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Xanadu Weyr - Training Field
As the coastal road leaves the Weyr proper, it hugs the cliffs overlooking the Sea of Azov while skirting the perimeter of the large, treeless, dwelling-free field here. It appears this is a multi-purpose area with the grass rough-cut and trampled by man and dragon alike. At one end there are several wood-frame, straw dummies used for flaming practice, on another, a jumble of movable objects that look suspiciously like obstacles and targets.

The road continues on toward the south, finally turning inland towards the rolling hills that form the highlands that lie between Xanadu and the open plains. Passing through Ressac Sea Hold, it encircles the Sea of Azov eventually curving back in a northerly direction linking Black Rock Hold with Hannista Hold and Rubicon River Hold.

Above Xanadu, white clouds look like cotton balls floating along a sea of pale colors. It’s a clear morning, and the newly risen sun has painted the sky a myriad of blues and golds and purples on the horizon. Being morning, it somewhat cool, but not the uncomfortable sort of cold that comes with winter and fall months. This is the sort of coolness that is a prelude to a warm day. Springtime on Xanadu certainly is a season worth being around for. Ka'el still thinks summer is better, but .. summer is a little ways off now, and what he’s hoping to happen needs to happen now. Thus, he’s here in the training field with Kanekith nearby, strapped and ready for flight. This isn’t exactly unusual. He’s the Weyrleader. He runs with the wings all the time. The training field is empty. Practice dummies are set aside, gathered in one area for future use. The obstacle course looks teasingly serene in the morning mist that’s starting to burn off. It’s quiet, save the sounds of nature. A breeze and the chitter of wildlife. Birds. Bugs. The occasional firelizard that pops in from between. Ka’el is dressed ready to ride. Goggles rest upon the top of his head, and he’s currently pulling on leather gloves now as he casually leans against the polished hide of his bronze. He already sent word to Kiena a day prior to meet him here this morning after breakfast. Information would’ve been given that Ujinath needs to be prepped to fly, as does she.

Kiena received the word and has made certain to have her day in order to meet Ka'el out here in the training field. No explanation needed either. The Weyrsecond is clever enough to put two and two together, especially when the Weyrleader asks for her to be prepped for flying and Ujinath too. It could only mean one thing! Another sign favouring her assumption is the clear early spring morning. Perfect for flying. Perfect conditions for many things and any lingering doubts or reservations she has, Kiena is shoving them aside and sucking it up. She HAS to try! So she makes her way to the training fields, decked out in her flight gear and Ujinath in his straps. All is in order and the blue looks just as determined as his rider, though he is far more calm. Kiena looks calm as she strides up to Ka'el, but in reality her stomach is in knots and her hands are trembling subtly beneath her gloves. "Morning!" Kiena calls out, lopsided smirk slipping a bit as she flips off a hasty salute. Glancing about the field, she takes a deep breath and then speaks again on the exhale. "So just us for this, huh?"

The approach of a blue turns Ka'el's attention away from his gloves, and he half smirks upon recognizing Ujinath. He pushes away from Kanekith, removing his weight from the bronze and lifts a hand to wave to both he and his rider. Apprehension is in his eyes, but thankfully there is still distance between them. He has a little time to mask it. Just a bit. How could he not be worried? "Mornin'," he calls back in return, returning her salute with a grin as he takes a few steps forward. Kanekith swings his head around to geta look at the bluerider before rumbling a low, lazy sounding greeting to the blue himself. S'up. "Not quite," Ka'el answers Kiena, eyes shifting from her to glance off behind her. "One more to the party before we dance. V'dim will be here," he explains as his eyes shift back to her. Friendly, calm eyes. See, he's not worried!

Ujinath doesn't hesitate when Kanekith swings his head around, but the blue walks with a certain wariness to his movements as he studies the bronze in return. The lazy sounding greeting is returned with an abrupt and sharp snort. Not much. He settles back on his haunches, wings pinned tight to his side as he waits, his slender tail coiled around his feet. Kiena is doing her fair share of masking too but by appearing too nonchalant it's easy enough to see through it. "I'd much prefer to be dancing. A bit more fun, that." she admits with a smirk and turns her head a bit too to keep an eye out for V'dim's arrival and doing her best not to fidget like a first-time Betweening Weyrling.

