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Winter is in full swing as the Northwest reaches the middle stages of the cold month, and Dalibor, taking full advantage of a crackdust filled break in Threadfall, is back at it again. Delving into the Southern ice and snow, they have paired with Grove Weyr to fully explore the lands they only slightly uncovered the previous turn during the Jungle Expedition. This, however, will not be a warm and relaxing waltz through the woods; although was it ever that to begin with?
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 Endless, AU:14 {Keth's First Flight}
Lee
 Posted: May 5 2016, 09:27 AM
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The summer sun was scorching.

Maybe not to most, but Temurshivi’s skin still shrank from the heat after all these turns, and she found refuge in the cool, dry caverns of the Records room, for all that that…thing was there. Fen, the Western feline who had taken residence shortly after she had, for the intent of exterminating vermin, eyed her with disinterest while she frowned at him. No sooner, though, had she set her focus to muddling through the words on the hide than…

Ah.

Abruptly she stood up, and with some silent apology to the Harper who would surely scold her later, she left the hides where she had laid them down, hurrying up the hall to her weyr. Keth would wait, she knew, but the urgency was unmistakable, and as unforgivable a sin as the Harper would no doubt find taking things without putting them back, hosting a Flight in such a place would surely be more grievous. Not to mention the security breach that would be. She moved fluidly, managing a slightly strained smile at anyone who happened to cross her path, though fewer sought her out than did they Jali and Rayna. It didn’t bother Temurshivi; she too trusted the older women more than herself, and preferred listening to participating anyway. Most days when she wasn’t in the records room or endless, endless meetings, she was in the lower caverns, bottling herbs and listening to chatter, or on the docks of Western, loading and unloading boats, listening.

Keth, however, was apparently ready to shift them from the shadows.

She reached her weyr, breath quiet despite the hastiness with which she drew it in.

Keth waited.

Are we in agreement, my Temurshivi?

There was only one eye staring at her, luminous and large—larger than Shivi, even if she stretched her fingers to their greatest lengt—for the other had been taken by Threadfall. What remained was red, and, mixed with the golden glow of her hide, the colors reflected oddly onto Shivi’s white hair and pale skin. It gave the impression, the junior weyrwoman thought oddly, of being on fire.

“Yes.” She breathed. There would be those who objected, she supposed. They would argue it was backwards. That those Keth would dismiss were the most worthy, by virtue of their previous accomplishments, but…she understood what Keth wanted, for herself, for Dalibor. Unceremoniously, Keth turned, with unusual speed for the laidback queen, left the ledge and was upon the first herdbeast before Shivi’s feet could reach the space she had occupied. Shivi’s own stomach screamed with hunger, and she pitched, slightly, off-balance from the sensation of having extra limbs, but she caught the side of the wall and steadied herself, breathing already hoarse. We can’t, blood only, she didn’t know which of them thought it. She wanted it, the soft, tender belly of the slaughtered herdbeast. She could taste it, succulent. What was the harm—The littles, Shivi latched onto, hands wringing the post she’d grasped for purchase. She remembered being small, and hungry. Secure your own stomach first, then the children, that was the rule in the Wastes, because even if you saved them, if they could not save themselves after it did them no good for you to go under. The ice of her home burned as badly as Keth’s heat, and her head yanked, to the neck, and Shivi’s hands went to her lips, where the blood dribbled down muzzle and was felt on skin as translucent as icy glass. A second one. Easier, this time. The belly no longer held appeal by the third. It was heavy.

If you have rank already, The words were a force, Temurshivi felt them pour from her own lips even as they reached into the minds that were willing to receive, burnished, molten gold—lovely to look at but scorching to feel, and her wrists pressed to her temples with the heat of it, suffocating to a girl from the Wastes—inexorable but slow. Woman and gold continued, Then I advise you, do not tax your strength. My claws will not strike you from the skies should you try, but you have already been granted platform for your voice, She roared, or Temurshivi did, and its echoing bellow vibrated against the rock as Keth leapt from it, wingbeats taking her up and over the edge of the bowl in a breath, and despite the bellow of sound the molten voice was as smooth and controlled as it had been before it, I should like, this first time, to hear from those that do not. Speak, it was not an order, she would not demand anyone do so, but it certainly would be the most direct way to gain her attention in her present mood, and it poured to the blues, the purples, the burgundies, the browns, those large enough but rarely listened to, and the kings were not excluded, but nor were they sought, and their tales would need to be great indeed to entice her now, Tell me of your Pern.

A great sweep of her wings arced into a bank, and she began to circle. Again, and again, around the Weyr, rising occasionally and falling at times, but in endless sweeps of circles. A savvy suitor, or perhaps one that lacked the stamina typically required in a queen flight, could sit, wait, conserve their strength. She showed no signs of leaving the arc of her path, though an attempt to question the path of the massive queen—as long and large as the senior Couineth—would be ill-met. The gleam in her remaining eye made that clear enough.
^
Sari
 Posted: May 5 2016, 02:42 PM
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Kozameth heard the call, but he only lifted his head and watched, eyes whirling more slowly than usual as he considered the matter at hand. He could feel C'sen pausing in his industry over a report to prod him, and there was a hint of concern there. This was the second time that Kozameth had not been clear in his desire to chase from the start, or so his remembered. The Iron didn't keep count on such matters. He kept his council as the youngest queen of their Weyr finished blooding and made for taking off.

Finally he made his decision, and dropped form his ledge, but even still C'sen was confused. Kozameth didn't feel the same way he usually did when he took flight, there was desire yes, but it wasn't the predominant sense from his Iron, rather there was irritation, suspicion, and a possessiveness that didn't feel like it had to do with the mating of the matter. In fact, C'sen wasn't even sure he'd need to stop what he was doing to see if his Weyrmate was available, but maybe that would change as the flight went on. He'd often experienced a delay in getting 'on board' with the whole flight thing. Somehow though, he doubted it was that, and considered calling his Iron back, but was at a loss of whether he should do so. It wasn't something he recalled being touched on during weyrlinghood.

Kozameth bugled a challenge, not to Keth, but to the suitors that might arrive, regardless of their color. The Iron couldn't reason out the difference in his behavior; he'd come to protect and watch over Keth. Why he felt this need there was no knowing. Whether it was because she had been his clutchmate, or simply because the Iron would have felt so inclined towards any queen for her maiden flight, where it was more likely some might think to pressure or physically challenge her. His wings beat hard, and he boldly took the place he wanted, behind her, to her right, as if in formation. Whether the snort he issued was heard to drown out by the winds blasting along their sides he couldn't tell, but there was something else at play in this difference in him. His want to protect hardly accounted for his lack of desire to be chosen, as dragons didn't tend to care much about familial bonds in these matters.

~I do not come to catch~ He stated flatly, hints of his irritation possibly making it through, if the way his wings pointedly battered the air around them as if to punish it even as he used it to propel forward. The young King had had his fill of females that demanded words; always it was words. Hard work, actions, behaviors they saw in the males made no difference, the enthusiasm and skills in the skies were never requested or considered. Always it was which drakes could flatter them, or amuse them, the chatty and the gossiping, those that could put of false fronts had the advantage. Kozameth had had enough, he was not in the mood to speak; he was not in the mood to play games. He certainly was not in the mood to have his status lessened; he was no bronze but he had his limits. The snapping of his jaw at the rise in emotion in him was loud in his own ears. He flew to protect, and because it was his right and duty to do so as a King.

His whirling eyes were sharp and red, watching nearly any male that joined with suspicion, studying him closely, minding the way he flew and his presumptions. Perhaps Baihujinth and Keukorimath would come, they were a good pair he would not need to be wary of. Philoloth was another he knew would behave himself, along with a handful of fighters. They weren't likely to be subjected to his scrutiny. Though his eyes and flight didn't change, somewhere in the great hulk of a King, there was a ping of disappointment. Laeth probably wouldn't chase, especially not a queen. It would have been good to have his friend flying with him though. It would have given him a pleasant reason to be in the skies.
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Raining
 Posted: May 5 2016, 04:45 PM
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Roiath watched from his place on his ledge, watched the young queen bleed her kills with a dark ruby gaze. He had already made his choice to chase, as he did every time a Queen rose. Though he never meant to feel so involved as it was more of a show of support than to actually catch her.

Da'on was at his desk in his weyr looking over reports as well, just before his shift was to start in the Infirmary. Though as soon as his Blue caught sight of Keth, he could feel Roi's intentions and he tossed an exasperated look over his shoulder. Why must you bother trying? Roiath ignored him at first as paced along the ledge, waiting for her to finish bleeding her beasts. You can take a break, and return to it after.

That's not my point. You are no King, my heart.


Keth's call came loud and clear and Da'on groaned, "oh for Faranth's sake." Roiath's red-eyed look towards his rider was rather smug. Shall I take you down to Ketserututh's? Between with you. He snipped but he rose from his chair and let his blue take him across the 'bowl to his fiance, to whom he greeted with equal exasperation. "This is what happens when I try to get tedious work out of the way.." he sighed. But the serious facade didn't last long, never did around his loves, especially through Flightlust.

All the while he watched Keth make her seemingly endless circles around the bowl. Now he could go up to meet her and follow in a lazy pattern, but... perhaps in an effort to keep up with her large wingbeats he'd run out of energy before the Flight could really take off. So he kicked off from the cyan's ledge up to the top of the highest wall and stood proudly, with his tail lashing eagerly. He will wait for her to choose a direction, and then he would take wing. Sure it made him look lax and arrogant perhaps... but it would look a little sad if he had to drop early because he circled the bowl with her. Kozameth was regarded coolly, his aggressive take on this Flight was noted. It clearly told him 'don't be an idiot', and when was Roiath ever one?

Her demanded query was thought about.

A Pern where one could strive to be what they wished, regardless of birthplace, heart's desire, or status in the world. Where one would never have to question whether they can or cannot. Perhaps this wasn't for him, but Da'on's inner thoughts were just as important to him, especially when such questions have come to light recently... regardless of his attitude towards it. Roiath's muscles were coiled, ready to take wing after her.

