Twilight cloaks the elegant form of this small bronze with a nocturnal patina that shadows the copper iridescence of his hide. Cold intelligence glitters with subtle danger in the icy absinthe of his eyes while on the nightshade of tapered muzzle and narrow head, knobs and neckridges are touched blood-red, droplets of the burgundy hue dripping down his neck and across his deep chest before bleeding down to the tip of his sinuous tail. Antique gilt encircles his neck, forming a faint baroque pattern that ends in a fleur-de-lis flare on the center of his chest. Joined from strong shoulders his wings, raven when mantled, flare open to breathe a dusky blush that warms the pallor of fog clouding the thin membranes stretched between ebon wingspars. Wine-laced cognac ripples across lean flanks and taut underbelly, dimming to sunset-bronzed stonework on fore and hind legs where dark moss clings to talons ending in rapier-sharp claws of steel grey. This lithe, serpentine dragon, sleek musculature perfectly proportioned for aerial speed, moves with agility and a predatory grace that is beautiful - and deadly.
Egg Name and Description
Paint Your Palette Blue and Grey Egg
The surface of this egg provides a canvas for an artist's hand whose brush has danced in lively, almost theatrical elation across the shell creating a bold, dramatic display in bright, glossy colors here while applying muted, somber shades there. Powerful strokes create a mysterious depth conveyed by indistinct shifts of light and shadow where dusky tones merge with bright, the light fading one moment only to be reborn the next. On the underside there appears to be a nocturnal forest sleeping in deep shadow, the foliage touched by moonlight's silver, its ghostly light falling to the ground beneath in fluttering patterns. Above, pale clouds stir the rich indigo that saturates the curved apex, the blue shimmering across it as if changing skies were mirrored in watery reflection. Fractured hues overall evoke emotion, creating dreamlike pictures unique to the beholder's eye, imagination and interpretation - never the same twice.
Pieces of the shell begin to flake from the Paint Your Palette Blue and Gray Egg as gleaming steel-colored claw tips emerge from the crack. The painted picture upon the surface begins to crumble slowly but surely as, impatient to be free, the hatchling within pries hard enough to finally pop the shell apart. Shattering under the strain, shards fly in several directions, moisture from the egg staining the sands in a few damp drops that quickly evaporate. The masterpiece rises, unveiled at last!
It gets you first somewhere in the gut, a small thrill akin to fear - or maybe it is desire! Your vision darkens and the temperature plummets like a stone as the blistering air around you chills. Sweat trickling down your back feels icy despite the heat of the sands and the warmth growing in your own belly - a heat that rises to curl possessively around your heart until you can feel each beat against it like that of a trapped bird. With a sudden upward surge from there, a golden effervescence of exultation explodes in your mind. « M'trin! » It's painless, this instant expansion to include the mind of another, but quite overwhelming nonetheless. With silken seduction the words are gently spoken, the cultural polish to the tone making them no less possessive and demanding, « You belong to me now. I am Volenth and you will teach me of your world. I hunger for it. » Waves of gratified elation flood you as the young hatchling feasts on what he picks from your mind. This fades somewhat, replaced by impatient fumbling then a hasty pencil-scribble that scratches out what appears to be a crude picture of a four-legged beast. « Before that though, This! » Two arrows are quickly drawn in, pointing to it. At the same time he curves his neck and aims a lip-nip at your backside, attempting to get you moving. « Let's go - wherever it is!! »
Past all thought of 'if' or 'when'
No use resisting
Abandon thought and let the dream descend
Volenth is, in a word, insatiable. When he learns there is a world beyond the immediate draconic one, he will spend the rest of his life not only exploring it but influencing it - though you. When he learns how the political structure of Pern works, that it is usually bronzes who catch the queens, that through capturing the senior queen in flight their riders become Weyrleaders, that it is the Weyrleaders who help make and shape the political climate and future of the planet, he'll tell you privately and with great satisfaction, « How fortunate I was not born a mere blue. »
Let your mind start a journey through a strange, new world
Like you, Volenth is at heart a sensitive poet, appreciative of beautiful imagery in word, music and art. This is first and foremost what drew him to you when he reached out beyond the confines of the eggshell to touch your mind, for above all else, he appreciates and treasures beauty and the ability to create it. He's creative and sensitive and though he wants to be independent, he knows he needs you. He may only admit to needing your eyes and ears but it runs far deeper than that. He was drawn to you, M'trin because while still in the shell he dimly sensed in you someone deeper than the younger candidates laying hands to his shell when he touched their minds. In you he felt someone not only attuned to the beauty and deeper things of life, but someone who has the sophistication and the knowledge Pern in general.
