How to Train Your Rider

Xanadu Weyr - Meadow
A large, slightly rolling meadow is set high enough above the riverbank on both sides to avoid suffering from flooding, healthy ground cover and grass spreading out from either side of the dividing river. Scattered amongst the meadow are a variety of weyrs, each with a narrow path leading up to it from a main, winding road. Some are set under a few trees, while others sit by themselves. The meadow continues with gentle rolls and dips, grass tall and short waving in the slightest of breezes, and eventually those hills grow higher and steeper, ending in a large rige that provides a fine view of that meadow and the rest of the Weyr, gazing out over the multicolored roofs of the houses and the cliff that holds the caverns.
Runner stables with the paddock beyond are to the south beyond the meadow weyrs, and a smithy and a woodcraft shop are settled closer in towards the path to the clearing. Trees border the northern side of the meadow, and more of those low, rolling hills can be seen to the northwest. A road passes through the meadow, coming from the east and used by traders and crafters alike. Wagons laden with felled trees from the forests or ore from the mountains are hauled by burden beast up the road through the meadow, over the bridge spanning the river to be processed in the appropriate workshops.

Spring breezes idly push clouds across the blue sky over Xanadu today. It's fairly warm dry, the perfect day for straps checking. At least it's E'tan's conclusions and the bronzerider is circling around his lifemate, carefully staring at every pieces of metal here and here. Saburath obediently lifts a wing then the other, allowing his rider to check. Both seems to be quite focused on the current task even if a blue and brown flit desperately try to distract the young bronze by chirping above his head.

Marzoth and S'dny had landed in the central clearing. After a quick peek around they found no one. So the pair walked from the clearing toward the meadow. With the warmth of Rukbat shining overhead the walk is not unpleasant. The two of them move slowly through the grasses of the meadow and soon enough come to the awarness that there is indeed another person about, and a dragon along with that person. Syd raises his hand to wave, "Hello." he calls to E'tan. Marzoth offers no greeting of any kind. At least not at first. He holds his head high as he walks in as stately a manner as he can manage to pull off. Only once he gets closer does he incline his head slightly to the other bronze, « Greetings. » he says, letting a gentle wind blow through his dark forest.

E'tan doesn't notice S'dny and Matzoth's arrival at first, so much focused in that strap checking. But if he doesn't realize, Saburath does and the young bronze folds his wings in a brisk move causing Tani to disappear under. "Hey…what's wrong with you?" He almost scolds his lifemate just as S'dy's voice is heard. "Oh hello S'dny!" Glaring quickly at Saburath, E'tan walks over to reach the other bronzerider. "Marzoth." He politely adds, offering a smile. "What good fortune brings you both here?" « Greetings as well. » is the only reply from Saburath, his stellar echo tainted with reserve mixed with respect.

Marzoth is hardly effusive in his response to the other dragon's greeting. He nods his head slightly before he holds it high once more. The human's greeting he ignores all together. He looks off into the distance as if he is pondering something. Apparently it didn't take him too long to figure it out, « Kanekith is not here. I do not sense his mind. Where, I wonder, is he? » the dark bronze muses. Syd smiles affably, "No particular good fortune. Just had a bit of time off and thought I'd travel down here for a visit." He sends a glance Saburath's way, "You've grown considerably from the last time I saw you." Indeed dragons do get so much larger than when they are small, "I trust things are going well here?" he asks E'tan.

Saburath has grown, it's true, but he still has to raise his head to look back at Marzoth. A low rumble escapes his maw, nothing aggressive tho. Just some kind of emphasis. « He is not here anymore and so isn't his rider. » Due to their known short memory lifespan Dragons can't tell much but still, Saburath knows the pair has gone. « Is he a friend? » "You know you're always welcome around here and it's always a good fortune to see you again." E'tan is sincere here and also grateful Saburath is finally behaving in front of Marzoth. Resting a hand proudly on the bronze's flank, he flashes a broad grin. "Things are well, yes. I think we're adjusting just fine." the younger bronzerider's hand slides down the gleaming hide until he can give the straps a firm tug. Another check? Or a way to tell Saburath he's been talked too. The bronze warbles and dip his head at S'dny before glancing back up at Marzoth.