^
RhiaBlack
 Posted: May 5 2016, 06:52 PM
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Baihujinth's eyes waxed crimson, but the Iron made no desire to leave his ledge. Z'dyn sat idly at his low-slung table, propped up against the cushions and stretched out among them as he toyed with his Mark. It was rolled across his knuckles, and though his hands were in motion, his eyes only shifted towards his King as Baihujinth briefly flickered with life just long enough to offer a low-tone, ground-rumbling growl. Keukorimath lay beside him, the Brown curled up underneath Baihujinth's wing.

Io'tez lay behind his husband, gingerly toying with the immense scale of Z'dyn's mane of pinky-thick braids. The Igen native studied the rising Junior Queen curiously, before he slid both hands down Z'dyn's shoulders, across his chest, and up under his shirt to lay both palms against the washboard length of Z'dyn's rock-solid torso.

"Gonna send 'im up, love?"

The briefest quirk of the Wingleader's head. A soft incline, indicative of it being the Iron's choice, if he wished to chase. Keukorimath was obviously not interested nor inclined; the Brown hadn't moved a muscle otherwise. Io'tez lifted a brow. It appeared that both males were serious, when they'd stated they were done chasing. Baihujinth maintained only his obligation to follow Couineth for the promise made by His to P'ryt, but otherwise the Iron appeared completely unaffected by the glowing sun sailing over the Weyr.

"He ain't one't talks. She's lookin' fer conversations an' such, both Mine'n Yers ain't the sort."

Io'tez tilted his hat back, fingers lacing down to slide against Z'dyn's belt and curl around it. He held his husband's waistband, watching curiously.

"Who ya think she's gonna pick?"

Z'dyn shrugged, the Mark still rolling across his knuckles, as he continued to watch Keth in all her glory.

O'men was waiting when Da'on arrived; already, the other Journeyman had stripped himself down to his sleeping pants, and nothing else. His bed was turned down, and the glows had largely been covered, leaving the shadows to stretch across the weyr beyond where the light from day reached. It cast his bed in a comfortable state of dusk, shaded from sun and cooler than the temperature outside.

One arm slipped around his beloved, and he drew Da'on against him with his other hand threading into the back of his fiance's pants, to grab a handful of his favorite attribute and hoist him up against his hips with the intention of carrying him to bed. Of course, O'men fully expected that actually making it there was half the battle; Da'on was exasperatingly attractive, and the Cyanrider often had every intention of getting his hands on his companion and now long-time lover as quickly as possible.

Lips silenced the complaint in much the same fashion. O'men wasn't about to hear him complain, and he kept him shushed until they made it - barely - to the sheets. Da'on was tossed unceremoniously, and with considerable strength, back-first. Before the hammock could even stop swaying, O'men climbed aboard, and hooked his fingers into the linen and furs to regard his other half with a measure of admiration that was in no way, shape or form, even remotely hidden from his eyes or his face.

"It'll show you, now, won't it. No more complaints, or I'll be forced to shush you, and...wait...no, please, keep complaining..."

Lips captured Da'on's in earnest, and the sheets were haphazardly yanked over them as O'men snickered sinfully.

N'tharon peered curiously from where he lingered in his hammock, watching the youngest of the Queens take flight. Her first, if he remembered correctly. Sintharith was interested; though the Black said nothing, he'd gotten to his paws and padded out towards his ledge to watch. Nel could feel the surge of need, watched his bonded's eyes wax purple. Without a sound, Sintharith dropped from the edge, leaving N'tharon to slip the box of semi-precious stones and the wire he was working with down to the floor. Deft, calloused fingers eased the lid shut, and he felt the flurry of movement from his trio of smaller creatures, little more than three pairs of yellow eyes in the dark alcove above his bed. Acetone, Slag and Mig shifted in their respective places, as N'tharon slid silently into the sheets. He wasn't sure where Fyris and L'nor were; more than likely, dealing with the twins. It left him alone, and he wasn't entirely opposed.

Sintharith glided briefly, before hovering in the midst of Keth's circle. He said nothing; the smallest of the Fighters, he knew better than to ever assume she would choose him, or even one of his color. He was simply curious, and looking for a means and reason to stretch his wings. After a moment, he took up the chase in kind.

Ain't it somethin', havin' a Queen askin' for our opinion, for once? Jayneth retorted to the risen Gold as he dropped from his own ledge, leaving Qui'jin standing there to observe, unkempt from where he'd been repotting some of his beloved plants. Thinkin' you're the first one, Keth. But you're not gonna be like the rest of 'em, are you? When we're not what you want anymore, we're just a pair of wings and another body to fight the Fall? Are we really gonna matter to you, when it's over?

Jayneth's wings, their slight hue change made stronger by his presence in the sun, beat casually as he pursued her. She was pretty. She was so pretty, even with one eye, he didn't care. If anything, that made him respect her more. She was tough.

My Pern ain't pretty. It's rough, it's tough, it's ugly and bloody and worth every red Mark we've paid in blood and ichor. Might be peaceful-like now, but I got the feelin' it's not gonna be much longer. You're gonna need somebody can stand claw to claw with shellin' Thread and give this shardin' place a backbone, away from all them too-big, metalheaded blowhards. They don't wanna listen to us, and it's gonna be their downfall, Keth. We got a lot of work to do, don't matter who wins or loses. I'm here to win, though. Ain't gonna lie, I think you're prettier'n...prettier'n...well...one of Mine's flower-type things, look, I ain't the shardin' best at pretty words and such, but figure it's worth a try.


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Raining
 Posted: May 7 2016, 07:59 PM
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Two more dragons joined the Flight, or at least one of them was in the air with her -- the other, a lighter hued Blue darted up to cling to the top of the weyrs (although he kept a distance from the darker blue already there.) The first one, dropped His off on Hers' ledge and joined Keth in her circling.

Fortath joined the Flight out of simple curiosity, due to her question. He was sort of baffled that she'd ask at all. No one really cared about their opinion before. The Fighters and non Kings were there to bulk up the wings and to protect the larger less agile drakes during Fall. Since when did they have a say with a Queen. I don't have an answer for you just yet, he responded honestly, I've never thought about it, to be honest. Maybe you will have an answer before you choose your suitor. Or maybe I'll end up showing you instead. He may not have the stamina of Kings, but he's been in the Upper Wings his entire career. He wasn't slow by any means. If he couldn't come up with an answer for her... well... that was that. Fortath was still... flattered that she asked them, that she called out to the ones who had no right being in a Queen's Flight. Either way you deserve an answer, my lady. I hope you find one who harbors similar intentions.

No flirting, no fake nonsense Fort? I'm impressed.
Its her Maiden Flight, and she's a Queen. I figured she deserved some honesty. Will you be all right?
I'll be fine, you focus on her. Show her what blues are made of!


The Blue cracked a grin and watched carefully, poised and ready to leap after in a moments notice.

Mountebath wheeled after her, taking the inner circle to her circling... but he didn't get in her way. My Pern is... your Pern he responded to her simply. I know, I know. 'Thats the easy answer Mountebath' But I promise you its not. You seem different. Right now you don't seem to be looking for the biggest and shiniest of them all... and if I may be serious for just one moment. That's what drew me and Mine to you and Yours. Even if you are still looking for the biggest baddest of us all... your consideration is.. well its nice. Your vision of Pern could be my vision of Pern. Is all I meant. If that's an easy way out of saying something along the lines of equality then so be it!

Ri'card stepped into the Jr. Weyrwoman's weyr and bent a little at the waist as he cracked a smile at her. "My lady," he greeted her simply, formally... but mingling with the Flightlust in his eyes... there was also a genuine curiosity. He had never spoken to the youngest Weyrwoman personally and... well who was the woman bonded to the Queen who preferred to listen to the "lessers".

^
Rowana
 Posted: May 9 2016, 07:31 PM
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Teraath had been long waiting for this day. Finally a lady worthy of his glorious attentions. He stood on his ledge and gave a long stretched. Worriedly, he looked back over his hide with narrowed eyes. Tor'n! My hide is not shiny enough! he cried urgently.

Tor'n looked over from where he had been having a nice, relaxing nap. He yawned. 'It's fine, Teraath,' he answered patiently. 'Besides, do you want to be late to the chase?' That got Teraath's attention. Ah! I can not keep the lady waiting for my presence! He agreed with a toothy grin. Surely she was looking for a male as handsome as he to appear and rescue her!

Turning, Teraath took to the sky. He banked around to follow Keth, taking the time to let the sun glint off his hide dramatically. Though even he might admit that it paled in comparison to Keth's sunny beauty. I, Teraath, see Pern as glorious as myself, he declared confidently. Was he vain? Maybe. But Tor'n had also taught him to look beyond the superficial when it really mattered. I shall protected all with my strength and intelligence! What he really wanted was to protect everyone from the pain of death and loss, but he was slowly started to realize that that wasn't always going to be possible. Together, we can make Pern great! True not all are as handsome and as smart as I, but we all have skills to lend each other. We fight together to keep Pern safe!

Waking up completely now, Tor'n realized who it was Teraath was actually chasing as his confidence and lust flowed into the rider's mind. While Tor'n had reacted with awkward nervousness or reserved shyness around Shivi in the past, with Teraath's control, he was swave and confident. He arrived at her weyr with a swanky walk and cocky smile. Still, he was patient. The choice, after all, was Shivi and Keth's.

~

Xerocleth watched as Keth blooded her kills, his claws clenching and unclenching with tension. He was not one to choose to chase a female lightly. Indeed, his first chase had been for another queen. It took much to impress the fierce male. Was it because of his ambition for power? Perhaps. Yet it was also for the challenge. A chase worthy of his skill and attentions. Foolishly chasing every female who rose was a waste of time and precious energy.