Despite his appreciation for the finer things and love of the arts, Volenth is all male, this one. He's got an inner rugged masculinity and sensual male sexuality that identifies strongly with your rougher past and Bitran roots. He may be refined but there's nothing girlish or timid about him! Contrary to his expressive nature, he holds back when showing his feelings for you. With him it's the tough-guy sort of thing: gruff manhugs, clouts on the shoulder, hearty thwacks that say, 'I've got your back' in a sort of rough, almost embarrassed affection. That's all he'll display most of the time. But when you're in that place between sleep and the edge of a dream, when he thinks you're just out of it enough not to comment on, he'll give in to his vulnerability. His presence then will steal into you, the warmth of his love and how precious you are to him curling tenderly about you. If you're ever seriously ill though, he'll drop every thought to attend you, keeping mentally closer than a breath. And woe be to anyone that ever tries to hurt you!
Close your eyes and surrender to your darkest dreams
Leave all thoughts of the world you knew before
Living in the barracks will most likely soon pall for young Volenth, who may find the antics of the other hatchlings vexing. For example Sonyxaeth's belief in fate and the stars guiding her will likely baffle Volenth, who is a firm believer in seizing opportunity and making his own destiny. He'll completely understand her fixation in looking at them, sharing with her the beauty he sees in them. And Izzuth, while he may be determined to lead, Volenth isn't so keen on being led. And though that desire might strike a chord with the bronze, the brown's determination to crush resistance with brute force and blast headfirst through walls of opposition may strike the bronze as amateurish. He'll often simply let the brown wear himself out with his heavy-handed tactics, declining to engage him in a physical struggle for supremacy. Whether he'll give the brown some tips on strategy depends on whether he thinks Izzuth will even listen. That's not to say he doesn't have a sense of humor or a playful side. He just expresses it differently than most of them do.
For him Weyrlinghood is a hurdle to get over. Graduation to the wings is a goal fixed as a shining beacon that beckons him ever forward. He chafes at the restrictions and may not be above pushing you to cut corners on the sly, whether it is flying early or attempting to *Between* before the Weyrlingmaster says it's time.
Volenth has an innate charm and wit, which he will become proficient in as he grows. He'll use it to his advantage when he pleases and will enjoy crossing wits with other dragons. He's driven and thus this spills over into a compelling, charismatic nature. He will speak his mind with other dragons, not because he's so forthright, but because being gentle doesn't suit him when stupidity is obvious. He may couch his clever words in smoothly pleasant tones, using such a beguiling manner the snarkier edge to the meaning leaving other dragons in the dark about the harsh criticism intended, but he will not hide that from you!
Volenth isn't the type to sit by and let others make the decisions, he wants to have a say in things and he is happiest when he feels free to express individually and creatively, where opportunities are not restricted by tradition, which he'll scorn as stifling and backwards. He is a leader, not a follower, choosing to lead with manipulative skill and deft precision rather than brute force. In his mind there is only one wing for the pair of you and that is Quasar - the Policy and Diplomacy Wing, which he views as the one that shapes Pern.
Slowly, gently, night unfurls its splendor
Grasp it, sense it, tremulous and tender
For Volenth, even when caught in the intensity of mating arousal, a flight isn't completely about the win - although that is the greatest part, of course. He's got a sensual side and the normal drives of any male dragon when the mating urges rise. But for him it is also personal. That irritating brown there he must defeat soundly! He is an opponent that must be overcome and shown that wits beats brawn any day.
Floating, falling, sweet intoxication
Touch me, trust me, savor each sensation
Despite his charisma and the fact that he will converse freely with other dragons, Volenth may not choose to form close bonds with the ladies he catches. He'll treat them with graceful charm and impeccable politeness, but most aren't kept and clung to after the mating ardor fades. Should he sire a clutch he'll be proud, of course. This is what dragons do, but if it doesn't suit him to eggsit on the sands, he'll leave that to the queen. There may be times when it is in his best interest to keep the gold company and then he will gladly do so. Should he catch a Senior queen, well. All bets are off as to how he'll feel about her or how he'll treat her.
When it comes to the world of men and their doings on Pern, there's really only one way for Volenth to sate that hunger and that is through you, M'trin. You are not only his answer man, you are his eyes and ears in places he'd love to go but cannot. He's keenly interested by all things in print whether it be Pernese law or harper stories of old. It frustrates him no end that he cannot visit libraries and select things to read himself but that won't stop him from prompting you to go pick out something to read to him. He'll devour the print through your eyes with a voracity that is intense.
What warm unspoken secrets will we learn
Beyond the point of no return?
