Sing Brightly In The Dark Brown Talanoath

Dark brown hide is adorned with near-black brindle that makes elaborate whorls and designs over the rounded contours of a powerful body. In the dark of night, this dragon might as well be black - at dawn, merely a brown tabby… yet when Rukbat’s light shines fully on him, it reveals a rich variation of color, an archipelago of shades scattered through his hide and swirled with patches of darker hues that seem to almost make pictures that move when he does and pause with his poses to make a symbolic tapestry whose message is as transient as his stillness, soon altered once more by his motion. Big and bulky he may be, yet beneath that soft surface is enough power to send the ball of variegated brown and black leaping and bounding like he’s made from the sap of a rubber-tree.
Broad cheeks surround a muzzle that’s quite wide but not very deep. It’s tipped with black between a pair of large nostrils - shaped like commas on their sides - that flare to huff in breath and puff it back out. Beneath those sniffers lies the line - or gape - of his maw. It’s less protruding than most, but beams wide when he opens it for a grinned smile - or to use those sharp teeth, the bone-white hooks of his upper canines just barely peeking past his lip even when his mouth is closed. There’s a sense of amusement to his face at rest, a construct to the corners of his mouth and shape of muzzle that gives him the impression of a smile.
Lopsided knobs sit above small round eyes whose brightness is all that keeps them from being lost against the rest of his face. One knob is a long and graceful sweep, curving out, then in, then straight back. The other is stubby in comparison, half the size of the other and with a sharper curve and a pair of backward pointing barbs interrupting its arch, one to the outside just where it emerges from skull, the other barb pointing inward near the tip. They evoke a fishhook looped through his brow, the bulk of it passing through his skull - yet extending its influence out with those projections.
That round head leads to a similarly rounded body by means of a short neck. Soft ridges roll along the top of his neck, ocean waves growing more pronounced as they near his torso. Just at the last vertebra of cervical spine, those waves crash against a craggy rock-bump of rough-sheared black basalt, the final ridge of his neck protruding in rougher fashion than the rest. That igneous stone buried in his hide still shows hints of its fiery origin, limned with the burnt umber of cooling lava around the irregular outline where it meets the hide of his back. Just past that ring of fire, his hide cools to make a dark ovoid enfolding it, an echo of his egg in the narrowed cross-hatching pointed up his neck and the dark pattern solid in the rounded base that rests against the cradle of his shoulder-blades.
Smokey topaz starts against those shoulders, stretching out along his upper spar of his wings to slightly past the first joint and down along his back with a curve inward past shoulders and then a broadening once more between his broad hips before it comes to a point just where his tail begins. His wings are large, with a sharp turn of angle at their primary joint to favor maneuverability and speed. Their sails at rest are mottled liver and black, their patterns hidden in the fold yet revealed when he sets them to motion, the shadows dipped along his trailing edge and making a triptych of ink-blots that hint at deeper meanings between the cocoa spars.
Dark bistre outlines of alternating triangles and circles are inset along the sienna line of his spine, and broken zig-zags brush against the edges of topaz as it blurs to strong-steeped tea along his sides. Beneath his shoulders, shadows of dark umber make trapezoids above the powerful muscles that reach to wings and legs, a contour of strength that changes size and shape with each movement that he makes. The warm, dark shades are darkened further by his brindled patterning, yet toward his stomach the speckle of rosy brown softens it like mottled granite to trace his belly with stars against a dark-chocolate sky. Strong legs reach past that belly to the ground beneath him, a pattern of darkness down their brown that starts as a single black dot on each, then expands further with each iteration downward until it makes a full band just above the paws. The rosy brown of his belly speckles at their insides, and on the hindlegs it extends around to dot his feet. His talons are dark obsidian, small enough to be easily missed beneath his bulk but still fierce enough to serve.
Between the base of his tail and his hips, the black outline of an arrowhead points opposite to the smokey topaz one beneath it. Those black lines continue down his tail, crossing back and forth as they travel down the deep brown. His tail is on the shorter side, but with a larger fork than most, and the black design favors one tip over the other, making it fully black - save for the very tip, where it is left as brown while the pattern leaps to the other. Those twin rudders have a tendency to curl toward each other when not in active use keeping him steady amidst wild leaps and daring flights.

Egg Name and Description

Egg of Brown Egg
Swamp-mud brown is daubed across the sides of this egg in a roughly textured pattern. It’s hardly striking, instead a lurking presence on the sands that might easily be overlooked and become a (tripping) hazard for the unwary. The near-conical top of the egg bears a paler thatch, streaked in cross-hatched patterns of musty straw and dingy hay that do little to brighten its overall appearance. A few splotches of mud-brown scatter here as well, and against the yellowed background their patterning becomes more clear - a sense of feathers, quills and fluff in their complicated and subtle shapes tracing all the way down to the egg’s base. There, hidden against the sand, is… nothing to worry about, surely. It’s just an egg, right? …right.

Hatching Messages

Egg of Brown shifts against the sands, swaying side to side for several beats.

Egg of Brown makes a loud cracking sound, and… stands up! An egg-wet leg emerges from the bottom of the shell, its hue hidden in shadow as the egg actually balances like that for a moment before falling back down.