Xerocleth stretched his wings as Keth's words reached the weyr. She wanted one without rank? An odd request. Surely she would wanted to strongest male to produce strong offspring. Xerocleth considered for a moment without moving. He and Arlya were wingseconds, yet he did not want to let this one pass by on a technicality like that. Besides, someone had to keep order if Keth was going to let any and all dragons chase her. His sister could be far too forgiving sometimes.

Xerocleth pushed off, winging strongly into the air. He drew in behind Keth and most of her chasers, watching like a hawk for trouble. Many had arrived already; fighters, kings, and sub-kings alike. It would be an interesting contest. Xerocleth knew he was no longer the handsomest of dragons. His front was marred by threadscore scarring and a longer scar across one forleg from a rogue bronze. Not that he cared. They were marks of honor as far as he was concerned, gained in defense of his weyr and his comrades.

Pretty words, my queen, Xerocleth spoke only to Keth in a low, growling voice. It was not with anger though, only the coldness that comes from one who has already seen more than enough death for a life time. Pern will need more than pretty words to lead. It will need strength and order, the kind that comes from within. Those who desire power must earn our trust through their own work and deeds. Xerocleth flexed his claws even as his wings eased into an easy rhythm. He knew of what he spoke. Hadn't he and Arlya worked hard to get as far as they had? Yet the barriers of his size and color prevented them from rising further. Still, he would also concede that many at Dalibor had earned his respect and loyalty. Did he have the strength to lead over them? Perhaps. Time would only tell.

Without leadership there will be chaos. Without cooperation there will be anarchy. We must have both to build Pern strong. Dissent breeds distrust, and distrust breeds division and rebellion. Unity is not always the easy path, but it is the path we must take. For strength, for order, and for Pern.

Arlya was more prepared for Xerocleth's control this time. As much as it bothered her to allow another control, they had been through too much for her not to trust him. She made her way to Shivi's weyr. She didn't great the queenrider with flirting, though, or even a polite greeting. Like Xerocleth, she came mostly to see to the order of things. She leaned with crossed arms next to the door, eyes narrow and alert. The other males had best behave in the presence of their queen.
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Tigersilk
 Posted: May 12 2016, 07:52 AM
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A certain Bronze watched from his ledge as Keth begin her maiden Flight. He, of course, had known for quite some time that it was coming, knowing all the signs by heart, having Chased after virtually every glowing female the Weyr had living here over the last decade. On this day, though, he was lying on his ledge, watching the young Queen call her suitors, watching with a mixture of pride and concern.

Pride in that his eldest daughter was coming into her own as a power, concern that she was playing with social forces that would destroy them all if not properly...controlled might not be the right word for it, but he couldn't think of a better one right then. Nevertheless, he crooned his support for the young Gold as she gathered her suitors to her side.

"Your daughter plays a dangerous game here, Zu," the human resting against the shiny olive green dragon said evenly. He was watching the proceedings while holding a large bowl of fresh popcorn in his lap, a light snack to tide him over until dinner. It somehow seemed appropriate under the circumstances. "Do you think she knows what all she's flirting with there?"

Zeuth thought for a second. I think she does, MyBoy. More so than her clutchbrother has shown so far. He and His have a strong tendency to neither hear nor listen when people tell them things that don't fit their worldview. A major blindspot the young Ironpair needed to work on if they truly had any ambitions to lead the world to a better tomorrow.

"Uhmm hmmm," G'len murmured his agreement to that assessment. He'd ask about it further later, after this Flight was decided. "What is the reaction of the suitors so far to being asked that question?" Given that it was rare to non-existent for ranking dragons as a whole to ask the fighters their opinions on anything. That had to be a shock of some type for them, and the other rankers of the Weyr.

Surprise, mostly. Some have never thought about that before, and need time to find the words to answer her with. Others have given decent answers to her. Perhaps this action of hers will bear good fruit for the Weyr as a whole. Maybe. The older drake had mixed feelings about upseting the status quo in this manner. The bad might outweigh the good being sought, after all, and disrupt the social unity needed to survive Fall.

"Let's see if she truly will accept a fighter mate first, before seeing how the other dragons take her ideas now." Rebels were great heroes to have in the occasional ballad, but not always in real life. They tended to die sooner than the rest. For a reason.

***************

Szolath, like many other males in the Weyr, had taken note of the young Queen's increasing glow, informing his rider of what was coming. While M'teng normally had little desire for Flights and the attendant lust (really, normal sexual desire was something he was glad not to experience in his day-to-day life; too much bother for too little gain, in his mind), he was wanting to make sure Shivi was handling her first Flight all right. The first time or two was always the hardest, until the rider learned the tricks to keeping themselves mentally separate from their dragons.

It was with that idea in mind that the lithe Black dropped his rider off at the youngest Weyrwoman's ledge before taking his place on the rim with a few of the other potential suitors. M'teng, who was actually clean for once during a Flight - he'd stayed out of the Forges the last couple of days for that reason - bowed to the pale blonde at the center of attention. "Shivi," he addressed her somewhat formally, as was due her rank over his own, "are you handling things it alright?" meaning the Lust and the increased mental sensitivities that came with it.

Szolath, meanwhile, looked over his potential rivals, taking notes of their respective attitudes towards the Queen's unusual request. Especially that Iron fellow who was determined to be a bodyguard to Keth, but otherwise was clearly not happy to be up there now. Boy needed to be taken down a few pegs with that attitude, in his estimation. Who would get the honor to do so, and at what time, was yet to be determined. It might not be today, after all. Just soon.

My Pern is the two sides of a coin, the Black purred into Keth's mind. One a place of creating beautiful things from the hottest fires, showing her an image of His creating one of his glass pieces from liquified sands, while the other is a realm of shadows and night, and those who choose to live there, showing an image of the Bitran gambling dens His had been a part of in his youth. Carefully edited to hide what precisely His had done there; the Leadership didn't need to know those things at this time, or maybe ever. Ignorance in such things was sometimes the best path forward for a leader, he'd found.

Which of these Perns intrest you the most?
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Ives
 Posted: May 12 2016, 01:14 PM
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It was not the golden queen herself that drew the attention of the minute gray, the stark contrast in size between the two was enough to keep him from bounding after her like a fool. No gold would ever choose a gray as anything more than a wingrider - that is how he knew Keth away from as just being the junior queen in the Weyr. She was peculiar but in an interesting way, a way that currently allowed him a moment to offer up his own thoughts that until now were only humored by T'vis. A creeping desire was present but common sense was enough to keep the gray firmly planted on his ledge, unfortunately leaving his rider caught firmly somewhere in the realm of being lustful with no outlet. T'vis was hardly about to run off to Temurshivi's weyr as if he had any right to be there.

It is too bad that Revinth's never convinced you to move weyrs. There would be a tunnel you could use then. Reith offered little help in the state his rider was in, even if it was he who caused it. Instead he focused on the gold's question and once the others were done talking he offered his own reply.

There is not a person alive of age who is not bound to a dragon, or a wher. There is no senseless killing of eggs, of dragons, of whers, of other people. There is order. There is knowledge. There is the Bond which lifts humans up from what they once were to what they can be. It is a glorious vision to behold, one I plan to see through to the end.

"Y-you know she ain't gonna come pick you up even if she likes what you are saying." T'vis half-scolded the gray from inside his weyr, sweat beading up on his forehead. Reith had thus far had not allowed desire to cloud over his mind, but it was definitely there now even if he was acting calm as can be. A red ribbon of lust wove through T'vis' mind, toying with him as he laid there on his bed cursing the gray for having woken from his nap in the first place. Humor washed over the young man briefly and he laughed loudly until it passed - no humor of his own apparent as he glared daggers towards the ledge. And you expect me to just lay here like this until your mood passes?

Would you prefer I drop you off at Keth's weyr? Or perhaps... Revinth's? Humor laced through his words as the gray considered T'vis' own thoughts, buried as they were beneath his own. Lust continued to drip over the man's mind, coating his thoughts and feelings until they were no longer fully his own and more of what Reith desired than naught.

"Shard off." Rolling onto his stomach to bury his face among his pillows, immediately the movement was reversed as he realized his folly. On his back again he placed a pillow over his face and let out a strangled cry of frustration. This better be worth it to you.


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Boo
 Posted: May 14 2016, 01:57 AM
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Well it seemed as though they might soon have a full leadership team again. Rayna raised a hand to block the scorching sun and looked at the golden form of Keth take her leave of the bowl. She had called for those dragons who held no leadership. In a lot of ways, Keth was a dragon of the people, or at least in her personality. She seemed to believe strongly in the truth that every single person had a part to play. Rayna had not been one to think like that a long time ago but now, she saw this as a truth. For a moment longer she lingered, watching as dragon after dragon followed after their youngest queen.
It will be good.
Yes.

She looked now to the form of the Senior queen. Couineth's great head turning as she watched the dragons take off after Keth, both observing the actions of those affected by the queen's power.
Of all of us, she is the most likely.
For a moment the Weyrwoman pondered the statement, tapping her leg with her hand.
I could see it. I wonder, though, how people would take it?
For once we would not be the first. Annoying, if you ask me. I do so love the attention we get from the other Weyrs when we do something different.
I am not a huge fan.

By the close of the day, they would have a new Junior Weyrleader. Keth would hopefully choose someone suitable and, what was more, she would bring more eggs to the sands. Whers would be given double watch... It was needed now more than ever with Dalibor's thinned ranks.
Good luck Keth. Rayna thought and then turned towards the record room.


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Rii
 Posted: May 15 2016, 04:27 PM
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Keth calls. I'm going, Maeradith announced abruptly. Of all of them, perhaps she has the sense to see King material when it's offered. The brown waited only long enough to pick up his rider, bringing Elly to Shivi's weyr before lifting off into the sky, to hover and drift while Keth made her request.

It was not the first time he'd chased a queen, although it always seemed to end badly for him. The last time had seen his wing broken and the brown grounded until it had healed, and it had soured him to queenchasing for long enough that Laanasuth's flight had passed unchallenged. But it wasn't his way to let every opportunity pass him by. Upwards movement was his desire, even if it wasn't his rider's, and he would continue to try until he sickened of it.