V'dim has been keeping a close eye on Kiena and Ujinath as she's been tending training with the senior weyrlings on the Theory of Between and the visualization drills. Why she's been in on the classes? Ah, that hasn't been explained to the weyrlings. Kiena is Weyrsecond, after all. She could plausibly be auditing the class as part of her leadership duties. He's aware that the time miscalculation can shake a rider and thus he's been observant of Kiena's reactions to discussions in class. Isobeth has sought to maintain a tenuous contact with Ujinath, as much as the blue will allow the aged green to have, but her manner isn't overly fussy when she checks in to see how the pair have been doing. The senior weyrling class has yet to try an actual jump though but he's not going to have Kiena and Ujinath do theirs in front of an audience. So they are meeting here, on the practice field, rather than in the weyrling grounds. Over the treetops glides the magnolia green, her pale spring hide almost the same color as the tender leaves that tickle her belly as she dipd, flares her wings and touches down lightly beside the two dragons. She chirrups birdlike, a pleasant greeting to the two males while V'dim salutes the pair from Isobeth's back, his manner grave but kindly, his usually stern face softened as he asks them both, "Ready?" He's a man of few words!

“We’ll dance,” answers Ka’el with a light smirk. “To celebrate your jump. Maybe even before the Gather and races.” If she’s successful today, he’ll likely take her dancing tonight! But for now it’s yet to be seen if there will even be something to celebrate. Luckily, the two of them don’t have much waiting to do before V’dim arrives. Kanekith peers up at the approaching green, his greeting low and nonchalant. Perhaps just as nonchalant as the riders are attempting to be about all of this. Ka’el makes a nodding gesture upward. “The gang’s all here,” he reports to her, smirk crooked and gently playful. He salutes up to V’dim, and at his question, he begins to move towards Kanekith. “I hope you do not mind my tagging along, Weyrlingmaster,” he says, though there’s a vague underlying note that his words are just a courtesy. He said he’d be here for Kiena, no matter what! And, speaking of the Weyrsecond, he pauses near to touch lightly at her arm, giving her an encouraging smile. “If you feel you aren’t ready…give the word. Waiting a little longer won’t hurt anyone,” he says lowly, a meaningful look on his face. Then, he moves to mount up on Kanekith.

Kiena blinks and would have said that she was only kidding but her curiosity gets the better of her. "The Gather and races will be happening soon?" she asks, that same smirk still curving her lips. "Might hold you to it." IF she's successful. Which she should be, given the training she's been attending with the senior weyrlings and her careful steps to this very morning. Ujinath lifts his head to observe the approach of Isobeth, the blue a little less frosty with his greeting to the aged green but still aloof as always despite having been in closer contact. V'dim is a man of few words but Kiena doesn't mind that in the least. The less she has to say, the least likely her voice will tell of her growing nervousness. "I know," she mumbles to Ka'el, giving him a quick sidelong look. "I'll speak up. Don't worry." Because if she doesn't, Ujinath will. Taking a deep breath, she straightens her shoulders, pulls on a determined look and nods to the Weyrlingmaster and giving a swift salute. "Ready!" As she'll ever be. Lead on! Kiena will linger only to briefly clasp the Weyrleader's arm in return, a passing reassurance before she's striding over to Ujinath's side and mounting up as well.