Egg of Brown cracks again and rises once more - on two legs, this time! It takes a step toward the candidates, as if intending to impress without even leaving the egg - until it overbalances in the attempt, falling backwards to split its shell apart against the sands.

Sing Brightly in the Dark Brown Hatchling lies on his back where he fell, wiggling his legs in the air with his wings spread to either side like some kind of strange oversized turtle. He hums as he does, joining with the adult dragons to welcome the baby dragons - which is to say, himself - into the world.

Sing Brightly in the Dark Brown Hatchling finally decides that enough is enough, and rolls around onto his front to get his paws beneath him instead of above. There! A shake to get itchy sand off his hide - or at least attempt it, his success is rather mixed - before he bounces off toward the waiting audience of his candidates, still humming as he goes.

Sing Brightly in the Dark Brown Hatchling plots his course with assurance, because he knows exactly where he’s going. A few nervous candidates scramble further away - and get a maw-gaped grin for their trouble - before he stops at the one who didn’t run away, whose blue eyes will finally get a chance to meet his. Hii.

Impression Message

Are you feeling faint? Unsteady on your feet? That sound, roaring in your ears like blood - or the ocean, crashing up against your shores. Against your boat, rocking beneath you here on the sands. Your vision darkens, shadows that grow speckled with points of starlight shining bright. As your eyes adjust - or the hallucinations begin - you see a figure, bounding toward you at the lope of a wolf - the skitter of a lizard - the hop of a frog - the gallop of a horse - a hawk flying - a stag leaping - a shark swimming impossibly through the air - a wild feline climbing to meet you - a dragon. « Talanoath! » says the roar of the sea, the drumroll beneath his name. « That’s me, dear star. » Music rises up to accompany him, flutes and strings playing in joyous harmonies… that occasionally edge on cacophony, especially when a chorus of animal voices try to join in with their yowls and barks. The sound descends into chaos, a rumble that resolves into laughter and another tune, pipes and drums against the steady splash of oars. « Oh-oh- Talanoath! » he sings, taking up the melody line as he dances. « Watch me come and watch me go-eth! » Again, the laughter as the attempt at lyrics falls apart - though this time, the song continues. He twirls closer to you, his body enfolding yours in a swirl of warmth. « Nailii. Nai~li~i~! » The music swells, the wave rising beneath you. « Nailii and Talanoath. Has a ring to it, doesn’t it? Or maybe the other way round, Talanoath and Nailii. A dragon and his rider! Yeah, let’s go with that. So. My Liilii, my little star, my ripple in the ocean… » And there are probably words beneath the prolonged earthquake-rumble of his (your) stomach, but good luck hearing them. « - with all that said, let’s eat! »


Talanoath came to be inside the shell of an egg. It was a safe place, a warm place for him to grow and develop… but he wanted more. He needed more; he knew, deep within his heart, that there was a larger world out there, a grander destiny that awaited him. Minds came to meet his, and from them he sought the larger world beyond the warmth and safety of that tiny sands-warmed egg. Fear. Danger. Adventure.

He wanted the best, because he is the best… but Talanoath has a very particular idea of what that means. He doesn’t need someone with iron thews, because seriously, he’s a dragon. He’s going to be all the muscle you could possibly need! No, what Talanoath needs is someone with a caring heart and a courageous spirit, someone who just keeps trying no matter the setbacks.

The others who came and touched his egg? They admitted they weren’t good enough for him, made excuses about being good enough for “their crafts” or “themselves”. Or they ran away, which is pretty much the same thing except without saying the words out loud.

You, though. You weren’t just good enough, you were The Best You Could Be. And when he threw you out? You didn’t give up. You were willing to face him again. You were waiting for your chance to lock eyes with that baby dragon and show him what for.

How could he refuse? …okay, so he tried. He was like NAH and NOPE and WHAT ABOUT but no, you were there in his thoughts being there and not giving up and running back home like the others. You were the one who stuck with him, climbed out of the cave in his mind he shoved you into, the one his thoughts just swept him back to like ocean waves that reached out and grabbed him. So, fine. FINE. Talanoath can’t get you out of his head, so he’s just going to GET IN YOURS and NEVER LEAVE.

How you like them coconuts, HUH?

Moana: If there's something you want to tell me, just tell me! Is there something you wanna tell me?
[Gramma Tala looks back at Moana, smirking]
Gramma Tala: Is there something you want to hear?

Talanoath will grow to become the sort of dragon people talk about - though whether it’s because they love him or hate him is an open question. He’s nimble - and arrogant - and strong - and rude - and funny - and ridiculous - and helpful - and won’t shut up - and… he loves you. He loves you, and he loves the world and the people in it. He loves life, and he wants to enjoy it to the fullest and make everyone around him happy… and he wants them to know that it was him who did it, because he also wants them to love him back.

From his first days, Talanoath will be called by the sky - especially at night. He wants to fly, of course - what dragon doesn’t? - but for him, there’s something more to it. The stars are beautiful and complicated, an endless dance in the heavens that calls to him and guides him in a way he has a hard time putting into words. It may take some work for him to figure out exactly what it’s saying, but he knows there’s something there, something deep and wondrous, and it assures him of his place in the world even as it draws him toward the future. He is Talanoath, and he follows the stars.

