,” his forehead wrinkled, “he’s not the prettiest dragon on the planet.”


{{He’s fine,}} Ozayith said to both, affronted for Truenoth and Talith. {{You probably weren’t that pretty when you were born, either. And,}} he bugled angrily, {{you all should be ashamed of yourselves for judging him. At least Almira will give him the love he needs.}} 


The bronze acted like he was going to stop letting them look through his eyes, but M’gal had to placate him, and quickly.


[[I’m sorry. I think everyone was just surprised. And with everything that happened, it’s hard not to...I’m sorry.]]


((A Hatchling is a Hatchling,)) Kassia tried to reply, unknowing whether the bronze was listening back or not. ((Every Hatchling should be celebrated.)) Especially after those eggs had been smashed.


Placated, Ozayith allowed them to continue to watch as the Stoic Pebble and the Bricked Skull eggs began to rock. Eventually the Stoic Pebble egg opened to reveal a stocky brown, while a little green nose poked through the top of the Bricked Skull egg. After the hor--surprise of the first egg, seeing these two made M’gal smile. Ozayith also allowed M’gal and Kassie listen to the exchanges between the dragonets and their sires.


“These two are wonderful,” he said to Kassia. “I’m surprised that no one touched them. They are so smart.”


{{They are Foreth’s,}} Oz said.


((Yes, they are Foreth’s,)) Kassia agreed. And as Foreth’s, she expected them all to have an extra ‘oomph’ to them than some of the other golds. She doubted there’d be many that were excessively sweet, but Thread didn’t need sweet. Thread needed mentally strong and motivated, for lack of a better way of describing it.


“So good so far,” she said out loud.


M’gal nodded. Unlike some Hatchings, these dragons seemed to study their selection of partners. He knew that no matter what was said, dragons were not infallible in their choices. Some ill-made matches had happened throughout the history of dragonriding, though he knew that even though Kassia felt hers was one, that wasn’t the case. She had just needed affirmation. Or something.

Now the Sheen of Blood egg was rocking, and speaking. “So, this next one seems to be really hungry,” he said. “She’s calling for food before she’s out of the shell.” Then his attention was caught by a couple of Candidates.


“Should I have Oz have someone remove those two?” M’gal asked, speaking of the two Candidates acting out while on the Sands. But as he spoke, the Bronze Eye egg, the one that had been punctured, Hatched.


“They should be handled by the ACMs,” Kassia said, not wanting to upset the whole situation. That’s what the ACMs were for, right? Besides, it wasn’t unusual for there to be a little bit of issues among the Candidates.


“Yeah, true,” he said. “Oh look. This is why people should keep their stupid firelizards out of the Sands.” The bronze had grabbed a blue firelizard out of the air and was playing a game of keep-away with his green sister.


As they watched, he was impressed with the mind of the green, how she tried to trick the bronze so she could steal his prize. And she did! Until…


“No. Oh, Faranth, no!” he said, gripping Kassia’s hand. “This shouldn’t be happening.”


Kassia gripped it back. There was nothing they could do for what was obviously a dangerous situation. It could only get worse.


“Feck.”


M’gal was yelling at the Candidates now. “Get away! Get out of the way!” But of course they couldn’t hear him. There was nothing Ozayith could do as the boy was ripped to shreds. 


“Oh, feck me,” M’gal moaned, laying his head in his hand. How could he ever look at Dardueth with anything but revulsion?


{{She doesn’t know. He was in her way, and she wanted to get to Hers,}} Oz chastised. {{If someone were standing in my way, I’d have done the same thing then. But not now. Now I’d politely ask them to move.}}


“Trust Ozayith to put things into perspective,” M’gal said. 


Kassia just stared in horror even though the image was all in her head. She’d seen enough throughout her life, but the image still made her nauseous.


“Foreth could have...she could have...” she stammered. If Foreth had been there...if she’d been there to direct Foreth...it might not have happened. This was all her fault.

Tears welled in her eyes. 


Something of her guilt reached Ozayith, which reached M’gal. “It is not your fault,” he said holding her good hand in both of his. “These things happen. If you’d been there, you would have been at the other Caverns with Foreth and wouldn’t have seen it. You said it yourself earlier: This is why we have Candidate Masters. But there are a lot of Candidates.


“If you’d been there is the least of it. If the Caverns hadn’t exploded. If Talith and Truenoth weren’t blinded. If Foreth had allowed that girl up with the gold eggs. If, if, if.” He wanted to hug her, but it was too soon after the explosion without causing pain. Plus, it was hard to hug someone in an Infirmary bed.


“Look, we have a green and blue playing with tunnelsnakes. Aren’t they cute?” he said, trying to get her mind off of this most recent tragedy.


Kassia tried to push the memory from her head. She blinked a couple of times and then pulled her hand from his so that she could wipe at her face. She needed to be strong. The Weyr needed a strong Weyrwoman, even if she was injured.


She focused on the image in her head and let herself enjoy it. “So long as they don’t get hurt.” Faranth, this was a heart wrenching Hatching.


“For some reason, I think those two know what they’re doing. And they don’t look like the poisonous tunnelsnakes. I know that before Foreth even rose, some of my Wing and I went through the tunnels checking for poisonous nests, and there were none.


“Their lifemates are going to have their hands full, though, if those two insist on catching and keeping snakes. And Ko’ssen. Definitely Ko’ssen.” He smiled, glad he was neither a CM or WM. This group made Weyrleading look easy.


“I don’t envy his job,” Kassia agreed. “And the golds haven’t even Hatched.”


“No, but we do have another bronze,” M’gal said as the Endless Sky egg Hatched. “He’s a nice-looking one. Oh, and another blue. I’m glad that these guys are being a little more civilized.” Not that it was the others’ fault for what happened. But he was still talking his stomach down from that little episode.  He felt Ozayith’s snort as he heard it.


“Hey, didn’t that guy get banned from the Sands for being a troublemaker?” he asked, referencing Asheran. “Or, because he was actually trying to help was he allowed on?”


Kassia narrowed her eyes as Ozayith passed on the image. “He did,” she said. “We’ll have to make sure he serves some sort of penance. I wonder if anyone helped him.”


“Well, not sure what we’re going to do now,” M’gal said wryly after a few minutes. “He Impressed that bronze. But I’m sure if anyone helped him, not all of them will Impress.” Secretly he was glad the boy Impressed. Sure, he’d gone about it the wrong way, but his heart was in the right place.


“We’ll find some way to punish him,” Kassia insisted. “And whoever helped. Can’t let that stuff fly or others will try. “He’ll probably come out of Weyrling training a good bronzerider, though.”


“Probably.” M’gal looked at all the eggs still waiting to Hatch. He hoped none of them were duds. That would be terrible. Bad enough Foreth lost eight babies to the explosion.


Another egg hatched an ugly green. “Hey, there’s a green that can go with that blue,” he said jokingly. Ozayith closed his eyes.


“I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” he said. “Honest, I didn’t mean it.”


{{You did, but I’m only going to let you watch because Kassia can’t be there,}} Oz said. He opened his eyes again.


The green was hanging out, trying to decide what to do when he saw a shadow out of the corner of Ozayith’s eye. “Look out!” he said, then stopped and stared. “Where did that dragon come from?” he asked rhetorically.


“It’s so dark in parts of the Caverns,” Kassia said. “It’s likely that there are eggs we can’t see.”


“Yeah, likely.” He watched, smiling at their antics too. “Heh. More Fun with Tunnelsnakes,” he said as the two kept trying to corral the creepy-crawlies. “I really like that green--she’s almost black. I love dark green, it’s a good color.” 


“She is pretty,” Kassia agreed. She was starting to get antsy to know when the golds were going to Hatch.


Both greens Impressed, then two blues Hatched. These two seemed to love the puddles that were placed around the Sands after the rains earlier that night. 


“Heh. That one looks like a runner,” M’gal said as they splashed. “A water-runner. They’re both handsome, though.” Then he frowned. “Too bad Shalia’s not down here.She’d love that one.” But, she didn’t get him and instead they went to a couple of different people.


Now things were quiet and he wondered what was going on.


Suddenly Foreth pushed into her head. It was Kassia’s turn to be the relay.


“Golds are hatched,” she said. “Little brats they are. Beautiful brats. They’re each trying to show each other up. They’re definitely Foreth’s brood....Now she’s restraining them with her cla...oh no, she let one out.” The stream continued until suddenly things got exciting again. 


“Oh no! They started fighting and hurt each other and a couple of other girls. Shalia fell over, I think she broke her arm!” She squeezed his hand hard. “Oh...oh...they Impressed.” She let out a sigh of relief.  “One of them is the girl who was taking care of Foreth. I don’t know the other.”


At first M’gal held his breath, expecting another death like the last one. But after they Impressed he let it out. “Poor Shalia. Didn’t she just have a broken arm because of R’tal’s wher?”


But now two more eggs had Hatched, and these headed straight to the water puddles also. Then they took on the look of dragons searching for their lifemate.


“Faranth! There’s a green and blue trying to go up the stairs to the other grounds. They need to bring the girls down1” M’gal said


“Shards!” Kassia said, but Foreth was still giving her info. She saw Kashara run towards the stairs and then disappear down them. “Kashara’s gone down.”


“Good. She got the green. But the blue is still looking for someone...oh, there’s Shalia, broken arm and all. She’s going to have fun. As will K’ossen.” He sighed, then the last egg began to rock.


“One more, and it looks like--oh, some idiot Candidate brought food to the Hatching and left it on the Sands. You’ll have to talk to the Candidate Masters about that. Can’t have that happen during a Hatching.”  A few minutes later, that dragon had Impressed.  He squeezed Kassia’s hand.


“Looks like they all found someone,” he said.


“And only...one person died.” Kassia sighed, then brightened. “But Kashara and Shalia Impressed. And Shalia got her blue. And the golds Impressed. Now it’s all the Weyrling Master’s problem.”


“I’m so glad I’m not him,” M’gal said.


{{You’ve got that right.}}





You're Coming With Me JP Asheran/Kashara #HatchingForeth2020

sailyn2
 

The sounds of the humming jolted Kashara out of her sleep. She wasn’t the only one scrambling to get into her robes as chaos went up all around her. The eggs were early and Hatching at night. No one had been expecting it.


As soon as she was dressed, she went looking for Asheran.


Asheran hadn't slept well the past several nights, and last night had been no exception. The hatching was too close, too many things could still go wrong - but then the humming had started and he had been on his feet, adrenaline singing in his veins, throwing that borrowed robe over his shoulders like a cloak. He needed to find Kashara --


And nearly ran right into her outside his dorm.


“Oh, there you are,” Kashara said a bit quietly, though it was hard to be heard over the cacophony. She grabbed his arm. “Come on and keep your head down. No one’s going to look too hard at someone with me.”


Asheran followed her without question, doing as she asked but - maybe it was the adrenaline, or the keen anticipation, or the humming that seemed to shake his bones. He shook off her grip on his arm after a moment and reached for her hand instead.


"Thanks," he hissed again through his teeth.


She squeezed his hand and led him through the throng and into place in the line. The Candidates were ushered toward the Stands and Kashara and Asheran moved through with no issues. For a moment she thought that T’rifoshe might have spotted the boy, but if he did he didn’t say anything and they reached the Sands to stand around the Hatching Grounds.

That was when Foreth called to her.


“I have to go,” she said to him. “You should be fine now.”


"Good luck," he murmured to her, but his gaze was already drawn by the eggs. Somewhat hunched over and shuffling - because disguise - he made his way slyly over to the others, without a backwards glance. He was here. One weight slid off his shoulders, replaced by another.


Just being here wasn't enough.


“You, too,” she said and then slipped away. They’d meet again on the other side or they wouldn’t. Either way she’d given him a chance.





Re: Hatching - Searching the Night #HatchingForeth2020 Kashara/Rusalth #HatchingForeth2020

sailyn2
 

Kashara couldn't believe it. Her sister's arm had been broken. Again. She stepped forward as it to help, but then she heard a voice in her head. The sweetest sound she'd ever heard in her head. But where was she? She had to be downstairs somewhere.

"I'm coming, Rusalth. I'm coming!" She hadn't gotten the idea of mindspeech yet as she rushed downstairs and then found Rusalth at the bottom.


Re: Hatching - Dark Riddles (Zosime/Xinspeth SA)

Jerzy Tobin
 

((Do you think those white-clad things know something?)) Tredamth asked. ((There are so many of them. Surely someone can tell us where to go and what to do.))

((Everyone knows something,)) said Xinspeth. ((Four legs walk down the hill. Six legs leave the hill behind. Yes?)) She had to find the one who knew the most. If she could have that advantage starting off, she would stay well ahead of the others…

Tredamth didn’t know much, but something was telling him that the white creatures knew something he didn’t. He strained until he was as tall as possible and looked over the group.

Suddenly his eyes settled on one particular thing in white. No, person. As Impression set in the word came to mind. ((Ronhim, come show me where to go!))

Xinspeth was concerned… perhaps concerned was not the best word. Worried? Afraid? She hated to think she was vulnerable to such things. But for a moment, it seemed Tredamth was going to pick the white-clad thing who knew the most. When he did not, she was relieved. She had to get there now. Quickly, before anyone else tried to claim hers.



Under the watchful eyes of their sires, the two Hatchlings finally found their lifemates. The riddle was solved.
Zosime had been standing in the middle of a fairly decent sized clump
of candidates, peering into the dim sands to see what, if anything,
was happening. Of course these babies just had to decide to hatch in
the middle of the night. She shifted from foot to foot both from
impatience as well as the heat from the sands. Impatience vanished
when the brown and green dragonets began heading in her group's
direction. She found herself standing up straighter, taking a small
step forward to get a better look at the green. She was a lovely,
light, very light shade of green, and she was...she was stopping in
front of Zosime?!

((Zosime, shall we make six legs of it?))

The melodious voice that filled her head was unlike anything Zosime
could have imagined. The presence filled every part of her, made her
feel whole in a way she had never known was possible. She found
herself brushing away tears as she knelt down to wrap gentle arms
around the green's neck.

"Oh, my dear, wonderful Xinspeth. We'll be wonderful together! Thank
you for finding me."

((Of course I would find you, my Zosime. You are the answer to my
most important riddle, after all.))


--
"Life is NOT a journey to the grave with the goal of arriving safely
in a prettily preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways in a
shower of gravel and party shards, thoroughly used, utterly exhausted,
and loudly proclaiming: "F*** ME, that Rocked!!" -unknown

Whizzy: Jerzy
Aim: Yue146


The Painful Aftermath of Joy JP (K'el/Ysolde/Ked'son/NPC Healers)

Nutmeg
 

IC Date Reference: Set in the hours during the Hatching and early hours of the following day.


Whilst the Hatching continued, there was a bustle of activity in the Infirmary. Almost immediately, it had been realised that there was nothing to be done for Sorho. The poor lad was a bloodied, lacerated mess, the only mercy being that he had likely died swiftly. It looked as though the bloodthirsty little green who had done the damage had managed to sever major arteries in her frenzy. The other Candidate, Ysolde, hadn’t been quite so fortunate. The screaming began as they escorted the girl gently towards the Infirmary, right when pain began to override shock and her eyes seemed to take notice of the blood pouring down her arms. And the blood all over her hatching robe that was most definitely not her own.


In the end, it became almost immediately apparent that in order to tend to the deep lacerations on her arms, they were going to need to do something to calm her and a needlethorn of fellis had been sunk into her arm. The girl’s legs had given way under her within seconds, caught by the hands of waiting Healers who lifted the bloodsoaked girl into a bed that was already ready and waiting for her. The wounds were deep, the worst being almost to the bone but by some miracle of Faranth, were almost entirely on the outside of her arms, missing the major veins and arteries. They would scar, that was for sure, but she would live. By the time the Healers had finished carefully stitching and bandaging her arms, the Hatching Feast was still celebrating deep into the night, the Impresssion of the two newest golds jubilant in the air. Even the Midsummer Dreamers had been allowed to attend, albeit only for a short while, as well as being permitted to observe the Hatching from the Stands with all the other anxious spectators. Even if the dragons had started humming in the middle of the night.


Eventually, Ysolde had been settled in a quiet room. A couple of the Healers had carefully bathed the unconscious girl and gotten her into a clean nightgown. She would likely be kept unconscious for at least a day, if not more and a Mindhealer had already been discreetly made aware that chances were, they were getting a new patient. By the time they were finished she was clean, asleep and with bandages from her hands up almost to her shoulders. When she woke up, then they would decide what they needed to do regarding the state of her mind.


K'el felt like the wind had torn through his sails, stranding him helplessly dead in the proverbial water. He'd seen it happen. The first Hatching he'd had the privilege to attend as a spectator and things had gone horribly wrong from the start. Blood, so much blood. And poor Sorho, the boy hadn't stood a chance. K'el shot out of his seat as the violence started, Ysolde's name a scream ripped from his throat that joined the audience's horrified cacophony. He tried to rush the Sands, aimed to throw himself over the railing and race to her aid, all else forgotten in the moment. No risk of danger to himself or Alberith had entered his mind, all else forgotten in the heat of the moment. 