If she's not successful they might not be in the mood to dance? Depending on where and when Kiena ends up, they could be mourning or freaking out, respectively. But V'dim doesn't seem to be considering the possibility of failure; his manner is calm, assured as he takes Kiena's measure. The grunt he gives Ka'el could mean anything from disgruntlement to acquiescence for the weyrleader's presence. He certainly doesn't ask him to leave. If Ka'el looks closely, he'll see the gleam of approval in the old man's eyes that belies the almost taciturn expression on his wrinkled features. He gives Kiena a curt nod and sends the green aloft to glide in gentle circles until Kanekith joins them. Then his hand gestures Kiena to take point while he and Ka'el flank her on either side and fall back a dragonslength. From Isobeth, shared with Kanekith, tendrils of vines weave and snake, reaching towards Ujinath's mind, seeking to establish a grip that will not allow her to make this particular jump unsupported. There's hint of Seryth and the other golds in the sinews of those vines that lend it fiber and strength as the contact tightens. Isobeth waits for the link to mature before she says, « V'dim wants you to take us to Western Weyr's weyrling sky, present time. » Since that location should be the first they learned and most familiar to the pair. « Whenever you are ready. No rush. » Passed along from V'dim is the is the time difference; he's well aware that it is still dark in Western, what the star patterns in the skies there look like at this season and that is what he visualizes along with night-dark warm seas lapping the shores of the tropical isle.

Up and up they go! Kanekith rises into the sky with more grace than his bulky form may have one imagine. Ka’el has set his goggles in place and rides wordlessly for now, listening and feeling his own dragon while at the same time, keeping an eye out of Ujinath and his. Kanekith finds the rhythm of wingbeats easily and falls into place, flanking Kiena as guided by ol’ Isobeth. Ka’el’s mind wraps deeper with that of his dragon, feeling him, listening to him, listening to the conversations heard through him. He can feel that link. The grasp from one dragon to another, and he’s comforted by it. Of course Kiena will be supported in this, he knew that, but it’s still settling to be able to feel it himself. “Western..” he says aloud to himself, nodding vaguely in agreement. That’s good. An overly familiar place, or so he’d assume. A former home. He closes his eyes, using those of Kanekith instead as they fly. You can do it, Kiena. You can! He coaches in his own mind. Kanekith rumbles in his chest softly. Perhaps that coaching isn’t all just in the rider’s mind after all!

If Kiena brings both V'dim and Ka'el somewhen in this jump, she'll never live it down. Literally, as they could meet their end by such a blundering mistake. Yet the chance of such a failure, aside from her confidence crumbling away and hindering Ujinath to the point of it being too dangerous to jump, is slim to none. Not with Isobeth linking to Ujinath, Kanekith as well as support and the subtle presence of Seryth and the other golds there too. That's a wide support net and Ujinath is well aware of it and allows for the link to strengthen and mature as he launches into the skies and glides nimbly into his position at point. Kiena is silent in the straps, gripping them hard with her gloved hands, her goggles making it difficult to read her facial expressions but the grim set of her mouth is enough sign to show her struggle. Her eyes do drift to where Ka'el and Kanekith are at her flank, then to V'dim and Isobeth. Not alone. She's not trying to do this alone. Normally this would grate against her, making her bristle and spit in anger and frustration. Not now. Now she is glad to have it. Her surprise for the choice of location is briefly lived and then hastily pushed aside as she focuses. She KNOWS this! Ujinath rumbles deep in his chest. « We understand. » he says over the link, the rolling meadows and distant forests of his mind gradually shifting as he absorbs the image and reflects it back. All the details are in place, including the right time. Familiar. HIS home! « We are ready. We will go in three… » Provided they're not called back by V'dim that is, but the blue is eager to jump, so it can be proven once and for all that they're capable — and before Kiena's resolve breaks. She can do it, she can do it! Once it's cleared, Ujinath vanishes Between and in the span of three heartbeats, reappears above Western as they ought to be. Hopefully they were warned of their arrival, because the blue trumpets the success! Sorry, Westerners who may have been sleeping?

V'dim's papery cheek twitches, but that's the only sign of visible stress he shows as he await the transfer. This jump will be directed by Kiena and Ujinath despite the contact and support of all the dragons involved; the blueirding pair will definitely be guiding the weyrlingmaster and weyrleader along with them - where ever - or whenever they go! The pale blue eyes of V'dim remain locked on Kiena's form, not worried despite the man's grim visage, but certainly, expressive enough in the concern for a rider and dragon under his watchcare. Kiena won't see it - unless she turns around suddenly - but Ka'el certainly may if he turns looks to his side. The cold of Between envelops them all and in three beats the humid tropical air wraps around them like a blanket. « Very good! » is Isobeth's cheerful tone, which changes to more brisk, obviously prompted by V'dim. Congratulations might be premature as yet. « You are to take us above the Starstones of Xanadu, just after we left. » The sun rising over the Sea of Azov and that fluff-clouded, sun-painted gold and purple eastern horizon and a sleepy-just stirring Weyr emerging from the shadows cast by the retreating night is in her touch. The tendrils of vines remain but she waits for the blue to initiate the jump.