Marzoth considers this bit of information and references it with the information that S'dny has so graciously been told to keep in his head on the matter, « Yes I have heard of this. It is of no concern. » he says as the little lights in his forest twinkle and fade into the trees, « No. He is not. » the bronze answers accurately enough. When he was much younger he had hero worshipped the bronze from afar but interacted with him little. "I'm glad to hear that it's all going well. It takes a period of adjustment to being graduated, but soon enough it all mundane enough." Syd answers the other man's comment. He grins to Saburath as the dragon greets him.

« Are you sure it is of no concern? » Saburath body asks the older bronze. It may only be the second time he meets the huge dark bronze, it seems like Saburath took on the mission to pierce Matzoth's aura of mystery. "Mundane yeah. But I'm beginning to suspect that routine is the true enemy here. Right Sab?" He chuckles, tugging at the bronze's flying straps again. What comes from the young dragon is nothing but an annoyed rumble. "We…err…had our share of adrenaline lately…"

Marzoth's response to the question is twofold. He first wraps the darkness of his forest around himself as he does periodically to keep himself feeling safe and secure, and the second part is more verbal, « Not to me. If he is gone then he is gone. It is the nature of things. Dragon's often leave. Others replace them. No one is irreplaceable. » Syd nods in agreement with that statement, "It is very much. Routine routine routine, all the time. You can't really escape it." The same old same old is truly the mark of a rider, "Oh really? Hopefully the good kind of adrenaline." he asks.

E'tan's grin is soon replaced by an embarrassed grimace and he shifts a bit. "Well…I'd rather say it ended up safely enough….luckily." « But aren't we irreplaceable for our riders? » Saburath is perplex as if all his believes have suddenly been discarded. "It was my fault tho. Lack of rigor. A buckle broke…." Tani finally admits.

« That is what they say. » Marzoth replies with a slight whip of his tail. If this is something that he believes personally or not he doesn't say. « I have no wish to replace mine. » Which is just about as close as the bronze will admit that he needs S'dny. Though he'd never say that to the man. Not in words anyway. "I'm assuming that the class that they gave you on strap repair and maintenance was good?" he asks. After all it is one of the things that he hammers into weyrlings over and over, "Because between will damage all your equipment as will normal weyr at tear. I hope you didn't fall from too far?"

As much as his fall has scared him, E'tan would never admit it in public but by standing up like that in the mid day's sun, he now can't hide the pain in his back and grimaces slightly as he shifts again. "Luckily no. We were….experiencing hasty landings when it happened. It was so sudden, I ended up hanging by one boots and finally fell on my back." Was it because of S'dny's rank or a way to exorcise the fear he felt that day, it's hard to tell but the young bronzerider couldn't help telling. « Neither wish I. I… nearly lost him not long ago. » It's Saburath's turn to confess now, his mind voice carrying all of his shame. A new feeling for him.

Marzoth does his best to steer clear of all feelings, all of the time. Except for anger, that is appropriate. Occasionally pride when someone does well, but that is about the extent of it, « They are fragile in all respects. Easily hurt. They must be watched and guided. » There is no doubt in Marzoth's mind who is in charge of this relationship and who isn't. « You will learn to better watch yours. » Syd ahhhs. "Hasty landings. That can happen. All the more reason to make sure your straps are strong. Can't check them enough. Don't want to find yourself falling off between. There is no coming back from that. Same is true of great heights. Those accidents will remind you to keep a close eye on things like that." All the more reason for him to continue to harp on his weyrlings.

Saburath may still be young, he knows he's got a long road ahead of him. He can also realize the chance he has right now. A chance to get some valuable advices from a wiser dragon. « Fragile, yes. » And the snort that follows show no doubt about the bronze's intention to make his rider tougher. « Be sure it will never happen again….» there's a pause here and a rumble echoes. « Ever! » E'tan winces at Saburath's rather noisy manifestations. He tries to ease the young beast by gently tapping his flank. A lesson is in progress. And for both of them. "It may sound stupid but I only realized that very recently. I…felt true fear then. But not for me…." his voice finally trails off as he leans against Saburath more.

