Xanadu Weyr - Coastal Road

This coastal road runs parallel with the edge of beach that stretches endlessly beside the Caspian Lake. From coast to inland the dunes of the beach grow smaller and smaller until they eventually peter out into nothing but small moguls in the sand. The path is eventually seen to be blocked by a river that reaches the lake just south of the point where the road turns west and crosses a grassy meadow towards a sturdy wooden bridge that can be seen in the distance.

It's just after lunch and the spring day has a lazy quality to it with sunny skies and soft breezes. People are headed back to work or out-of-Weyr to enjoy the fine weather. Along the coastal road ambles a lone teen, slivery-blonde hair gleaming in the sun when she moves from dappled shade to clear spots as she goes. She's sipping on a mug of klah, looking like she hasn't been long awake, mascara'd lashes drooping with that still-heavy sleepy look despite the fresh and flawless makeup applied to her face. That she has a purpose is only apparent in the way her eyes scan the wallows in front of the Weyrbarns she passes.

Lan's weyr is located near the cliff buffs that slant down into the coast line, where the end of the road bends away from the Weyr and starts heading into the wild. The towering lighthouse that guides in the ships from the far waters is a part of his weyr, so needless to say that the brown will be there. It's a longer trip considering his weyr is likely one of the last to be found on the road, though the scenry is nothing but extraordinary to view - so there is some enjoyment from the walk. Zhaoth -is- outside, not tucked away into his priate alcove carved into the cliffs and rock in the region. The brown is often on duty even when his rider isn't, taking roost on some vantage point (like the clocktower or starstones) just incase something did happen. Today, he's lingerng at the weyrside, his head cocked to listen for the sounds of babies crying from the interior of his rider's weyr. Interested concern has the brown sitting there, tail flopping uneasily, wings furling and unfurling at his sides, crooning the odd time as if that would help those inside with the four newborns.

Darsce doesn't seem too interested in scenery, but then the girl is more attuned to the hum of Ierne, the busy shops and the glittery nightlife. Thus she might look rather bored as she walks save for that alert-eyed scanning she's doing. Green dragon, blue, brown… she stops and peers - wrong one. The girl moves on, finally running out of weyrbarns and hesitating before continuing on towards that lighthouse further down the road. She finally reaches the end of the path that leads to the place, stands on tiptoes and cranes her neck to see down- ahh! The glimpse of brown hide beside the weyr draws her down that path, shells crunching underfoot as she goes until she finally stops several paces away. She can clearly hear the baby-sounds from inside and looks as though she'd like to flee but instead she clears her throat. There's no timidity from the girl, but rather unsure of whether she'll be heard although she speaks audibly enough. "Zhaoth? Hello. I've come to see you, would you allow a visitor?" It's probably the most respectful tone the girl has used in turns.

Zhaoth withdraws his muzzle from the entrance of the private weyr upon hearing the sounds of shells cracking behind him. The bony brown crans his head back, shuffling his rump back against the rocky ground, curling in his wings tighter toward his sides to really angle himself 'round better to note the visitor. Front legs lifted and replaced, his oddly-dusted hide, looking as it has never been oiled once in his life - no shine at all to it, settles low to greet the pretty lady. His head is lowered and his nostrils flare, sniffing toward the girl as if trying to recall something, a scent or a memory. Whatever the case is, which is hard to say with dragons, the russet brown bumps his nose ever so slightly against any limb outstretched for scritching - or if not, he'll bump her shoulder, all the while offering a grumbly physical sound. Not a purr, not a growl, but rather a mixture.

Darsce's hand is there to meet the muzzle, iceblue eyes taking in his hide with a tsking sound of sympathy low in her throat. The sound he makes doesn't seem to make her uneasy in the slightest, though it's nothing like the trills and croons other dragons might make. She lifts her other hand to join the effort, long curved and tapered nails are quite good for a nice scratch and she gives him a thorough one with fingers that are practiced at getting to all the right itchy places - along eyeridges, under jawline, even close to his nostrils where skin might flake. "I'm Darsce," she tells him easily, also not a stranger to draconic memory. "Siebith's is my father." She seems sure he'll know the blue since he, in a sense, commands the Weyr in part. "You thought I should stand for Seryth's clutch."