Okay, here we go. Kanekith does not understand the feel of worry that laces thinly within his rider’s thoughts. What is there to worry of? The day is perfect! They are in the sky, flying in formation as they did turns ago during Weyrlinghood. His confidence is tangible. Tangible enough to be shared with Ujinath. There is no need to worry, all of you. This, as his rider tends to say, is cake. And it is easy to Ka’el, who has no experience of being lost in time and space to cause him to fear the act of doing something as natural as Betweening. And it will be easy to Kiena again, he knows it. It must be! His grip faintly tightens upon his hold, but fisted hands gently relax. Relaxation and a clear mind, those two are key things when it comes to this, and thus he clears his. Kiena has the lead. He’s just … along for the ride. Blue eyes do shift towards V’dim, and he exhales a slow breath during the short moment that he holds him in his gaze. But then.. they’re leaving. Between is cold and silent for a span that always seems much longer than seconds to Ka’el. Then, it’s over! Ujinath’s trumpet is answered by Kanekith’s as Western’s warmth hugs them. Ka’el himself blinks, peering to and through the darkness with a grin that quickly grows. They did it? How would one know if they’re in the wrong time? V’dim would know, right? He looks around quickly for his travelmates. “Are we…” Ah, they won’t be able to hear him. And the lack of panic is a good thing, right?

Congratulations may be premature, but that doesn't keep Kiena from voicing a slight whoop, some of Ujinath's pride washing over to her. See? They can Between JUST fine! One way. The Weyrsecond forgets herself, relieved as she is and lifts a hand up in a closed fist, signaling success but just how pleased she is. It's directed to Ka'el, since shouting at him would be futile, any words she dares try to speak would be lost to the winds. He's here for a lot more than just being along for the ride! It is one way for her to show some reassurance to the Weyrleader that, yes, they are in the right place and time. He would know otherwise. They would all know! Kiena will swivel in place to do the same gesture to V'dim, though will swiftly sober when Isobeth relays the next step. Right… time to go home. Ujinath settles into a glide and the blue is not the least bit panicked, already strengthening the link again as he prepares to take in the new image of Xanadu's Star Stones. A tricky return, given they're to go back and there is again the issue of a timezone shift. Nothing overly complicated, but the Weyrsecond goes slow with it and Ujinath keeps his patience steady. « We understand and we are ready. » the blue intones calmly, the image once again reflected back to both bronze and green. Confirmation that he DOES have the right one and that no detail has slipped that would lead them to an erroneous jump. Yet even with it in place, Ujinath does not vanish and continues to fly straight, drifting higher. Kiena is second guessing herself and the blue has enough sense not to go ahead. « Or we were ready. The image is correct? » HE knows it is right, it's the rider who needs that extra boost. The confidence to acknowledge that yes, all her training has paid off both past and present. She can do it, if she just stops overthinking it or letting her mind drift to the what-ifs. It's a vicious circle, those what-ifs and she shouldn't worry so needlessly. Worry about it all coming apart and leading both Ka'el and V'dim into danger… or worse.

V'dim would know what time they're in because Isobeth will touch the mind of Western's watchdragon and check in to be sure he's…heh…the current one. Seryth and the other Xanadu queens will be able, through Isobeth and Ujinath, to ghost-drift through Western Weyr, brush the sleeping minds of the dragons with a barely-there touch and check that they are indeed, the dragons that ought to be there in this time and place before they ebb like a gentle dreamtide so as not to awaken and alarm them - if indeed they are still sleeping after those bugles. V'dim jerks his chin down in a gesture of acknowledgement to Kiena, a twitch of lips that might be a grudging smile of pride and encouragement for her achievement but he's sternly and firmly focused on the task at hand. « You have it concisely », assures Isobeth crisply, the bracing confirmation shared with Ujinath's rider - and also Kanekith's. « Feel your present home… your friends… your family… the queens of Xanadu listen with you… that link will help to guide you. » And they wait, to follow in Ujinath's wake.