Marzoth wouldn't account himself to be wise, but he does have a bit more life experience even if he is still young himself. « They do not often know what they want. They are like dragonets. You must tell yours what he wants. They will often not listen. This is irrelevant. If you lead they will follow in the end. » says the dark bronze. A bossy fellow if there ever was one. « I often tell mine what he should want. If you give them something they want they will give you something in return. » Bargaining has become the cornerstone of his relationship to his rider. Syd probably should be upset about what Marzoth is saying, but he isn't, "It's a good thing to learn. Other than all that how has life been down here?" he says moving onto other topics before he does look up to Marzoth, "You are hopeless." he says with a shake of his head, to which Marzoth replies, « I am not. I have many hopes. »

Also wanting to switch subject E'tan catches S'dny's last question, letting Saburath absorbs Marzoth's words. He does cast a worried glance at his lifemate tho. If Marzoth is hopeless, Saburath seems to be a bit too much focused on the older bronze's advices. « Mine often does what I suggest him and I happen to do the same when he ask me. » His tone turns more determined now as he begins to realize there is hope after all. Hope to see his rider becoming as strong as him. With that he shifts his broad body, causing E'tan to bounce slightly. "Err…Life is really a blessing here. I mean, considering what Fort and Half Moon went through…" He's so glad he can be free enough to help friends all over Pern. Whenever the occasion arises again that is.

« Good. Then he can be trained. » Marzoth's teaching philosophy revolves around focusing on those that he deems 'teachable' while paying less attention to those who he deems are incapable of grasping what he is saying or doing, « Do not often listen to what he says unless it is something which you deem of interest to yourself or for the good of you both. They have many strange ideas. These may taint yours if you are not careful. Some dragons become too like them… » In short they become to human. "Yes. Things were rough in half moon for a long time. It seems now though that they are getting back on their feet and the weyrlings there are doing well from what I hear. I have not been to Fort so I couldn't comment on how things are going there, but yes, Xanadu does seem to be doing well. Hopefully things will go well all the weyrs." Syd says, "But there's always something happening somewhere."

"Xanadu is doing well, yes." At least from E'tan's perspective and rather new rider's experience. "Let's hope Pern will allow us some moments of peace." He thoughtfully adds. The conversation between Saburath and Marzoth is obviously noticed but he doesn't feel the need to join. He just grins up at his bronze, muttering, "Don't you get ideas you big bulk." « Mine only dreams of stars. » There is no trace of disappointment in Saburath's voice, more like the contrary. « Save for his obvious lack of strength I think he is doing well. When guided. » And here comes the bronze's acknowledgment. He is a fast learner it seems.

Marzoth has yet to really accept the fact that there are things in this world that you can't control. « They have strange habits. So long as they do not interfere with your plans they may be left alone. They may even be used as incentive if they comply with your wishes. » How to train your rider. Marzoth could teach a whole class on it, « If yours wishes to see stars. You may tell him that you will take him to space if he perserveres and becomes stronger. Do not be afraid to be harsh with yours or anyone else. If something gets in your way you must eliminate it immediately. » "I'm sure we'll have peace for awhile. Until the next thing. In the mean time its best to just relax and have fun. Get out there and travel a bit, meet new people, the whole bit." is Syd's advice, "Especially when things are quiet."

E'tan nods, taking a single step away from Saburath, just not to be bounced again. "That I did. I mean, travel. I've been to Monaco not long ago by the way. I met a rider that day. A…kind of odd one I must say. And now that I'm thinking about it, I don't even know what dragon she's riding." He shrugs a bit, obviously amused. « It is something we both want to do. But there is not enough time for that he keeps saying. » Saburath continues to carefully listen but if at first, Mazroth was inspiring, his hard and firm way of considering life is making the young bronze perks and backwards a bit. « I will only eliminate immediate danger. And if I can be harsh on mine, I won't be with others. Unless a danger arise. » It may not be obvious but for him, there's a difference.