Zhaoth certainly doesn't look like other dragons, considering his hide bears no indication of a gleam, even after he's been bathed in oil, nor does his vocal range seem to mimic others. Instead, the noises he makes are a combination of what one would call coughs or hacks, hints of groans and clicks, huffs and vibrations. Trills are certainly not found in his vocal range. Mindvoice wise, reserved as well, and at the moment Darsce might sense something like rustling silk, the glimmer of it, only enough to perhaps make the girl belief she didn't feel it. However, if she's been around dragons long enough, she could pinpoint the source as being the large brown in front of her. He certainly makes use of her fingers, tilting his head low to the ground so that she could get those pesky places. And while his hide must look dusty and unpampered, his hide is smooth like the rest of the dragons. No hint of flaking or peeling or cracks. His hide well taken care of, it's just a faded brown that resembles the Igen deserts creating the mirage of bad hygiene. Slowly a ribbon of golden silk flirts with her, rigid words forming in contrast « I know. »

Fooled by the dusty color, Darsce is both surprised and approving of the smoothness to the hide her fingers make contact with. While not surprised in the least by the audible sounds Zhaoth makes, she almost reels at the voice in her head. Her eyes widen just a titch and her fingers freeze. "Okay now, see, I wasn't expecting that," she admits freely with a little laugh. "I wasn't really at all sure you'd listen to me at all. Not all dragons do, you know." She cranes her neck to eye the lighthouse weyr, but there seems to be no one minding she's out here and so, tilts her head at the brown in enquiry. "Could we…" she nods at some boulders a few paces away, "move over there so I can sit down? I wanted to… explain why I…" she coughs. Yes he knows and thus remembers how she punched his rider. "…did what I did." Yeaaaah, let's put it that way. "I'm sorry, because I'd never wanted to upset you."

Zhaoth makes a graity sound as her fingers freeze in the path of her scritching as his mindvoice pops into her head, intruding certainly and not at all characteristic for this brown. He rarely if at all, talks beyond his rider, or without his rider there to translate for him. It was difficult for any dragon to mindspeak to another person, simply because other people do not interpret the same way. As it is, there is no further attempts made, at least not yet. Zhaoth crans his head toward the boulders in which are a few steps away, answering by moving himself that way, body shifting and slithering up against the rock. There he waits, a curious tilt to his head but also a reach that means to put him in contact with her scritching fingers again.

Darsce wouldn't know how rare it is or isn't since she's not acquainted with the brown at all, but as she follows him to those boulders, she tells the dragon easily enough, "Mama's Quirinth never ever has said a word to me and I grew up with her around, but I think that's because she's a snooty gold. And daddy's Sie, well, I think he's as allergic to words as his rider is." She laughs under her breath with a dry irony about that while using both hands in a push-hop up to have a seat on the boulder, turning gracefully in mid-jump to land on her tush. "Where were we?" Meaning the scritching, obviously, as her fingers wriggle invitingly in the air, offering to resume if he would like. "I can't tell your rider, but I thought you should know…" The blonde is totally without her usual haughty, sophisticated veneer, totally sincere as she says, "you did honor me by asking; I know that. And thank you so much for doing it. I was so angry and upset and… scared when your rider told me you wanted me to stand. I can't do it, Zhaoth!" And she looks very young and very vulnerable admitting that.

Of course Zhaoth would love to continue the scritching, considering this far down doesn't mean he gets a lot of visitors, save for those who live in his rider's weyr. As it is, this time, Zhaoth exhales loudly as his head comes to rest on the boulder beside Darsce, muzzle pointed at her lap but not sitting upon it. The rest of him looks as if he's stretching, comfortable with a quiet chafe of his wings against the ground proper. A tickle of a ribbon as smooth as silk touches again though this time, no words beyond the simple indication he understood her words to him, her apology. There was that sense of acknowledgement, that even if they weren't connected, the young woman could feel. At the very last, with that vulnerable admission, Zhaoth exhales warm air that makes his nostrils flare and lifts his lips to show those teeth of his - one fang missing - in a dragonic smile. His rider must be thrilled that the dragon has decidedly tried to mock human emotion. There is a slight rolling of his head on the boulder that pushes his nose into her shoulder, a sound like a questioning whine - something a canine might do to beg, but definitely not in the pitch or quality of a canine.