He’ll sing to them, sitting with muzzle to the heavens, and at these times his voice may seem to take on the aspect of a wolf or wild dog as he howls out his message of « I am here. » to skies that are - at least to him - caring and warm, the depths of space like dark velvet to surround him. So what if some people are scared of the dark? Talanoath has nothing to fear. The wandering Red Star is gone, Pern saved by his deeds - or at least, the deeds of other dragons long ago - and if it should ever return, Talanoath is here. These stars are friendly, and no matter how far he may wander, they will always lead him home.

At other times, he may take to the water for a night-time swim, floating in the rocking cradle of the waves as he watches the heavens overhead. He’ll often seek company on these voyages; your own, of course (which goes without saying, really, but Talanoath still says it because that’s who he is), but also that of others who’ll follow him down to the water where they can form an armada of dragon-boats, moving through the waves beneath those guiding stars.

When it comes to guidance in the form of lessons, Talanoath is likely to be a quick learner - which is good, because he’s not a very good student. Don’t look for him amid the attentive pupils with eyes intent on the instructors… more like the one who interrupts a lecture with some amusing joke, or who gets into a tail-wrestling match with Asceorth that escalates until the two of them are rolling across the field in a tumble of claws and laughter.

He’s not concerned with his own dignity when it comes to having fun - or with staying within the narrow and boring bounds of what’s polite and proper. After he chews some firestone, he might feign trouble just to get a weyrlingmaster close - only to let loose with a meat-laden belch from his feeding stomach instead of his flaming one, and laugh at the cries of, “That’s disgusting!” and “What is wrong with you?”

For all the headaches he may pose to his teachers, Talanoath does put his effort into learning. After all, falling on his face? Definitely not heroic. He’s just… not really a classes sort of dragon. He’d much rather work on things with just the two of you, or with a friend to run back and forth along the beach and practice their pounces… or just get into a wrestling match. It’s fun and educational! It’s like some kind of… fundigation? Nooo, maybe not. That sounds more like what he might do to a tunnelsnake infestation. One big breath and he’d send them scattering! Oh, maybe he’d inhale, and swallow down the entire nest with one gigantic gulp. Yeah, that’s more like it! Talanoath, destroyer of small pests and defeater of minor infestations! …okay, so it’s not the most epic of his deeds, but… « Just you wait! »

Talanoath tends to be lighthearted in how he expresses himself, his sense of play as grand as his ego. He can be quite the clown when it suits him, capering around for the amusement and adoration of a crowd. He enjoys pranks when they’re set against someone who deserves them - or is big enough to take it. Messing with the little guy? Not cool. Talanoath don’t swing that way. If he’s the butt of the joke, he may well be the one who laughs loudest and longest - after all, it takes a big man to be unconcerned enough by appearances that he’s willing poke a little fun at himself. « Ahahaha! Good one, Tsarziath! »

Serious moments are rare for him, and seldom shared with the world at large. Even with those he’s close to, he’s unlikely to remain somber for long; the world’s just too wonderful a place to not smile about it. There’s very little that can keep him down - though perhaps the one most likely to happen is a very literal form of downer, for if Talanoath were to be forbidden the skies once he’s reached them - whether due to an injury or some other reason - that would definitely put a serious damper on his mood. He’s Talanoath, and he would be nothing without his flight.

Talanoath has a very, very high idea of his own capabilities, saved from being utterly conceited only by the fact that he actually is (nearly) that good. Those dark wings will - once grown and practiced - cut through the air in agile swoops and quick dives that still leave him with enough attention to boast about it. « Look at this! » Even on the ground, he’s quick and graceful; that rounded body is made of muscle, and his willingness to turn an unintentional stumble into a clowning tumble - along with his seeming inability to sit still and be quiet for lessons - will ensure he has plenty of practice in putting his body exactly where he wants it.

He acts brashly confident and certain of himself, even under the most disapproving of stares. If he had a flaw - which he does not - it would be that people are jealous of him because of his awesomeness. Sad, but true - and really, it’s only to be expected. They’re not as good as him, because they’re not him! Seriously, he’s Talanoath. Dragons want to be him. Humans want to ride him. Small children want to admire his presence. That, or they’re trying to hide it. It’s okay, he gets it. He is quite stunning, it’s no wonder people are sometimes left without words by his anything-but-mere presence.

Between his sense of humor and his grandiose ego, it certainly wouldn’t be surprising if Talanoath made a few enemies along with his friends. Well, at the very least, people who would think of Talanoath as an enemy - just because he didn’t mean to insult Nysaiwenyth when he greeted his clutchmates as, « Ladies and gentlemen, boys and bones! » doesn’t mean she isn’t going to seek her revenge.

Moana: [addressing the ocean] Um… *what*? I said help me! And wrecking my boat? Not *helping*!
[She kicks at the water, which recedes, causing her to fall]
Moana: Fish pee in you… all day!

If he understands that someone is undeservedly hurt by his actions, Talanoath will stop and - while probably not actually apologizing - seek to make amends. But, for the most part - at least as far as Talanoath is concerned - an enemy is just someone who admires you so much that they feel the need to compete with you! Sure, they might be trying to defeat him - or insult him, or maim him - but while Talanoath is quite happy to engage in a battle of wits or wings, he doesn’t tend to hold grudges, and he is not interested in maiming anyone… or being maimed, though clearly, it’d be him doing the maiming if it were to happen, because he’s just that good.