The next thing he felt was the impact and K'el was face-first on the floor, tackled to the ground by Ked'son before he could martyr himself to a pair of angry Sires. There was a brief struggle in which K'el cursed him and demanded to be set free, but Ko'ssen quickly joined them. Together they pulled K'el to his feet and ushered him back to the Barracks, but not before Ysolde's screaming forced them to drag him bodily through the first exit. Only once they were half-way back to the common rooms did the boy's fight finally give out. 


Alberith's agitation did not quite match his rider's, but his eyes were still swimming with the bright yellows and orange of alarm by the time they arrived - better than the roiling red they had been at the start. (( Crimson rain and inky ropes, is that what's inside all of you? )) He asked with morbid curiosity that wasn't nearly as calm as he seemed, filling the background with the static of his questions. (( Mine, will the one who spilled his insides get up soon? They dragged away the fire-haired maid, too, we saw it. Has she fallen as well? )) His interest in the new dragonets took a backseat in the distress his rider was feeling.


K’el remained silent up until the bronze’s nervous chatter began, tearing himself away from his guardians’ hold. “Al, just shut up for five minutes! --Sorry,” He snapped, regret instantly on his face. The dragon watched with his head cocked to one side, but for once, fell silent in the wake of K’el’s frustration. "I need to know if she's safe, there was so much blood! I have to know! Augh!" Turning away from all of them with an angry groan, his hands raised to rake fingers through his hair, K'el stalked across the foyer. "You have to let me go!"


It was so late, they’d had so few hours of sleep as it was with the new schedule. Adrenaline burned the exhaustion away, but took with it his patience and manners. 


Propping his eyelids open, Ked’son wished he had had the foresight to grab a mug of klah when the dragons had started humming. Shells, the middle of the night? He had been literally just about to crawl into his bed when it had begun and with a new class literally around the corner, there was no way he was getting a couple days off now. Huddled in the Stands, Ked’son had barely stifled a yawn as the first of the eggs began hatching and he wondered if anyone noticed if he took a discreet nap. But thoughts of naps and tiredness vanished like a piece of parchment in a flame as the murderous little green pounced her target and he watched a Candidate get disemboweled before his eyes. The Healers were already scurrying on scene, grabbing up another Candidate - a female - who had gotten in the green’s way as well as carrying the covered body of the boy away. 


What happened next took his brain a moment to catch up with. In slow motion he heard another scream, this time closer. As in sitting in the Stands a few seats away, closer. His eyes watched the mountainous form of K’el move, preparing to pitch himself over the railings. Ked’son had moved as though he was wading through quicksand. His arms had wrapped around the Weyrling’s waist as K’el was dragged to the ground. The young man was as strong as a determined bull but he had been dragged bodily from the Stands with supreme effort. Immediately Thaath had reached out to Alberith, reassuring the young bronze that His was returning to the Barracks and not to be alarmed, that His had just seen something rather distressing but emphasising that K’el was going to be okay.


Through sheer force of will, they had gotten K’el back to the Barracks and his wallow where his dragon waited. Ked’son had reassured that he would be fine left with the boy on his own, not wanting to leave the newest weyrlings without another pair of helping Weyrlingmaster hands.


“K’el, you need to listen to me, before we do anything you need to calm yourself and calm Alberith,” Ked’son said carefully, his voice a low, calm thrum, noting the whirling colours in the bronze’s eyes. Then, something seemed to click into place. The name K’el had screamed. Oh shells on baby flits… “K’el, the girl taken from the Sands…” The girl whose screams had been echoing down the corridor of the tunnels as they hoisted the Weyrling away. “... That was Ysolde?” The Ysolde. The subject of letters and amusing proclamations from a theatrical young dragon. And who they had last seemed covered in blood and surrounded by a group of Healers as they all but pulled her away.


"I am calm!" K'el shouted, sounding  outraged by the implication and twisting around to face Ked'son with an expression that was anything but what he claimed. "I'm FINE, *we* are just fine!" He gestured between himself and the anxious dragonet watching closely. The images, he couldn't stop the scene from playing out in his mind over and over. So much blood. He'd gutted fish his whole life and never seen so much of it as had been spilled on the Sands. Sorho's grisly end, and Ysolde… Faranth, she had been covered in red. So much blood...


When Ked'son said her name, his eyes sought the man out from beneath thick, furrowed brows. He felt anger boil in his core at the thought, at how helpless he was to save her. Fists curled at his sides with impotent fury, knuckles blanched. "YES!" He roared his frustration, as if Ked'son should have already known. "THE Ysolde! The only sharding Ysolde that matters! You have to let me out of here! I have to see her! I-I have to know if she's--" his voice cracked, the sentence too painful to finish. 


“No, you’re not K’el,” It was still said in that gentle and calm tone with no note of accusation whatsoever. He hadn’t so much as flinched at the roar. “And she was still on her feet, she was still walking so that means she was still breathing…” He gently pointed out the logical obvious. She hadn’t been carried off under a sheet. K’el needed to remember that. And as much as he didn’t want to point out, if she was able to scream, then she was definitely still alive. “... She’s with the Healers so you know they’re going to look after her. And what I’m going to do in a moment is have Thaath bespeak on of the dragons there to find out what’s happening. But you’re no good to her or Alberith right now. C’mon lad…” Ked’son was giving the Weyrling space to pace, flail, whatever he needed but he wasn’t entirely backing off either. Because a sliver of him didn’t trust K’el not to bolt and he definitely didn’t think he was going to take him down on his own.


Thaath gently reached out mentally, nudging Alberith. The big blue’s voice was a soft echo of Ked’son’s own. (( Mine will do whatever he can to help, Alberith. Humans can express very big emotions when they experience something like this. It can be overwhelming. Tell me how Yours is feeling so Mine can do the proper things for him… ))


(( Mine is scared! )) Alberith latched onto the lifeline that Thaath offered, fear leaking into his mindvoice. (( Mine thinks he will lose the girl crowned by fire, and he cracks in anticipation of that loss! So many deep wounds barely healed, what he has seen ripped away the scab!  Mine does not want to lose anyone else! ...also Mine told me to 'shut up' and I do not like it. )) He wasn't able to make sense of what had happened in the Hatching, of death, but he knew it had upset his rider and *that* was upsetting him. 


K'el stared daggers at Ked'son for several moments, breathing heavily through his nostrils, assessing. He wasn’t helping anyone the way he was right now, and he knew it. "Eh, fishguts," he muttered through his teeth, annoyed to realize that the WLM was correct. He felt that righteous anger begin to seep away, leaving only the manic worry that creased his face. "I-I'm... I shouldn't have snapped at you, or you, Al." Squeezing shut his eyes, K'el raised opening fists to grab handfuls of his own short hair. He could do this! He had to put the dragon first, this was his only duty. "I just.. if she's hurt-- I promised I'd be there. I should be-- I *need* to be by her side!"


Alberith crossed the distance between them to press his dark, little head into K'el's chest, causing the boy to open his eyes in surprise. (( No one can stop us together! )) The dragonet declared. (( I won't let anyone else lose their inside-ropes, we'll stand together and face the bad as a united front! …Right, Mine? ))


K'el threw his arms around the bronze's triangular face and bowed to squeeze tight. "Right." When he released, Alberith twisted to peer at Ked'son with swirling yellow eyes. (( Now do as Mine commands! Take us to our charge so that we may guard her! ))


The information was passed along to Ked’son, even as Thaath continued to reassure the bronze that he and His were there and not going anywhere. The blue bulked up his mind presence, his voice filled with gentle reassurance that things were going to  be alright.


Ked’son took his dragon’s silent words on carefully. He had taken the time to glimpse through most of the Weyrlings’ files now that he was going to be around the Barracks more and vaguely remembered a note that K’el had lost most of his family shortly before being Searched. Ah. That would explain an awful lot. He was hugely reassured to see the boy reach out to his bronze and was not entirely surprised by Alberith’s command. At least they were both on the same page which was, in it’s own way, a good thing. Besides, it wasn’t as though Alberith were some barely sevenday old hatchling anymore. He shook his head at the bronze’s insistence. “I won’t take you there right away, because if the Healers are working, they need to do so efficiently. But as I’ve said the first thing I’ll do is have Thaath bespeak one of their dragons and we’ll find out what is going on. Then and only then, if the Healers permit it, I will ask them about you both being taken to her. They have a job to do first and none of us, not even me, can get in the way of that right now. You need to trust that they’re doing their job first and they need to do their job. If we start getting in the way right now, we’re only slowing things down.”


At times like these he could use a firelizard. Instead, he had Thaath bespeak the dragon of Vivaeldi, he knew she was also a Healer, his eyes losing focus. Without needing to be prompted, Thaath had layered the need for urgency in knowing what was going on, deftly explaining that one of the Weyrlings was distressed and needed to be updated. It only took a few minutes but it felt as though turns had gone by. Ked’son hadn’t even realised that he was waiting with bated breath when Thaath finally spoke to him again. Unconsciously his shoulders dropped a little in relief and he turned back towards the Weyrling pair as he scrubbed a hand through his short blond hair.


“Okay… so it’s good news…” Of sorts. But he would get to that. But the first thing K’el needed to know was that everything was more or less okay.


It grated on K'el that Ked'son had a point. He'd started as a healer apprentice upon joining the Weyr and he knew he was in way over his head when it came to that craft. What did he think he was going to do, hold towels? Hand out tools? Lurk in the corner like some VTOL on the wall? For now he was nothing but an additional burden, no use to Ysolde while she needed their care. The threat to his pride prevented him from admitting it, but he knew. "O-Okay," he croaked, the earlier venom entirely absent from his voice. "I'll.. We'll wait." Not that he had much of a choice. 


Alberith stood sentinel before his rider as K'el struggled to compose himself, amber facets fixed on Ked'son as if he might hear the distant telepathy through sheer force of will. He couldn't, but he would try! The boy beside him scrubbed at his own face, steadying his breath in the effort to bring his heart rate down, to clear his mind. It did not appear to be working well if the frustration etched in his scrunched face was proof. All he could think of was the girl, of the bloody shower she'd been drenched in, of her screams echoing in the hallway. Every time the loop played again, he felt like his walls were crumbling. He couldn't lose her, too. Not this again. 


Alberith nudged him gently and K'el scrubbed at his shiny hide to reassure the dragon as much as himself. When Ked'son's thousand-yard stare vanished and his voice returned, K'el's head popped up instantly. "...Good news?" Hope chased away the fear in his voice, but the mountain remained on verge of crumbling. "What is it?" Unwinding his arms from around Alberith, K'el rushed toward the WLM expectantly. "Tell me!"


So it seemed he was getting through to the lad. Somewhat. But given the situation it wasn’t as though he expected the Weyrling to become a waterfall of calm as K’el rushed towards him. “Easy, lad…” he said, raising his hands placatingly. “... She’s alive. They had to fellis her so she’s unconscious at the moment. Now, she has been injured and in all honesty, it’s not nice. Some serious lacerations to her arms. But…” he paused a second as he emphasised the caveat. “... They’re not life threatening. The Healers are stitching her up at the moment and that is going to take them some time because of how many and how deep. But they say she’s going to be okay.” Physically at least. Ked’son had no idea what the poor girl would be like when she finally woke up. “When they’re done, they’re going to let me know. But right now, we’re just going to be getting under their feet.”


Ked’son inspected the Weyrling, his aching bones horribly aware of the time. “So we’ve got two choices here. Either you try and get a little bit of rest and when the Healers contact me, I’ll come get you. Or you come back with me to my office and we try to have something to drink. Thaath says he’s happy to have Alberith come sit with him if he’d like.”


K'el took two main things away: the first, that Ysolde was alive, the second, that she *was* injured. It was a mixture of feelings that struck him all at once, relief and concern at war with one another. On the other hand, her wounds were serious enough to require both stitches and fellis. They would be painful healing, but she would survive. Knowing she lived let him breathe again, or it felt that way, a weight lifted from his chest. He stepped back from the Weyrlingmaster to give both of them some space, well aware of how imposing his bulk tended to be - even when he wasn't in a panic.  


"Thank Faranth," K'el's shoulders slumped as he willed himself to relax, to let go of the anxiety. "She's okay. It's gonna be okay." He was no longer looking at Ked'son, but through him, withdrawing to sort through his thoughts. That surge of adrenaline still coursed through his veins, kept him wired and on edge. At this point, K'el felt like he might never sleep again. "I won't be able to sleep," he admitted, pausing before adding more quietly, "not until I see her." Heat flooded his face, the flush of infatuated embarrassment. 


Using the needs of his dragon as deflection, K'el glanced back to Alberith while they briefly conversed. "Al says he wouldn't mind a companion, that Thaath can.. uh.. help him keep the danger away." He cringed, this statement more embarrassing than the last. *He* knew the danger was gone, even if his mind wouldn't let it go. 


Ked'son didn't even bat an eyelid. "He's already waiting out by the Barracks doors. You send your boy out to him and then come along with me. I’ll get the stove on and make up a brew.” And likely add a small dose of something to it to take the edge off the Weyrling’s nerves. Wasn’t like he was going to get blind drunk from a dash of brandy in his klah. No, Ked’son had no intention of doing anything but occupying K’el’s thoughts with enough random small talk until they had word back from the Healers. All he could do was hope that it wouldn’t take them extraordinary amounts of time but as it was, he expected this to take a while.


With a friendly gesture, he encouraged K’el to follow him. True to his word, Thaath was indeed sat waiting outside the Barracks, his own gaze speckled with orange and yellow at the fingers of worry threading through his own Rider. No, he was sure that lessons would be postponed tomorrow… or was it now today? And if not, well he would have to quietly speak to Ko’ssen and ensure that the lad was excused. “I know I’ve not been about as much so far, but I’m sure you’ve probably walked past my office a hundred times without knowing.”


K’el didn’t hesitate in relaying the order to Alberith, turning to find the bronze already acting on Thaath’s offer and stomping toward the doorway on short legs. He hurried to open the door ahead of his dragon, pausing long enough to let Alberith through and watch until he had joined the blue. There had been too much loss already and the boy was clearly hypervigilant now. Only once Alberith was securely under Thaath’s wing did K’el jog back to where Ked’son waited for him to follow, then adjusting his pace to match his tutor’s. 


“It’s... probably a good thing I haven’t been to your office much,” he replied with a wry twist of his mouth. “I try not to make trouble anymore. I, uh, haven’t had time for it, honestly.” K’el tried to pay attention to where they were going, but kept finding himself distracted by worried thoughts that would not cease. He focused on keeping his feet moving forward, eyes on the floor. “..How long do you think it’ll take?” He asked, referring obviously to Ysolde’s stitching. There was no real way to be certain, but it was clear he was grasping at straws for comfort. 


Thaath had crooned softly to the young bronze as soon as Alberith had appeared through the doors. He had barely lifted his wing in invitation before Alberith had wormed his way underneath and Thaath’s rumble had been one of amused satisfaction as he tucked the weyrling close to him. (( We shall watch for danger lurking in the shadows that wants to hurt Ours. And we shall chase it away with our most fearsome roars! )) He had snapped his jaws in dramatic effect as he settled himself more comfortably.


Ked’son hadn’t rushed K’el, letting him watch Alberith and when the Weyrling had joined him, Ked’son had given the lad an amiable smile. “Truth be told, I don’t tend to take many Weyrlings to my office to tell them off. I generally leave my door open to just let people know I’m there if they want to come in and talk at all. I don’t like to seen just as a disciplinarian. It’s tough not having people around these first few months so I always extend that branch if people want to take me up on it.” As they settled into an easy pace, Ked’son had tucked his hands in his pockets. 


“Honestly?” he said after a moment when K’el asked how long they’d be. “I don’t know. But,” he quickly emphasised, “They’ll be working as fast as they need to. But at the same time, they can’t rush what they’re doing. Stitch-work takes time because they have to be careful. But I’m sure they won’t keep us waiting any longer than they need to.” His office wasn’t far away and he gestured towards the familiar door. “Just in here.”


K'el was quiet while Ked'son spoke and remained that way for a few minutes afterward, throwing himself into one of the chairs before taking in the room with a sweep of his eyes once they arrived. "I'll have to remember that, about your office. I don't think I’ve ever had a chat in a setting like this *without* getting scolded." The distraction of a new environment and subject helped briefly to keep his mind occupied. For a moment, he sounded almost fine, if a little sad. "It.. it has been very weird cut off from everyone else. Felt like I was finally starting to make friends when Impression happened, a-and then, *poof*. Starting all over again." His expression turned guilty. "..Not that I would trade Al for anything, but-- yeah, weird."


And there it went, the change visible in his face as much as his posture when his thoughts stumbled over Ysolde. Brows low over his eyes, K'el's mouth thinned to a worried line and his shoulders sank just enough to make him appear to slump. "Storms, I just-- I just need her to be okay." The boy's head sank into his hands with a frustrated sigh that belied his fear.


