"You didn't have to do that, Jetiyan." A younger boy said from where he was perched on the fence. "They would've gotten one of the masons to move it."
Jetiyan dusted off his hands. "Yes Jekyann, but the day is hot and the beasts are thirsty now Sometimes we must do things the hard way because waiting a short while longer would be too long."
"You're so smart Jetiyan..."
"Oh, you flatter me, little brother." Despite their six turn age gap, Jetiyan and Jekyann looked very much alike. Trim, dark eyes, and long dark wavy hair tied back with a thong. It came as no surprise that Jekyann wanted to be just like his brother when he grew up - even though Jetiyann was no more than a weyrbred handyman. Though their parents were the Weyrleaders, they had no real special priviledges, save that they were guaranteed spots at the Hatching Feast, if they chose to be there.
"Do you think that mother will let me have a canine?" Jekyann asked as he accompanied his brother back to their shared room.
Jetiyan smiled. "I'm sure she'd allow you to have a pet. You're a very responsible boy, and could handle taking care of a critter." He was very careful not to say 'canine' lest her ger his brother's hopes up. He knew that their parents had a surprise in store for Jekyann, but he knew not what.
"You think so?" Jekyann said with boyish exuberance, to which Jetiyan responded with a nod. "Wow!"
Jetiyan smiled as his enthusiastic brother ran off. Task completed, Jetiyan set off to find something else that needed doing - and if there wasn't he'd go bathe before the evening meal.
* * *
Jetiyan sat on the rim of the weyrbowl looking down at the weyrlake sparkling in the darkness below. The sound of footsteps on the stone behind him alerted him to the presence of another before the voice reached his ears.
"You should not be up here." It was J'lenn.
"It is dangerous, yes." Jetiyan answered, "But the Weyr-heights are only forbidden to children, which I am clearly not any longer."
J'lenn's silence contained a smile, it seemed, as the bluerider sat down beside him. "Your daring risks your position within the weyr. A fall could reduce you to drudge - if not dead - faster than you can snap your fingers."
Jetiyan scoffed. "I have no position here. I am a craftless young man with ranking parents. I'm nothing, absolutely nothing."
Now it was J'lenn's turn to scoff. "Far be it from me to say what you are or are not, but I can assure that you are not 'nothing'." Jetiyan brooded silently for a while, and J'lenn sat quietly beside him. "Is there anything you particularly like doing?" the searchrider said at long last.
Jetiyan was silent a bit longer before he answered. "I enjoy working with stone." he said at long last.
J'lenn clapped him on the shoulder. "Good. I'll get you an apprenticeship with some stonemasons I know, and you break the news to your folks." J'lenn rose then, and made his way down from the rim. Jetiyan never had a chance to object. Not that he really wanted to.
* * *
Though J'kosh and Tiyanni weren't the most enthusiastic about their eldest child leaving the weyr to become a crafter (as the opposite was far more common) they did not stop him. He felt a need to go, and as he was far from a child, they let him, though as soon as he was gone they feared it was a great mistake.
Jetiyan soon found, though he was strong, he was not nearly fit to the degree that stoneworkers were expected to be. Due to this unexpected but highly understandable setback, Jetiyan was entirely worn out at the end of each day and was glad to retire to his cot in the apprentices' barracks - though it was a far cry from the simplistic luxury he had enjoyed in his home at Ryslen.
Days turned to weeks, and Jetiyan's skill grew. He learned all there was to know about firestone. Low vs. High grade, the best size to break it into... Everything. Having had only basic knowledge of firestone (firestone + dragon = flame) this was quite the treat.
One afternoon when Jetiyan was free from his duties, he was thinking of htis very thing while his skin shown healthily in the sunlight. He was stronger now than he'd ever been before - but he felt as though he had forgotten something important. A brown dragon flew overhead, and like a load of bricks crashing down on him, Jetiyan's homesickness for the weyr and his family came back to him. But he knew he couldn't return. He was useful here; he had purpose. And to quit his apprenticeship for the mere fact that he was homesick would scar his reputation for life. It was with a sorrowful heart that he returned to his duties.
* * *
The brown's rider, a man called F'ran, strode into what passed for the Master Crafter's office. Ilabo was a sour man as it was, and thought little of dragonriders. And F'ran's news would not raise him any in the Master's eyes. "I hace come on Search, Master." He said. "My Weyrwoman has instructed me to find craftbred young men and women to present to the hatchlings. May I have your permission to seek among the apprentices?"
"Fine." Ilablo grumped, and F'ran was out of there like a bolt from a crossbow.
The prospects were slim, but one well muscled young man with long hair caught his eye.
Yes, he will do nicely. Sylenth said, and F'ran grinned. He waved to the apprentice, who hurried over to him as soon as he could.
"Might I help you, Rider?" Jetiyan asked, respectful as always.
"I ride on Search for Opal Moon Weyr. Syrenth has informed me that you would be an acceptable candidate. Would you join us?"
Jetiyan could not believe what he was hearing. What would his parents say? "I would be honored." he said.
The rider beamed. "Prepare yourself then, lad. I shall inform the Master of your departure."
Jetiyan bowed in gratitude and departed.
* * *
Ilabo was not exactly pleased, but what was there to do about it? "I suppose I ought to relay this to his parents."
F'ran looked bewildered. "Won't he be telling them when he packs?"
Ilabo looked at the Searchrider. "Shells no. That one isn't from the Quarry."
"Where's he from then? Who are his parents?"
Ilabo laughed. "Why, Weyrwoman Tiyanni and Weyrleader J'kosh of Ryslen, of course!"
Unfortunately, the message would never sent, as Master Ilabo's heart failed him not long after.
* * * Jetiyan and Toshi @ Opal Moon
Jetiyan is a candidate at Opal Moon Weyr.