Talanoath may think he’s all that - and boast accordingly - but at his core he is a helpful dragon. He wants to use his brawn, brains and beauty for the good of the Weyr, not just to amass personal power or gather shiny treasures. These are his people! From the smallest green firelizard to the largest gold dragon, the youngest squalling baby to the creakiest of elders, Talanoath is here for them. If one of his clutchmates seems hungry? Hey, Talanoath can drag a herdbeast back to the barracks for them! Someone’s moping over a romantic upset? Not to worry, Talanoath has sage advice to ease the heart. A lost puppy? Talanoath is on the job.

Maui: So… Back to the humans I went. I gave them everything. Islands, fire and coconuts. Heh, everything they can never get enough of.
Moana: You stole the heart… for them. Because you wanted to be loved…
Maui: [solemnly] It was *never* enough.

His eagerness to help doesn’t always mean he gets good results. Herdbeast bits all over the barracks, confusion added to heartbreak, and terrified puppies hiding under the porch are not exactly ideal outcomes to those situations, but Talanoath is seldom deterred by such complications.

« Found your puppy! »
“He’s shaking like a leaf! What did you do to him?”
« Yeah… it almost sounds like you’re upset with me, which is impossible because your puppy was lost, and you were very sad, and I found him. Yeah. So, what I believe you were trying to say is, “Thank you.” »
“Thank you?!?”
« You’re welcome! »

It’s not that he’s oblivious to those undesired consequences of his actions, it’s just… he wants to focus on the positive. He especially wants other people to focus on the positive, because Talanoath wants to be the center of attention and adoration. He wants to have other people sing the songs about how awesome he is - not because he forced them, or because they’re afraid of him, but because they love him.

And, okay, he’s not above a bit of fast-talking charm to persua- er, remind people of all the wondrous things he’s done. After all, those trees? Would not be there if he had not stomped the ground so hard that they popped out. And have you seen how the days are getting longer? Yeah, that’s him again. Caught Rukbat, made it slow down so you’d have extra time for summer. Talanoath is thinking of calling it Daylight Savings Time, on account of how he has saved the day so many times.

Many dragons have problems remembering what they’ve done. Talanoath has a tendency to remember deeds of heroism, adventure, and fortune that… didn’t actually happen. Sometimes, they’re even downright impossible! His boasting tales include you, as well - remember that time when you saved two dragons at once with a double organ cross-transplant? No? Well, lucky thing, he’s here to remind you (and everyone else)!

Do you know who Maui is? Only the greatest demi-god of all the Pacific Islands. With his magical fish hook he slowed down the sun, pulled islands out of the sea, battled monsters! And I should know, because I'm Maui.

At times, Talanoath seems to know he’s spinning tales instead of reporting the truth, but at others he seems to earnestly believe the thoroughly implausible stories he’s telling. Sometimes you may even find that you are left unable to quite remember which way things actually happened in your grand adventures and what’s just imagination. Talanoath’s got such vivid mental pictures to go with his words that it can be easy for myth and history to blur.

Talanoath is not a quiet dragon. Oh, he can sneak around if he wants - that dark brown and black hide melds with the shadows quite readily, and he can be very light on his feet despite his bulk - but most of the time, being overlooked is the last thing on his mind. He’s far too much of a people-person for that; Talanoath wants his deeds to be seen and remembered.

If he accidently is sneaky and those glorious deeds aren’t actually seen by anyone who can get the rumor mill going? That’s okay - he’ll just have to tell people about them himself! Some people may be too shy to toot their own horns, but Talanoath is most assuredly not one of them. Just because he has an inside voice (unlike his dam), that doesn’t mean he’s got to use it. He’s got few compunctions about sharing his words with whoever he’d like, willing to talk to whoever seems like they’d be an appreciative audience - or have an interesting story of their own to tell him. The more friends, the merrier!

He loves to sing as well as talk… and he’s pretty good at it, too. His musical range will expand as he copies sounds he hears around him, or simply from spending some time chirping and rumbling around to see what sounds good and what sounds like a wherry with a sore throat. Which, okay, is definitely a sound that he could use for a great punchline to a joke, or to startle someone on their way to the privy at night, but it’s not so much musiCAL as AmusiNG.

Most dragons only croon or hum when they’ve got a reason, but for Talanoath? Taking a walk down along the beach is more than enough of a reason to break out into song… and probably a dance to go with it, hopping from boulder to boulder in time to the beat. The music varies, from simple tunes to epic operas of destiny, but it’s rare he doesn’t have at least some fragment of melody stuck in his head (and yours).

Talanoath’s mind is a naturally musical place, even when its music is simply the sound of the waterfalls and ocean waves, wind in the trees and raindrops pattering down. It can be peaceful in his thoughts, but never silent. Often enough he’ll add to the natural harmonies of the world, using instruments or simply his own voice. Sometimes what he sings is nonsense, a babble of syllables and words used because he likes the sound of them. « O-o-ocean! O-o-ocean blue! Ba ba loo ooooh! » Other times, there’s actual lyrics to make the meaning of his songs clear with words as well as the pure emotions that music carries. You may need to work on tuning his music out - or at least getting him to turn it down - when you need to concentrate… or just don’t want to accidentally start singing along.

