|Hatching written by Thirza, rider of gold Bellezath.
Another brown shattered his shell and walked towards the candidates. It sat down halfway between the boys and the girls and stared at both groups, obviously confused. A green hatchling nipped at her brother and pointed him towards the boys while she walked, head held high, straight to Jillyana. The brown, with a snort at his sister, stopped in front of Nemar.
Jillyana smiled down at her hatchling. "I can tell that you know what you're doing Oath. You show your brother how to behave at a hatching."
Nemar smiled up at her. "Marahadeth didn't need the help. He knew how to find me." The two new riders left the sands at the same time, accompanied by their hatchlings, of course.
Marahadeth grew quickly, and though he wasn't the largest brown Pern had ever seen, he was going to be much bigger than his clutchmate Alegreth.
N'mar was pleased to see that his friend Lamelior from Sennet had been Searched and brought here as well. When he heard the story, he was very amused. That Amitath was one stubborn dragon.
"He does his duty to the Weyr." Marahadeth said, "When we have grown, we shall do our duty as well." The brown was very sure in his speech.
N'mar smiled at his bond, and scratched his brown hide. "We will, Marahadeth." He said, looking towards the horizon. "Probably won't get to go sailing anymore though." He thought of the sailboats he'd commanded with a loving heart.
"You won't need those awkward things." Marahadeth said, unfurling his wings. "We'll sail on these."
N'mar lay on a grassy mound, watching the clouds drift by. Marahadeth lounged nearby, soaking up the sunlight until his healthy brown hide gleamed. N'mar enjoyed his leisure time, and often spent it sharing his knowledge with Marahadeth - They were lifemates after all.
"Tell me again how the lake becomes rain?" the brown asked, eyes whirling with curiousity. "Or about how holders aren't permitted to treat men badly for being potential greenriders?"
N'mar had to laugh at that one. "Later, Marahadeth. The Weyrlingmaster said you're to practice flying today. Unfurl those fabulous sails of yours and show those little'ns how a real dragon flies."
Marahadeth's chest puffed with pride as he stretched out his large wings. N'mar caught a glimpse of the tiny Alegreth trying to get airborne, and pitied him.
"L'io is handling it well." Marahadeth observed, launching skyward. "He is so encouraging."
Yes he is. N'mar sent back, lifting himself up from the grass. He walked down the slope to where L'io stood with the Weyrlingmaster. "How goes it?" N'mar asked softly.
"Better." L'io replied, not looking at N'mar. "He can manage short hops, but he's far too bulky..." The brownrider sighed.
N'mar rubbed his fellow weyrling's shoulders, and felt the man relax. "Have you tried exercising his wing-shoulders?" N'mar asked.
"We swim a lot." L'io replied, thoughtfully. "Maybe I should have Alegreth swim using only his wings for propulsion, as though he was flying?"
"That's an idea. Try that." N'mar said, absently watching Marahadeth's leisurely glides. Come down, Mara. Alegreth is feeling discouraged.
Okay. the brown said mentally, and spiraled down to a neat landing. "Alegreth!" He called. "Come play with me!"
Alegreth flew in short hops to Marahadeth. "C'mon! I'll give you a lift!" Alegreth hopped closer.
"Not until you're bigger." The Weyrlingmaster said. "Patience. Now walk to the lake to play."
"Yessir!" Marahadeth and Alegreth chimed.
The wind ripped past Marahadeth’s wings as he flew with N’mar high up in the sky. There was no greater feeling in the world than sailing with one’s lifemate.
"Melroik has gone to Falas, and they expect him to do well." Marahadeth said.
“They?” N’mar returned, eyeing the skies.
"Auspexeth and Minaeya." Marahadeth replied. "They think he well lead."
N’mar nodded slowly, a grin on his face. “I’d fly with Melroik any day. Let’s head back. I’ve a good feeling about dinner."
Marahadeth rumbled and began to turn. "You silly people and your meals."
N’mar grinned. It was more of a joke than anything else. Marahadeth understood the limits of his bond. "Say N’mar? What does it mean when the Leader and Seconds are waiting in the courtyard?"
N’mar’s mind raced. “Someone’s getting promoted, or assigned to their fleet.” N’mar responded after a moment.
"And if they’re waiting for us?"
N’mar’s eyes went wider. “Then we shouldn’t keep them waiting!”
The brown dragon landed neatly a few paces in front of the men and their mounts. N’mar slid down and approached, taking off his goggles and flight helm. “You called?”
Leader A’ndo nodded. “We of the Misty Mountain Wing have noticed your strength N’mar, and that of your Marahadeth. We hereby induct you into our midst.”
N’mar nodded. “Thank you, Sir. It is an honor.”
“It is an honor to have you among us, N’mar.” L’ken said, handing him his new insignia.
Marahadeth trumped their joy for all the land to hear. Tonight was a very good night!
Background from Futura's Graphix Outpost.