As the weyrling collapsed into a chair, Ked’son busied himself with getting the small stove brewing a fresh pot of klah. He glanced over at K’el at his words about not having been in the office. “Well, my door’s always open. I encourage the weyrlings to leave a note if they want to speak to me and I’m not here. I appreciate that in the Barracks it’s a bizarre combination of feeling isolated and yet under complete scrutiny.” As he waited for the pot to come to a boil, Ked’son dropped himself into another chair, this one clearly well worn and had seen many a night with him propped up in it. “It’s hard. Even if you’ve been a Candidate for a good while. You’re settling in, used to a routine and then all of a sudden you’re thrown into a totally new schedule surrounded by people that perhaps you didn’t know so well or maybe didn’t even really like so much. But now you’re in the fifth  month, you get a bit more freedom again so you can start seeing people and trust me, that makes a big difference.”


He watched K’el carefully, a sympathetic frown pulling at his features. “The Healers said she’ll be fine, K’el. She’ll need some recovery time, but it’s not life-threatening at all.” Ked’son paused, because now he was starting to think that this “Ysolde” was in the weyrling’s thoughts a whole lot more than he had initially suspected, brushing it off as more of a harmless youthful crush. “K’el… you’ve taken this awfully hard. And I know we had a bit of a chat about Ysolde and who she was to you. And I won’t lie, I didn’t think it was much more than some cheerful fancy with a little mental occupation on the side,” his smile came back tinged with its usual playful cheekiness. “... But I’m starting to think that this Ysolde is a whole lot more important than you’re letting on.” Before he could say anything else, the kettle began to whistle and Ked’son got back up, tending to the klah and giving the weyrling some space to speak. 


K'el tensed at Ked'son's words, flinching like he had been struck. "I am NOT a liar," he replied hotly, glancing up from between his hands. His stomach twisted as if this were a vulnerability he hadn't yet considered for himself and the shock of it stirred his anger. Was she more important to him than even he realized? He *liked* her, he was certain of that as he was of the flutterbynights in his stomach every time he opened one of her letters. And having seen her bathed in blood.. the mental image made his face scrunch in revulsion and worry all over again. He scrubbed at his cheeks with his palms, but wouldn't close his eyes, knowing the picture would be there waiting for him. "She's…" he trailed off before he'd even really begun. K'el wanted to say she is a very good friend, but those words failed to fully encompass the constriction in his chest while he thought about her plight. Instead he faltered, a sigh hissed through his teeth. 


He loved her. He felt like he'd barely started to get to know her, but he couldn't get enough. It was embarrassing to admit he had fallen head over heels for the girl, like he had done something foolish in falling so hard so soon, but these feelings.. when it came to Ysolde, he had no control. K'el knew what they were, even if he couldn't admit so to Ked'son. 


The boy swallowed hard. "I, uh.. I could really use a drink," he said sheepishly at last. 


Busying himself about the stove, Ked’son’s chuckle came over his shoulder. When he returned, he was holding out a mug of klah that had had a careful dose of brandy to it. He didn’t think it would do any harm, the hot water would kill off a lot of the alcohol. But it would be enough to take the edge off, nothing more. “No one’s calling you a liar. Least of all me.” Retreating to his chair, he folded his long legs easily, draping one ankle over his opposite knee as he pulled his own mug close to him. “There’s nothing wrong with having feelings, lad. We just keep half an eye the first months as you know. Some folks find it hard to work around them when they’re bringing up a new dragon because of how intense it all is. Plus, when you’re in isolation the way you are, some folks find it easier to cling to them which can be dangerous in itself or find themselves resentful that they’re taken away from that. Being told that you can’t be around people? It gets in your head. In weird ways sometimes. You all experience a strange sort of isolation and some people find that hard to cope with.”


K'el stared into the cup a few moments before he took a sip, brooding over the weyrlingmaster's reply. The recognizable hint of alcohol sent his eyebrows skyrocketing, surprised to find the taste in his klah. He hadn't expected Ked'son to actually comply!  Honey-colored eyes flashed a look at the other man alight with newfound respect before he drank deeply. The warmth was comforting as it settled in his stomach, radiating outward with a calming effect. It *did* make the young man feel better, if only a little. "..Thank you," he said over the rim, keeping the cup near his face to breathe in the aroma. 


"I guess.. it all started when I first saw her," he began despite lingering reservations. Pouring his feelings out to the one man he had come to trust, K'el walked Ked'son through his first encounter with Ysolde all the up to their correspondence, which he gave a rough overview of absent some of the more private details. He was so clearly smitten with the girl, it couldn't have been more obvious had it been painted across his face in red ink. K'el might have waxed on about her ad nauseum had news not arrived. 


Sitting back in his chair, Ked’son let the Weyrling talk. He asked only a few questions here and there, most of the time he was watching K’el. What he didn’t say, his expression certainly did. He could have read him like a book. The only real interruption he made was to refill their mugs on more than one occasion, this time without the brandy. There was no doubt that the Weyrling was head over heels. He made a mental note to have a chat with Ko’ssen later, just to bring him up to speed. 


The time moved by, K’el talking and Ked’son listening. It probably made the time move faster than just sitting in awkward silence at least. He had been idly contemplating putting a new kettle on to boil when Thaath had given him a mental nudge, discreetly telling Ked'son that Vivaeldi’s dragon had bespoken him again. Setting the mug to one side, he stretched, grunting in obvious discomfort as joints popped and complained. "Time to shake your boots," he said as he got to his feet. "Healers are done. They've brought her down to the dragon side for the moment so Alberith can come too. They've said she's still unconscious because of the fellis, but we can meet them there and you'll be allowed to sit a while if you'd like."


Where he leaned back comfortably against his chair over the course of their conversation, K’el jolted like he’d been struck, bolting upright and onto his feet shortly thereafter. “It is?” The look of elation was pure and unguarded when it showed on his features. “Right now? Thank Faranth!” He’d never before felt more devotion to the deified dragon than he did today. “I mean, yes. Yes, I’d like to do that.” K’el fought to contain himself and tried to school his emotions so that he didn’t affect Alberith, but was only moderately successful. 


He didn’t wait for Ked’son to lead the way this time, knowing that he would follow, navigating the route back through the Weyrling Barracks and outside with practiced ease. If there was one thing he never had trouble with, it was a sense of direction. 


Alberith had needed his time under Thaath’s protective wing, the blue’s steady presence and kind words precisely the reassurance his frightened young mind required. As his rider’s distress had been mostly abated, he was able to pull himself together. At K’el’s word, he squirmed free of the older dragon’s comforting grasp and went galloping awkwardly toward the entrance he expected the humans to emerge from. (( Mine! I will get to meet The Queen at long last! ))


“Sort of, pal,” he explained aloud, greeting the bronze with an affectionate pat on the cheek. “From afar for now. Maybe when she’s awake and ready for more, you can say hello yourself.”


(( I don’t need to be at her side to say hello. )) Alberith replied with all the petulance of a toddler being denied, but bounded happily ahead of them toward the Infirmary without further complaint. Who else should lead the way!


Ked'son barely had a chance to leave the mugs to one side before the Weyrling was half sprinting down the Barrack corridors. "Steady on, lad, you'll do no one any good if you trip and break your neck.” It only took a few minutes for them to emerge out of the main doors that opened into the Weyr Bowl. Thaath was settling himself back down for a snooze after Alberith removed himself. It was the middle of the night after all.


With K’el setting the pace, it certainly didn’t take them long to cross the Bowl towards the Infirmary where a Healer was clearly waiting for them. Maithera had been sent to await their arrival when she had been told that they were on the way so that they could be escorted through to the larger, dragon side of the Infirmary. It was about the only place that a dragon, or rather, a five month old Weyrling bronze dragon, could be accommodated.


“Assistant Weyrlingmaster Ked’son?” she called out, lifting her hand in greeting to them both, and to catch their attention. “Are you here about Ysolde?”


Alberith was the first to arrive, stamping impatiently while he waited for the two men to catch up. He didn’t speak to the Healer awaiting them, just peered at her briefly and then raised his head as if he might be able to see past and find the girl first. K’el jogged to close the distance once he saw the woman at the entrance, abandoning Ked’son to either do the same or join them moments later. 


“Ysolde?” He asked with the slightly airy quality of someone nearly out of breath. “We’re here to see her, show us in!” There was a commanding note in his words, a far cry from the despairing panic he had been filled with earlier in the night.


Maithera was used to dealing with the panicked aftermath of concern for patients. The Weyrling’s tone didn’t go unmissed, but she didn’t immediately challenge him on it. However, she pointedly turned her attention to Ked’son, making it clear that to her, he was the one in charge here.


Catching up, Ked’son greeted Maithera with a friendly salute. “Aye, we’re here about a young lady you have. This young man is a friend of hers and keen to establish her wellbeing. Obviously we appreciate the situation is a little unorthodox but we appreciate the time you’re taking to keep us informed.”


The Healer nodded in polite acknowledgement of the Bluerider’s words. “Obviously I will remind you both that you’re going to be entering a recuperation area. This time of night most of our other patients are sleeping. So I would politely remind you both to be considerate of them as well and keep noise to a minimum. For the moment, we have brought Ysolde into one of the empty dragon wallows. I was informed that your Weyrling’s dragon would likely also wish to be present, so we have made sure that there is space to accommodate him as well. However after this evening, Ysolde will be moved back into the main ward.”


Maithera turned her attention on K’el, her expression firm but patient. “I appreciate that you want to see her. But I must stress that you need to ensure neither you or your dragon are disruptive - for the sake of the other patients. Ysolde is unconscious and will remain so, likely for a day or more. She did sustain significant lacerations to her arms. They have been sutured and will heal well with proper care so there is no immediate concern for her safety. It is now a case of determining her recovery process. I am happy to show you in, and, if you agree to sit quietly, equally happy to allow you to sit with her for a while.”


K'el was quite used to being brushed off as he had no real authority, but that didn't stop his hackles from rising at the unspoken insult. He let Ked'son take the lead without grumbling, waiting with as much patience as could be managed, shifting his weight from foot to foot. Hearing about Ysolde's condition gave him some comfort, reinforcing the news Ked'son had already relayed. She'd be alright, she just needed time. When Maithera did finally address him, K'el straightened respectfully.


"Yes, ma'am. I'd like that. We can behave, can't we, Al?" He glanced over his shoulder at the bronze dragon looming behind them. “We won’t do anything to disturb the other patients, or to harm Ysolde.” 


Alberith gave an emphatic snort, tossing his head indignantly. (( I am offended that she thinks I will cause a commotion! I am dignified and refined, I am no brute! ))


K’el returned his attention to Maithera with a brief and polite bow of his own head. “He says he’ll be on his best behavior.”


Maithera smiled gently at K’el. “We remind everyone coming in, especially during stressful circumstances. It’s easy to forget there’s other people around you when you’re fixed on one person. That and given the ridiculous hour it is, as well.” She glanced at Ked’son who nodded at her for her to lead the way.


“If you follow me,” she said, turning on her heel. 


“I’ll come with you and make sure you’ve found a seat and so on, then I’ll go and talk to the Healers whilst you sit with her.” Ked’son chimed in. It was a polite and subtle way of just noting that he would hang around for the moment if he needed to and then he would give K’el some privacy. That and he just wanted to make sure that the Weyrling wasn’t going to tip the scales on actually seeing whatever condition this Ysolde was in. Sometimes the seeing was a whole lot worse than whatever the head had conjured up.


It didn’t take long to walk through the Infirmary. Just as Maithera had said, it had the hushed quiet of the night time workers, the occasional Healer doing bed checks, quietly sitting at the duty desk and working on papers. Ushering them through to the dragon side, Maithera led them past several wallows where the sleeping shapes of dragons could be seen, towards a wallow where a large curtain had been drawn across for privacy.


“She’s in here. Remember, she is unconscious because of the fellis but there’s no harm in sitting and talking to her. She’s heavily bandaged and it looks a lot worse than it is.” Maithera pulled back the curtain, gesturing for K’el and Alberith to enter. When they did, Alberith would be able to settle himself on the empty wallow and the bed was occupied with a small, sleeping figure whose arms were heavily bandaged from fingers almost to shoulder. Ked’son followed but instead stopped near the curtain, giving K’el and Alberith space. “There’s a chair in the corner there, lad, if you want it. I’m happy to let you sit here a while unless you’d like me to stay and sit with you.”


K'el shook his head and flashed Ked'son a small smile. "I think we'll be okay, and.. thank you. For this, for everything." He wasn't sure exactly what he would have done or what might have happened had the other man not tackled him during the Hatching, but it wouldn't have been good. More importantly, there was nothing he could have accomplished that would have helped Ysolde. 


Ysolde. He stepped into the room and drew the curtain closed once Alberith had followed inside. (( She is alive. )) The bronze noted in unusual reticence as he moved past the cot with the utmost care, climbing onto the wallow beyond where he could watch comfortably.  K'el stood at the threshold for several moments unable to tear his eyes away from her, breath caught in his throat, before he collected the chair from the corner and brought it to her bedside. 


She was so beautiful. Even in her sleep, Ysolde put every woman he'd ever met to shame. It was more than her outward appearance, she was so full of life and passion, so kind and outspoken. To see her laying silently wrapped in so many bandages, only the rise and fall of her chest to reassure him she still breathed, drove a blade through him. 


K'el took his seat beside her, vision blurring with tears he blinked away before they could fall. "I'm so sorry," he said, painfully aware of how loud his strangled voice seemed in the quiet room. "Ysolde, we-- ..I wasn't there when you needed me."


(( We are here now. )) Alberith bespoke only K'el, unwilling to disturb the recuperating queen while she slept. (( I will watch over you both. ))


The boy didn't respond, but his dragon’s words were of some small comfort. He wanted so badly to take Ysolde's hand in his own, but didn't dare disturb the bandages that covered them. Instead, he reached to brush red hair he found lovely even then away from her face. Before withdrawing, he stroked her gentle plane of her cheek reverently with the back of his fingers. "I.. I'm not real sure if you'll hear this, but.. Ysolde, I can't stand the thought of doing this without you. You're.. storms, you're all I think about.  I've missed you, I have so much to tell you. You have to get better soon and come back to me." He knew the Healers said she would recover, but until she awakened, he'd continue to worry.


(( When she does, we will be here. )) Alberith promised his rider. 


With the stress of that night and the conversation that had stretched into the early morning hours, K'el had managed to stay wide awake. But now, with the subject of his desire in front of him, he felt more at ease than he had in many candlemarks. That relaxation meant exhaustion soon weighed on his shoulders and, with his arms folded and chin laid atop his chest, K'el fell asleep slumped back against the chair. 


(( Thaath, Mine needs to return to our wallow. He slumbers as we speak. )) Alberith reached out to Ked'son's dragon as soon as he felt his rider drift off. He cared for this girl by proxy of K'el, but the boy would always be his first priority.


= End. =




--
Nutmeg on the Wizzy.
Recluso#6042 on Discord

I'm sometimes slow and have the memory of a sieve at times, so don't hesitate to poke me if you think you've been forgotten!


Re: Hatching - Wriggling Gloom (Rennitz, ACM) #HatchingForeth2020

Ren
 

It started as a little niggle in the back of her mind, similar to her firelizards. Rennitz sent the thoughts a gentle quieting shush while watching the two gold eggs still. She was more than a little surprised when her two firelizards chimed in from their place outside to ask who she was talking to. Wait, that made no sense. What did they mean? There was Jevensha's golden presence, Aranck's strong brown one, and Basilith's-

Wait.

Basilith?

Looking up at Foreth and then back down at the eggs, it started to dawn on Rennitz. She wouldn't be a goldrider, now or ever. All the responsibility she'd chosen to accept, all of the work-

{{Rennitz! Come on, come see my pet and help me choose a name for him!}}

- was now going to be directed to her blue. Giving Foreth and her eggs a sorrowful yet grateful look and a bow, Rennitz took off at full speed towards and down the stairs, nearly tripping over the stone until she reached the bottom to find the pale blue waiting there with a-

"- a tunnelsnake?" Rennitz asked him in surprise. "What are you doing with that, Basilith?"

{{I found it with Euryath's hel, though I did most of the work.}} Basilith was quick to point that part out with pride. Rennitz saw through him but let the blue believe what he wanted. 

"Alright... You should let him go, though. I don't think they'll let you have that in the barracks."

{{Why not?}} Basilith demanded with a fussy thum of his tail. {{It's mine!}}

"Pets aren't allowed in the barracks, Basilith." Rennitz's tone was firm as she put her will behind the words. The blue tried to continue to defy her but another push of insistence from his rider had the blue sighing and putting the snake down. The tunelsnake hissed at Basilith and tried to rear back to bite, but Rennitz kicked it away. "Come on, let's go get you food."

{{What's that?}} Basilith asked, snapping his sharp fangs after the snake and following Rennitz.

"You'll see, my love. But I promise you'll like it. I wouldn't lie to you, would I?"

