Benjarin was a big man. At 19 turns he stood 6í3" and was very wide shouldered. He almost completely filled doorways. His face and arms were a deep coppery brown, and his short hair was all but black. His eyes were dark but his smile was bright. Benjarin was the friendliest healer anyone could ever ask for, and was as gentle as a lamb.
This generally startled people as they were taught to believe large men were tough and dangerous. Benjarin was neither, and had the best bedside manner anyone could ever hope for. He never squirmed at the sight of blood, and regularly assisted with gruesome injuries. Heíd even helped repair firelizards who had been injured. That was no easy task for hands as large as his, no matter how gentle he was.
Despite his good record, Benjarin was usually kept away from the seriously injured and the critically ill. The big man could not handle death. His parents had died accidentally, a few days after he had been apprenticed to the healers. He never forgot them, and could never forgive himself for not having been there to save them. It is though that Benjarin mourns as deeply for a patientís death as the Weyr for the passing of a Queen.
Benjarin brought meals in for the ill children one afternoon. It was a threadfall day, and the wing of the healer hall was lit by glows.
"Benjarin, can we sing?" one girl asked as he gave her a lunch.
"You eat, little one, Iíll sing." Benjarin was supposed to supervise during the meal, so he had to stay anyway. Once every child was eating, Benjarin took a deep breath and opened his mouth. A rich Baritone poured out, telling a tale of the mighty dragons fighting threadfall. His voice made the thread seem less scary, and the children relaxed. Later, MasterHealer Ekol complimented Benjarin on his handling of the children.
"Turn the glows, and then you can go." Ekol said.
"Already done." Benjarin said honestly.
"And checked on the lads with the broken legs?"
"Yessir, doing much better, dosed both with Fellis for pain."
Ekol nodded, trying to think of something for the Journeyman to do. "Fill the water pitchers?"
"Done, and the auntie with the bad knees was very grateful." Ekol laughed.
"Ok, Benjarin, scat."
Benjarin bowed slightly, and left. He decided to take an early dinner, and found Jialla reading over some message at a table, ignoring her dinner, as harpers were apt to do. "Interesting news, Jialla?" he asked, and the Journeywoman looked up.
"Ah, just a record of the hatching at Ryslen. Seven new specials were hatched."
Benjarinís eyes went wide. "Really? I would love to see them." Benjarin said. "From a healer standpoint. I always worry that the special dragons arenít healthy for some reason."
Jialla smiled. "Baeris always checks out the hatchlings that look a little off. You could learn from her. If you really want to get out to seen them, get some dinner and come back. Iím dining with Greenrider Jeniae."
Benjarin smiled, and went to get his meal. When he returned, Jeniae was there. At least a woman he assumed was the greenrider.
"Ah, Benjarin, we were just talking about you. Join us?" Jialla said, as though she had not suggested it only moments before.
Benjarin grinned. "How could I resist?" he said, setting his tray on the table before he sat. "Healer Benjarin at your service." He said, holding out a hand to Jeniae.
"Greenrider Jeniae, of Ryslen. Likewise." She said, smiling.
"Itís nice to meet you." He said, lifting his fork. "What were you ladies talking about?"
Jeniae swallowed the drink of klah she had taken. "Jialla tells me that youíve an interest in the Night dragons...?"
Benjarin nodded. "I worry that any Ďspecialí dragon is somehow not well--and Iíve never gotten a chance to see for myself, and put my fears to rest."
Jeniae nodded, wondering if perhaps this young healer would make a good candidate. "As far as Iíve seen, the half-white and half-black dragons hatched at Ryslen are healthy, but Iíll take you to see them if you like."
Benjarin was excited. "Iíll ok it with Master Ekol, Ben." Jialla said after she finished eating. "Thanks for bringing the record, Jeniae."
"Youíre welcome, Jialla." Jeniae said, draining her klah mug.
After a moment, Ekol appeared, trailed by Jialla. "Benjarin." He said.
"Yessir?" Benjarin said, rising and turning to face his master.
"Jialla tells me youíve expressed an interest in the specials at Ryslen. Is this true?"
"Yessir." Benjarin replied.
"Good. Journeyman Benjarin, you are hereby posted to Ryslen Weyr for research... Unless you get searched--in that case, help out wherever you end up..."
"Thank you sir." Benjarin said, shocked, and surprised.
"Make us proud, Journeyman." Ekol said.
As a Laden Phylith appeared over Ryslen, the blue dragon on watch say up and took notice. Jeniae laughed and directed Phylith to land. Jeniae laughed and directed Phylith to land. Once on the ground, Jeniae explained. "Amitath is on watch, and the first thing he said was 'Hey Phylith! Where're you going with that candidate?' And Ekol had said..."
"We've one, but the one at Falas will be hatching sooner. Phylith hatched there..." Jeniae said, leaving the question hanging.
"I would be honored to stand at Phylith's hatching place, Jeniae, but I'd like to see the Night Dragons before I go."
Jeniae grinned. "Sure thing. Min is over there with Auspexeth..."
Benjarin is a Candidate at Falas Weyr.
Continue with Benjarinís story, visiting Minaeya at Ryslen Weyr.
Background from Susannaís.