He is a sensual personality, incredibly so and may even prompt you to try things so he can experience them vicariously through you. During everything you do, from eating, drinking alcohol, soaking in the hot springs even making love - if you do not create a buffer to keep him out - he will attempt to be present in all the corners of your mind, analyzing your sensations, enjoying the pleasant and enduring the not-so. It's your meetings and conversations with those in authority that he'll hone in on with razor-sharp attention though, not only listening, but as his understanding of things matures, participating in the discussion and expecting you to voice his questions, speak his ideas and follow his prompts.
Let your soul take you where you long to go
Only then can you belong to me
Volenth has a quick, keen and analytical mind combined with a supremely self-confident decisive style of decision making. His ambition drives him and thus he's demanding, determined and passionate with an intensity that few dragons have. He has an innate skill, the ability to learn quickly and use eloquent, cultured charm that can spill over into manipulation. A bit too clever and when paired with his ambition, he might not always be as scrupulous as he should be, sometimes endorsing a course of action that is contrary to societal rules. He's highly idealistic and has great disdain for empty tradition, impractical goals, or meaningless rules when they run counter to his ambitions. For this reason he tends to be a maverick, making his own rules if the policies and politics do not fit, skilled at finding or perhaps 'creating' loopholes in the Harper laws when it suits him, citing the end justifies the means.
You are the mask I wear
It's me they hear
Because he is highly altruistic, when he cares deeply about the welfare of a particular person or he knows someone is being hurt, he's not afraid to get his (or your) hands dirty in spite of a certain amount of aesthetics. The Weyrs don't interfere with Holder issues? That's stupid and backwards! Violence? Well, in his mind it's okay to cheat or 'take down' a jerk. Renegade murderers? Kill them before they kill anyone else! He often has his own reasons for doing things and pushes himself and those around him. He's not above trying to manipulate or nudge Seryth into a certain direction he thinks will set a course towards where he wants things to go. His heart is in the right place, for he truly does want the greater good for the Weyr and Pern. He is consumed with his passion for the Weyr - HIS Weyr and in a wider sense, the rest of his world; he wants only the best for it and cannot seem to accept that sometimes things just do not work out for the best.
Without light there can be no shadow. Where the rest of the world and the voices outside your head provide the light, Volenth is more than pleased to provide the shadow. Ineptitude and dithering totally frustrates him and he has no patience with it. While he fully endorses a more diplomatic response outwardly, mainly because that will bear the results he wants in the long run, you will hear his sarcastic comments, asides meant only for your hearing, should the two of you encounter such. Sometimes he fights your tendency to be diplomatic, oft prompting you with a hasty and harshly sarcastic response that, while truth, is unacceptable in Pernese culture - especially for a Harper striving for diplomacy! Be careful that his words don't pop out of your mouth at inopportune times!
Close your eyes, let your spirit start to soar
And you'll live as you've never lived before
When Volenth realizes that you are intent on being the person everyone sees he will question why you are holding back, not expressing your opinion, not going for what you really want, or not facing this issue you've buried deep within yourself. If your answers don't suit him, if there isn't an ulterior motive for waiting or a plan in the long run for you to accomplish an end, he will push you to take a risk before you lose an opportunity. Have to explain yourself to someone? Deal with it! Have to face disapproval from someone? Oh well! Might be misunderstood? So what? Don't know the Masterharper of Pern very well? Guess what? You're going to!
He's decisive, sure of himself. When confident that he's right, he has a shoot-from-the hip mentality, completely convinced his aim is true. And most of the time it is. Though he is ambitious and tends to push for action, be does understand the value of timing and methodical planning. But when he's certain NOW is the time, he can be quite insistent and forceful if need be. And he's not afraid to call you out if he thinks you're holding back or over-analyzing, either.
Say you'll need me with you now and always
Promise me that all you say is true
Volenth is introspective, sometimes almost to the point of dark brooding over some of the things he does. If one of the actions he's pushed you to take turns out badly, he may agonize whether there might have been a different course. You will have to pull him out of this - or be pulled into the habit with him. He's also obsessed with the need to know why dragons are and what their role is now that Thread is gone. Bred from firelizards to fight Thread were they? This he can accept but he probes deeper: Did Thread always fall or did it begin with some cataclysmic event that forever changed Pern's makeup? Firelizards existed before that, didn't they? Were they destined to become the draconic race all along and save Pern? Why is he here now, what his purpose is now that Thread no longer falls? He may keep you awake nights with these musings.
Then say you'll live with me one love, one lifetime
Let me lead you from your solitude
While Volenth may seem to be consumed with his machinations and manipulations, they would all be of little interest if it wasn't YOUR world, M'trin. He may appear distant or independent, very rarely putting affections into words, but he does love you. Deep down in the quietest part of his being there resides the need for your approval and your love - for you, M'trin, are his life.
