Flying Takes Me Away
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Xanadu Weyr - Training Grounds
A wide, grassy expanse, nestled into the gentle bowl shape where something's taken a bite out of the mountain. It's high above the level of the beach, and there's a good eastern view of the lake and a long path leading down to that sandy shore. Granite cliffs surround it on the other sides.
While much of the grounds are left in their natural state, one area has been trampled and trodden by enough feet that the grass struggles to grow. A running track circles a set of equipment - straw dummies with wooden frames, obstacles of various sizes and shapes, and targets for flaming, archery, and whatever else.
There's a dragon-sized opening to the south that leads to the cavernous weyrling barracks, and a smaller tunnel to the northeast - large enough for dragons newly emerged from the sands, but quickly outgrown by hatchlings who are then forced to take the long way around - at least, until they learn to spread their wings and fly. Between them in both position and size, a jagged crack in the stone leads to a dim cave with the sound of water.


AWLM Molli is here again, her short boy-cut hair in a sort of spiked style today. Or … maybe she just forgot to style it, period? In any case, the spunky greenrider has claimed the training grounds as a gathering place for some of the Weyrlings. It's practice time! And just what sort of practice may be obvious to some considering the way she's checking and rechecking the straps of her dragon. Goggles are set upon the seasoned-rider's head, stained a bright blue color. She kicks the heels of her riding boots against the ground, then bends to dust her palms with a little dirt before brushing them together. "Clear skies, Nyruth," she says to her lifemate before turning to look towards the barracks.

Wensith is enthusiastic as usual, the blue is bounding out of the barracks with his usual boundless energy. Ka'ro can be seen coming in after the blue, and for once, the weyrling looks just as excited as his blue, he's dressed in his newly aquired riding gear that still looks like it might need to be worn enough so that it isn't quite so stiff. But the weyrling doesn't seem to care. Ka'ro joins the others, shifting back and forth from foot to foot, unable to contain his excitement.

"And here you are," says Molli with a smile to Ka'ro. "Good to see ya with a pep in your step, Weyrling! You nearly had me worried that the only gear you had was gloom," she says witha half joking grin to him. She stops messing with her dragon to instead approach the Weyrling and his, giving Wensith a familiar grin. "Hey there Wen. You're looking your usual excited self!" She laughs a little. "As if there is any other way for ya to look, huh?" Her eyes turn to Ka'ro now, smile still evident. "How is he?"

"Sorry, we came as soon as we heard," Ka'ro says quietly, his eyes fickering down towards the gear, looking rather confused. "Gloomy gear? Is it gloomy? I thought it was rather new…do I need to brighten it up a bit?" He glances in confusion at the assistant weyrlingmaster, rubbing at the back of his head. Wensith gives a happy little rumble, his head leaning forward to greet the greenrider enthusiastically, thrusting his muzzle at her in greeting. Ka'ro laughs cheerfully, "He's his usual self, he's doing good, we're both really excited for today's lesson. He can barely contain himself for as much as he wants to fly."

"What she means is your expression." Idrissa offers while she is making her way on over to where Molli and Ka'ro happen to be. A slight smile and nod sent to them. Tahryth is gliding downwards, there is a flutterof her wings as they fold to her sides and a soft warble of greeting escaping the green.

Molli can't help but giggle slightly. "Gear as in a 'state of being' gear," she explains just as Idrissa arrives to help clarify. She beams and nods in affirmation. "Exactly that! But no matter. I'm happy to see you're in better spirits today. You'll need to be when you're up there," she says, pointing skyward. She pats at Wensith, having gotten his attention quite easily. "Yes, yes, I know. You're itching to be up there with your rider, aren't you?" she says to the blue. "Okay then, no need to drag this on, is there? Have you checked his straps? Double, triple checked? Has he been properly oiled? Have you noticed any strain during his unmounted flights?"

"My expression?" Ka'ro glances over towards Wensith, as if communicating with the blue silently. Finally he blinks, "Well, things've been better lately. Wensith and I've…come to understand one another. And he doesn't do things as often as he used to, I think he realized I was getting upset because he did things without thinking." Ka'ro reaches up to give the blue a fond rub, "He's still him, but he has fun when it's not gonna get us in trouble." Ka'ro explains with a little roll of his shoulders. He nods his head enthusiastically to the questions, "I went over them all day long, I went over them so many times I think I might've worn them thin already. And Wensith hasn't had any strain, he really wants to push himself, but he's been saving that for when we graduate and won't get into trouble for flying the way we're not supposed to."