Even when he’s just speaking, there’s a musical tone to Talanoath’s mindvoice, a melodic rise and fall to his words with deep thrums beneath. Words and music just go together, like music and nature do - or the sea and sky that form the background shape of his mind, endless oceans and horizons that brighten with dawn to the basking-heat of day, then fade at dusk to rest beneath the blanket of the stars. It’s just how things are meant to be; some things are better together… just like him and you!

He tends to speak fast and loose, lacking in formal elocution and with a fondness for repeating and re-ordering words or syllables that please him - particularly names or parts thereof. « Yahey! Zozoby! » might be his greeting to Iczobyth, full of ebullience and a joy that turns mere words into music. It’s not always the same nicknames that he gives, of course; they’re dynamic and changing, counterpoints of improvised sound to the music that he sees in them.

That same fluidity of naming applies to you as his chosen; sometimes you’re Nailii, sometimes you’re Nai, Lii, Liilii, Liinai… he might even decide to call you Lynn or Jaelynn occasionally, just to mix it up a bit! And, unlike some dragons, Talanoath won’t mind in the slightest if he is given a nickname. He might even answer to it - at least as well as does any other!

Talanoath often uses pictures to go with his words, whether it’s shared mental images - remembered or imagined - or stylized forms reminiscent of cave paintings and tribal tattoos given life to flicker and move of their own volition. Sometimes they’re bright, outlines in starry white and ocean blue that cavort and play with a seeming mind of their own when they’re not aiding the dragon in his communications.

At other times, the outlines are dark, and these too seem to have a will independent of Talanoath himself; in particular, the miniature version of him that sometimes appears sketched in living charcoal appears to converse - and even argue - with Talanoath. His words are inaudible to anyone except the dragon himself, though Talanoath’s responses are quite clear to anyone who was a part of the conversation before it was so rudely interrupted - as are the gestures of that painted dragon and his alterations of the pictogram mindscape tucked within Talanoath’s thoughts.

Moana: How do you get your tattoos?
Maui: They show up, when I earn 'em.
Moana: How d'you earn that one? What's that for?
Maui: That, uh, man's discovery of nun-ya.
Moana: What's nun-ya?
Maui: Nun-ya business.

This abstracted shadow-self is like his shoulder angel and devil rolled into one, an aspect of himself that the dragon refers to as Oath - because it’s part of him, but smaller. Or at least, that’s the polite version of the explanation; the ruder one involves certain words that get used in some of their more protracted arguments. Not to mention the gestures from Oath! Is that even physically possible? …maybe only if you’re a drawing, unconstrained by physics. « And a jerk. »

One might hope that Talanoath would learn from these self-reflective experiences and gain understanding of what it is to argue with a bombastic and opinionated dragon, but… don’t hold your breath. He is, of course, perfectly reasonable. It’s Oath who’s in the wrong! …or, okay. Maybe he has a tiny little point, but only a small one. « Small like he is. And besides, I was getting there. » (He probably wasn’t, but when you lose an argument with yourself, sometimes you need to save face. Oath understands, on account of feeling the same way, so he generally lets it slide without a ‘told-you-so’.)

Talanoath loves to sing songs about his adventures and yours, whether made up on the spot and full of errors that he ignores as entirely besides the point, or polished over time as he tells and re-tells his favorite tales. (And maybe distorts them a bit along the way, but hey. Which is more important, some dull facts or a fun story?) The stories of others? Those are interesting too! He doesn’t have Rosalyth’s patience when it comes to reading books, but if he can convince her to tell him those fairy tales and stories of romance? Talanoath will be a happy dragon! …even if he does keep interrupting to make suggestions of how to make the story even better.

While the majority of Talanoath’s heroic ballads focus on himself - or you - he’ll certainly include his friends and associates from time to time. After all, if they’re in the company of Talanoath, there must be a bit of greatness to their name! He might have to dig deep… very deep… even deeper than that… but he knows it’s there. If he meets someone who seems interesting to him - for whatever reason - he’ll seek out their stories of peril and adventure. The night is always darkest before the dawn (or it was, anyhow, but Talanoath lifted up the sky and put glows around the edge of it, so now it gets light just a bit before Rukbat rises), and you can’t have a tale of courage without there being some danger along the way.

If one of his friends should claim that they are not in fact someone special, Talanoath will not believe them. They may think that they are not a hero, or a badass, or whatever else, but Talanoath knows otherwise! He can - and will - tell them exactly why they are more awesome than they think. No matter how much they insist otherwise, Talanoath knows. He may choose to indulge them in their delusions of mere adequacy, but it’s with a knowing smile and subtle hints that he knows all about those grand deeds that they (may or may not) have done. He’ll still tell the stories of their heroic deeds that he invented for them, but only when they’re not there, or have turned their back for a moment, or… look like they need it right now, in his considered and impulsive opinion.

Moana: Well, some of our strengths lie beneath the surface, while others…
Moana: …far beneath…
Moana: But, I'm pretty sure there's a lot more to HeiHei than meets the eye.