Love me, that's all I ask of you
Volenth is a connoisseur of scent, taste, texture, sound and color, an artist that appreciates your talent for the expressive, drawing from you a rich variety that he will enjoy employing with skill to color his communion. Sometimes he may blast into your consciousness as a surging tide or a sudden summer storm, flattening your resistance with a gale force that demands access. He can be as coolly circumspect as a fog rising from the moors caressing your mind to entice invitation in while other times he’ll bleed in, seeking to find a way around your defenses so he can surreptitiously pick through your mind while you are otherwise preoccupied.
In sleep he sang to me, in dreams he came
In your head, Volenth’s smoothly sensual tenor tone carries a cultured accent, his words precise and flawlessly enunciated, but at first as a young hatchling he’ll be learning to communicate by listening to you – and others through you. In the beginning his phrases may be interspersed with half-spoken words colored with brush-stroked smears and splotches, or hastily-sketched pictures - whatever he can pull out that illustrates his thoughts in place of the words he doesn’t yet know. At times his questions might feel oddly physical - like fingers caressing the clay of your mind to pull from it the things he wants to ask but doesn’t yet know how.
That voice which calls to me and speaks my name
As Volenth becomes more fluent, employing language with skill, his mood and tone can be accentuated with sensations such as the flicker of warm flame flirting with cool shadows, the hiss and sputter of coals assaulted by water, the hauntingly liquid notes of a violin, the scented complexity of fine perfumes or the more masculine citrus tang of cedar, leather and woodsmoke - sometimes subtly sweet, other times heady - frequently enticing, always intoxicating. Or it may be the sumptuous caress of silk, the irritating scratch of stiff lace, the pleasure of smooth, supple leather, the taste of fine cigars and cognac in your mouth, the effervescence of champagne on your tongue, all richly used to convey his thoughts and mindset.
What better theme for a Harper than the arts? This is the theme you’ll find tying the whole dragon together from egg and mind touches, to the description, mindvoice and personality. You also wanted some darkness and said you pictured the dragon as European. With that in mind, I looked for a dark theme, using France itself, pulling ‘harper-ish’ elements form the cultural history, Gothic architecture, French literature (The Phantom of the Opera written by Gaston Leroux) and music (the Broadway production of the same, by Andrew Lloyd Webber, 2004).
The theme for the clutch was ‘Things That Come in Assortments’ with this egg’s being ‘oil paints’. The tie to France for Paint Your Palette Blue and Gray Egg is in its description with the allusion to French Painter Claude Monet and the shimmering watery reflection of sky in a pond’s surface.
This egg is dark and therefore seemed a fitting choice for your Volenth. It was written based upon Don Mclean’s haunting song, ‘Vincent’, in particular this rendition that you may listen to here:
Don Mclean wrote ‘Vincent’ after he picked up and leafed through a book of artworks by Vincent VanGogh. Deeply moved by the biography there, he wrote ‘Vincent’ which captures the elusive message he felt the troubled VanGogh tried to express through his paintings.
Volenth’s name is primarily of French origin, taken from both ‘noir’ (dark) and ‘voile’ (shadow/ fog). And since the Greeks at one point in history occupied part of modern France, part of your dragon’s name is taken from the Greek word Erubos (deep darkness, shadow), for the god Erebus was a primordial deity, representing the personification of darkness and brother to Nyx. Volenth literally means ‘Dark Fog’ and may be pronounced either Vwa-lenth or Vo-lenth whichever you prefer.
Volenth’s description is evocative of all things French and more loosely dangerous elements associated with France. His body shape and dark coloring were drawn from the poisonous Black Adder, native to that region, eyes from the alcoholic drink absinthe, also called ‘the green fairy’, said to be addictive, hallucinogenic and slightly poisonous. His claws are the rapier, a gentlemen’s sword used mainly for fencing and dueling in the 18th century. Bronze coloration is the Burgundy from Bordeaux, the wine traditionally enjoyed with meals, the cognac sipped after, the blood spilled during the many wars France endured and the stones that form its chateaux, monasteries and villages.
France is known for having the best of everything luxurious, from wine and cheese to lace, perfume and paintings. Thus French anything has come to symbolize ‘the finest’. Volenth’s mindvoice then, touches upon all of that from the foaming of Champagne, the aromatic smoke of cigars and burn of cognac sipped after dessert, the rich scent of fine perfumes, artists’ brush, the sheer textiles and soft leather goods that come from there as well as the natural beauty of the French countryside.
As always, these RP tips are only suggestions. You are welcome to RP him in any way you desire.
Volenth was created for you by Thea at Xanadu, Spring 2012.
~May your fog magic last a lifetime.
||Listen to the Night Bronze Volenth
||Matrin / M-trin
||April 10, 2012