{{Never!}} The blue's response was vehement and defined, sure that this perfect human could and would never lie to him. So Basilith followed Rennitz to where the AWLMs had set up food and went towards a bowl set aside for blues. {{Ahh, that smells positively divine, my dear. Is that for me?}}

"It is," Rennitz relied with a smile as she took it up and picked up some chunks of meat. "I'll give you these, but you must chew them, yes? Like this." Rennitz mimed chewing to show him and was pleased with Basilith mimiced her even without meat. "Good, like that. Now open your mouth so I can feed you." When the deadly maw was opened, Rennitz tossed in a couple gobbets of meat and watched as Basilith chewed slowly and then swallowed. "Brilliant! Well done, my love. Here, more."

The girl fed her dragon slowly while watching to make sure that he chewed the whole time. As he ate, she thought to herself. Well, now she had her blue which she could use to make sure Yiyu was okay. Beyond that, he would fly Thread and breathe fire to make sure Pern was safe. Win-win, really. Her fate was sealed with this blue, and she did want him. Faranth, did she want him. Was he better than a gold? Rennitz tentatively out to the feeding blue and immediately felt his love and adoration for her and allowed herself to get lost in it.

Basilith's love and devotion was full and complete. He worshipped Rennitz and would do anything for her. He'd fight and kill to keep her safe and would be her undying friend to the end. Rennitz didn't know when the tears started but they ran unchecked down her face as she fed the last few bites to Basilith. This was her best and truest friend and he was perfect, in general and for her.
--
Out of the fire comes new life. Telgar Rises!

Are you afraid of the dark? Come play in the Shadow...


A Splash Of Darkness (Iridan/Kraketh SA)

Steelsilver
 

Kraketh followed, but didn’t have as easy of luck. He went from Candidate to Candidate, rubbing against them and getting their robes wet. ((Are you going to help me?)) he asked one but moved on when there was no response.


Krakethcontinued to ask the question until he stopped in front of another Candidate. He bugled in triumph. ((MINE! You’re my ~Iridan~.))  

Iridan saw the two blues approaching, attention finally dragged from the spot where Sorho had been by the uneasy shifting around him; he breathed a sigh of relief when one blue stopped, turned away toward another Candidate. 

The other blue kept coming. No, no no- He'd wanted a bronze, shardit! He'd hoped, again, and again, and again- 

Kraketh bugled, and greeted him, and the Candidate- no, he was a Weyrling now, wasn't he?- sank slowly to his knees. 

((Mine! I need you to help me!)) Kraketh insisted, nudged at His once more. ((Come on, we need to fix my stomach!))


Hatching - Into the Night (END) #HatchingForeth2020

sailyn2
 

And then there was one. 


The Twisted Jaws Egg with its shiny appearance that hid a feline’s open mouth underneath. After everything that had happened in the previous part of the Hatching, the roaring mouth to end the Hatching seemed like a bad omen even after the Impression of the golden siblings.


For a long time the last egg sat there even as the night grew later and later. As midnight turned into technical morning people were beginning to think that maybe something had happened to the egg during the explosion after all and that there’d be yet another casualty in what had been a Clutch full of problems.


Then the egg began to rock. Slowly, almost imperceptibly so that it might be just a trick of the eye. Then faster and faster. The Hatchling inside very much wanted to get out and he was working furiously at escaping his cage. Then the egg fell on its side and there was an audible crack.


Another long moment stretched as if maybe the occupant hadn’t survived the falling of the egg, then the Hatchling stood up with the egg still around him. The only thing visible were legs of a beautifully patched worked brown. He began walking around the Sands as if he could see through the egg shell even as his tail poked upward through the top and stayed straight up. 


The brown kept walking until he ran into Talith’s legs and the egg cracked. He sat down and after a moment his egg disintegrated around him leaving a brown that was just as full of patches as his legs were and that were arranged rather handsomely. He shook himself off, egg goo and shell pieces flying everywhere.


((That’s better,)) he said then turned around with feline grace. ((Is there anyone else there? I am Mancoreth!))


There were no more Hatchlings, leaving him rather alone other than his sires. No Hatchlings replied.


((I guess it’s just m...)) he started to say, then looked around and spotted something interesting.


Some stupid Candidate had thought that bringing some meat would help Impression. After what had happened to Sorho, she had emptied her pockets and tossed the food at just the edge of the Sands in front of her. The small chunk was currently being feasted on by flits.


((Mine,)) he growled and dropped into an elegant crouch other than his erect tail. Very slowly, so as not to disrupt the flits, he crouched and stalked toward the food. Unfortunately the Candidate gasped and backed away, as did another couple around her. 


The confusion upset some of the flits. Mancoreth had to take action if he wanted his meal. He sprang, much like a feline would, and landed just in front of the meat. His teeth snapped around the lone flit that hadn’t vanished between. There was a sickening crunch as his teeth ground down and he was rewarded with the taste of meat. The taste was good, but Mancoreth realized that the meat on the ground sounded better.


The brown finished chewing the flit and swallowed and then dipped his head to eat the meat, crouching over it like someone might steal it away. The small bits of meat were gone in a couple of gulps.


((More, I need more!)) He crouched, stalking into the crowd to look for more meat. By now some of the Candidates were in hysterics and trying to get away. They’d learned what could go wrong and wanted nothing to do with it. Other Candidates grouped closer, backing away. A few pushed their way through, both girls and boys, and rushed from the Caverns entirely.


Something else caught Mancoreth’s eye. Something snapped in his head and he stopped, poised feline like. ((Mato? Are you leaving me? Come get your Mancoreth.))


And just like that the dark and frightening Hatching was over. The last dragon Impressed and left eight eggs destroyed: The Bloodied Mess Egg, The Ghost in the Shell Egg, The Moonlit Shivers Egg, The Twisted and Rotten Egg, The Disgustingly Oozy Egg, The Treacherously Sticky Egg, The Dark and Stormy Egg, and the The Boiling Trouble Egg. The Clutch had been cursed since the fateful Flight. Hopefully none of the weird things that had happened between the Flight and the end of the Hatching would ever be repeated again save maybe the fortune of two gold eggs.

Egg - The Twisted Jaws Egg: Yet another monstrous looking egg joins its brothers and sisters. At first look, the egg is glassy looking with a mess of colors underneath. Then you take a closer look and underneath that glass those colors twist and take form until something like a twisted big feline's head appears. Behind the "glass" the weird looking feline roars, its mouth open and exposing sharp teeth. Has Foreth laid a hatchling or a feline? What's going to happen when the glass cage breaks?

Dragonet - Mancoreth: Not dissimilar to his blue brother, Prometh, there is something of a patchwork quality to Mancoreth's brown hide. However, whilst Prometh seems to be odds and ends of different pieces, there is a more fluid dynamic to the brown's transitions, as though his different shades of brown were always meant to be there. One of his most distinctive features is the thick tendrils of dark brown that cascade down his neck and chest, surrounding his much lighter coloured face so that from a distance, it almost look as though he has a beard.


His body, thickly muscled and a light shade of tan brown, is that of a pure predator and Mancoreth moves with the same feline grace and precision of the large wild felines that roam the Southern jungles whilst his tail is artfully prehensile and will be used more than once to viciously jab someone to get their attention. It won't be unusual to see Mancoreth carrying his tail high, curling upward towards his spine as he waves it about during his more agitated moods, the color a blended shade of deep browns that seem to swirl together.


Patient, patient and patient some more, Mancoreth knows how to outlast his prey. His rider will have to work hard to curb his vicious kills when he hunts and even hard to stop him gorging unnecessarily. It will be a little disconcerting how much savage delight he takes in his quarry, browns are supposed to be sensible, after all! Down the line, his patience will lend itself well in the fighting wings, although his predatory instincts will make him prone to suggesting risky tactics that could go terribly wrong if they fail.


There is a decidedly cunning element to Mancoreth and he has a head for tactics that makes wing drills a walk in the park. Quick to learn but easy to bore, Mancoreth requires constant learning and stimulation to keep his attention where it is meant to be and not deciding to try something far more exciting. Convince him that all these new lessons will simply make him a better hunter and he'll be all the more willing to listen.




Re: Hatching - Midnight Hunger #HatchingForeth2020

Laura Walker
 

((You're not looking right!)) So far, sharing a pair of eyes was not going terrifically well.

"Wait, love." R'tal's attention had been caught by a pair of Candidates squabbling at the edge of the Sands. He frowned over towards them in the dark. If they didn't Impress this time around the ACMs needed to speak with those two.

((I can't wait!)) Talith's will pushed against his in a way it hadn't since they were Weyrlings still battling for control. ((That's my egg Hatching!)) His egg that they hadn't even been sure would hatch. His most loved and protected baby, because he'd been so scared that it wouldn't hatch at all.

Obediently R'tal turned his head. "See? No harm done. A handsome bronze. He's fi--oh." The bronze turned his head as he spoke, revealing that one, blinded, white eye. "...he'll be fine," R'tal amended, wincing.

((Who is he going to? 'tal!)) For R'tal had turned his head again and was on his feet, worried.

"Shards!"

(('tal, you need to look!))

"There's a Candidate injur-- feck, two Candidates!!

((You said you would look!)) And Talith dipped his head to where he guessed the little bronze was (though that itself was difficult to determine from what he could only gather through peripheral vision), caring little what the audience thought at that point, wanting to smell what he could not see.

On Sat, Sep 5, 2020 at 9:00 PM sailyn2 <empressoftheworld@...> wrote:

In the dark shadows of the dimly lit Hatching Cavern, the shapes of Talith and Truenoth cast ominous shadows across the walls as they hunkered over the eggs that they had laid claim to. The oppressive heat of the day had done little to subside in the darkness of night and clung to the walls like a thick blanket. Even in the light of the glows it was possible to see the scorch marks still on the walls and the fallen rocks did little to soothe the mind that there weren’t things lurking out there that might not be altogether friendly. 


Tucked to one side amidst the rest of its clutching siblings nestled beside Talith, the Sheen of Blood Egg seemed so dark it was almost black in the dim light, it’s red sheen seeming to reflect and bounce light ominously. Perhaps it was just  because people were half-asleep but there seemed to be less noise than usual. And everyone knew just how good the acoustics were in the Caverns, they were practically the stuff of legend. As the Candidates and spectators watched with bated breath to see who would hatch next, a voice as soft and whispery as the wind seemed to resonate around the stone walls.


(( Ssssooooo…. huuuuungrrrrrrryyyyyy…))


It was definitely female, of that there was no doubt and all of a sudden, the Sheen of Blood Egg seemed to twitch a little, giving the entire impression that it was bristling with sudden anticipation.


Standing blearily in the group of robe-clad Candidates, Ysolde tried to drag her thoughts to the forefront and pay attention to what she was doing. She wasn’t sitting dozily in a hot classroom, she was on the Sands! And eggs were hatching! Eggs, she hadn’t been allowed to see at all let alone go anywhere near them. Already the heat of the sand was prickling through the thin soles of her sandals and she shifted from foot to foot, grumbling in tired annoyance. She felt as though every sense was on high alert and her stomach had already flip-flopped in nauseating terror as a couple of Hatchlings wandered towards the Candidates, only to heave in sudden relief as they bypassed her and went elsewhere. The brown hadn’t remotely been a threat because, well, brown. She had even made sure not to pay them too much attention, not wanting to give the Hatchlings any idea that she was there for them. Ysolde had no idea how any of this was going to work. What if her gold was up in the Upper Caverns with Foreth? Would it be a case of waiting to see who was the last standing? Would she Impress at all? The uncertainty bristled her and she jostled impatiently, nudging someone at her side. 


“Be careful, will you!” she hissed, even as part of her brain knew it was entirely her own fault for fidgeting.


Sorho had been watching the hatching intently. He’d been at enough of these that the allure wasn’t as great any more, and other than impressing the bronze he knew he was destined for, the majority of dragonets that hatched and impressed held no interest in him, except maybe that brown… which hadn’t even looked this way.  His eyes were focused on the dragons--whether they interested him or not, they were always baby dragons at the end of the day!  That was probably why he hadn’t been paying attention to who he was standing next to until he heard her voice.


He turned at her horrified, “Ugh, what are you doing here?  I thought you were banned!”


Sorho was about to add more when a noise from the crowd drew his attention--excitement, which was common, but this was LOUD excitement.  Turning his head, he took advantage of his height to look over the candidate's heads just in time to see the first cracks begin to appear on the Bronze Eye Egg.


Most were sure this egg wouldn’t hatch, as a long stone had pierced the shell, like a stubby dart.  For fears of causing further damage removing it, the Dragonhealers had packed it with soft clay, and placed their bets.  The odds were completely against the egg, which now shook with life, eliciting the attention of the onlookers.  What would come from the damaged egg?  It would soon be revealed.


It shook aggressively twice and suddenly the stone fell into the egg.


{{ What’s this?  Who dares trespass in my abode?! }} a deep, masculine voice would be heard throughout the sands.  The egg shook again, and the stone rolled within.  {{ Speak!  What is your name?  I am Cycleth!  And you are?.... I see, you must be Nobody! }}


Turning in annoyance, Ysolde’s disgruntled countenance took on another degree of exasperation at the sight of Sorho. Sorho, the Candidate who still seemed to strike a nerve just by being in her vicinity. 


“I wasn’t banned!” she hissed angrily. “I just wasn’t allowed to see the eggs!” Stepping to the side a little, Ysolde resisted the urge to jab an elbow spitefully into the boy’s ribs. Shells, was it just her or was it unbearably hot in here? She could already feel the perspiration sliding down her back and her hair clung heavily to the back of her neck. Barely awake, hot and next to this… this…insufferable boy! Fidgeting from foot to foot, she turned her temper onto her thumb, chewing it nervously. She shouldn’t be down here, she should be… wherever Foreth had secreted the gold eggs to! She knew that the gold had taken them into the upper cavern but the waiting was killing her. Every second was another second where it was too much chance that she would be claimed by another dragon instead.


As the Candidates jostled, the Sheen of Blood egg continued to tremble and shake. Thin cracks began to appear on the surface, spiraling over the shell. From within, a soft and whimpering cry began to be heard, sounding ominously like a woman weeping. In the dark shadows, it did little to put anyone at ease. (( I’m ssooooo huuuungryyy… I need to be freeee… Free to… to hunt! ))


The voice wasn’t the only one that was hungry.  In his broken egg, the Hatchling within soon realized that he was famished.  Whomever this invader was… it didn’t matter!  What mattered was filling his belly!  The Bronze Eye Egg shook violently again, this time falling over onto its side and rolling just a bit until it was stopped by the unhatched egg next to it.


From the hole a snout appeared and huffed, annoyed that he didn't fit completely through… and what was this stuff plastered around the outside of the hole.  Pushing into it, he sniffed at it, but this part of the shell was particularly brittle and began to crack and crumble away.  Inside the egg the Dragonet repositioned himself and pushed his hole head against the cracks until one end of the egg nearly exploded, revealing the creature within.


He stood proudly on all fours, pleased at his escape.  He was a striking Hatchling, for sure, his bronze hide easily visible.  He immediately opened his wings stretching them out, striking a pose, even though he was so young.  Darker streaks zig-zag across his hide like lightning bolts in a storm--there was no denying that he was utterly beautiful to behold.  He could be perfect, even if not for one detail… his right eye was completely white.  The stone had pierced the shell of the developing dragonet and the damage had caused the bronze’s right eye to go blind.  As a result, he twisted his neck a little, turning his head so he would be able to see from his one good eye.


“Right,” Sorho said to Ysolde with a snort.  “And who’s fault was that?”  Any other comments--or even answers on her part--were lost to Sorho who’s eyes befell the bronze.  He didn’t care if the dragonet only had one eye!  He was the most beautiful thing he’d ever seen.


Pieces of shell had begun to fall in tiny shards like the most detailed of jigsaw pieces. The pieces gathered around the bottom as more and more holes began to appear, looking like bloody droplets staining the Sands. (( Freedom! )) Came the voice from within, soft and female, but as breathy as an intimate whisper as a whirling eye peered through the gap and the glimpse of an emerald green muzzle came into view. (( You there, handsome one, you will come help me won’t you? Help free me from this prison that we might feast together? )) 


The green’s voice, for it was most certainly a green, was beguiling and the whirling eye was fixed firmly on her bronze brother. A whuffling, hissing noise came from the slowly disintegrating shell, as though she were twisting and turning about inside it, trying to escape its confines.


“Oh, he’s stunning!” The praise escaped Ysolde without meaning, her eyes wide at the bronze. The intention had been to deliver a scathing retort but it had faltered in her throat at the sight of the Hatchling. Even in the dim glows that had been hastily scattered about the front of the Caverns, his hide seemed to glimmer and shine. Unconsciously, she stepped forward a little, as though to get a better look at him.   


The bronze dragonet craned his head until his one good eye was able to focus on the disintegrating egg in question.  He could see his green sister being born, but her proposal didn’t interest him in the slightest--why should he have to help her?  He’d managed just fine on his own.  He was about to respond when he detected movement out of the corner of his eye.  Reacting instinctually, he turned his head and snapped, catching a flit that had flown in without Foreth to eat and too close the bronze.  He immediately bit down, snapping the creature's neck.  Green ichor oozed down the bronze’s muzzle. But… ew.  The flavor!  It was terrible.  That being said, he decided to save it for later, in case he didn’t find something better.  He looked around for a place to keep his prize but was rather disappointed with the lack of proper defenses.  With annoyed snort the Hatchling returned to his egg, which was mostly intact except for the part he’d burst out of.  He entered the shell and deposited the dead flit and reemerged.  No, this wasn’t enough.  He needed something to block the entrance. 