Well, at least you won't get hurt while she's just circling, Maery, the brownrider offered silently as she lingered at the weyr's entrance. Probably. She hoped. The feeling of her dragon's pain and the fear of losing him to the fall had left its mark on the merry, happy-go-lucky Bitran, though she let no one see it. Perhaps if Dora had still wanted to spend her free time with her - but Dora didn't need her anymore. Elianne shrugged a little, going inside with a wave and a bit of a grin to the Junior Weyrwoman. No sense in dwelling on the gloomy bits when there was the potential for enjoyment to be had.

My Pern is a place of opportunity, Maeradith told the shining gold. A place where merit is recognized and ambition is not a sin, not something to be shamed or ridiculed. It is a place where persistence can be rewarded and traditions live on only when they serve a purpose to the good - when they are wings to lift us, instead of chains to hold us down. For once, he felt, he had as much of an advantage as any. Perhaps this time he would achieve his desire of rank. Of leadership.

Glory, I hope not. Elly's lips twisted in a wry smile, and she settled in to wait.


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Minute
 Posted: May 28 2016, 04:06 PM
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He felt it before he saw or heard it. Some may say that the pull of a rising queen was not one meant for blues, but it was one he had pursued once before. With this rising of the youngest queen, it was one he felt he might pursue once again. His mind reached out to his rider, running laps around the lake. Gentle now, for things would get intense soon enough. Kahrie. She stilled at the call of her name. It was faint, but already she could feel it, the faint tendrils of forming lust. It didn't take a genius to figure out what was going on. Who is it? The answer came just before a golden form took to the herdbeast pens. Keth.

Kahrie couldn't help but raise an eyebrow at that. Another queenflight? She didn't doubt he would chase Couineth when she rose, but Keth was another matter entirely. Yes, a queen had chosen a blue at another Weyr. That didn't mean that anything like that was going to happen here. Are you sure? Soon after her question came the call. For the ones who didn't already hold rank to speak. This gold seemed to want to know about her Weyr. Rather than looking for size and shine, she was looking for wisdom. At least, it looked like that so far. She wasn't going to bet on anything with golds.

Qilonth flexed his wings out on his ledge. He did not take off just yet, wanting to preserve his stamina for when it was truly needed. He did perch on the very edge of his ledge, clawing at the stone with eagerness to properly take off. I'm sure. If she was going to listen, then he and his rider had a lot to say. Kahrie only hesitated for a moment longer before nodding and heading off toward Temurshivi's weyr.

The blue reached out to that mind laying behind that glistening form. He allowed his touch to linger for a moment, to make her aware of his presence, before he began to speak. The Pern I see, the Pern I love, is one of duty. But more than that, it is one of forgiveness. He thought of his rider, of everyone who had helped her become the person she was today. Everyone has something they can do to help the world around them.But sometimes they stray off course instead of embracing their full potential. Some things... some things are truly horrible. He thought to the eggs killed by those fake candidates, the incident kept fresh in his mind by his rider. This Pern is marred by travesty, but it is not without hope. People you may not expect can become something great when given the chance. When people stray, sometimes a little guidance is needed to bring them back on path. That is what Dalibor should represent, I think. Guidance when needed and forgiveness when it may help. I have seen that through that, tragedy may be left behind and the Weyrs can protect Pern as they should.

He spoke from personal experience, but that did not mean that it would not ring true for others as well. What he spoke of was what he had seen from the dragons and people he looked up to the most. He could speak of war and rank and fighting, but nothing could compare to what could happen when you encouraged people to grow.

His desire to take flight grew when he felt his rider arrive at Temurshivi's weyr. She gave the Junior Weyrwoman a polite nod and lingered around the outskirts of the group of suitors. He waited a little while longer . It wasn't until it looked like Keth was beginning to rise out of the weyrbowl that he shot off his ledge. With a few powerful strokes of wide blue wings he joined the pack of suitors and let the chase begin.
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Azhdarchid
 Posted: May 28 2016, 09:15 PM
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[------------ NOTICE: Due to OOC factors, this Flight is postponed. The thread will be locked until other arrangements can be made. ICly assume the Flight has not happened yet. Most likely, when the Flight is restored, we will continue to use this thread but will give you a grace period to edit your posts or ask for them to be removed by PMing the staff. ------------]
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Azhdarchid
 Posted: Jun 18 2016, 07:35 PM
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[------------ NOTICE: This Flight has been reopened. It should now be considered as taking place in the Autumn season. Please let the staff know via PM if you would like your Chaser removed, otherwise all currently active Chasers are still considered active. ------------]
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Lee
 Posted: Jun 24 2016, 01:19 PM
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[[ooc: my apologies for the extended pause on this flight. Keth will pick her suitor in the next post, and I’ll be a little faster XD I’ll finish when the chasers have posted or the 30th, whichever comes sooner. If you didn’t post first time around and still want to, since this has been a weird flight schedule—again I am so sorry for that—I would be cool with that]]

Thank you, Kozameth, Despite the underlying current of heat, the molton flow of poured gold, there was warmth to the words. An active effort, on Keth’s part, to overcome the unfamiliar instinct. With a humorous nod to the tendency of their kind to ignore such things, she added with mischief, breathless from the other undercurrents, My dear brother. She swept her great wings, and though her focus ought to have been on her task, she heard the irritation. What bothers your mind, brother? She could listen, would listen. The red in her remaining eye warred with green. Mind over instinct. It was not so hard.

Or so she told herself. Temurshivi’s hands clenched and unclenched. She was not prone to wasted movements, far more inclined to remain utterly still. But it was like standing on an ice shelf that had given way. The instinct was to grab, flail, panic, be swamped by the snow, and she was doing her best to self-arrest. Keth wanted calm, she would be calm. They would fight it. Keth continued to circle in great arcs around the Weyrbowl, a sight for any on their ledge, her remaining eye on the Weyr inside. She was wearing her own strength, to give even chance.

A clever blue understood her intent, and settled himself on the edge, watching. She was not so in control of herself as she liked, to offer a croon, so it was a bugle, more of a shout of acknowledgement than her gentleness would prefer. A Pern where one could strive to be what they wished. And what do you and yours wish to be, Roiath? A bank, her great eye on his as she circled, And beyond you and yours. Who do you see that will be what they wish? It was not a strictly clear question, but it was not intended to be.

She did manage a croon for the kin that remained in their ledge, for the great iron and golden brown. She did not need them to follow her to acknowledge her gratitude to them. There were dragons in the Weyr whose accomplishments and dedication were unquestionable. She did believe that should be rewarded, acknowledged. But just once, this first time, she wanted to give someone who needed the little extra push the chance. Those who had proven themselves would contribute to Pern without her assistance. She wasn’t yet sure how to express this. But she could greet them, with the same humor she had offered the first iron. Sintharith’s curiosity was rewarded by Keth flying close enough to see him better, with the eye that remained, and in a nod to his dexterity in the sky, changing direction to circle the other direction. Now her remaining eye stretched out over the Pern that lay beyond the walls of the Weyrbowl.

She kept the direction, but turned her head thoughtfully as Jayneth spoke, slowing her circles as she considered. You see an honest Pern, she acknowledged, wistfulness in the tone. They always mattered. Already mattered. Keth had been making Shivi learn the names of every Weyr worker since she hatched, acknowledge each dragon’s interests in between endless meetings and record rooms dives. But saying so was a hollow offering. If Keth wanted them to know she believed each dragon mattered, she would have to show them, and that would take far more time than a slight. Her great golden tail curled slightly in the air, acknowledgement of the compliment that came from one she did not believe offered them freely, but asked, I want to listen. Others would too, she believed. Perhaps it simply hadn’t been made clear, The prettiness of words is not my interest, though I thank you for them. Tell me what you wish to be heard, Jayneth.
The air felt too cold, or Shivi was too warm. She kept wanting to close her eyes, but then she saw the sky—it was disorienting, losing the depth perception to gray haze. She opened them again. It felt like the fever, when she’d had the plague. All hot and cold and colored spots. Flights, Shivi filed away for posterity, are ridiculous.

She would be kind. There would be no ichor spilt from the sky she shared, but it felt like anger, the rising ride. Her wings were tiring, and it simmered in the bones and muscle that kept pumping. The gold shuddered. A light blue landed on the ledge. There is time, Fortath Keth mused quietly, warmly to the light colored blue who did not yet have an answer. An answer that has been considered well is bound to come with conviction. To wait for it is no hardship. If it does not come to you while I am in the sky, tell me another time.

She folded her wings, dropped, down, down, low enough to skim the water of the lake, before resuming her route up and around, around, around. A purple joined and she welcomed him. I crave equality, she told him privately. What does it look like to you, Mountebath? At times, it seemed extraordinarily simple. And at others, less so. One could not discount the tremendous contributions the shinier dragons made, just as protecting Pern would not be possible without the numbers and skill of her green and fighters. What did you do when skill separated? How did one equate a Harper and Smith?

Temurshivi made a soft sound, something of a gasp, as she was addressed. It was not quite surprise, but a muted form of it. She blinked several times in rapid succession, trying to see knots on the shoulder and not purple hide. He was the first to arrive. It was hard to remember being human, at the moment, but after a long moment of silence, spent trying to do just that, she murmured, “Hello, Ri’card.” They had not spoken, but Keth knew who he was and shared. Shivi said nothing else, but managed a brief, jerking gesture to indicate he was welcome to enter. She remained standing at the ledge, and willed her hands to be quiet.

Tor’n was met with a similarly simple greeting, “Hello, Tor’n.” This was his first flight, she knew for certain because of his graduation schedule. (Dimly, she realized it was technically hers as well, for all that she had been a substitute as others.) Were she not otherwise occupied, she may have attempted conversation, but she apologetically returned to her more comfortable silence. Bemused by the bronze king’s brazen confidence, Keth acknowledged, Your strength I have seen, Teraath. Tell me of your mind. How shall you protect Pern with it? How shall you organize our skills to come together?