For all his boasts and jokes, Talanoath is certainly capable of genuine respect for others. The spark of greatness - the heart to believe and the will to achieve - could be there inside any dragon or human. As one of the larger browns of Pern, he sees himself as something set between the metallics and chromatics of the world; not so mighty as they of the shiny hides, but with a responsibility to aid and guide the smaller colors of his kind… at least, until they show him that they too are worthy travelers, capable of making their own journeys.

He’s even capable of being polite, though he saves that for the few occasions that actually need it… generally when there’s someone who he does genuinely respect that’d appreciate it. And, yes, that often means his manners get used when he’s making apologies for some sort of caper gone wrong, but it’s not just that. Sometimes he wants to make a good impression on a visiting queen - one of the ones that actually cares about whether he stands up straight and uses formal language.

It’s difficult to shake his respect, once given… but not impossible. Simple failure won’t do it; he doesn’t care whether you make it, he cares that you tried your best. Do that, and he’ll celebrate your attempt and encourage the next one. After all, even Talanoath fails sometimes. (He knows, it sounds strange and nearly impossible, but it’s true!) His disappointment is reserved for those who give up, and his anger for those who use the respect they’re given to purposefully do wrong to the people who look to them for guidance.

Should Talanoath ever be truly roused to anger, the seas will boil and the ground will shake. His big heart will seem to disappear, fire rising with a rage that strikes out against those who did this terrible wrong. He’s single-minded in vengeance, unthinking and uncaring; as though that personality within the egg has emerged once more to bring darkness and destruction instead of love and joy. If left unchecked, he may injure even those who aren’t responsible for anything more than getting in the way, and you will need to be strong to remind him of who he truly is and bring him back to where he belongs.

Moana: I have crossed the horizon to find you.
Moana: I know your name.
Moana: They have stolen the heart from inside you.
Moana: But this does not define you.
Moana: This is not who you are.
Moana: You know who you are… who you truly are.

For all his usual cheer and the playful boasts he makes as he goofs around and dances his way across the Weyr, Talanoath is still a predator… and a good one. He’ll have the usual first fumbles, of course, but he’s got no compunctions about killing his meals, and - much like his sire - he has the instincts of a hunter and will develop the grace and strength to bring claws and teeth to bear with deadly precision. Once he’s got the trick of it, his hunts will be swift and deadly, often ending with a single leap that sends the herd scattering as his victim falls.

But which beast is it that should become his next meal? That is a question Talanoath spends his time considering! You might find him sitting to watch the herds not because he’s hungry, but just to figure out which animals look tastiest… or like they might become tastiest, given the proper attention.

« I shall call you… dinner! »

Once he’s made his selection, he’ll seek to make sure that beast turns out extra delicious. Gifts of food left nearby in the pens? Aww yeah. Herdbeast like clover, right? He can grab a maw full from the fields and drop it right on them like some kind of aerial grass-bomb. Look out below, there’s hay on the way!

Maui: And I'm going to love you in ma belly. Now, let's fatten you up, drumstick.

If somebody else eats his chosen meal? He will be so disappointed. That was his, he claimed it, he was feeding and tending it for his dinner. What do you mean, someone else ate it? Not. Cool. « Next time, we’re keeping it in our weyr. » Of course, if you give in to his ideas of keeping his next few chosen meals near at claw, you may find that having those animals so close has another sort of unintended consequence when one or the other of you grows too fond of the beast to be willing for it to actually become Breakfast or Lunch. Which means he’ll want to pick out another beast, and name it Elevensies. This one will definitely, absolutely, no doubt about it become a meal! …probably.

Moana: [tasting a bit of meat given to her] Mmm! That is good pork!
[Pua, Moana's pet pig gives her a "sad puppy eyes" look]
Moana: Oh! I didn't mean… no, I wasn't… What? They're calling me, so I gotta… Bye!

When Talanoath has matured enough to actually take his dance up into the sky, he will glory in it. It’s where he truly belongs, and he exults in the freedom to move in all three dimensions and be free as only a dragon can be. Well, or a rider - he’ll be impatient to take you with him, chafing at the restrictions of flight training that keep the two of you from being as free as you are called to be in the sky where you belong.

He loves to dance in the air, to fly, and you may have a hard time convincing him not to push his limits in the air and do spins and rolls when the breezes call his name, whether or not you’re on his back… or he’s supposed to be flying in formation. Booooriiiiing! You may have a few near misses in the sky as his aerobatics bring him too close for comfort to other dragons, but he’ll eventually learn his lesson - that he should be more observant, that is. Not doing a flip when he feels like one? That’s not even an option to Talanoath.

Moana: We were voyagers! We were voyagers! We were voyagers!

He’s not just insistent about his heroism and skill, he’s persistent. Sure, it’s disappointing when he veers off course because the winds are too strong for him, or his feet slide out from under him on that landing, but he knows he can do it. He knows that you can do it, too. Other people? Maybe. Some of them can, some of them can’t… but if they’re willing to try, he’s willing to believe in them, at least a little. He can be downright stubborn at times, throwing himself at a challenge despite its seeming impossibility. He might fail, but he has to try. And try. And… believe, deep in his heart - and maybe find some help - and try.

Moana: Why did we stop?