Not too far away the bronze spied a pile of large rock… those would be perfect!  He pranced over, sniffing at them, trying to decide which was the best one, momentarily becoming distracted and leaving his “home” unguarded.


Despite her attempts and the seductively sweet tone her voice had taken, it didn’t seem to have the effect that the green desired. A huffing snort of annoyance was heard about the egg as the shell fell away, the large hole exposing a small, delicately formed dragonet in a striking shade of emerald green. As languidly as a feline, Dardueth slid from the shattered shell, stretching lazily as she shook the globs of egg slime that clung to her. Everything about her screamed femininity as she looked about her, her finely pointed head streaked with dark stripes that accentuated the curve of her skull. 


The sight of another green was enough to make Ysolde freeze, hastily backing up against Sorho and leaping away as though scalded. Focus! So what if she wanted to watch the bronze, if she let her guard down, she was walking into a trap. She knew it. And that was how she ended up walking away with a green and not a gold. That wasn’t the plan. Not no way, not no how. Shaking her head furiously as though trying to shake sense back into herself, the Candidate edged away slightly, her eyes now fixed on the green as the ball of nerves in her belly renewed its frantic thrashing.


Dardueth had no interest in the peculiar cluster of white things. Her eyes had been captured by the firelizard, a small blue thing that swooped in and had reared back on her haunches just as her brother snatched it out of the air. Her shriek was furious. (( Give it to me! I shall feast on its bones! )) Slipping on the broken pieces of shell, she lunged forward, as sinuously as a tunnelsnake, slinking after her brother as she undulated from side to side. In the shadowy caverns, she could see that he was doing something near what was left of his shell but couldn’t quite determine it. All she knew was the scent of… whatever it was, that filled the air. And it was delicious.


“Oh look, that one is perfect for you,” Sorho said, lightly putting his hands on her shoulders, leaving it easy for her to escape but definitely pushing her a tad bit forward, in a playful way more than actively malicious.  “And I’ll impress the bronze--who knows, I may just catch you some day.”


The bronze found a stone he liked and was in the process of trying to push it over.  He applied pressure with his head, but when it didn’t budge he tried pulling it with his claws.  He dislodged it enough to make it roll--towards him!  Opening his wings again, he leapt back in surprise and let out an audible hiss. 


{{ Don’t fight back!  I’m using you, }} he informed the large rock, unaware of how dangerously close his sister was to stealing his food.


At Sorho’s touch, Ysolde had squeaked in surprise. “Don’t say that!” she hissed, but the anxious anger was replaced with hot embarrassment as colour surged up her cheeks. Her eyes were jumping from the green to Sorho. Shells, that thought hadn’t even touched her mind until he mentioned it. And they all knew what greens were like! A twinge of terror, like an icy finger coiled around her. She didn’t want to end up in bed with Sorho! Most of the time she just… wanted to give him a good slap!


With the scent of ichor hot in her nostrils, they flared as Dardueth sucked the scent in, inhaling deeply. It smelled so good! As she sidled closer, she realised that her brother was trying to hide it from her! Keep it all to himself! And that was no good at all. But for all he was only a hatchling, he was still bigger than she by a considerable measure. The green hopped nimbly to one side as the rock rolled noisily forward and she seemed to consider the situation. She wanted what he had. And he wasn’t going to hand it over willingly. Hmm. The wily green maneuvered behind the bronze, approaching a dark puddle that was still sinking into the sand. A clumsy staffer had inadvertently spilled a large pitcher of wine in the candlemarks before as they cleared the rubble from the Sands. The alcohol had mostly evaporated by now in the heat of the cavern, but the scent was still sickly and rich, more pungent as Dardueth approached it.


(( Oh, what IS that intoxicating aroma? Why… it smells positively delightful! )) Her mind-voice took on a decidedly theatrical note as she slithered towards the dark puddle, glancing over her shoulders back at her brother. (( I was so VERY hungry… but this WONDERFUL smelling thing… I shall feast until I feel hunger no more! )) Dipping her head to the puddle, the green made a show of inhaling deeply, looking for all the world that she was deeply invested in investigating the wonderful thing she had found.


He stopped what he was doing, his sisters beguiling words seducing the young bronze away from his single minded attempt at construction.  Letting go of his large rock, the bronze made his way over to the green and sniffed at whatever it was that she was smelling.  He couldn’t identify it, like so many other things in the world, but it sure did smell… strange.  Interesting even.  Tentatively he opened his mouth and lapped some up.  It wasn’t bad!  And he was starving!  He lapped up a little more, then a little more… completely distracted.


{{ Oh!  This isn’t bad at all!  It’s actually really good!  What is this!?  }}


(( I believe it is clearly some sort of… of… )) The green fumbled for a word in her limited vocabulary, (( It is… nectar! Yes! And it shall sate your.. I mean OUR hunger. You should drink deeply of its sustenance, brother! )) Even as she spoke, she sidled to one side, smacking her lips noisily as though she too had sampled the dark liquid. Of course, she had done nothing of the sort and her beady eyes were already glancing towards the remnants of the bronze’s shell. Cautiously she sniffed the air as though trying to get a new scent of the now very dead firelizard. Whatever had leaked from it had smelled... wonderful! 


The bronze was more than distracted by this newfound… what had she called it?  Nectar?  He didn’t know what that was but it sounded just right.  He lapped more of it up, completely oblivious to his sister’s actions for the moment.


Dardueth was positively delighted! Her scheme was most certainly working and the crafty little green continued to sidle towards the now abandoned remnants of her brother’s shell. Her delicate head twisted this way and that as she tried to recapture the delectable scent she had found on the air and her stomach rumbled with anticipatory hunger. Victory would be hers! Keeping half an eye on her brother, she carefully moved towards the broken shell. Sure enough, the scent was stronger here and on instinct alone, she smacked her lips, revelling in the thought of what she would find.


Hunger got the better of her careful plan, overtaking her need to be stealthy and causing her rush the last few steps, thrusting her nose into the shell pieces with a snorted rumble of glee. She would have it! She would claim her prize! Thoughts of care and delicacy were forgotten about as pieces of shell were noisily cast about and Dardueth scrabbled in the midst, determined to law her paws on the hidden treasure. 


“Hey, watch out!  She’s going to steal it!” Sorho called out to the bronze, eager to make a good impression on the bronze.  The dragonet snapped his head up from the wine and twisted his head, looking around him with his one good eye, pausing a moment at the boy before turning his attention fully to his sister.


{{ Dardueth!  What are you doing?  How DARE you!? }} he charged back to his shell, completely intent on stopping her from completing her mischief.


With the scent of ichor, though rapidly growing cold, filling her nostrils, Dardueth’s plan had now become one of complete and utter intent. The hunger gnawed in her belly and the desire to crunch bones and rend flesh became irresistible. With a crowing bugle of triumph, the green wrapped her jaws around the firelizard’s soft body, intent on pulling it from its hiding place. (( It shall be MINE! )) 


Without thought, Ysolde clutched Sorho’s arm, her eyes riveted on the dispute between the two hatchlings. Would they fight over the food? Hurt each other? The glowing red of their eyes was eerie in the dim light and all she could do was watch. Surely one of the sires would intervene. Something.


{{ No! It’s mine, thief! Nobody steals from me!  }}  the bronze charged right at the remains of the egg, trying to shoulder his way past her.  The egg was never meant for two and soon enough the struggle between the bronze and green was enough to shatter what remained of it.  {{ Look at what you did!  Now it’s buried! }}


The shriek of fury from the green was earsplitting in the acoustics of the Caverns. How dare this pompous brute try to steal her prize. Crashing through the remnants of the shell, crushing pieces underfoot as she went. (( Worry about your shell all you like, foolish brother! I have the REAL prize and you shan’t have it! )) The firelizard corpse in her mouth flopped in a macabre fashion as she danced away, her smaller body more agile than his own and ducked to one side of the bronze. She knew he had a weakness. That blind eye. If she was clever, maybe she could stay in his blind spot…


{{  GIVE it BACK!  }} he demanded, loudly.  He opened his wings, taking an aggressive stance towards her, instincts kicking in.   Lowering his body, as if ready to pounce, the bronze took a step towards her, turning his head so as to be able to look at her with his good eye.  {{ Give it back now or I’ll take it from you!  It’s mine!  }}


Dark and wicked amusement seemed to roll from the green in waves as she lithely danced about her bronze brother. (( Should have been paying more attention then! Finders keepers, losers weepers! And you’ll never be quick enough to catch me! )) Her hissing rumble seemed triumphant and she noisily gnashed her teeth about the firelizard, the crunching of bones uncomfortably audible. 


He tried to follow her with his one good eye, turning his body in a circle but failing to keep up with her speed.  He kept trying, demonstrating his endurance, though his patience soon proved to be lacking.  With a growl, he lunged at her, trying to tackle the green.


“He’s going to get her,” Sorho said, only just noticing Ysolde’s closeness.  He jerked away instinctively.  “You--I--Whatever--whatareyoudoing?  Get off.”


Ysolde ignored Sorho’s grumbling, she was much too distracted by what was happening in front of her. Just because she didn’t want the green, didn’t mean that she wanted to see the hatchlings rip each other to shreds right in front of her. Even as the bronze lunged, a gasped squeal of surprise escaped her, her hand flying to her mouth. “No!” she gasped, her stomach lurching with a ball of panic.


(( Keep away! )) Dardueth shrieked at her brother, throwing herself down to the sand even as he lunged towards her. (( The creature is mine! )) With a guttural hiss of noise, the green flailed and as she did, scooped up a pawful of the hot sand. Instinctively and without thinking she flung it at her brother, or more specifically, right towards his one good eye.


Sand impacted the bronze’s wide open eye and immediately he hissed, temporarily completely blind.  He started to shake his head wildly from side to side, panic starting to set in, {{ What did you do?  I can’t see!  I’m blind! }}


Wailing, he dashed off towards the candidates, running towards the only thing he could, that pull, that mind… he tripped over shells and stones and completely  knocked over one of the candidates, all in order to reach the only one that could help him.  {{ Please!  I’m blind!  I can’t see at all!  And I’m so hungry!  Lerian, save me! Save your Cycleth! }}


As her bronze brother scampered away, Dardueth’s attention was caught by the direction that he moved towards. Why, she had hardly noticed those peculiar things before now. Or rather, she had pointedly ignored them. The broken body of the firelizard was all but forgotten about, discarded in the sand like so much rubbish. With smug satisfaction, she watched her wailing brother run away and… and… what happened then? She wasn’t sure. Clearly something did or why else would he have run to… someone in particular? One of those peculiar white shapes?


Stepping forward, the bright, emerald coloured green flared her wings in sudden apprehension, snorting and chuffing at the group as she inspected them. But she was still so very, very hungry. However, she had a fancy that she had a taste for something particular. Something exquisite. Her shape moved across the sands, gliding forward so effortlessly that she might have been floating. Her head flicked from side to side as she let the hot scents fill her nostrils. She could smell… fear. How delightful! Her eyes whirled faster and faster as she approached the group but at the last second, deviated to one side. Hunkered low, it was a stark reminder that dragons were a predatory animal as she slithered to stop in front of Sorho and Ysolde.


(( You smell… Diviiiiine… )) She hissed, but with her mind-voice projecting to all and sundry, it wasn’t clear to whom exactly she was directing her remark. (( Such a wonderful looking treasure… oh yes… yes… I shall have you for myself! )) Her mind-voice thrummed with intimacy, as though perhaps speaking to a lover. But the edge of hunger ran through it as she stared, her head weaving from side to side.


Sorho felt a shudder go up his spine when he heard the green’s voice in his head.  No, oh, no.  No, no, no, no.  He was supposed to impress bronze, even a half blind one would’ve been better than a green, he’d even take a blue!  He turned towards Ysolde and a rage rose within him.  “You,” he said.  “This is your fault.  She’s yours, not mine.”


Before he knew it his hands were on the girl’s shoulders and he was shoving her towards the green Hatchling.  “Get it the feck away,” Sorho told her. “It’s you she wants!”


Keep moving. That’s it, keep heading towards the… oh no… no, why was she coming this way? Why was she stopping HERE?! As the soft voice filtered into her thoughts, Ysolde felt her limbs turn to ice. No. Surely not. Not her. Not this. Her breathing sharpened through her nose as she willed herself to stay calm. At Sorho’s angry words, her head snapped towards him, her mouth open to issue a scathing remark. But instead she was stumbling forward, arms flailing out just as Dardueth’s muscles tightened to launch her into a pounce.


Time seemed to both slow to a standstill and speed up to a blur. As Dardueth sprang forward, Ysolde got in the way. Or most accurately, her arms did. Flailing arms were suddenly wrapped about by razor-sharp dragonet claws that sliced through flesh as easily as a hot knife through butter. Her brain hadn’t caught up with the white hot pain that rippled over her arms as Ysolde crashed into the sand with a moan, the blood already spilling onto the ground. Dazed, she tried to scramble back to her feet just as Dardueth thrust past her with a snap of angry jaws.


Blood, she could smell… blood. It was hot on the air and enticing. But it wasn’t the blood she wanted. Even as she pushed past Ysolde her gaze fixated on Sorho. He was… exquisite. Handsome. So very handsome. She liked that. Even if she wasn’t sure why. Oh yes, he was marvellous. Her lips curled back into a growl as the hunger wrapped itself around her and Dardueth launched herself at him with a furious, hungry bellow. Claws and snapping teeth were extended, reaching out for soft and pliable flesh. 


Sorho had no time to react.  He could only stare, wide-eyed as the green dragonet landed upon him.  She was heavier than he’d expected her to be and he went down with her on top of him.  Her jaws shut around his left arm as it rose attempting to protect his head but her needle sharp teeth tore into the skin and muscle, the force of her bite easily breaking the bone.  He couldn’t even scream in agony because when they landed her weight completely knocked the wind out of him.  Due to the very nature of the impact the green attempted to stabilize herself on top of Sorho, and unconsciously buried her claws into him--her rear claws in particular caused significant damage to the boy, as they dug deeply into his lower abdomen and ripping through his stomach and intestines. 


Immediately the candidate coughed up blood but he wasn’t dead yet… and he had one free arm, which he swung decidedly at the dragonet’s head.  


Clinging all the tighter as they fell, Dardueth’s claws ripped through Sorho, slicing deeply into his gut. With feverish glee, she hissed in delight as the deluge of blood began to pour and as she released his arm, her jaws bit down again on the upper groove of his neck and collar bone. In full bloodthirsty frenzy her hind legs kicked and scrabbled, ripping new holes in the boy.


(( Yesss! )) she hissed, her whirling eyes half lidded in gory pleasure as she bit down harder. (( The blood… the blood is the life… the most handsome blood… ))


Somehow, Ysolde stumbled to her feet again. Her brain hadn’t connected to the blood pouring down her arms, to the white hot pain that ran up her flesh. It could only process the sight of the candidate being disemboweled in front of her as the arterial spray soared across the air, hitting her robes which were no longer a ceremonial white. It was a macabre fountain of which she was in  a direct path, mingling with the blood on her arms. And all she could do was stare, stare in frozen and mortified horror as she watched Sorho’s gut open up in front of her eyes.


The more she dug in, the worse the tear was; soon enough the tear was large enough and intestines exploded outwards alongside blood which began to stain the hatching sands.  Again Sorho tried to scream but she was stepping on his chest as well.  Sorho struggled through the pain, trying to yank away the arm she held away from her while his right arm continued to attack, aiming his fist at her mouth in an attempt to get her to let go--he hadn’t even had time to realize that he was dying.  Adrenaline was rushing through his body still.  He wanted to curse her, and curse Ysolde and the whole fecking world but in the end he was the only one to blame.  Still he attempted to fight, though each attempt was noticeably weaker than the last as the lack of blood and oxygen started to take their effect.


Ysolde couldn’t move. Some part of her noticed that. Noticed that she couldn’t move even though part of her mind was screaming to do… something. Somewhere she noticed that the blood that covered her was a mixture of Sorho’s and her own. But she couldn’t do anything about it. All she could do was watch in slack-jawed horror.


From the side of the Stands, on hand “just in case”, the Healers watched. Already bags were in hand, a stretcher, anything they could grab. But not one of them could move until the green had released her victim. Not a single one of them would risk startling the green into Between by disturbing her before she had found her Rider. It was sad, but one human life wasn’t necessarily as important as the life of a dragon who would help save thousands from Thread over and over again. All around them, the tension notched up as they prickled with the anticipation of being ready to run, run like the ground beneath them was on fire.