A bright burgundy joined next, one who had already proven his determination. Aryla did not greet her, but that was a relief, almost, to the somewhat antisocial Jr Weyrwoman, and a troubled smile bespoke something of her relief at not having to try and remember speech before it smoothed into her more patently blank expression. She recognized the cold, it was as her Shivi was, and welcomed it with Xerocleth. And how will you encourage unity, Xerocleth? None agrees with you more than I that it is necessary. How do we bring it to our Weyr? To our Pern?

She could not spare words for her father, not now, after so many circles. This was no longer the beginning of her flight, but the immersive middle, and it took all she had to remain focused on patience. She knew he watched, and did so with affection that was returned.

Shivi’s eyes snapped open as she was addressed by her nickname. She hadn’t realized they’d been closed. Breathing was a bit more difficult. She licked her lips, which felt dry in the autumn air, before answering M’teng carefully. “I do not have a basis for comparison, to know if it could be handled better. It is…a lot.” She finished, finally. There were more descriptive options, but she could not get her head around them, and fell quiet again, slight incline of her head her thanks for his arrival. Szolath was the first to ask a question in return that she did not interpret as rhetorical, and delighted, she bugled, You said yourself they are the same, Szolath. I am interested in the coin itself, that two such sides can exist in the same time. I do wonder, are their other sides?

One of the smallest of the Weyr’s dragons bespoke, and Keth slowed her circling to listen. That was an interesting Pern. It was not one she immediately agreed with, but it was one of the most concretely visible worlds she had been presented with, and she had asked, and so would listen. It was important to get viewpoints other than her own—that was what she sought, in the sky, Tell me of your plans to bring such a world to pass.

As she had with her father, Keth knew others watched. Shivi too, craved the presence of her seniors, though simultaneously grateful for their willingness to let her do this on her own, as it must be done. The human half tried to remember that whomever they chose would come with a person, one they would have to deal with until Keth flew again, and not just her but Rayna and Jali and V’yeri and G’len.

How many people were in her weyr now? Shivi tried to count, but could not sustain the effort past an acknowledgement of what counting was. Elly had come too. The weyr really was too big for one person. But that was the problem when one’s dragon was the size of a respectable stack of boulders. “Come in as you please.” She managed, to Elianne, Kahrie, and any others she had failed to greet. An interesting answer, Maeradith. Tell me, which traditions do us good? And which do not? The which was not so important as the why that would follow, but the dragons of Dalibor were clever, she was sure he would know to give her this.

Temurshivi took a brief, stumbling step to the wall of her weyr, laying her hand against the cool stone, breath ragged and hoarse. She dearly wanted to sit down, clear her mind in some way, but that would not happen until it was over. Not much longer, oh, not much longer. Qilonth’s answer warmed her. She was quiet for some time before she bespoke the purple-y blue, Your answer is whole, Qilonth. And how do you look forward, and not merely back at what has happened?

She was getting frustrated. Shivi’s fingers ached, curled into fists, sharing the frustration. She had asked for words and gotten them, but none had been precisely what she sought. She did her best to school herself to patience. If so many had answered, it was she who was not clear. Plans, my friends. You have told me what you see, tell me now how you shall make it come to pass. A high-pitched, draconic chuckle followed, hoarse now with the effort of listening, waiting, when she wanted to snap free. And if I like your plans for Pern, I shall help you bring them to pass. Come now, this is the last. For the barest of seconds, she hovered in the air, in the space between wingbeats, golden and shimmering, she turned her neck, wary of the wretched Autumn winds, and chose to fly with them, so that none who chased would risk being blown off course or strain themselves unnecessarily fighting them. It would be challenge enough to use them in their favor and not be swept up in their strength.

At last, her wings snapped open, unfurled to their full length, and she streaked to the northwest, the true chase begun.
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Minute
 Posted: Jun 24 2016, 06:57 PM
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Kahrie did not immediately engage with any of the others competing for the rank of Junior Weyrleader. Dark eyes scanned the room as she took in the faces of the others. So many people. Of these people, one of them would end up having a significant say in Weyr politics. Normally, she would count herself out. Not this time. Keth was flying laps around the weyrbowl and talking to her suitors. The fighters were getting as much attention as the larger colors. This time, it seemed like that may be facing something unprecedented in Dalibor's history. The bluerider sighed and allowed her eyes to flutter closed for a moment. It felt like the right time to say something along the lines of 'may the best dragon win', but it wasn't that kind of flight. This wasn't about bulk and brute strength.

She opened her eyes when she felt the queen's mind touch against her blue. Her response was encouraging as well as one that prompted thought. Already she could feel her mind floating farther and farther away, tangling with that of her dragon in the force of nature that was flight. Her consciousness remained in the room long enough to murmur, "alright then." Let this play out as it would.

Two minds became one and she saw the gold as if she was right there. Sight was important, but it was not all that there was. Now Keth called for plans. Qilonth did not answer right away. He would take a moment to think so he could provide her with a proper answer. Even if he didn't win this flight, this was a chance to make his opinions and goal known. In case she might approve of his plans, he would have to lay them out well so that they may be easily followed by actions. Claws unclenched from the stone and one massive flap of blue wings saw him rising off the ledge. A few more strokes and he was off, like the blue dust trailing a falling star.

His every movement was deliberate. It was not difficult to fly with the gentle path the lady had chosen, but there was thought in his motions none the less. He went fast, but not fast enough to wear himself out too quickly. Being the experienced flyer that he was, it did not take much to accomplish this. Most of his thoughts and emotions were poured into the response he gave the queen. Ah, but do we not need to look back to move forward? That is, after all, how we learn. Mistakes could be learned from and successes repeated and expanded on. I would like to help Pern learn. There are so many people who know little about so many things. Faraway lands, different cultures, and even the very function of Weyrs. For the Weyr to work better as a unit and as individuals, it is important to minimalize fear of the unknown. Steps should be taken to educate those who need or desire it, within Dalibor and in the territories it protects. It may be an endeavor that would be faced by our human partners, but I believe it is one that could lead to a greater peace and understanding. He knew there were those who were wary of Shivi because of where they came from. Perhaps she and others like her would face less of that if they simply understood.

Going forward, there are also bound to be times of loss and despair. I would like to see those treated with a firm, but forgiving, hand. Crimes that must be punished should be. However, we must also make an attempt to understand. To find out all that we can about situations instead of jumping to assumptions, panic, and hatred. Likewise, I think it would be wise to learn all that we can about threadfall itself. It is important to drill the wings and create new formations in case we face another heavy threadfall. However, attempts should also be made to figure out how it happened, if it may happen again, and if there is anything we can do to stop it. We should reach out to the holders. Many things that effect Dalibor have caused suffering for them as well. Plans of actions should be made to allow it to run more smoothly in a crisis. Dragons do not and should not rule the holds, but it is our job to protect them, be it from thread or whatever else may plague them. A failure to do so is a failure of our duty. They did not need more damage from thread or another iteration of the Western raid. This was especially important when one considered the fake candidates who had attacked Lanaasuth's clutch. That had been an attack on the Weyr, but a hold may very well be targeted next. I would have us learn from our past and use that knowledge to better do our duty, to those we serve and anyone else we may be able to help.
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Sari
 Posted: Jun 24 2016, 10:21 PM
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Very few of the males were spared his critical gaze, and a rumbled growl of warning. Roiath was one of the few, though he did get a pointed sniff instead. What did the blue understand of it? Kozameth could feel in his bones the call of old instincts, that unbeknownst to him spanned beyond the time when dragons flew the skies of Pern. He was a King, it was for him to protect the Weyr, all the smaller dragons, and the Queens. He could fly without worry or thought, but not Kozameth. Jayneth was another that he found more favorable; he was a good drake, something the Iron knew from sharing a Weyr, he even offered the burgundy an easy rumble. Whatever might come of a fighter being chosen, should that come to pass, right now, there was little room to think about such human concepts as Weyrleadership. Right now, there was only the flight. Xerocleth however, despite being a dragon they had flown with when young, earned a sharp snap of his jaws, more to offer further warning, rather than to threaten a bite.

It surprised the Iron when Keth reached out to him. He should have felt annoyance, he hadn't come to talk, but her voice helped to focus the impulses and thoughts that the Iron dwet in as he kept pace with her.

~Words are used to deceive and flatter Keth....~ In his pause he turned his head at the appearance of yet another dragon who was not known to him, to dish out his warnings in proper measure to this new comer as well. ~... you do not deserve attempts to fool you, or to have any try to force you. They will feel more able for your first ~ There was still irritation, the aggression of the flight and the want to protect her. ~nothing else matters~ That was that, whatever other displeasure Kozameth had, now was not the time. It was her flight, a Queen's flight, and the Queen's right to revel in her own beauty and enjoy this time that was only hers. Any other matters could be discussed between them at another time, if she were so inclined.

For now it was about the flight, and he would stay in these skies until he was no longer needed, just as he had stayed on the sands to watch over their clutchmates alongside her, until she had no longer needed him.
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Raining
 Posted: Jun 27 2016, 03:02 PM
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Roiath's tail twitched as she responded, and he clicked his teeth in thought. While His was busy, he did probe for an answer they both agreed on... and shuffled through His' memories and thoughts. What did he want? No... what did they want. Purpose was their original intention, as well as to rise as high as people in their pos... -dragons- in his position were allowed. What did they want?

Then it came to him, it was something he and His shared. Da'on through his Craft and Roiath's never ending support of that. To help, to make some sort of difference in this world. No matter how small, he offered in his regular short version manner. The next question had been given some careful consideration as well. They were hard questions. Forced one to look deeper into themselves, it was a good thing His was rather pensive... inwardly. Who do I see? Those without voices. Those whose wings have been clipped due to birth circumstances, or what lies in their heart. "Keroon clipped his wings". It was something that stuck out in Da'on's mind, because of who told him that and why... and perhaps because it was very poetic, the entirety of it. Ketserututh's helped Da'on stand on his feet, saved him from himself... but it was Bosk's that inspired him, pushed him further to be better. Those who influenced His, also influenced himself.