Talanoath is not actually as fearless as he acts. He’s not worried about his dignity, or concerned by scrapes and bruises, but… he’s seen, through your mind, what it looks like when a dragon has a wing injury. Sometimes they recover enough to fly again, but sometimes… they don’t. That could happen to Talanoath, and deep in his heart he is terrified by it. What if he could never fly again? Never spread his wings and leap up toward those stars above, or soar over the waves as they crash beneath him. How could he live? How could he be Talanoath?

He won’t let that stop him. Sure, he’s scared. He’ll even admit it, in the quiet of night when there’s no ears to hear besides your own or those of another trusted confidant. Sometimes, he does actually try to be sincere for once. But… despite the terror of what might be, despite the fact that he is afraid, Talanoath refuses to act afraid. He’s going to fly his highest, dance his hardest, fight his fiercest, and be the best he can be. He will put on his brashest, bravest face, and he will show his determination in every fiber of his being, because that is who he is - and besides. There’s a certain kind of exhilaration, in with the terror. Knowing that you might die makes you really appreciate the wild rush that is life.

Perhaps that hidden fear - and the adrenaline high as he faces it - is a part of why he’s so fascinated by your work as a dragonhealer. He may even be a little too fascinated, according to some; Talanoath loves to peek in at surgeries and procedures, curious at the gory bits of them and seeking to learn just how dragons are put together. The more he knows, the more he can make sure his own bits stay together, right? Besides, it’s creepy and gives him that tingle of terror up his spine that excites him just like his own daredevil antics. That same curiosity may extend to his hunting, leading him to investigate his kills thoroughly instead of just chomping them down. « Ooh! Is this a spleen? Nailii! Come here and look! »

When it comes to helping out with your patients, he’ll turn out to be quite a good distraction… once he figures out that explaining the gory details of just how the bone is sticking out is - while exciting and fascinating to him - not something that the injured dragon or rider actually wants to hear. But that’s okay, because Talanoath has a thousand songs to sing and stories to tell, and someone stuck on the healer’s couch is a captive audience.

Maui: Really? Blow dart in my butt cheek?

Talanoath will drag up islands from the endless oceans in his mind just for them, and the music of his mind will sweep those injured dragons away from their pain to where warm currents surround volcano-heated rock and verdant greenery beneath shining stars. He will entertain them even to the point of being insufferable - because if they’re focused on glaring at him, they’re not suffering. And if they do happen to enjoy their island getaway singalong… so much the better! Talanoath certainly wouldn’t mind getting an actual friend out of the experience… but even if he doesn’t, he’ll draw satisfaction from a job well done.

Okay, so sometimes he may need to make sure that you and the other dragonhealers appreciate how graceful he was with that mental judo against pain, but really, the acknowledgment of his peers is an essential part of that satisfaction - at least, for a dragon as socially-minded as Talanoath. He earnestly does want to be liked - and for you to be liked - it’s just tucked beneath a bluster of playful confidence that has him acting full of certainty even when he’s still just a bit clueless.

Along those lines, Talanoath will likely think he understands flights long before he actually does. It’s a race! A competition in the sky! Sounds great - let’s go! The finer details of attraction and lust, well… he’ll understand when he’s older. Once he’s got a full grasp of what’s going on, you’ll find his opinions mixed. On the one talon, he is Talanoath, the aerobatic champion of the skies and charmer of ladies. On the other… well, there’s only one person who’s really admiring his flying, and she’s not even looking in his direction for most of it!

He’ll certainly chase - with passionate enthusiasm and flirtatious boasts - when he’s in the mood or fond of the lady dragon in question, but there will also be times when he’s far more interested in doing other things and leaves the flight to other males. « Yeah, I’m sitting this one out and giving the rest a fair chance. No good stealing the heart of every green, that’d just be greedy. »

When he does make good on his boasts and catch, Talanoath will do his best to give that lady a night (or day) to remember! Not that draconic memories are the best under any circumstances - or that he’s likely to want more than her friendship, come morning - but still. Where’s the fun in not being your most fantastic? While the dragons will soon forget, you may find your own flight-memories somewhat more detailed than those of most riders - though, given how your mind mingles with Talanoath at those times, should you really believe anything of what you think you remember? Maybe it was just a vivid dream, like that one about the sparkly crab with the weird accent.

Whether he’s actually the one who caught the gold or not, Talanoath will be happy when there’s eggs on the sands and babies in the barracks. They’re adorable impressionable little darlings! They can be such an appreciative audience for his stories, and admire his thews and the demonstrations of aerial agility where they too may aspire to someday be nearly as good as him.

He’ll often be willing to fetch prey for any friendly gold bound to the sands - or even take a turn at keeping watch over the eggs, should she be willing to leave them in his care. Once they’re hatched, he can be relied on to lead weyrlings on an adventure or let them curl around him for storytime. Admittedly, he’s not quite so reliable when it comes to actually telling the weyrlingmasters what he’s doing, or letting them know where their charges are and what they’re doing. After all, « If I asked, they might say no. »

When it comes to your own relationships, Talanoath certainly has his opinions. You should have a lot of friends, and you should be happy. They’re hard goals to argue with… in principle, at least. When he decides to help out with a song and dance about how wonderful you are… in the middle of a Gather… well, you might just want to bury your face in your hands and disown him before you run away to a deserted island for the rest of forever.