Darsce hasn't really apologized, not yet. But she's getting there. Poor Ers'lan may never hear the words come from her tinted lips, but for Zhaoth she is more honest. And completely unaware whether he shares with his rider, she continues as her fingers resume scritching, "I'm sorry I punched your rider. That probably upset you and I shouldn't have done it - it sort of happened… on its own. In truth it really wasn't fair to him; I think I was punching something else entirely." She's looking out over the Sea of Azov, a bleak look on her face, lost in some thought until the whine and shoulder nudge brings her back. As there were no words from the brown, she interprets it as, "Why? Well because…" she breaks off, quite at ease with the beast to grin back at the lip-lifted brown, her light laughter silvery in the stillness of the afternoon air. Laughter that fades though as she continues in a low-voiced admission, "I saw what being riders did to my parents. The… arguments and the jealousy and daddy leaving…"

Zhaoth has this sound like stones clinking together in a sack for the mention of his rider being punched, followed by a deeper rumble - which with the flop of his tail could indicate his discomfort. The change in his eyes, from lazily swirls of green with flecks of yellow turn to mostly uncertainty of orange with soft fleck of concerned yellow, show his confusion and his compassion at the same point. It was good that his rider was not present, considering the brown seems to thrive on the attention given to him, droplets of green still there in his gaze as his muzzle pushes more into her hands. The laughter causing his gaze to slip back into deep blues for an instant, melting back to the pale yellows of concern. The emotions quick and fast lived in the dragon as much as in the young woman. For the last of her admissions, the brown draws back his muzzle and crans it toward the inner weyr, then back to Darsce. A few more sounds that indicate her to press on, as if more explanation was needed.

The iceblue of Darsce's eyes is the softest it's been since arriving at the Weyr and she looks openly apologetic at the distress she seems to pick up from the brown. "I know, I know," she murmurs reaching to slip her hands along the muzzle comfortingly in an almost-hug. "Mama would cry and Quirinth would do that with the yellow-orange eyes, only worse and so… yeah doing that to your rider was… bad. I'm really sorry; he sure didn't deserve it." She doesn't cling when the brown withdraws and peers at the weyr, allowing the hide to slip easily through her hands, which settle into her lap, fingers twining uncertainly. This is not a Darsce anyone at the Weyr or Ierne will ever see and her head drops when the brown seems to want her to elaborate. "Daddy says he doesn't know what went wrong, but I remember Mama always upset about other women. And she threw things at him…" Despite the painful account, her lips form a twisted sort of rueful smile, "There was this T-shirt we helped her make that said he belonged to her." Her voice catches, "I want… someone of my own, Zhaoth. Riders… they don't get to have that. Not the way I want. I don't want to be my Mama all over again." She flashes a look at the brown, assuring him, "And I would! I'm totally possessive. I don't want to love someone then drive him away."

Zhoath settles down on the ground now, rolling his belly to one side, pulling his wing out carefully to bunch it behind him, while his back legs outstretch and forelegs cross over one another, muzzle dropping down to that boulder again, exhaling another big gust of air. Abruptly there is that sensation of silken cloth rustling through her mind, the touch stronger this time, more intrusive, but only to show a picture. The picture was of a ship, with tall masts and a large crew, sailing upon the waters of the ocean, and his rider at the helm. Then a sadness would wash there as the image turns to Ers'lan watching from the shoreline and on the base of Zhaoth's neck the ships darting across the horizon. Finally, as the sadness washes away like a wave, there's a trace of empathy. His rider gave up his dreams to stand on the sands. Everyone knew that once a dragonrider one could not master a craft. It was not allowed. Masters generally were the only ones to Captain a ship. And so, in the physical world, Zhaoth gives a dragonic sigh and a nudge, encouraging sounds vibrating in his chest. The dragon listened and understood.