Idrissa wont go into detail about Ka'ro's expression, though she is glad to see it is better then it has been. She smiles at the talk of the straps, the unmounted flights, ah yes this is the part that she likes, flying! Tahryth warbles out to Wensith, clearly looking forward to seeing what this blue can do in the air with his rider it would seem. "Have to make sure everything is checked and then checked a dozen more times when one is starting out."

"That's what I like to hear!" exclaims Molli. Check, check, and check again! And then one more time, just to be sure! As for pushing himself…she just smiles. "Eeeh what you do after graduation is your business, yes. And that of the Weyrleader, if it gets too insane. But that hardly happens. Mount up!" she says. Apparently it's just Wensith and Ka'ro today. "We'll be flying over the Weyr today to get a feel of your lifemate. I won't pretend that this is the first time you've been on him, as I've yet to meet a Weyrling that doesn't try to ride before his or her time." Grin. She doesn't seem too worried. "Strap in and AWLM Idrissa will check you. Meanwhile, do you have any fears of flying?"

Ka'ro turns towards his lifemate and pulls himself onto the dragon's side and then settles himself onto the dragon's neck and starts to strap himself in. "We won't do anything too abnormal, y'know. Just us, flying, like we were meant to fly, not like you guys want us to fly." Ka'ro says as he lowers his goggles over his eyes and checks over his work with a little frown of his lips. "I am not scared of flying, at all. I know how Wensith flies when no one else is there to moniter him and make sure that he's flying straight. I've flown on dragons like that before, I'm looking forward to the thrill of riding him. I'm not scared at all."

Idrissa glances to Molli andnods a touch at the bit that she will go about checking the straps. She moves on over to where Ka'ro is, waiting for him to be all strapped up and she is checking to make sure the straps are indeed well. She tugs on a few, yanking on another before nodding. "Looks like his all set to go." This said back to Molli while she smiles and moves back brushing her hands off.

Molli mounts her Nyruth, making quick work of strapping in. This is hardly her first time! She situates herself while Idrissa checks Ka'ro over for the final time. "Excellent," she says, nodding to the other AWLM and Ka'ro as well as he claims to have no fear. "Fear can cloud your lifemate's mind, if he senses it. This isn't to say to be fearless all the time. We all get that way sometimes, but it can be harmful if one is afraid of flying, as flying is … natural for a dragon. Now!" She claps her hands together. "Watching a dragon fly and riding as a passenger are both very different from being the actual rider to your own lifemate. While up there, listen to him. Feel the shifting of his weight and the adjusting of his wings. Nyruth and Tahyrth will be there both as guides and support, if he needs it. But ultimately, the best support he'll receive is from you." She situates her goggles over her eyes. "When you are ready, Ka'ro and Wensith, fly up!" And she does just that on her little green, whose wings get her lithe body aloft quickly.

Wensith lets out a little excited rumble, turning his neck when Idrissa comes over and perhaps looking to seek attention from her as well. Hey, look at me, don't you just wanna scritch my head? Ka'ro shakes his head in amusement, giving the blue a fond pat to his shoulder. "C'mon, Wens, stop trying to distract her so we can get up in the air faster." Though most of his attention seems to be upon Molli, nodding his head as he listens to her speak.. "Right, well, I'm not scared. I've been on dragons before, my parents were dragonriders." He leans forward, gripping the straps between his fingers once he and his blue have been cleared to fly. Wensith seems to wait until Idrissa is a respectful distance away before he launches straight up into the air, using the power of his hind legs to send him into the air. And then the blue is flying, his wings pumping hard at the currents around him as he follows the little green's ascent into the sky.

Nyruth soars high! Her wings spread, catching an updraft that spirals her into the clear blue! Molli grins in delight. Flying never gets old! But she has to focus, for she has a first timer here. "Find him.." she says to her lifemate. The green reaches out with her mind, her thoughts a warm way of sunlight that basks upon him. « Fly to me, youngling. We will soar together this day! » The spiraling green soon levels out, looking momentarily as if she's hovering motionless against the backdrop of the sun.