Keth's pattern shifted, and Roiath crouched in preparation as he considered her next interview question. Well... wasn't she incredibly "word" needy. Da'on, if one could believe it, was his anchor. Because during a Flight, all he wanted to do was chase, posture and prove he was strong, and agile, but Keth wished to hear words. The more reasonable part of him didn't mind, but instinct and the desire to mate wanted to overshadow that. Of course this required concentration from His as well... perhaps to O'men's dismay.

Roiath took off after her and let the wind carry him to the shining Gold. How do you give voice to those who have none? Yours' people, the cave dwelling people, those born Holdless, Drudges, servants, slaves, the common working folk? How do you erase hatred, prejudice, grudges and lifelong traditions? He retorted back to her, trying to keep his part brief. She was no doubt listening to all the others as well.

Da'on's lips hovered over his love's throat, as he tried to help his eager drake answer 'her majesty's' words. Most of those questions were his own, because the world did not change over night, over a couple of turns. Her new vision of Pern would take a long time... his would too. But of course... it wasn't him speaking... Roiath was. Yet... they shared all this wishful thinking but no one had to know that. It was horrifically out of reach, and hope was a dangerous tool. Change happened to be a vengeful beast, backed into a corner. When things were backed into a corner, they tended to fight back.

By listening to those who don't have a choice in what happens to their homes or Holds.. even regions. But what of equality? That... is a difficult road and it would take more than just one weyrleadership term to see all of that through. People hold their traditions and views close to their heart, no matter how quickly time threatens to change. Mine is no ambassador, but he tried to be for those labeled "Palefolk". They rejected him and others who tried to reach out. Roiath weaved around a couple of others as he used the wind to guide most of his path. Perseverance, and constantly breaking those old traditions and old out dated values. Much like you are doing now, by listening to dragons who have no place to discuss any different future.

Did he answer her question? Perhaps not.

Fortath was a lover, not a fighter. Okay he was also a Fighter but for Thread... He wasn't competitive by any means, and her questions did give him a lot to think about. The light colored blue took off with his "kin" as Keth chose her direction. The blue hummed and trilled as he used the wind to roll and twirl, dancing with the elements.

Although he didn't have an answer for her, not yet. This was something that he would need to bounce off of someone. A Queen during her Flight wasn't the most ideal someone, neither was His when he decided to chase. I think I would love to sit and chat with you about it someday, my lady of ladies. I would like to hear your version of Pern, I would like to see you work towards it. I may not be directly involved, but I can say that Mine and I will help anyway we can. Also Candidates because we have those too, if they want.

The blue's lips pulled into a grin, as he dove under Kozameth. He wasn't afraid of the Iron, because Forath's intentions were far from ill. For now I will follow until you choose. Backing out of the Flight, without actually backing out. Always the loyal supporter.

Al'dr had left the barracks at the start and took a walk into the Lower Caverns, to aimlessly walk through the dimly litted tunnels. Fortath wasn't as affected by this Flight as he was when he chased Gozukith... but a Queen's pull was hard to shake off. The Candidatemaster and the Blue had no intentions to "catch" the chatty queen... they had enough on their plates and he just got this job.

The purple laughed, like you're trying to start something new. Though I shouldn't laugh, it is kind of silly how a word as simple and appealing as Equality is tiptoed around and shunned because... well. Everyone has their reasons, even if they're wrong. Going in the direction of the wind gave his wings a bit of a break, as he was circling with her before she chose the smoother direction.

No offence, but you're asking us of our plans of our version of Pern... but what about your plans. Or is your plan as simple as helping out one of us? You are a Queen, it is always your word over ours. That is in our make-up, isn't it?

Mountebath...
WELL, its true! Besides, we're not here to win, right? Just to see.


Mountebath paused, I've been informed that i'm being rude. I'm sorry. But I like where this is heading, and I like where your headspace is. So my answer is still the same. My Pern, is your Pern, my plans are yours. Even Mine has been working to understand everything better, with an open mind. Funny how a "purple" was the gateway to that. He pulled his mind away from hers and cackled a bit. Even a Flight where there was a chance anyone could win... he couldn't remain serious.

But a smile touched his rider's lips, briefly. Although Ri'card had tried to heavily school that at the start... he wouldn't change a thing about his dragon now. The purple's rider gave Shivi her space as he stood among some of the others. Like Mountebath mentioned, he wasn't here for the weyrleadership, he was here because he was curious. He feared change, or he used to at least... Dalibor drove him away but... he eventually came back because he missed this dynamic Weyr.

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RhiaBlack
 Posted: Jun 27 2016, 06:49 PM
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Ain't about what I want, Jayneth responded with a bit of a kicked-puppy sense. He knew he wasn't the brightest of dragons, he never really had been - it was why he'd chosen Qui'jin. His Jin was his brains to the Burgundy's brawn, and in those moments the Farmcrafting Burgundyrider was too wrapped up in the wiles and needs of Flightlust to really offer much coherent thought. It's about what's best for the Weyr. Ultimately, ain't just one dragon's choice. Even whoever you're pickin' here today, they gotta work with the resta the Weyr's leaders. You, Laanasuth's an' her, Couineth's an' her, Zeuth's an' his. They gotta be able to handle everythin' happenin' around here. They gotta be able to shape up to everythin' comes with bein' a Weyrleader, an' I won't lie. Don't think I got it. Lotsa answers comin' outta here, loads better than I got to say. But I never was much good with words. Mine is, though. It ain't just about me, it's about Mine, too. It's about the ones bonded 'tween all of us. Ain't a one-dragon show. Never was, never will be.

He didn't figure she would choose him. There were plenty there who had given better answers. Jayneth had never taken himself for being in a leadership position, but that was okay. His Jin wasn't a spotlight sort of guy, either. It was all about working hard. Hard work, low profiles. Don't get noticed, don't get pointed out. But it was okay. He'd be sore about losing, he would, but life went on. She'd Rise again, sometime, and another would be chosen, probably. She was a Queen. He trusted her judgement.

I wanna come back.
No. It's disrespectful, Jayneth,
Qui'jin twisted in his furs, writhing with breathless abandon, trying not to simply find the first warm body he came across to soothe the anger, hunger, and need that saturated his body. You stay until the job's done.

Jayneth dropped back behind the other suitors. Much like Fortath - backing out, without backing out.

Sintharith's response was simple. The simplest among all those in the field of suitors, from a dragon who almost never spoke.

To matter. To be something bigger than the sum of a color. To show the ruling powers we are not incapable, or inadequate.

It wasn't hard to tell who was a Rider and who wasn't. Even in the low-lit darkness of the lower caverns, one didn't need knots to recognize faces. Who belonged, who didn't. He heard the footsteps before he smelled him, and the Blue's head lifted as His pulled from what his Blue caught scent of. The spiced scent of dragonhide, the lighter step of a smaller-statured form. Musk could hear the movements of those among the caverns, the whispers among Drudges and Weyrfolk that Keth had Risen. Her maiden flight. Names fluttered, whispered in the dark. Would this one be the next Junior Weyrleader? What of that one? This one?

One name had stuck out in their conversations, and Mutorin - clad only in his sleeping shirt and underclothes - lingered at his door to eavesdrop as they passed. It was daylight out. It wasn't yet time for him to be awake, or Musk for that matter, but excitement in the lower caverns had woken them both. Closer. Mutorin's head slid slightly around the corner of the doorway, the hide moved aside. Just enough to see who was coming, long enough to get a good look.

As Al'dr wandered past, Mutt's hand slipped out and seized him by the forearm. Diverted the Bluerider gently into his quarters, and slid the object of his affections with equal care and concern softly up against the interior wall. He smiled down at Fortath's bonded, the uncovered glow offering only the smallest of amber light to betray who it was the wanderer had been snared by.

"Looking for someone?" Mutt whispered with a smile, the edge of his nose brushing low against the Bluerider's. "An' here I was, about ta come ask ya if you'd do me a solid an' just come lay down with me....gets awful lonely, just me an' Musk...like havin' a partner or two, just ta sleep 'longside, love..."

He'd been forward enough. It was a matter of whether or not Al'dr wanted to stay; Mutorin wasn't the sort to take possession of anyone against their will. If the Candidatemaster wished to go, Mutt wasn't about to stand in the way. He murmured against the other man's ear.

"If you're na interested, just say so, aye? Don't wanna push ya none, you're wantin' me to leave ya be, now..."


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Rii
 Posted: Jun 27 2016, 07:41 PM
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Maeradith wasn't quick to answer. He was impetuous at times, he could be prideful, but dimglowed he wasn't. He could sense his rider's amusement at how the Flight progressed, and he wasn't sure if he was also amused, or a little frustrated. It's not that simple, Keth, he finally answered, his tone rather gentler than was his habit. It was some note from Elianne's mind that had reminded him of how much younger the golden queen was.

It's not a checklist, you see, where you cross off the bad ones and leave just the good. It's observation. It's listening, and watching, and seeing what comes out of each. For example - the Weyrs look to their irons and bronzes, golds and coppers for leadership amongst dragons. The whers don't tie themselves the same way, and yet they still have strong leadership, because they judge by merit, not by size. That's the first I would name. I will not cower and be denounced as a poor choice just because my hide isn't bronze, or because some other brown has been a poor choice before.

He soared higher, following Keth's aerial path. It's trial and error. It's saying I could be wrong - not that I think I am, right now - but trying anyway. Question not one tradition, but all of them. Discuss them, not just with me and you, but with many. Watch them. Weigh them. And when there's a change that seems like it might be for the better - we try and change them. We might fail. But, we might also succeed.

Elly ran a hand through her hair, grinning absently. She was possibly the only person here who would be completely undisappointed with a loss. Or, maybe there were others who were only here because their dragons wanted them here too, who knew. Either way, she'd be getting the same fun out of it.