Ers'lan was hanging in the shadows of the weyr, having stopped on the threshold of his weyr when he noted what was causing his lifemate distress and those various hints of concern. The man sunk back into the shadows before he was seen by either party, but even so, Zhaoth can not keep himself from picking up his muzzle, stretching his neck over his wing to peer toward the inner weyr. A chuff signifies a shift in the brown, the beast getting up onto his feet to pivot around, careful to mind his body and whip-lash of a tail from getting too near Darsce on his turn. There's a happy sound from the dragon - not a trill - just a playful rumble as Ers'lan finally does come out, his hand sliding over muzzle with his eyes questioningly turning toward Darsce…

For a moment the impulse to lean down and scritch Zhaoth's upturned belly like that of a canine is evident as Darsce's hand reaches… then jerks to a stop at that silken mindtouch. Her eyes glaze over and the picture wavers, filmy and ethereal before her eyes, to hold her in thrall. How long the teen remains like that she has no idea, but her expression is tender for the span of time the image lasts. "Thank you, Zhaoth," she breathes, perhaps more at peace than she has been in many a turn for it's quite likely she's really never opened up to anyone about what she's locked away inside of her. Coupled with that is her appreciation that he's shared with her what his rider sacrificed as well as the listening ear and understanding. "I am far too selfish to be a rider, I know-" she's admitting forthrightly when the brown moves and her peace-hazed blue eyes lift to spot Ers'lan standing there. It's like a veil drops over them though the change, subtle enough, is there nonetheless. They're back to flippant with a touch of ice. "Oh hello, is this your dragon?" Faker! Yes. Badly done and she knows it but she's not going to admit it to him.

Zhaoth does show that dragonic little lift of his top lip again, the sides of his teeth showing as he does give a grainy purr for her appreciative 'thank you.' If the brown wanted to chance more of his mind to her, he doesn't. For whatever reason, the dragon restrains himself from reaching out any longer than he had to. The points were made and the understanding shared. No one knew what a dragon's mind touch did to those it was not bonded to afterall. Regardless, it wasn't natural for a dragon to do it. What she experienced certainly was out of respect, since there is that lingering ripple of silk that indicates as much.

Then there's Lan. He scrubs the muzzle of Zhaoth with a fondness that has his arm curling around the end and the brown giving a few more loving sounds of affection. Lan smack-pats the big fella in return, remaining where he was, without approaching the young woman. Finally some response to Darsce, level toned with a note of significance, "Reckon I best be gettin him ready fer duty. Oilin 'n checkin straps. Tis time fer ya to go Darsce."

Darsce slides off that boulder while rider and dragon reaffirm their bond and love for one another. In her own mind there is a kiss to her own fingertips that then reach to lightly touch to that ripple of silk and trail it though her fingers: a heartfelt thank you and a fond farewell. She'll see him around. As for the rider, she has a brittle smile and a flippant, two-fingered salute. "I was just on my way out, promise." Her steps take her crunching down the path towards the coastal road but partway before she turns back to tell him, "Your Zhaoth is quite wonderful and it was fitting he know a few things." In that she can be quite sincere, looking despite herself, that she might spill more, but instead her veneer falls firmly into place; defense for the coldness she senses and quite deserves from the man. "Take care of yourself Zhaoth," she says softly, gentleness cracking her mask of indifference until she can spin about and skip off with the appearance she hasn't a care in the world, while in truth she carries a heavy one, though the weight is somehow lighter.

Zhaoth nudge-bumps his head against Ers'lan hard enough to dislodge the man's hands, lifting his head to watch the blonde haired girl make her away back down the path. Lan merely stands there with his arms at his side, rooted to the ground and with no secondary offer that she should stand on the sands, simply, a watchful gaze noting her departure. Her comments earn from Zhaoth an outstretching of wings and a loud thrumming with a stop of a foot, his own salute of sorts, shaking out his head once he's finished, descending that head back into the chest of his rider. Lan simply falls into the task of scritching before he disappears back inside to fetch the buckets of oil and the scrub brushes. If he knows what was said to Zhaoth, he doesn't indicate. There too, his own walls. Life does go on.

Add a New Comment
Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License