Wensith soars through the air, and if there was any doubt that the blue couldn't fly, it's easily erased as he seems as natural in the air as he does upon the ground. Dragons are meant to fly, after all. The blue may be still learning the ins and outs, but for the most part, he doesn't seem to be having any problems at all. And as the mind touches his own, the gentle chattering of birds can be heard across the green's mind, bringing with it a image of a mechanical construct that seems to be build of odds and ends. «The sky is ours.» He responds, catching up to the green easily. Ka'ro is grinning, the wind in his face as he leans forward, hands clenching at the straps that hold him fast against his partner. The youth lets out a little whoop, though with his thrill, is the absent concentration that he is giving to the flight.

Now that they are in the sky, Molli uses Nyruth to help keep an eye on the Weyrling pair. She makes a hand signal, which by now any Weyrling would know means to flank to her right. « You fly well, youngling » Nyruth projects in a burst of cheerful light, a confetti of flower petals. « Can you feel your rider above you? Their weight is slight, yet it alters our flight still. Be aware!" She trills languidly. « Keep mind that he is there. To forget is easy." She gives her wings a pump, then settles into an easy glide. « Follow me and show him how the ground looks from above! » Molli smiles both to her lifemate and hearing Ka'ro's joyful whoop. He hasn't fallen off yet. That's a good thing! She guides her dragon onward, soaring away from the training grounds and above the beach and lake.

Ka'ro has been practicing on his hand signals indeed, the weyrling has been studying them day and night and when the hand signal is flashed at him, he has Wensith move into position at the green's flank. The blue seems pleased at the words bestowed upon him, his wings trailing as he settles into an easy glide at the green's side. «I would not forget that mine is there, he is precious and I would not drop him. He is safe with me.» Wensith says cheerfully, his mind abuzz with his usual flurry of thoughts that flicker and change from one moment to the next.

Nyruth guides the blue across the water, and Molli points to the dolphineers as their dolphins jump from the water. She grins and then arcs her green around, back towards the shore and beyond it, flying above the meadow and clearing. From here, people look like dots. Children wave up, even though dragons are such a common thing here. Nyruth trills as she wingbeats further up, bringing herself higher and higher, towards the towering starstones. « It is good to fly. It is btter to fly with your own on your back. Remember, too far above ground is not good for them. For you and I, we soar to no limits! » Perhaps an exaggeration, that! « But for them, there is danger. If you feel tight in breath, he feels tighter. »

Wensith follows the green, seeming playful in his flight, swerving from side to side, but at least he's not doing anything more than delighting in the way that the air forms over his wings. The blue lets out a little jubulant cry, his voice joining the whisting winds as they flow over his body. The blue's eyes whirl green in his contentment, though he does take care to carefully keep at his position at the green's side. «I will remember, Nyruth. I will not forget, I would not put mine in peril.»

Although it looks as if the green is going to land on the starstones, she doesn't. Instead, she gives a playful call to the watchdragon on duty and then circles around and flies off. Molli is listening, attuned to her lifemate and the one-sided version of the conversation that she's hearing. She glances over her shoulder to get a look at Ka'ro, wobbling just slightly at a sudden gust of wind that fights against the currents. Nyruth stays aloft for a while, flying over the forest and areas beyond that. Circling back to the ridge and the dominant looking observatory above that. Then finally, back to the Weyr proper where the green begins to circle towards the barracks, landing upon the training grounds.

Eventually all good things must come to an end, as they fly over the star stones, Wensith slowly glides down to the ground below, thier circuit around the weyr complete. And while the thrill of the flight is still clinging to them both, the lesson is done for the day. Ka'ro unhitches himself from Wensith's neck and slides to the ground. An enthusiastic grin pulling at his lips, "That was great! I can't wait to get back up there!" Ka'ro says quietly, looking around in excitement. And he'll stay for a few moments to talk to the weyrlingmasters, discussing things he needs to improve on before he and Wensith go back inside, probably to gush over how wonderful it was to be flying together.


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