« We are here! With you! For you! » Kanekith's mindvoice, shared only with his Xanadu brethren, is strong. A waterfall, opposed to a trickling stream. He is encouragement of the brash kind. That overly confident friend who shows his care in less gentle ways. Ka'el half smirks upon his back, a hand drifting to pat at his dragon's neck while he looks ahead to the blue hide of Ujinath. Or more correctly, the the speck of a rider on his back. His concern for her, while indeed there, is masked by Kanekith's sureness. Neither one of them fears being led astray. They believe in you, Ujinath! He believes in you, Kiena. Although behind her, he lifts a fist and pumps an arm towards her. You can do it!

Clever idea on V'dim and Isobeth's part! How could Kiena fail, with the Weyrlingmaster taking care of those details and then Ka'el and Kanekith providing the morale support of good friends. It's the best security net one could hope for, not too obvious and pushy but there. Known and felt, acknowledge and accepted by Kiena, who normally shoves aside all offers of help. Ujinath rumbles again, craning his head around as much as he can and still keep a straight flight path to peer towards Kanekith when the bronze's brash encouragement is caught and examined thoughtfully. Trusted? Yes. More so by his rider and by him because it gives Kiena that necessary nudge. Whatever makes his rider happy, makes him happy. Isobeth's crisp confidence further soothes any lingering doubts. « So it will. » Ujinath agrees and Kiena sits a little straighter in the straps and saddle, turning again once last time to, of all things, flip off a half-salute to Ka'el. A bit of humour to take the edge off the tension, but her focus is still there as she turns to face forwards again, a quick sidelong glance to V'dim to check on the Weyrlingmaster even if unnecessary. All are ready? « We go home. » Ujinath confirms and holds fast to that link as he makes the jump Between. Three beats later, they're back over Xanadu and the blue repeats his same celebratory trumpeting call.

This time Isobeth's warble joins Isobeth's as the bright morning skies of Xanadu greet them. V'dim will nod gravely to Kiena across the space and salute K'ael for his wing position and support of the rider as well. He'll pop her about, Betweening to various points first in the Weyr and then about Pern in the routine, but thorough drills until the midmorning and he is confident they are capable, if not altogether at ease. They he and Isobeth will peel off smartly to attend the younger Weyrlings and leaver her in Kael's watchcare.

Back to the cold. The darkness of Between. As used to it as he may be, it never will be a comfortable thing for Ka'el. But Between Kanekith goes, moving with Ujinath. Guided by him. Guiding him. And then….warmth! It's like bursting out of a prison of ice, and he can breathe easier the air of their home Weyr. They've done it! They're back home! Ka'el slightl sags as he feels a weight lift from his shoulders, happily. She can do it. And V'dim will make sure that she continues to do it with the way he practices with her. Ka'el stays the entire time, holding his position as they pop around Xanadu only to return to the ground once the Weyrlingmaster is satisfied (either that or he has to go make sure the Weyrlings didn't burn the barracks down. They've been left alone for far too long!) Kanekith backwings to a landing back on the training field, where they started. Wings flare up before being folded against his back, and Ka'el grins as he sits up, eyes seeking Ujinath and Kiena. Now he can holler and possibly be heard! "Woooooooooohoooo!" Yeah!!