« Sometimes it is too late by that point. You should widen your scope. For me if I see a threat coming I eliminate it when it is small. » Marzoth replies simply enough. This approach has caused him to be actively restrained by a gold on at least one occasion. « You may behave as you wish. » Syd watches the other bronzer closely and when he mentions meeting an 'odd' rider in Monaco his mind immediately flies to one in particular, "You've met Reya then." he says, "Yeah. She's nuts. She's a gold rider just so ya know. How that happened is beyond my ability to understand, but it did."

E'tan's eyes widens at Syd's comments and particularly at the fact Reya is a goldrider. "I….wouldn't say she's nuts but…eccentric maybe? But then you certainly know her more than I do. So she's riding a queen…" He muses just before chuckling. "Now I begin to understand why she kept hiding that. Saburath did tell he enjoyed Monaco's hospitality and manners of the dragons here." He slowly shakes his head adding. "I wouldn't be surprised if he'd met Reya's queen." Saburath is not shutting himself, he's still listening and learning all he can. But he has a rather vivd sense of protection and counts on his strength and agility to always react appropriately. It's what he's strongly believing at least. « You sound wise and I sense your advices are good enough to follow. I will just do it my way. »

S'dny nods his head, "I went through weyrlinghood with her. Her gold is Marzoth's sister." Syd explains, "It wouldn't surprise me if he met her either. She and Marzoth do not get along very well. I'm glad he had a good time while he was there though. It's a nice place. I highly recommend it." Obviously or else he'd move, "There are gold riders everywhere. You're going to meet just a ton of them. Trust me. Most are alright." Despite Marzoth's rather harsh and sometimes brutal teaching tactics he does have one saving grace. If someone disagrees with him and it doesn't impact his life in any great way he lets it be, « As you wish. »

"Oh I know, I mean I'm no after goldriders and all. Like you said, I was simply meeting new faces…." E'tan does nod his head as well at the mention of Matzoth's sibling. "Her gold is Fuerioth, right?" He asks, throwing the name thanks to Saburath's relay. A name he didn't forget it seems. "As you talk about normality, I met Vanessa a long time ago too. Way before she impressed. Funny how women I meet keep ending as gold riders tho…" It's not one can call a curse. At Tani's side, Saburath seems to settle down, curling his tail around his legs as he sits. « I believe we are both right. Just with a slightly different vision. » There he displays his stubbornness. Even if Marzoth did let go, he keeps seeking for some kind of approval. He needs to know he's in the right way or close to it.

"Yep. Thats her gold. Never could pronouce her name right. I keep hoping that she and Marzoth won't bump into each other very often. I haven't seen Reya in ages now it seems. I'm sure he new job is keeping her very busy. Which is probably for the good of us all." Because Syd and Reya don't like each other much either, even if he hasn't directly said so, "Vanessa is a lovely person. Her dragon is Marzoth's mother, and a very nice dragon she is too." She puts up with a very odd son well. « If you say so. » is Marzoth's response. The dark bronze's approval is a fickle thing. He seldom grants it to anyone but himself, and even then he is stingy with it.

E'tan's right eyebrow raises at S'dny's rather harsh words and he suddenly have the odd feeling those could have been Marzoth's. Certainly a side effect of the quite intense conversation has with the dark bronze. "I just met her once or twice, so I will believe you with that." the young man grins, nodding again as Vanessa is brought to light. "A lovely person, you're right. She came here when I was still a candidate…." he trails off. look attracted by a familiar silhouette. Another bronzerider : D'ren who's waving quite frantically in E'tan's direction. "Oh my I nearly forgot. Dragonhealing class. I'm sorry S'dny, I will have to go. But if you're still around when I'm done, I'd love to share a drink with you….or two…or three." Grinning broadly, he starts his way, waving. A little behind Saburath lumbers slowly, giving Marzoth a short warble tho the sound much more low than it was before. He's grown up a bit. « Enjoy your stay here. I shall meet you later. »

Unfortunately Reya is one of the just handful of people on Pern that Syd has taken a dislike too, "Enjoy your class." Syd says with a wave of his hand to the departing bronzer, "I look forward to it." Marzoth gives a slight nod of his head to Saburath as he heads off and turns his attention elsewhere as he begins to wander away from Syd's side.

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