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Zephyr
 Posted: Jun 29 2016, 03:23 AM
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K'ius had been gone. It hadn't been his idea completely, to go see his mother again, but he had to. She was in a terrible state, and there was no way he'd ever be able to forgive himself if she had died before he had had a chance to see her. Luckily, this time, his father seemed to have had a shred of mercy within him, and the purplerider had been able to gain access to his ailing mother. He knew there was something there...something he hadn't been able to see at first. It was no secret that Larius hated everyone. But Kiana...she was different. He had married her after all.

He loved her, even if he had never shown it. And she had wanted to see K'ius.

It was a glorious time. He'd spent a while with his mother, as much time as he could get away from the weyr. He told her about his new position, about Shobhaith (the purple had happily greeted the sick woman, and they spent long amounts of time deep in conversation, but she was too sick to actually meet the dragon, and Larius couldn't be budged by her insistent pleas to let her ride the purple, at least once), and secretly, he told his mother about Al'dr, the love of his life...the man who made him keep going when all he wanted to do was stop.

Larius wouldn't approve, he knew, so she promised to keep things quiet. As he left, he promised to bring his sister next time, but he knew, with regret tingling in his gut, that there likely wouldn't be a next time...and he should have been more insistent, but Mara was at Eastern now, and it would be difficult to get a message to her before...

His thoughts were trailing into very negative territory, so it was a good thing Shobhaith piped up when he did. Well...that was fun. Nice that your father wasn't a total sharding dimglow at last. K'ius agreed, though anger from what happened at their last meeting strained their bond a bit. It was the elephant in their metaphorical room, and K'ius wasn't about to mention the way he had to mentally hold the purple back from ripping into his father when the man had decided to get physical.

That wouldn't have helped anyone.

By the time they got to Dalibor proper, K'ius was deep in thought. Al'dr was the first person he wanted to see, but he also wanted to bathe. The trip had dirtied him physically and emotionally, and all he wanted was to zone out in a hot back and be alone for a while.

Of course that wouldn’t happen. Of sharding course.

He had as of yet been unaware of the stiffening in Shobhaith’s posture…too preoccupied with himself and his own thoughts to notice how the purple had trailed off on his own comment. And now he was unaware of the fact that the purple had stopped completely, and lust, uninvited, crept its way into K’ius’ gut, clouded his mind. This was not right…this was…”Sho?

His word was low, careful. Coming back to full consciousness, he gripped the purple’s spines until his knuckles were white. Shobhaith growled, the sound mentally and physically reverberating through the both of them. Keth has risen. I’ve been waiting. You shouldn’t have kept me away! The purple’s voice was fierce, uncharacteristically angry, but K’ius paid no heed to it. It was the lust, the way males knew they had to chase females…and K’ius was feeling it as the purple sped off.

He hadn’t enough time to gather himself, to insist something happen. Shobhaith was angry to have missed nearly all of Keth’s flight, and he wasn’t about to waste time dropping his rider off and risk missing all of it.

Sweet Keth… The purple trilled to the gold, and K’ius understood that the purple was intending to chase with him on his back. K’ius was negligible weight, on his back and in his head, so stunned was he at the sudden turn of events…but this wouldn’t be good for either of them, so the man had to tighten their bond. “Sho.” When the purple didn’t react right away, he tightened it further, threatening to stop the chase completely, even though he couldn’t. He pretended like he could. “Shobhaith.” And it was enough. The purple snarled, veering from his path of the chasers as he moved lower to the ground. K’ius unbuckled his harness as the dragon neared the ground and let himself drop to the ground once the purple was close enough. It was a bit too far and pain lanced up his leg as he attempted to land on his feet and instead fell to the ground in pain.

Oh faranth.” The kid muttered, holding his stomach and falling over onto his back. Maybe this was good. The pain would hopefully distract him from the lust, but it was rapidly coiling its way through his body as Shobhaith ascended into the sky, bugling towards Keth. Some part of him, before he closed his mind off to the world, realized that Fortath was chasing as well, and he greeted his friend warmly before he closed himself off to everything, focusing upon the brilliant, golden light in the sky.

I apologize for my lateness, my queen. I hope you don’t mind me joining. He joined the flight once most, brushing past Fortath before bursting forth. He had been flying for a long time, so even though he only just joined the flight, his wings were as worn as the rest. Wouldn’t it be nice… He mused as he flew. If color mattered not. If a dragon could rise and fall by merit of his or her personality…if his rider wasn’t bound to certain roles simply because of the color of the hide between their legs? It was something Shobhaith had wished for before his birth…when he was in the egg…listening to the mutterings of his sisters and brothers and the mind of his rider. The death of Datwith and D’ren had proved to him that size and strength and color weren’t everything. A mighty iron should have been able to fend off a red…but no. Every dragon has the same weakness. No matter his or her size. It’s a shame that that weakness might be weaker than the rest simply due to circumstance. He twisted as he chased her, satisfaction burning through his veins as he watched her. Regardless of who you choose, I know it will be the right choice. I have waited so long for a colorblind queen…one cared not for the invisible boundaries created by color but for the strength of character…in dragon and human. You will make Dalibor a better place, and I would be honored to have a spot in that new weyr.

Finally. After so long, Shobhaith had found his queen. His true queen. Keth wasn’t a whiny, spoiled brat like Couineth. She wasn’t as traditional as Callistath, but she was still a Dalibor born queen. She was what Shobhaith wanted in a queen and he would follow her to the ends of time…now and for all his years at Dalibor.
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Tigersilk
 Posted: Jun 29 2016, 10:45 PM
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Keth's happiness at his question made Szolath happy. After all, it wasn't every day that a small dragon like himself could make a Queen happy with his words. You ask a question that thoughtful humans and dragons have asked for countless generations before you, he purred into her mind thoughtfully. And yet none of them can give a better answer to that paradox than 'it exists'. Or else they do not understand their answers well enough to explain it to another. Hard to tell which it might be. Or if both reasons are true.

As the slippery Black thought about his next answer, the great golden Queen finally took off for the heights needed to safely fall with her chosen mate. Perhaps a coin is the wrong metaphor for a person, he finally replied to Keth as he followed her into the sky. Perhaps a die is better. People can have many sides, many faces to them, but never do they show all their sides to everyone. A leader shows his followers a hard, cold face when fighting Fall, then returns to his weyr and becomes a pile of goo when his young puppy comes to say hello. Both faces are the true face, but both cannot be displayed at once without causing diaster. At any rate, a mating Flight is not the best time for a a deep philosophical conversation either. Perhaps we can discuss these ideas later, when everyone is calmer?

Szolath stayed at the back of the pack of suitors, not because he didn't want to be chosen, but because his stamina was less than the larger beasts. Still, he was determined to stay until the end. My plans for making a better future are simple in the abstract. Discover what job each person, dragon, and wher is good at, and let them do it. People are happiest when doing work they enjoy doing. It keeps them out of trouble, and keeps them from plotting overthrows to gain what they need. He gave a mental chuckle. Of course, implementing such an idea without the interference of those who are powerful already, and would do anything to keep their power intact, is trickier. Rebels trying to change the status quo often die in those old ballads for a reason, yes?

M'teng, meanwhile, kept watch over Shivi, making sure she was all right, and that her suitors behaved themselves. "First time or two experiencing Flightlust is hard," he told her calmly. "Once the mind and body adjusts to it, it's not too awful bad. Just another annoying experience to shake up an otherwise decent day." He didn't know how much of his words she heard, but hopefully she heard enough to get her through it in one piece.

This post has been edited by Tigersilk: Jun 29 2016, 10:45 PM
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Rowana
 Posted: Jun 29 2016, 11:12 PM
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Teraath kept pace easily with the other dragons, but then this did not seem to be a test of speed or strength. He mostly ignored the others entirely, dropping into his own thoughts. He rarely showed this side often, but he was actually quite clever when he tried. Not that cleverness would win him many Chases, especially this one. Keth asked difficult questions, ones he thought Tor'n was better suited to answer. Then again, that's why he'd pick him wasn't it? If nothing else, he thought Tor'n would be good for Pern but he was too laid back to push for it himself. If that was the case, than Teraath would do that for him.

After some time to collect his thoughts an ideas, Teraath spoke again. He was quieter and more serious this time and he kept his words only for Keth. It was up to her what to do with them. He trusted her to protect Pern, whomever she chose. My Tor'n wishes to keep all safe. In Weyr, Hold, and beyond. For this, we became strong, but strength is not enough. The dangers of the enemy are too great for strength alone. He spoke not of the human enemy, but of Thread, having seen first hand how terrible and unpredictable it could get. The future is changing and we must change with it. If we work together with craftsman and holds, his voice became more distant as he thought and considered. It was a rather undragonlike habit, but Teraath had always be fascinated by the human art of invention. We could design new ways to engage our common enemy and keep all of Pern safe. He wasn't sure what those ways were right now.

He was a dragon, not a smith.

~

Xerocleth spared Kozameth a brief, glaring look. Did his brother want a fight? He wasn't afraid of him. Size wasn't everything and he would take on a dragon four times his size for the defense of his queen. But not today. He knew Kozameth would do nothing to threaten Keth or the other Dalibor dragons. He was a noble sort, not that Xerocleth cared for such things. Nobility only went so far in his eyes. Still, if his brother was concerned by his intentions, he needn't be. He was here to prove himself to his queen, not to anyone else. That she accepted his bid to Chase was enough. Now it was up to her to make the final choice.

Xerocleth considered the questions for a long moment. He'd already spoken more to someone besides Arlya than he'd done in almost his whole life time. Words were not his strong suite. He was a dragon of action. Words, he growled in annoyance, still speaking only to Keth. Promises. They are empty without the strength to uphold them. Yet would you become a tyrant for those promises? I believe you would not. Unity must come from example. Ask none to do what you would not do yourself. Give power to those who earn the trust of their peers. Listen to all who seek to give council. Respect will be earned and unity will come.