Sorho’s attempts to release himself were futile, Dardueth using her wings to bat the weakening blows away. What seemed like an age seemed to pass until the blows lessened… and lessened… and finally, they stopped. Throwing her head back, the blood soaked green crowed in triumph at her kill. Her roar, though tiny, was still furious until it cut off abruptly as though all of a sudden, something had snapped its fingers and caught her attention. With all the disdain of having trodden in something unpleasant, the green pulled herself free of Sorho’s maimed corpse, heedless and uncaring of the new rips her claws left in their wake. Something, something was… waiting. For her. Yes, she could feel it. It was right here. 


(( There! There you are! My Trifali, you shall share this with me! Share the delight of what I have done, feel the energy that surges within me! Yes, we shall hunt together and it will be WONDROUS! ))


As the green left the bloodied mess behind her, the Healers surged onto the Sands. All the Healing in the world would do nothing for the boy as Sorho was carefully lifted onto the waiting stretcher, his body quickly covered with sheets as they rushed the stretcher away from eyes that had already seen far too much. As for Ysolde, it was immediately apparent that the girl’s mind had frozen in place, her eyes staring at the bloody sands even after Sorho was removed and there was nothing left of him but the bloody reminder of himself. And those wounds to her arms… lacerations down the length of her forearms, some deep enough to almost see the white of bone beneath the coursing blood. A unanimous decision was made. They couldn’t save one, but there was one for whom they could do something. And by shells, it was better than nothing at all.


For two Candidates, the Hatching had already ended. Sorho had stood his last Hatching only he hadn’t walked away with a dragon at his side. And Ysolde, escorted carefully from the Sands by the Healers, she at least, would walk away today. Although it would be without the coveted gold dragon at her side, at least there had been only one sheet covered body carefully taken away.



 

Cycleth : Cycleth was hatched a big, powerful bronze and would have been the asset to any major wing if only the accident hadn't happened before the Hatching that left him with only one working eye. He's striking, both because of the dark bronze body with the zigzag patterns on his body that look like thunder bolts and because of his opaque right eye.

 

The loss of his eye doesn't keep him down. He's strong willed and determined to show his best abilities that he can. Despite his eye, he can manage to fly in the Queen's wing and has a knack for avoiding danger that is full of luck. More than once he'll make a save that could only be described as miraculous and he'll earn a great reputation for it.

 

When hunting, he has a knack for herding the herdbeasts up before striking, which can be annoying to his rider when they're in a hurry but can be very helpful to other dragons also wanting to eat. Less helpful is when he does it just to have fun and gets his rider in trouble for running the herds ragged.

 

Cycleth also has a fascination for building. He never knows exactly what he's building, or how to build it well, but he's sure going to try. Given a chance, he'll spend hours trying to create elaborate little creations with rocks. and his rider will often find him piling up rocks and trying to build random objects that will have to be quickly dismantled before they accidentally fall on someone.

  


Dardueth: From the moment she falls free from her shell, there is something decidedly hypnotic about the way Dardueth moves. Even as a hatchling there will be a sinuous, elegant liquidity in her movements that will be impossible to keep from staring at and a well balanced shape that makes Dardueth a stunningly beautiful green to observe.

 

Even her mind-voice has a sultry and sensual timbre to it and it rolls smoothly into thoughts, compelling the listener to stop and pay attention to her, no matter how important the task they were doing first may be. A bright, emerald shade of green with sweeping dark shadows that seem to accentuate her all the more.

 

Hungry is a word to describe Dardueth. Hungry, hungry and hungry some more. Especially if you're male. More so if you're handsome. Dardueth's Rider will have to work hard to keep her in check and to stop her roving eye and make her pay attention to the things she's meant to be doing. When she puts her mind to it, she's surprisingly cunning for a green, but incredibly easily distracted.

 

A particularly unusual characteristic will be Dardueth's tendency to blood her kills, seeming to prefer sucking them dry and pouncing on the next poor animal before reluctantly, she'll take the meat she needs. Unfortunately, it means she has an exceptionally high prey drive for smaller creatures to exact the same fate upon them and her Rider will be likely on the receiving end of Dardueth having caused the untimely demise of more than one beloved pet.








--

Blackadder: I mean, what about the people that do all the work?
Baldrick: The servants.
Blackadder: No, me; *I'm* the people who do all the work.


Hatching - Searching the Night #HatchingForeth2020

sailyn2
 

The Misty Depths egg sat in the Sands, quiet. Then, suddenly, a pretty green dragonet, the exact same color of the egg, poked her head out of one of the deeper puddles left by the most recent storm.


{{Ahhh, that feels better,}} she said, trying to clamber out.  But the puddle was deep and she kept slipping off the sides. {{Until it doesn’t!}} She kicked at the side of the puddle, splashing some water out onto another egg.


Nearby, the Music in the Water egg wiggled back and forth making the watery facade look like rain pouring down. Unlike other places where the explosion had left holes for the water from the Caverns explosion to let rain sneak through, there was no puddle at the base of the egg. After a moment a small hole opened in the side and then delicate looking forepaws reached out of the hole to pull it open. A head emerged next and then the egg broke entirely and out came a feminine looking dragon, but he was blue instead of green.


((Helllo world, nice to meet you,)) he said, spreading his wings in welcome as if he wasn’t the one to be the new arrival. He crooned, a beautiful trilling and melodious sound.


{{Hello,}} the green said, almost invisible in the water. She scrabbled again at the edge of the hole, and this time was able to make footholds on it. Clambering out, she shook herself and water droplets went flying. She looked around until she found the dragon who had spoken.


{{Hey, you’re a real cutie-pie,}} she said, flowing over the Sands to greet him. {{I think we can be good friends.}}


((I’d love to be your friend,)) he crooned back. ((Will you come play with me?)) He walked up to her and nuzzled her. Pulling back, he looked around for a place to play. He spotted a different hole of water nearby. This one was bigger and full of rain runoff. ((Let’s play there.))


Without waiting, he sauntered, tail flicking as he headed to the fun play spot.


{{Okay!}} she said and followed. He’d gotten a bit ahead of her, but she hurried to catch up.  {{I was in one of these,}} she said. {{It was nice, but hard to get out. I’m sure a big strong boy like you will be able to get us out of this one.}}


She jumped in, making a splash. Her tail didn’t quite follow her in and she studied it, as if she’d never seen it before.  Well, maybe she hadn’t. She flicked it a little, then flicked again so it landed close to the blue. {{Come on in, the water’s nice,}} she said as she wrapped her tail around his legs, trying to pull him in. She just wasn’t quite strong enough to.


Nireseth preened a bit. ((I bet I could,)) he said. ((I’d do anything for you. Will you show me how to play in this...wa...water? You seem to know so much about it.)) The tail flicked in front of his face and he tried to grab at it with a forepaw.


{{Of course. It’s cool, and wet, and wonderful, and we should live here forever.}} If dragons smiled, she would be positively beaming now. She wiggled the tip of her tail, pulling it closer to the water for Niriseth to follow.  {{I was born in water.}} She ducked down and did a somersault, and came up sputtering.


{{But you have to hold your breath if you go under,}} she cautioned.


Nireseth was distracted from her tail as it disappeared under the water and then she came back up. The somersault looked so fun!


((Like this?)) he said, and then attempted to follow her lead. He didn’t manage to coordinate holding his breath before he went under and came up sputtering instead. As soon as he could breathe again, he bugled another melodious note. If he could have laughed, he would have. ((That was fun! Show me more, oh beautiful one.))


Rusalth dove under and circled Nireseth, twining her tail around him. Then she tried to dive deeper, but it was, after all, a slightly larger puddle so it wasn’t deep enough. Instead, she jumped up with her wings spread, and splashed at him. {{This is the best. The others are missing out.}} She didn’t know how she knew there were others; possibly the residual mind voices from the eggs. Plus, she saw a couple others in the distance.


{{But I think we’re doing fine on our own. We don’t need any others.}} Suddenly, she wasn’t sure she wanted to share him with the rest of the Clutch.  {{Your voice is pretty. You need to make more sounds.}}


((We can work together,)) Nireseth said, splashing her back. ((We will conquer this water and do it together.)) He bugled again, that beautiful, oddly enticing sound. ((Come show the water who it shall call in charge.))


{{Yes! We own the water! We are in charge!}} She flapped her wings again, splashing more water out of the hole.  {{Hey, where’s all the water going?}} she said. The level was drastically lower than it had been a few splashes ago. But there were things at the bottom. She dove/reached down and came up with a pretty pebble.


{{For you, kind sir,}} she said, holding it out. Wet, the pebble was pretty. 


((Why thank you, m’lady,)) Nireseth said, spreading his wing and dipping his head like a bow. He took the pebble and set it between his legs. Looking around and momentarily forgetting the water, he noticed a piece of eggshell that was blue. He carefully grabbed it and returned it to Rusalth. ((And this one is for you.))


Rusalth took it reverently. {{This is beautiful,}} she said. {{I want to wear it around my neck.}} She sat back and looked pensive. {{That image came from somewhere. Where did it come from? Do you feel anything?}} There was something odd going on, and it had to do with the dry land. She held the eggshell carefully and tried to climb out of the hole. 


{{And this is where I have problems,}} she said angrily. {{The water is our friend. Until it isn’t. And tries to keep us here.}}


((The water calls to me, but there’s something...something I need.)) Nireseth arched his neck elegantly as he looked around. He spotted the Candidates in their white robes. He clutched his pebble. ((I want to show this to...someone. I feel something pull more than the water. It sings to me.))


{{Singing is good. Maybe if you sing, you can bring it to you?}} Rusalth tried to sing, but her voice wasn’t anywhere near as beautiful as his. She was more tactile. {{Come on, let’s get out of here. Give me a push, and I’ll help pull you out.}} She tried finding toe holds like she had before, but the hole filled up as fast as she made them. 


{{Whatever you are calling me, I’m coming,}} she said. {{But you have to be nice to Nireseth too. He’s my boyfriend.}}  Well. He was a boy. And he was her friend. Right?


((I will help!)) Nireseth was happy to get behind her to try to push her. He strained until she could pull herself the rest of the way over the end and onto dry land. ((Where shall we look for...for...whatever? What shall I sing to?))


Rusalth wiggled her hindquarters happily, once she was out, then turned and gave Nireseth a paw so he could get up.  {{I don’t know...I think, over there?}} She heard a buzzing from the white things over to the side. The other way was just more eggs. Bo-oring. She was already out of hers. 


Something was going on above them, too, but she didn’t think she wanted to be up there. It didn’t feel right.  She nodded.  {{That way,}} she said, pointing at the Candidates.


Nireseth looked up, too and then shook himself off sending water everywhere. Something was calling for him up there, but if Rusalth said to go to the white things, then she must be right. She had Hatched before him, after all. He followed behind, crooning a beautiful song. ((Maybe my song will bring what I’m looking for.))


{{I know that your song will bring me, always,}} said Rusalth.  She headed towards the white things, but the call got fainter.  She was wrong. She stamped her foot.

{{Mine isn’t over here,}} she said petulantly.  {{Is yours?}}


Nireseth looked around. Whatever was calling to him wasn’t there. ((No. Not over here.)) He turned a circle. ((I...I think that way...)) He pointed with a claw towards the side and up.


It was the other side of the cavern, but when she leaned towards it, the pull was stronger. {{Yes! You’re right! Handsome and smart. What a glorious combination!}} 


Rusalth went the way Nireseth pointed, her tail undulating behind her. She looked back, liking the trail it left in the sand. Maybe she could draw a picture...no, she needed to find out what was calling her, first. {{How do we go up?}} she asked.


((Maybe we could fly,)) Nireseth suggested, puffing his chest out. He hunkered down and tried to flap his newborn wings, but they barely fluttered. He deflated. ((I guess not. Let’s go try to find a way up.))


{{Okay,}} Rusalth said agreeably, but she was starting to feel weird. Something she couldn’t put a finger on, but it made her insides shaky.


<<panic>> a little voice inside her said. She didn’t know where the word had come from, but it didn’t sound good.  {{How are you feeling?}} she asked as she trotted along next to the wall. Whatever she was looking for was right above her. She jumped and tried flapping her wings, but, no, she had as much luck as Nireseth. 


She snuggled up next to him. {{I don’t think we’ll ever find them,}} she said plaintively.


((We’ll find a way,)) Nireseth crooned. He lifted one of his wings to drape across her slightly smaller body. ((Let’s keep going this way.))


Suddenly a tall two-legged thing stepped out and started making gesturing motions at them, blocking their way. 


“Not this way,” the AWLM said. “Go back to the Candidates in white.”


Rusalth sat back, almost on Nireseth’s wing, startled.  {{No!}} she said, then, if a dragon could look crafty, she did. {{You don’t want to make me stop, do you?}} she asked twining herself around him. {{You know that ours are up high, not back there.}} She snorted derisively, breaking any spell she could have hoped to have on him. 


{{Drat. Nireseth, sing to him.}}


The AWLM couldn’t hear her. He just knew that suddenly he had a baby dragon very close to him and that was BAD. After that boy had been attacked, he didn’t want to risk her ire. He stood stock still while she moved around him.


((I’ll sing to distract him, then run,)) Nireseth said and he opened his mouth to bugle again, right in the man’s face.


Problem was, she didn’t know where to run. The opening they sought wasn’t making itself clear. But the call she was feeling was moving, and she ran, moving along with it. She knew it was there, but couldn’t reach it. 


A thought came to her of a figure prone on the sand, hitting the ground with its hands and feet. That didn’t seem to be very helpful, but she wondered if it would make her feel better, so she tried it.


All she got for the effort was sand in her mouth, so she got back up again. The call wasn’t coming from anywhere near the white things. Something the man had called Candidates. She tasted the word in her mind. It sounded right, but none of them were the Candidate she wanted.


((This way!)) Nireseth took off past the man. He was obviously trying to keep him from his goal. Whatever that was. He sprinted across the Sands and an opening came into sight. He ran through it and quickly came to stairs, only they were narrow and steep and not meant for dragon paws. He tried climbing, but only slid back down.


His was up there. He had to get to her. ((SHALIA! Come to me.)) Even his desperate bugle was beautiful to hear if desperate.


{{What did you find?}} Rusalth cried, running towards him. She saw the opening, and the narrow stairs. {{Let me try!}} she said, and tried to get up them. But she had as much luck as he did.


{{Why are you calling...oh, Shalia’s yours.  Mine’s Kashara.  KASHARA, where are you?}} she called, scrabbling at the steps when he wasn’t. She looked back at the mean man who tried to keep them from Theirs.  She hoped he wasn’t going to try and pull her back.



 

Dragonet - Nireseth: The reality is, there is a decidedly feminine quality to Nireseth, from his delicate refinement to his gentle mind-voice. And yet... it's impossible to imagine him being any other way. Slim and well defined, each angle seeming to be carefully measured and set in place. He'll never be a bulky and muscular blue, rather something much more elegant and refined looking although he shall eventually grow up to be one of the largest blues in the Weyr. And people will look, as though they can't tear their eyes away from him.


A vivid and bright shade of blue, as blue as the tropical seas in the middle of summer, Nireseth seems to thrum with vibrancy with dashes of darker shades across his wings and shoulders. His most exceptional physical feature will be the peculiar markings on his hind legs and tail, a myriad of darker blues that look for all the world as though someone has painted feathers over him.


There are two words to describe Nireseth to a "T". Sensual and seductive. He is charming to a fault, oozing a quiet and confident allure that draws dragons and human alike to him. They just can't help themselves. And he *likes* drawing them to him. Those he wins in flight (and he will *like* to fly whenever he can) will find themselves with a tactile and attentive companion for days after and those he calls friends will find themselves groomed and nurtured like nobody else seems to know how to do.


He has a way with words to be sure but his vocal calls will have a definite melodious quality to them, rich and emotive. He will have the distinct ability to be able to convey a thousand emotions in just one bugle, one croon with an intoxicating voice that seems to soar above the rest.

Dragonet - Rusalth: Rusalth almost seems to swim out of her egg, and stands on her own four feet immediately. Once she hatches, people will be amazed at the integrity of the egg--because the inside is the same color scheme as the outside, it doesn't look broken at all. But, after the Hatching, depending upon the hatchlings' actions, it may or may not still be there.


Rusalth will be there, and once she finds her lifemate she will move all the Sands in the Cavern to get to them. The link will be a strong one and almost immediate once she figures out who it is. And they need to be strong, too, because she will be a green to rise more often than not. Especially in the summer months. A few sevendays before the summer solstice, she will be especially randy, and her flight will be as long and hard as a young queen's. And it won't be unheard of for her to rise twice in that sevenday.


She's a misty-green color, much like her egg. Her hide has light and dark patterns that will shipper in the sunlight, and if you take her to some of the ponds around Arolos, she'll seem to disappear in them, her coloring is so close to the water. Her tail is longer than most, and she's sleek and lithe, able to slide quickly through the air. It wouldn't be amiss to bet on her during dragon races.