If he ever thinks you’re romantically suited to someone? He might just invite your new companion over without bothering to ask you first. You’ll have fun! What are you so concerned about? It’s not like you need to have eggs if you don’t want - but really, at the very least you should take an appreciative look. Maybe a nice horizontal tango? Or a vertical one! Diagonal, maybe? Okay, fine. « There are other fish in the sea! Where by fish I mean men, and women… and also fish. Are you into fishyfishes? Yeah, didn’t think so. I’ll find you a human! » …he can be so, so helpful.

When it comes time for the two of you to find a wing and put that desire to help into regular duties, Talanoath will be quite confident in his ability to do, « Anything, pretty much. Except- nah, actually, that too. » The less blithely optimistic might suggest a continued focus on dragonhealing, whether around the Annex or taking it into the field with Galaxy - assuming, of course, that he’s not barred from the rescue wing because someone in authority didn’t take kindly to some aerobatic antics of his. Still, his agility in the sky is undeniable, and it would certainly be an advantage to the wing… if he can convince them he’s enough of a team player that they’ll be willing to take him.

The two of you might someday find a role on the weyrling wing to work with those baby dragons he loves to play with… but then again, Talanoath might find himself happier to merely be the eternal uncle who appears with adventure and trouble - then disappears again to leave someone else to clean up afterward. Administration just… seems like a bad idea… and while he might enjoy the chance to see unfamiliar places and new people by riding transport in Asteroid, his cargo - and passengers - would probably be much less happy to be jolted around by quick turns and sharp dives.

Whatever your official duties may be, Talanoath will continue to take his true job as the greatest folk hero and storyteller of Xanadu - nay, all of Pern - quite seriously. Well, okay, he’s not going to act serious, but the point is, he believes in what he does, he believes in you, and together? You two are going to be the best you can be, and believe him, that is going to be AMAZING.

He is Talanoath of Xanadu Weyr, and you will be his rider.


Now Fall Down into the Sea of Stars and Songs
There’s an ocean in his mind, set beneath the starry skies… and there is music, mingled with the sounds of nature. That much is constant in Talanaoth’s thoughts, but there is a great deal of variation as well.

He finds or creates islands there among the waters, suited to the purpose he desires. They’re places to interact with others - or just to keep his thoughts. Which island had that bit of knowledge? He forgets, but that’s okay. There are more islands to be found, and he knows the way beneath those shining stars. Many of the islands on Talanoath’s are green with plants and full of life, with animals and people living there to add their voices and music. Others are barren rock - or even erupting volcanoes, with the crash of surf against the stone and the hiss of lava as it cools making for fiercer thoughts than the lap of waves and the songs of birds.

The stars shine in the darkness of his mental sky, sparks of pale light like the white foam on the ocean waves… or the glow of bioluminescent creatures that move in them, geometric patterns that coalesce amid skies or seas to make moving images of light against the depths of sea and space, their patterns an echo - or extension - of those carved against the island rocks and woven on banners fluttering in the sea breeze. Sometimes the light of dusk or dawn brightens his sky with its gleam, but it’s within the starry night that Talanoath is most often found. After all, night is the time for friends gather to around the fire to tell stories and sing together.

He speaks with the sounds of music and nature woven through his words, his mental avatar himself - or an animal, but really, it’s still just him. You can tell, because it always has the same patterning - adapted to the creature, of course, and varied according to what makes sense at the time, but there’s some variant of the brown hide and black designs in whatever genus or species catches his fancy this time.


Egg of Brown began its life as a reference to the story of Baba Yaga’s hut. A powerful witch of Slavic legends, she lived in a chicken-legged hut and would certainly like to have you for dinner. The egg-name itself is a reference to the Quest For Glory computer game, where the magic rhyme one needed if they were foolish enough to want to actually enter Baba Yaga’s hut was, “Hut of Brown, Now Sit Down.”

As for Talanoath himself… well, he’s mostly Maui, with some Moana… and even a bit of Te Ka’s darkness in his egg, restored to Te Fiti’s warmth and life now that he’s hatched and found his heart with you. He’s got Maui’s urge for heroic deeds and the adulation due for them, as well as his sense of bombastic humor and love for song and dance - while Moana lends her strength, determination, and caring to round out his character.

His name comes from Samoan, one of the languages of the Polynesian people who inspired the world of the movie. Tala - in addition to being the name of Moana’s grandmother - is the word for a tale (of which he has, and creates, many!) while Talanoa means to chat, to talk nonsense, or to boast… all of which are things your Talanoath is quite prone to doing! His name for you is similarly derived; Nai is a diminutive, while ‘Li i’ refers to the Pleiades - also known as the seven sisters. You’re his dear star-sister, Nailii… or perhaps his Naili’i; here the Li’i means small, because you are his little dear one. Sometimes you’re even his Li’ili’i - it means ‘ripples’ - as the two of you are sure to make a great many ripples with your lives together.

Egg of Brown and Talanoath were both written by Soriana, who sees Moana’s courage and love for her family reflected in another of the inspirations for your dragon’s name, and want to see those stories that began to long ago continue into the future. You and he can explore this world together, growing and changing as you do. He’s yours. <3

Name Talanoath
Dam Leirith
Sire Garouth
Created By Soriana
Impressee Nailii (Jaelynn)
Hatched Winter 2018
Xanadu Weyr
PernWorld MUSH
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