It would be hard. He and Arlya had learned as much. It was one thing to train hard, to be skilled, and to accept no failures. It was a completely different thing to listen, to understand, and to lead. In some ways, he was not sure they were ready. Compassion and sympathy were still new concepts to his Arlya, who kept far too much of herself hidden behind a mask of coldness. In the end, the choice was not his and he could do little more

The choice is yours, my queen, Xerocleth finished, his voice calmer and more determined. He was loyal to a fault, not matter what. Woe to anyone who betrayed his queen. Whoever Keth chose had better live up to their promises or else. My strength will always be yours. Choose wisely. For us. And for Pern.
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Lee
 Posted: Jul 2 2016, 07:24 AM
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Keth did not speak again for some time. She kept an eye—literally, for she only had one—to the clouds, shifting as though restless, though in truth it was to avoid the great, robust gusts of autumn wind. Another time, perhaps, with shining hides of bronze and iron behind her, she would have tested them with the winds, but not now. Below their path the forests rippled in waves like a great sea. As instinct clawed with reason the former won, and the queen turned North, to the Wastes, and Shivi’s head dipped in longing.

What did she want?

No, that was selfish.

What did the Weyr need?

A better question, though one difficult to answer, as she had only her own opinions – but that was why she had asked. A contrast, she supposed. The Weyr needed contrast, from what had been and what was. From herself. A complement, rather than one who complimented.

But who could provide it?

With a gentle croon, Keth dismissed the colors that had won before this time. They spoke well for themselves, but not enough to overcome her desire to choose one who, perhaps, would not have the same chance to be chosen again by another of her hide’s sheen. Your merit is proven, Maeradith. She appreciated the gentle chiding—he was right, it was not so simple—but flew on. And likewise, Your words are true, Teraath, but you will find other platforms for them. (If Temurshivi looked briefly disappointed by the dismissal, it was only a quick flash. She was not a creature of impulse but, for once, blamed it on the Flight as she took a quick step forward, hand rising to touch the dismissed rider’s cheek, before dropping as though it had touched something scorching, and she turned back to the sky)

Contrast, contrast. Not conflict, but different. She was a talker. Who was there that was not? Fortath had intrigued her, when he had not words at the ready, and spoke so honestly. She drifted his direction. But he withdrew, figuratively if not literally, and Keth shook her great golden neck, with a croon of thanks. It was not a bad thing, to follow. One needed those willing to do it, but she did not want a follower for her partner, but a challenger. She turned away. Keth turned to dip her wings next towards the burgundy who had spoken plainly. She admired his speech, the honesty of it, and had the thought to give him platform to do so around others, but as she turned, wheeled in the air, she saw him draw back. Jayneth did not leave her Flight, but she took from the motion that he did not wish to win it, either. Hesitant for a moment, the gold trilled. It was no great thing to force someone into something they did not want. There were those who saw winning a Flight as a triumph, others a necessity, and still more a means to an end, ambition. And there were those who knew it for the burden it meant. It had taken Keth four turns to Rise for the first time – her choice had a long time to bear the cost of it ahead of them.

Help them home, if they need it, please Kozameth. This was terse, strained. A request in tone, to Kozameth, as she sensed the denouement. With such strength they had all flown!

In indecision, she hovered next by the purples. Oh, how well they had shown for themselves! A color dismissed as frivolous and silly, they had shown their depth and heart. Shobhaith had spoken so sweetly, so purely, that she came ever closer…but, softly, Fly with me again, dear Shobhaith, please promise me this. Mountebath amused her greatly, with his frank observations, and she trilled. I do not have a plan. She confessed, with some wry self-deprecation. I do not yet know what I do not know. I will learn, and plan as new knowledge comes to light. And while I do so, I shall act in small ways. Nonetheless, with great regret, Keth released them too from her flight. A fighter this time, for all that the smallest of subking colors had tugged most greatly on her heart, was what she believed the Weyr needed, what the words of her own chasers spoke to.

Who remained? Two blues, two blacks, a burgundy.

Shivi did not move. She was lost to the words of the humans in the room, iron focus applied wholly and solely to buying Keth time, time to hear and think and consider over the wave of need. The pale Wastewanderer hardly moved, gray eyes closed and hands still, slack. She didn't answer those who spoke to her after that, though her expression was one of calm her muscles were tense. Her eyes opened, briefly, as M’teng spoke, though it was questionable how much she heard. Nonetheless, her hand moved, and grasped his quickly in a squeeze before releasing.

Szolath’s was a friend to her rider. She understood the duality he spoke of. Hers lived it, one foot in the Wastes, a hunter, the other in Pern proper, a politician in the making. Seeking those out as individuals, first, a more straightforward task than setting the direction of a whole population at once, though more time-consuming. Was it something that could truly be achieved?

Roiath, now there was an intriguing choice! A blue pair doused in charisma, and she understood, listening to him, why others did as well. A wingsecond of his own merit, and proven capacity to be heard and hear others, with a vision of the future she too wished for. Was it different enough, though, to give the Weyr not a voice that would echo hers, but speak in its own light?

In Sintharith was the contrast she sought. He watched, observed, absorbed while she chattered and claimed the spotlight. Succinct but entire in his thoughts. The simplicity of the message appealed. The Weyr Leadership council was not a quiet place. It could be tempered. But what of the unknown?

Qilonth gave her the most detailed plan. So great was the compassion that she trolled softly. A true and gentle heart, a yearning she could appreciate. Could a kind heart thrive in the at times contentious realm of leadership?

Finally, the newest color. Xerocleth was another intriguing choice. Like Sintharith, he provided the contrast she was looking for. A fighter, where she preferred compassion. Actions, not words. Contrast could be good for Weyr. But was he too volatile to be a true a leader?

No, she decided, listening to his words. It was not easy for him, but he understood. Listening, watching, leading by example.

Fall with me, Xerocleth. You are my choice.

Temurshivi turned to Aryla, reaching but then stopping, as she did not know the other girl’s preferences. She had exhausted her capacity for words, so she simply sat on the side of her furs, hands clenching them with strain, and indicated the wingsecond--now Jr Weyrleader--was welcome to join her there.
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RhiaBlack
 Posted: Jul 2 2016, 06:18 PM
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Sintharith wasted no time. As soon as the winner was chosen, the Black diverted back and headed for his couch. N'tharon wasn't the slightest bit bothered, though he was somewhat confused. Apparently Fighters were suitable charges for Weyrleadership now? His brows knit. They would see when the clutch was laid, though in some ways the Smith felt sorry for the Candidates meant to Stand. Time would tell.

Jayneth flexed his wings when Keth's eye stilled briefly on him, but it was simply that. Briefly. The look that almost felt to be disappointment flushed his eyes red, and he diverted back before the winner had even been chosen. Useless, he felt the word catch in his throat. He should have known better.
She chose a Burgundy, Jay. One of your brethren, no less. I wouldn't take it so harshly.

Silence was all that greeted him, as Jayneth alighted not on his ledge, but into the herdbeast pens. The rush of blood into his mouth made Qui'jin's stomach churn, but he didn't bother stopping his drake. Little soothed the savage beast more than blood.

Z'dyn twitched where he laid against his husband, the well-worn Mark rolling continuously across his knuckles as he hard-gazed past his ledge at the falling star.

Xerocleth. One of our own, Mine, this pleases me. It will be like P'ryt, again.

The Ironrider's lip curled, and he shoved off where he sat, letting Io'tez's fingers slide through his own as he flicked the Mark up into the air. The Igenite caught it, pulling his hat brim low as Z'dyn straightened his shirt.

"Where ya goin', love?"
"Out."
"Sounds like a good plan."


Io tossed the Mark towards where Kee, Latch, and Lauque were curled up on Z'dyn's bed, before he pulled the string on his hat to keep it in place. Feet shoved in his boots, the Igen Brownrider was a few steps behind his husband as Baihujinth left the ledge in anticipation of His's usual mounting style. Z'dyn swan-dove off the edge, landing with one hand on Baihujinth's neck ridge, catching his grip and swinging his legs down against the natural saddle as the Iron shot skyward. Powerful wings sent him towards the Eastern Ring, and close on his heels was Keukorimath, Io'tez opting for the much safer style of climbing aboard his sub-King.


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Rowana
 Posted: Jul 2 2016, 07:14 PM
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Wingsecond





Time Lady


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Teraath was more than a little disappointed. His confidence in his abilities took a bit of a dive at being dismissed. Yet Keth was so lovely and sweet, he could hardly stay mad. If anything, it spurred him on to do better next time. Next time he would definately be the best! And he had a lot of work to do to get there.

Tor'n gave a small smile as Teraath drifted away back towards their weyr. His pride would recover and he thought they'd fair pretty well for a first time. Maybe next time his dragon would be more mature and less vain. Time would tell. Tor'n accepted Shivi's familiar touch with another grateful smile. It would have been nice to share this time with her, but this was what being a rider was like. They couldn't always choose just for them. They had to choose for their dragons and the Weyr too.

He drifted out of the room, lost in thought.

~

No one was perhaps more surprised than Xerocleth. He knew what many thought of him and his Arlya. That they were cold, unapprochable, even violent. Yet Keth was willing to see past that. Yes, it would be hard. This was but the first in many steps to come. The road would be long and difficult, but they would not be alone. In fact, they could never reach it alone. They would need everyone working together to get there. Each with their own strengths' and weaknesses. Then they could keep Pern safe.

Xerocleth tucked his tired wings and allowed himself to fall with Keth. As you wish, my queen, he replied, gentler than he had ever been before. Let us build our Pern. Together.

Arlya had been still the whole flight at her place by the wall. Then her face changed and she turned to Shivi in surprise. Xerocleth was a rush of emotions stronger than she was used to feeling. Emotions she normally kept hidden so deep she'd fogotten what they were like. The dragon's fierce love and the woman's cold heart battle with each other for a long moment as Arlya's face looked pained. Then she let herself give the smallest of smiles. Maybe tonight, for once, it would be good to not be alone. Without words, she accepted Shivi's offer to join her.
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