Hatching - Solving a Dark Puzzle #HatchingForeth2020

sailyn2
 

Despite the horrendous start to the whole affair, the Healers bustling the mangled body of the Candidate away behind the covered screen of their own bodies and ushering the other Candidate who had gotten caught in the midst of the carnage off the Sands herself to tend to the wounds on her arms that streamed with blood, the fact was, the Hatching had to continue. And continue it did. However, there were still two eggs sitting up on the upper Caverns that no doubt, were at the forefront of many minds. Especially the female Candidates who were being called up according to those who had been approved to see the gold eggs in the first place and a few select others, to join Foreth in surrounding the two large, glittering eggs that were undoubtedly gold.


Perhaps the more ruthless or competitive of them might be quietly elated at seeing one of their competition removed. No doubt there may have been more than one thought that Ysolde might have been something of a shoe-in and if anyone had placed any bets, they might be sorely disappointed to watch the bloodied, distraught girl be gently led away by the Healers. There would be no Hatching for her. At least not today.


For those that had been called up to join Foreth, the tension cranked up a notch. But downstairs, eggs were still hatching and when they weren’t ripping apart Candidates, they were still going on to find their new Riders exactly as they were meant to be. Things will still going… more or less… to plan. Even if some of the hatchlings were, thus far, just downright creepy.


The lighting in the Upper Caverns was even dimmer than it was for the Lower Caverns. The area was tiny compared to down below with just enough room for Foreth, the eggs, two ACMs, and the Candidates. If the whole of the Candidates had had to fit up there, they might have had trouble, but with only the select group of girls that had been largely called up before the first egg cracked, there was plenty of room.


Downstairs there was a lot going on, but it seemed like the gold eggs were taking their time. Every Once in a while one or the other would give a twitch. Or maybe that was just the imagination of the girls who wanted the gold eggs.


Time ticked by while the sounds downstairs swelled each time a new Impression occurred. Then things began to happen.


A claw punctured near the top of the Gilded Cage Egg and twisted in a half circle until the gold inside pushed the way out like stepping through a door. The gold who stepped out took a powerful but dainty step forward as she shed her cage. She stopped to pose regally. Everything about her screamed femininity, her body the shimmering color of a lady’s finest gold colored dress.


((Finally, I am free!)) she bugled.


(( And you are loud. )) The disgruntled voice from inside the First Temptation Egg seemed to bristle with annoyance for all that the egg had barely even begun to quiver. It had sat solemnly quiet and still throughout all of the events thus far with only the occasional shiver of movement. It seemed that for all intents and purposes, the occupant was in far less of a hurry than her sister to step out into the world. The shimmering shell, so similar in texture to densely packed, clay soil began to sway a little, calmly beginning to rock from side to side as faint lines began to appear over the surface. (( I hope you are not always this tiresomely noisy. )) There was a distinct note of snobbery in the soft but very female voice as the lines began to spread faster and faster over the shell’s surface.


As if someone had shattered a mirror and watched the pieces fall to the ground, all of a sudden the shell seemed to collapse, cascading in pieces around a slender gold hatchling whose hide seemed to shift and swirl with various shades of gold all blending into one. Casting her nose into the air, the hatchling sniffed deeply, her tongue flickering out as though she were tasting the very air itself. (( Hmmm…. )) She said thoughtfully. (( … I smell death on the air… ))


((I hope you’re not always so creepy,)) the first gold said, her nose in the air. ((Actually, I hope you are, because who would welcome a creepy gold? A refined, beautiful gold like me will be much more adored and sought out.))


Above, Foreth rumbled with satisfaction, clearly not upset by the already apparent rivalry appearing and with no Kassia to control her, she was still doing exactly what she wanted even if that meant being willing to encourage and stop the actions between the golds at whim.


(( Oh joy, a vacuous airhead. What a delight. )) The occupant of the now thoroughly destroyed First Temptation egg stretched languidly, her mind-voice seeming thoroughly bored with the whole thing. Again the tendrils of a scent caught her attention and she cautiously sniffed the air. (( You are foolish if you cannot sense it. Terrible things have already happened tonight. Things that cannot be undone. Pay a little more attention to things other than your own vanity, foolish child. )) That she was exactly the same age - if not hatched a few minutes later - seemed to completely escape Nimoth as she stretched, each moment filled with an easy and captivating grace. 


((Maybe I’d be more likely to listen to you if you focused on more than the macabre.)) The first gold flicked her tail dismissively. ((I do appreciate you admitting that you’re ugly. Beauty can be used so neatly in so many ways. An ugly gold could do no such thing. Even if you’re smart, if you’re ugly you’ll have to work harder to be taken seriously because who would want to look at you? What is your name anyway? I’m sure it’s as hideous as you are.))


The sonorous bugle that came from the second gold was perhaps as close to a laugh as anyone could imagine a dragon being capable of making. (( Oh you dear, dear thing. I am well aware of my own wondrous beauty. Aware that I am perfection cast from a mold that would make artists weep with joy for the sheer sight of me. )) And despite her bragging, if it was that, there was a truth to her words. As she moved on her feet, it was evident that there was a graceful elegance to her proportions, even as a newborn. She had none of the evident clumsiness that was often so common in hatchlings, moving instead with an easy fluidity. (( Unlike yourself however, I feel no need to proclaim my glory. For I am already aware of it. And that is why I do not need to kowtow to your foolish prattling. Things have happened that you should pay heed to. ))


Flicking her wings, wings that were streaks with bright gold atop deep and aging tones, the gold neatly tucked her limbs into a sitting position. (( Though I care little for the thoughts you might have of my name, I suppose you shall have it. Let it be branded into your silly head that you might remember the name Nimoth! )) And Nimoth, for that was indeed her name, snorted derisively at her golden sister, clearly disdainful of her vanity and silly pride.


The first gold just snickered and flicked her tail dismissively. ((I am easily more perfect than you, dear one, though I have little need to call names. That’s the sign of lesser intelligence.)) And she was no less elegant and beautiful, her elegance and beauty just leant itself to more of a femininity than her sister. Foreth had done a good job, at least as far as looks went, with both young golds. ((And look at you posing as much as I do. You just sit like a common green instead of walking like me.))

To demonstrate, the slightly older gold sauntered across the sands, the meager light flashing across her golden baby body. She didn’t even bother to look back as the other gold proclaimed her name. ((Nimoth? A perfectly boring and ugly name, but it’s befitting of a younger, lesser gold. Not like Andorath which is befitting of an older, smart, more beautiful gold. But I will give you a gift. The gift of thinking you are anywhere near my equal.))


(( Mhmm. Whatever you say. )) There was a placid amusement to Nimoth’s voice as if to suggest that she wasn’t remotely interested in the opinions of her sister. And she wasn’t. Even fresh from her egg, Nimoth was already comfortably self-assured and did not need to proclaim it. Instead her quiet confidence radiated from her like a blazing aura and instead she cast her whirling gaze to her mother sitting high above them. (( Where are the others? I sense that there are more than us. But they are not here. Why is that? )) 


As far as Nimoth was concerned, her foolish sister could goad her all she liked. But she knew that there was something important happening. She could sense it all around her but could not quite fathom it.


((I don’t need more,)) Andorath replied. ((I’m good enough. I don’t know why I have to deal with you though.))

It was a puzzle, though Andorath didn’t want to admit it. She liked puzzles, but she didn’t like most dragons, she knew that already. Her sisters (not her golden brat of a sibling), she liked, but she knew instinctively that she wouldn’t like most of the other dragons so she wasn’t sure she wanted to solve the puzzle.


She looked over at the Candidates. ((Is that it? There should be more of those white things.)) She wasn’t sure how she knew that, but she did. She craned her back, way back, to see Foreth’s head. ((Are these all the white ones? Did the rest die? Is that why the Golden Brat over there is insisting that there was death?))


((No,)) Foreth rumbled with amusement. ((Those are the ones you pick from. Mine and I chose them specifically for you.))


Nimoth looked about her, large eyes taking in the darkness that touched the corners and gave the room creeping shadows. For some reason, the darkness pleased her greatly, even if she wasn’t sure why. Still carefully sitting, looking for all the world like the feline statues that graced mantles around Pern, the gold appeared to be contemplative. When her mother spoke, her whirling eyes flickered towards the group of gathered girls and she inspected them for several long moments before huffing and flicking her head away in disgust. They seemed incredibly boring. And nervous. She could sense it coming off them in waves. 


(( How did you chose them? )) She asked of Foreth imperiously. (( Is that all we have to choose from? What if we don’t like any of them? )) The choices seemed… well, very limited. Nimoth inspected the small gaggle of girls and seemed somewhat irritated, as if the very fact that a choice had been made on her behalf seemed to irk her somehow. She wanted to make her own decisions! And on top of all of that, she just couldn’t shake the feeling of something terrible having happened. Was it something that happened today? Something before? Nimoth was convinced that she could feel the echoes of terror all about her and it concerned her, concerned as well to some degree that her vain, foolish sister couldn’t appreciate that. (( Where are the rest of us? )) she insisted again, noting that her question had been ignored in favour of her sister’s own.


((You will choose from these,)) Foreth growled. It wasn’t a compulsion, but there was anger there that she was being questioned. If they didn’t like them, fine. But not the questioning. ((These are the ones that were the best. The others were not worthy of you. Pick someone else if you want, but they’ll be inferior.)) And Foreth might always think of either of them as inferior, especially the rude one, if they chose otherwise.


((There is a puzzle here,)) Andorath said, sniffing and looking around. The death was getting more to her than she wanted her annoying sister to know. ((I will worry about what has happened elsewhere once I have figured it out. The world is good up here. I have time to solve this puzzle and then I can deal with what has happened before. We need to know why the thing happened to something that happened before we can deal with it because we can not stop it now. I want to open the box before me and then I will know everything because it will tell me everything I need to know. Whether it’s good or not.))


Andorath got up and started with what was meant to be a pace, but was far too elegant than that. ((If you really cared, brat, you would solve the puzzle with me so we can hurry this up.))


Nimoth huffed, flexing and remantling her wings as she peered at her sister. (( And if you weren’t as childish as to resort to petty name calling, I might want to help you. If anyone is behaving like a brat, it is yourself. )) The slim gold hatchling scrutinised the group of girls carefully. They seemed frightfully… well… dull. And again she turned to her mother, her mind-voice more puzzled than challenging or argumentative.


(( But how did you know that these might be the best for me? You did not know me when you decided. So how did you know what was best? )) If anything, Nimoth was a little peeved that someone had dared to presume her best interests without knowing her at all. Why, that was a completely illogical structure on which to base a decision, not all the information was available! A small sliver of rebelliousness made her want to pointedly go in search of something else, something that she had found for herself and had not been chosen on her behalf. But… it was cosy up here. And for the most part, it did feel safe. Ish. The hatchling continued to scrutinise the group. She could sense the tense anticipation around them and for some reason, that seemed to irritate her further. How dare they wait and presume she would want anything to do with them! She flicked her head up and away, pointedly turning her gaze away. (( If they are what has been chosen, that still doesn’t mean they have the right to deserve me. Look at them just standing there. Quivering in the dark like insects waiting for the killing blow to come! )) And the haughty little creature flicked her head all the higher, her blended gold hide shimmering in the faint light of the glows.


((Like I need your help,)) Andorath said with a derisive snort. ((I think I’ll find out the answers to this on my own.)) She walked toward the assembled girls. ((None of these seem like an interesting enough puzzle to me.)) She craned her head up at Foreth. ((I want my own puzzles.))


((These are the ones you’ll get,)) Foreth growled, not liking being talked back to by a Hatchling the size of a claw. ((You’ll like it or you can go back in your egg and I’ll find a different gold Hatchling. You two have already given me enough trouble.))


Andorath cocked her head. ((I hear more somewhere else, maybe we could...)), she added as  she turned toward the stairs leading down and ran right into a golden paw. ((Oooof.))


Tired of having her questions ignored by her mother and aggravated by her childish sister, Nimoth snorted in annoyance, rustling her wings and lashing her tail. Imperiously she looked about her, craning her delicately proportioned head this way and that as she looked. Suddenly this little nook that had seemed quite comforting and cosy at first, suddenly seemed so terribly small. And the gaggle of white things staring nervously at her hardly seemed interesting at all! Well… maybe one or two did… sort of… but even so! Nimoth knew deep in her bones that she was destined for terribly important things, things that would be set in motion from the moment she stepped from her egg.


With whirling eyes, she watched with keen interest as her sister, as annoying as she was, made a sudden dart for a small stairway she hadn’t noticed before. Ah hah. Now there could be an idea. She didn’t want to choose from quivering white shapes that had been picked without knowing her! She wanted something… something else! Something SHE had found and deemed worthy, regardless of what anyone else thought. If she found it for herself, it would be worthy no matter what. 


As Andorath slid to a halt, Nimoth suddenly darted to the side in a vain bid to sidestep Foreth’s massive paw and slither down the steps. If she was determined, she was sure she could do it. Then they would see she bowed to no one


Except Foreth. Who trapped her with a carefully placed paw like a cage.


((Oh no you don’t,)) Foreth said. ((You stay here. You listen or you won’t get out of here until you Impress.)) She was getting sick of the golds acting like...golds. They were still meant to be under her paw, literally and figuratively. They had a very long time until they were anywhere near having the power that Foreth did. The only reason they didn’t get the smack down was that they were babies. And admittedly doing baby stuff.


((Ha!)) Andorath said, because she was not captured. She couldn’t get over the paw and leg either, but that wasn’t the point. ((Once I open my puzzle, the world will be mine. I will cause it all.))


((You both stop being brats or you can both sit under my paw,)) Foreth warned, lowering her head to the ground so that they could see her annoyed eyes whirling, though they had to crane their heads up a way to do so. ((Can you two both behave or are we going to be here a while?))


Caught in her unexpected prison so soon after escaping her first, Nimoth huffed and she puffed and in another story, she might have blown the Weyr down. Instead, she nudged and she batted but it was quite clear that the giant claws weren’t going anywhere.


(( Fine. )) 


It was the sulkiest acquiescence that could be imagined and if looks could kill, both Foreth and Andorath might have been reduced to piles of steaming ash. Nimoth was not impressed that her plans had been thwarted. But then, if she played along just enough, maybe she would get what she wanted after all. Which was… hmm. She wasn’t sure. But it felt ever so important. That was interesting. And somewhat unexpected. It felt like a whisper. Like it had been quietly in the background just waiting to be noticed. The sensation intrigued her. 


(( I can choose whichever I like, but it must be one of them? )) She asked, cocking her head towards the white robed Candidates. Now there was just a hint of curiosity there.


In her own cage, Andorath knew how beautiful she was. It wasn’t vanity. It was truth, although she was happy to play the vain card if it was necessary. Unfortunately, her beauty was going to do nothing to get her dam to listen to her. Time to use her brains, which she conveniently hid unless she needed them. People and other dragons might get easily manipulated by beauty and walk right into her paw.


She sat back down, letting her thoughts rush through her head. ((Perhaps we can take a look at what you have to show us and if we don’t find what we’re looking for here, you will let me go look for it elsewhere. I could bring it back to br...Nimoth. I promise to solve this puzzle.))


Foreth lifted her head again and considered. ((Fine, you look for what is here first. Then I will bring you more to look at. It’s too dangerous for you to leave here without what you’re looking for.))


She lifted her paw off of Andorath only. ((You start looking first.))


Reluctantly, Nimoth had to admit that was a smart move on her sister’s behalf. Not that she would ever tell her. Very well, if she had to act like she was at least doing what she was “supposed” to be, it would be her very best performance. Pressing her face to the digits that confined her, Nimoth looked at the group over with an air of great scrutiny. Not that one. Definitely not that one. Hmm, that one sort of looked a little interesting. In a boring sort of way. Hmm. A spark of an idea.


(( Oh sister, mine… )) she cooed sweetly to Andorath. (( … Why don’t you look at that one? The one with the red top to its head. Why, I think it flatters your beautiful hide most impressively… )) She could play on her sister’s vanity and pride if she had to, who cared if the foolish creature didn’t like her decision as she jutted her nose towards Shalia. The quicker she did whatever it was she had to do, the quicker she would be out of there!


Andorath didn’t like that her sister was giving her suggestions. Just to be contrary she walked back and forth with a good distance between her and the girls.


((Not you. Not You. Not you.)) To her annoyance, she kept eyeing the red haired girl. There was something interesting there.


Yes...something very interesting near there. The feeling grew and grew.


((You may look now,)) Foreth said in unfortunate timing.


Andorath took off full speed at the red haired girl.


As her cage was “opened”, Nimoth shot out like a stone from a sling, shaking out her wings and lashing her tail. Her gnawing irritation was growing because she realised that she was suddenly feeling incredibly impatient about something. Impatient about the need to FIND something. It was determined and hot, threading through her and it caused the tempestuous gold to huff and throw her head about as though irritated by invisible flies. How infuriating! Spotting her sister, Nimoth darted along the Sands, not at all perturbed by the usual clumsiness of hatchlings which seemed remiss in her altogether.