Cold and darkness so complete. It is unsettling and Kiena battles against it. She's experienced that heart clenching, gut wrenching lurch of fear when the blackness stretches beyond three seconds, an experience she never wants to repeat and would never wish it upon her worst enemies. Yet instead of eternal blackness, they're out in the sun and warmth and with each jump Kiena's confidence grows and the hesitation between each grows shorter and shorter. Guiding and guided, she'll tackle each jump that V'dim and Isobeth throw their way until at last it is time to land. The Weyrlingmaster has his Weyrlings to return to (and the barracks SHOULD be fine! Right?) and the Weyrsecond can properly celebrate. Ujinath needs to rest too, though the blue is too proud to admit it and when he does glide down to land by Kanekith, he is holding himself proudly. He snorts at Ka'el's hollering, but Kiena just answers with a whoop of her own and followed by laughter. She's already lifted her goggles and is in the process of dismounting and hurriedly to! Why bother waiting? "Nothing to it!" she calls to Ka'el, grinning crookedly. Just a bit of a hiccup to start but not anymore!

Ka'el dismounts from Kanekith and lifts his goggles from his head while heading towards her and Ujinath. Kanekith gives the blue a mental nudge. Dude. Nice. "Cake," Ka'el agrees with a broad grin to the woman once he's near. "Y'did great, Kiena. Not that I didn't think you would," he adds with a crooked smirk and coy lift of his brows. "Kanekith and I had nothing but confidence in you. And now, you're a certified Betweener again." Not that she ever wasn't but still. He grins and nods in the general direction of the Weyr proper. "Celebrate with a drink?" At this hour? It's barely reaching lunch time! But this is a celebratory moment! One drink isn't going to hurt anyone, right? "We've to proper celebrate your return to duty. M'sure healers will want to take one last look at you but," he waves a hand dismissively, "consider yourself cleared already. By your boss." He grins cheekily. "I've seen for myself you're more than ready. Plus, another few days of jewelry makin' and your mind's going to be too far gone to bring you back!"

Ujinath nudges right back through the mental link with Kanekith. Thanks. The slender blue then spreads his wings again as he backs up, clearly intending to take off again, straps and all. He'll worry about having those taken off later! Poised as he is for flight, he lingers for a moment and cocks his head slightly towards the bronze. « Hungry? » Because he is and that is his invitation to join him and hunt or simply chill. A very rare offer but no offence given either if the bronze refuses. "Thanks," Kiena means it too! She could tell, even before this morning, that Ka'el had more confidence in her than she did herself. Everyone but her believed… and now she does too. One drink can't hurt and she grins widely, pulling off her helmet and tucking it under her arm. Early spring or not, the Weyrsecond is heating up fast in her thick riding gear. "I'm up for that! Where too? Weyr or tavern?" Would the taverns even be serving at this hour? One drink couldn't hurt! Unless Kiena breaks out the Black Damnation she's got stashed in her weyr. Then… they may be in trouble. She snorts, wrinkling her nose. "I've enough of the Healers." she drawls just before bursting into laughter again and Weyrleader or not, she'll give Ka'el a good shove to his shoulder as she begins to walk forwards. "Who said my mind wasn't already too far gone?" she fires back with a crooked grin. Sobering a bit, that grin eases back into a wide smile. "Glad to be back to full strength. Thank you." There is a brief pause, then a mischievous smirk. "Sir."

Hungry? Sure, he can eat. Kanekith's head swings to his rider, as if seeking permission to go. But, that can't be right. The bronze doesn't seek permission for anything! He does his own thing! Or .. so he'd like it to seem. As it is, Ka'el has no immediate need for his lifemate to stay at his side, and thus he smirks and gives him a slight wave off. Which he does, alongside Ujinath for food and possible sunbathing til those straps need to come off. "The really good stuff I keep in my personal stash," Ka'el replies with a smirk. Not to mention it's a lot easier loosening up and celebrating when not being stared and poked at by tavern goers! "We'll have a toast and a drink," maybe two? "and get all've the details situated. And if your mind is already gone," he teases, "then I'll have the privacy of my own walls to knock some sense back into you! A steel rod will do nicely, y'think?" WIth his jest comes a laugh that gradually quiets as he watches her. He smirks at the last that he has to say, rolling his eyes at the added Sir at the end. "Glad to have you back, Weyrsecond," he says, his smile warm. "Now, c'mon before someone sees us and begs us to sign somethin' that'll need to be read over and changed a thousand times." Time to escape! He heads off with her for that drink, holding a grin the whole way.

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