It was like a sensation of hot and cold. Cooler as she moved one way and hotter as she moved another. Important. Like a secret sign telling her which way to go. Her gold body undulated smoothly as she darted towards Shalia. Perhaps it was a little bit of spite, perhaps she wanted to ruffle her sister’s proverbial feathers. But she wanted… she wanted… Skidding to a halt, Nimoth inspected the small group of girls, Shalia at the forefront. Yes, something in this vicinity. She felt as though she were tingling all over as her muzzle thrust forward, sniffing the air. But then, she jumped back as if startled and hissed, her tiny teeth bared as she lowered her head at Shalia.


(( Why is this one here?! )) Her voice seemed filled with fury as she fixed the Candidate with whirling, angry eyes. (( This one shouldn’t be here, she is CLAIMED! )) Nimoth’s whole body seemed aquiver with anger. How dare this white thing trick her into thinking she was important! Recklessly, Nimoth lashed out with a clawed foot, not caring if it came into contact or if it didn’t. All she knew was that this… this… imposter shouldn’t be here!


((She does not solve the puzzle!)) Andorath agreed, her own ire rising. She was a bit ‘softer’ than her sister, if either dragon could be considered ‘soft’, but not by much. This one was tricking them. Andorath had felt something open, almost like something opening in her heart that would be all the world to her and maybe all the world of the Weyr some day. But this wasn’t it.


She bugled. A little baby bugle with a beautiful voice, but one that promised power with time. ((Why are you pretending to be the answer to the PUZZLE?)) Andorath demanded, snapping at the air in front of her and then running at Shalia. She knocked the Candidate right over Nimoth and there was a sickening crack as the Candidate landed.


As the Candidate toppled over her, Nimoth jostled furiously, bucking her back to rid herself of the “imposter” and reckless to the part she might play in any injury that might be incurred. If asked, no doubt she would claim that was entirely Shalia’s own fault for being somewhere she shouldn’t have been at all. Even as the girl hit the ground, Nimoth’s head whipped around as she hissed threateningly at poor Shalia. (( Serves you right! Now get out! Get out now! )) Still prickling with the strange anticipation, Nimoth flicked her head back, fixing her eyes on the strange white shapes in front of her. The strange sensation was still all about her, a feeling that felt as though it made the air crackle and pop.


Nimoth looked all about her as though determined to find the source. Shalia was rapidly forgotten about as she stalked forward, head thrust high. Whatever it was, she wanted it now. And she knew that she could have whatever she wanted. 


Shalia was already forgotten to Andorath. She had bigger puzzles to solve, not why the red haired girl was in her way and not what had happened to her. The answer to the puzzle was near. Very, very near.


She ruffled her wings and lashed her tail in frustration. She needed to find the answer and she needed to find it NOW! Whatever it was, was behind the red haired girl and so, so close.


She felt something...that direction. She took off in the direction of two girls. It was over there, whatever it was!


The boiling urgency was making Nimoth more and more impatient. The longer she waited, the more it seemed to bubble and surge inside of her. She didn’t know what the feeling was. All that she knew was that it was something… important. Not just important, but most of all it was important to her. The churning hunger in her belly warred with the strange emotion, one that she couldn’t name. All she knew was that she had to follow it. But follow it where? Her head weaved and bobbed as she sniffed this way and that, as if she could tell what it was by scent alone. But no, no that didn’t seem to be it at all!


Reluctantly, Nimoth had to admit that whatever it was, it was somewhere in the same direction that her infuriating sister was headed and… Something shifted. Something inside. With a trumpeting bugle, Nimoth shot forward, her whirled eyes a furious crimson. (( Get away from her! )) she exclaimed, charging forward with all her might. Whatever it was, she was determined that Andorath wouldn’t take it from her!


She’d found it. Found her! She just needed to get to her! Andorath was jubilant.


Then out of the corner of her eye she saw Nimoth charging at her. No way was she going to let the other gold take Her away from her. She spun around and dodged, snapping with sharp teeth and slashing viciously as she went. Sharing wasn’t in her vocabulary and she sure wasn’t sharing now. ((CALYSE IS MINE!)) she bugled at the top of her lungs and instead of the beautiful sound from before this one was a piercing shriek of fury.


Gone was languorous, graceful movement. This was a race. A race for the prize she realised she had been seeking from the moment she had left her shell. A prize far beyond petty sisters and obstructive mothers, a prize that was the whole world. Her whole world. As the gold dragonet barrelled forward, she was filled with the singular and pressing desire to claim that which was hers all along. If Candidates got in the way, she certainly didn’t care. If there were scored legs and nipped ankles to make them move, she cared even less. With a hissing snarl of anger, Nimoth lashed back at the flying claws of her sister that had already nicked her beautiful golden hide more than once. She wouldn’t be beaten by this… upstart, this vain and petty fool who spoke nonsense of puzzles. Teeth gnashed and clacked together as her claws flew towards her sister. 


All that mattered was… There. There she was. Right in front of her like the most beautiful thing she had ever seen. Hungry red eyes shifted into glorious, rainbow incandescence as the whirling fury came to a sudden and abrupt stop.


(( Calyse?! I do not care for such a name. It is a name that means nothing to me. I have found my Mendl. For she is mine and no one else’s! No one shall take her from me, least of all you! )) 


At Nimoth’s sudden stop and words, Andorath got one more swipe in and then stopped fighting. She realized that the other dragon wanted nothing to do with the girl that was the best puzzle in the world. Her eyes whirling her own rainbow, she got up and ran to Calyse. She stopped in front of her and the world opened up to her.


((Calyse, you are mine. The world is a puzzle, but we will take it on together and conquer it.))


And just like that, despite the injuries along the way, the Weyr’s newest two golds Impressed and were ready to make their mark on the world. There were only a few more eggs to Hatch and Impress and then Foreth could relax.


 


   

Dragonet - Andorath: If there was ever a gold that could be considered perfectly feminine, Andorath is it. Every bit of her is refined and female from her delicate muzzle and head knots to her long, elegantly long wings, to her tail. Even her coloring is reminiscent of the delicate, shimmering gold of of a Lady Holder's most exquisite finery draped over her large, but not massive body. Foreth was built for power. Andorath was built for beauty and grace.


But don't mistake, underneath all that femininity is its own muscle and power and danger. Feminine and beautiful doesn't mean weak or complacent. Far from it. Andorath has has a brain and she knows when to show it and when to use that beauty to bedazzle instead. She has a fondness for gifts, but they often have drawbacks when given.


She also has a very strong preference for the company of women and green dragons, seeing males as only a means to an end to get things. As a Weyrling, she'll deign to give attention to the males only so that she can get things that she likes, not really enjoy them socially. Her rider and the AWLM will have to watch that she doesn't manipulate them into doing things they shouldn't be doing by her wiles. Same for the greens, but at least she'll enjoy spending time with them socially as well. As for other golds, they are rivals to be put in their place or ignored. At best, she'll listen to the Senior Queen, but otherwise she can't see why any of the other golds are considered better than her.


She's going to need a strong lifemate, as all golds should have, lest she start to twist the people and dragons around her as playthings. Andorath will likely have a close bond to her lifemate, but there is a risk of a lot of fighting if the rider doesn't get control fast. Andorath isn't likely to be a possessive gold, but she does have a strong-will and will exert it when it feels necessary.




Re: Hatching - Come to Me atten: Girls Who Saw the Gold Eggs #HatchingForeth2020

TrueTricia
 
Edited

Wycker wasn't sure what to think.  On the one hand, this round of Candidacy had been like no other.  Between the Weyrwoman's favortism, to the Hatching Caverns collapsing and the destruction of eggs, to the late night humms that broke the evening.  Dressed in white, she looked out into the Stands for T'quinn, before trying to find Leo among the others dressed in white.  When their eyes met, she smiled at him.  It was still complicated between them, but she wasn't focusing on that for this Hatching.  She found Ysolde and gave her friend an encouraging smile, before finding Calyse and moving to stand beside her.  As they walked onto the Sands, Wycker looked around.  She still wasn't sure what she was doing here, in the Weyr.  She felt the draw, felt the pull of a higher purpose, but she struggled to figure out if it was her Craft as a Harper, or this fanciful desire to be a Rider.  She didn't understand her reasons, and it made her struggle more than she liked.  

But the choice was no longer hers.  Tonight, something else would decide for her.  And if, like last time, she was left alone in a white robe, then perhaps the choice would be hers again.  She didn't bother looking for her parents in the Stands; she knew they wouldn't be there.  She'd heard almost nothing from them since coming to the Weyr, and she didn't expect to anytime soon.

And then there was no time for further contemplation as the eggs began to Hatch...


Hatching - A Splash of Darkness #HatchingForeth2020

sailyn2
 

The night’s rain had left many puddles around the Hatching Grounds, and one surrounded the Wrapped in Weeds egg. If one didn’t know better, they’d think that weeds were growing up from the puddle and holding onto the egg. However, this illusion was shattered along with the egg, and a tiny blue pony--dragon--tumbled out.


Pelkith shook himself and glanced around the area, wading through the water which he had hatched in. {{So, what is this place, and what is there to do?}} he asked whoever could be listening.


The Deep Blue Egg was smashed open a moment later. Only there was something wrong. Instead of a head, there were dark blue flailing legs and a tail. They moved such that it almost looked like there were too many limbs attached to the body underneath. Eventually the egg fell to its side and out spilled a perfectly normal dragon. He was chubby of body, but langly in legs and wings. 


((That didn’t seem right,)) he said, shaking himself off. Only to fall into one of the puddles with the vigorous movement. ((Oooo, I like this.)) He began splashing the water everywhere.


Some of that water splashed over to Pelkith’s puddle, letting him know that his puddle wasn’t the only one there. The world was so much larger than he first thought. That made sense; this little world-puddle of his really wasn’t all that big.


{{Hey, how big is your world?}} he called over to the other like him. But different. {{Mine’s pretty small. I need to find something bigger.}}


Kraketh looked around. ((Not too big. We need to find a bigger one. How about we go this way?)) He didn’t wait to hear the reply. He walked off a bit awkwardly, his limbs seeming too long for his body to use efficiently.


Pelkith trotted after him, shaking the hair out of his eyes. The fact that he had no hair didn’t deter him, it just felt like something he should do.  


{{This is an awfully sandy place,}} he noted. {{Not a decent waterhole to be found.}} He hoped that Kraketh could find something, maybe his eyesight was better. Pelkith couldn’t see much in the dark. 


((We just have to keep looking.)) They came to the edge of the light from the glows. Beyond that was only dark, made worse by the shadow of the big male next to them. ((What about that shadowy place? We could look there.))


Pelkith shook his head, and made a noise suspiciously like a runner’s whinney. {{Sounds good to me.}} He ambled into the darker area and stopped to let his eyes adjust to the dark.  


{{There!}} he said, and walked faster towards the water. This puddle was easily three times the size of their original ones. He took a flying jump and landed in the middle, splashing water all around. {{This is wonderful,}} he said, spreading his wings to buoy himself up. {{You need to try it.}}


((No fair!)) Kraketh ran into the water, wings outstretched. No one watching would have been able to see much, but the puddle was enough for a little bit of swimming and the sound of their splashing. In the darkness he moved through the water and he was a lot more agile in the water than on land.


{{ I didn’t take all the water. I’m small,}} Pelkith said and attempted a backfloat. Dragons don’t backfloat and instead he ended up tumbling head over end in the water. He came up sputtering. 


{{Bad water!}} he said, hitting it with a wing, succeeding only in splashing Kraketh. 


He floated for a few minutes, but started to feel strange. {{Do you feel like something’s missing?}} he asked.


((Hey!)) Kraketh splashed back. He huffed. ((I don’t know if anything is missing, but I do know you need more splashing.)) He climbed back out of the water and then flung himself into it. He misjudged and ended up crashing into Pelkith.


{{Oof!}} Pelkith said, falling backwards and going under again. This time he had enough warning to hold his breath, so he wasn’t sputtering when he came back up.  Instead he had a mouth full of water which he blew in a stream at Kraketh. {{What did you do that for?}} he said, though he very well knew why.


((Because it’s fun!)) Kraketh didn’t seem upset by the water shot at him. Instead he made a gleeful trumpet and splashed back at Pelkith.


Pelkith ducked the splash, then splashed Kraketh back. It was fun, he had to admit. {{Wheeeee,}} he said, jumping up and down in the water. But the jumping didn’t do a whole lot. The other dragon jumping in the water seemed to be the better way to go.  


{{We need something to play with in here,}} he said, then spied a curved piece of eggshell against the edge of the puddle. He put it on the water, and it floated.  {{Hey, look at that!}} he said gleefully.


((A toy!))  Kraketh bugled again and splashed after it. He got to it and splashed it back in Pelkith’s direction so that it rushed towards the other dragon.


Pelkith splashed it back to Kraketh, and they both splashed it back and forth until Pelkith got bored. He wasn’t bored with the game with just the only one toy. {{We need more of these,}} he said. {{We could have a whole bunch of these in a...a...float-illa.}}


((Let’s go look for more toys.)) Kraketh got out of the water and shook himself off like a dog. A spray of water went everywhere. Then he started off, his eyes on the Sands for more things like the eggshell they’d found.


Pelkith joined him, but where they were at there were no good pieces of egg. He also didn’t realize they were heading the wrong way, but there were some interesting things the way they were heading.  {{Look, there are some things that may help us find more toys. And smell something really yummy.}} His stomach rumbled and he sat back. 


{{Kraketh, I think something’s wrong. My stomach is making weird noises.}}


Kraketh’s stomach also rumbled. ((Maybe we need to find a way to fix our stomachs instead.))


Pelkith sniffed the air again, and started to follow his nose. {{This way.}} He headed towards the candidates. {{~~Leila~~ can you help me stop this rumbling? And then get some toys so we can play in the water with Kraketh and His?}}


Kraketh followed, but didn’t have as easy of luck. He went from Candidate to Candidate, rubbing against them and getting their robes wet. ((Are you going to help me?)) he asked one but moved on when there was no response.


He continued to ask the question until he stopped in front of another Candidate. He bugled in triumph. ((MINE! You’re my ~~Iridan~.))


Two more Candidates made their connections and the world was good.


Dragonet - Pelkith: Sliding from his egg, Pelkith's colouring is both inconspicuous and strangely alluring all in one go. His hide, a dark myriad of blues, seems to swirl and shift, something that will seem all the more obvious when he is freshly oiled. Especially distinctive are the long "strands" of bright blue that seem to tumble down his neck like a runner's mane.


Somewhat diminutive for a blue, Pelkith is definitely on the smaller side, but somehow it just... works. His most unusual feature is the fact his head seems longer and more angular than most other dragons. The Beastcrafters will quietly mutter that if they didn't know better, Pelkith was part runner with his tapered face and broad brow. He will always have a tendency to look a little skinny, something that will worry the Weyrlingmasters at first until they realise that's just the way he is because his appetite is certainly voracious.


It's easy to overlook Pelkith. He's certainly not the loudest voice in the crowd, nor will he go out of his way to draw attention to himself. But people can't help but find themselves wandering his way. There's just something about him. Ironically, it's this trait that will see him with exceptional potential as a Search Dragon as he gets older as he isn't afraid of loudly declaring who he feels is most worthy of being carried away by him.

Dragonet - Kraketh: Kraketh comes out of his shelf all legs and wings flailing. This dark blue Hatchling is a bit chubby in his body, but has long, thin legs and unusually large wings. He's awkward on the ground, but in the air and in the water he's very agile.


Kraketh is another dragon that loves the water. He'll spend most of his time in there and his favorite thing to do is to try to sneak up on unsuspecting victims and drag them under to dunk them or splash water all over them. He also loves fish. Unfortunately, they don't love him. They cause him to belch, sometimes bringing the fish right back up. But he still loves them and will take any chance he gets to go fishing.


A dramatic dragon, Kraketh likes to wave those ungangly long front legs and wings as he expresses himself or tells long, involved, often boring stories. Anyone too close is likely to get injured, so his lifemate will soon learn to stay well back at these times.




Re: Hatching - Broken is the Night #HatchingForeth2020

Amy Frazey
 

Almira had joined the other gold hopefuls up in the cavern where Foreth was guarding the two precious eggs, and was watching them with rapt attention, waiting with crossed fingers and bated breath.

But it wasn't one of those gorgeous golds that was to be hers. No, the voice, meant only for her to hear, came from below. A voice that sounded so angry that it frightened Almira, almost as much as it its overjoyed her.

Almira was wide eyed as she turned away from the gold eggs, stepping out of the smaller cavern to look down at the main Hatching, taking place on the dark sands below. Down there, something now held her complete attention. That voice, it urged her to go down the darkly lit steps. Love, it said. It -he- had love and rage. Somehow, Almira knew it was a he, and she went down the dark stairs as quickly as she dared.

And there, at the bottom, there he was. Her hatchling. A beautiful blue face, rainbow facets dancing in his eyes.

Almira blinked away tears of joy as she knelt in front of the blue hatchling, holding her arms out to gather him in. "And what is your name, my precious boy?" It didn't matter in the least that she hadn't Impressed a gold. Or that the blue hatchling looked like a lopsided patchwork quilt. Not after hearing that voice in her mind.

((I am Prometh. The first and only. And you are my only, Almira.))

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