Clutch-parents on the Sands

January 9th 2005
Logged by Ashli

Heat rises - ripples - wavers in a stifling curtain that envelops dragons and eggs while smothering riders and visitors. The black sands have been raked into ruts and dips, an alien, uneven surface for anyone trying to walk across them. Some say tension seers the heat: residue of hope, fear, relief, sadness, pain and ultimate joy staining high grey walls and lurking about the many viewing ledges that speckle the walls. Ancient murals of dragonlore fade across the walls near gallery and entrances.
Gold Isamath, gold Cadgwith, and bronze Minoyath are here.
You see Mound of Eggs here.
M'nty and Pyrene are here.

Cadgwith wakes from a nap, rolling backwards to affectionately nose Minoyath before doing much the same gesture to each of the thirteen eggs. "There's one thing for a smaller clutch," Pyrene murmurs, glancing up from the scrap of hide she's reading on the steps to the galleries. "It's definitely a time-saver." She puts down the hide, looks across at M'nty and sighs. "Not that we really need to save time."

M'nty shakes his head slightly, engrossed in his own thoughts before he realizes what Pyrene said. "What? No- no… that's true." He gives her a slight smile, watching Minoyath return the gesture and watch the proceedings, pleased as punch. "Sometimes I worry about him."

Ashli is curled up, as usual, amidst her nest of garishly bright pillows upon the Sands. Isamath looks bored beside her, tail-tip twitching restlessly as the gold peers at her eggs idly, before Cadgwith's movement garners her attention and she croons a friendly greeting. Aha. Someone to talk to, apparently. Ash, on her part, blinks up at Pyrene from scribbling in a dog-eared journal. "Well, we wouldn't want the weyr to be exploding with dragonriders, though, with the Interval coming up and all." the girl adds in her two marks, her attention switching curiously over to M'nty as she catches his last sentence and wonders…though her wondering is apparently done silently, as she doesn't speak.

Pyrene grins. "Still, nothing like a clutch to keep dragons happy." Hearing Ashli's tuppenceworth, she amends that. "Most dragons. How's Isa doing with Morchainth?" she calls across to the teenage weyrwoman, murmuring swiftly to M'nty: "Did you hear about this?"

Ashli rolls her eyes. "S'far as I know, Morchainth's still sulking, though Isa tells me they're 'still friends', and I shouldn't worry in the least. He 'just needed to be informed of something'." Ash apparently directly quotes from the dragon, who simply whuffs idly, as if not truly paying attention. "It's been…interesting, to say the least. But…I'm glad she spoke to him. It's made life easier on X'ian, at least, for the moment." M'nty is grinned at, in return, before she shakes her head at Pyrene and M'nty's side conversation, not catching much of it due to the murmurs, but guessing what it's about. "Not to worry, though, it's basically resolved, I'd say." she reassures, apparently attempting to halt gossip. Well, at least too much gossip.

Pyrene laughs for M'nty's benefit, not wanting him to get anxious about the situation. "You've noticed Morchainth and X'ian have been off the Sands recently? Isamath told Morchainth to leave. Nobody seems to know what's the cause, but it doesn't seem to be anything to worry about. In fact, I'm quite pleased to see Isamath taking her own initiative when required - which it apparently was." She shrugs one shoulder and chuckles. "And if X'ian's looking better, that's all to the good." Her eyes rest on Ashli in a gaze that's supposed to convey a wealth of meaning.

M'nty drawled his words out. "That's what I get for not paying attention. Morchainth, eh? You know- I never would have thought it." He shifted in the chair he'd plopped down on the sands, grinding it into better stability. "I suppose that happens, though." He looks over at Minoyath - obviously smitten with Cadgwith. Of course, that's where his mind automatically jumped, regardless if it's true or not. "You know-" he said, gathering himself, "And why would X'ian be looking bad?" He asked, using his famous ignorance as an excuse to clarify some things in his head.

"Well, actually, Morchainth chose to leave himself, Isamath would like me to clarify. She simply…how did she put it…informed him of some matters, though she would've been fine with him staying." Ash shrugs as she informs them of this, grinning wryly at the clarification, as if the girl realizes that Morchainth would most likely not want to stay after Isa yelled at him, no matter what the gold thinks. She returns Pyrene's gaze with a level one, a calm smile upon her face. Ash knows what the gaze is for, but the girl is apparently also confident in herself in this one. The young rider answers M'nty's question slowly, considering her words before she chooses them, perhaps subconsciously echoing the style of speaking of her dragon, "He's been rather sick recently. Dehydration from too much time on the Sands, and various other things."

"Dehydration's hardly unusual for a first-timer," agrees Pyrene who actually believes there's more to it but doesn't want to go opening that particular can of worms. "I trust you've been drinking plenty of water, Ash?" It's a rhetorical question; she's been keeping an eye on the girl's fluid intake. "Mind you, things have been going much more smoothly than I thought they would. I don't think you and X'ian have drawn knives on each other once, hmm?" Secure in her own rank, she gives her Weyrleader a look of outrageous impudence.

M'nty doesn't look entirely convinced, glancing from Pyrene to Ashli and shaking his head. "Females." He mutters quietly to himself, leaning back in his chair. "No- We've not drawn knives on eachother. I haven't had the heart to. Too much going on." He narrows his eyes at the other two, chewing at his bottom lip. He turns then, and pins Ashli with a look. "You're alright, though?" He hates being out of the loop.

"You know, Pyrene, I never gave you your birthday present…" Ash suddenly seems to remember, a slow flush creeping upon her cheeks at her error. "I've it with me, if you'd take a belated…very belated…birthday gift?" she suggests with an apologetic grimace. She nods at the question, though, "Oh, yes. Isamath's been on all over me about that ever since she realized the reason X'ian wasn't looking well was partly due to lack of water." Ash rolls her eyes and grins at the gold's mothering instinct. The girl grins at Pyrene's question, biting her lip to muffle a soft laugh at M'nty's reply. Somewhere in this, apparently, Ash found something to be amused by. "Oh, me? I'm fine. Slightly bored. Isa doesn't really like it when I leave, so I'm around a lot."

Pyrene nods at M'nty. "Well, I've been deliberately trying not to set X'ian off, and he's certainly better than he used to be. Finally growing up and out of his hormones, y'know the drill." She rolls her eyes, forgetting that M'nty's actually younger than X'ian. "And I think Isamath will be good for Morchainth… which will have a knock-on effect for X'ian." She looks over at Ashli again, although her speculative expression holds for a moment before being replaced with curiosity. "My birthday present? Well, now, how exciting. What is it?" She rises from the steps and heads over to the pillow-mound.

M'nty nods, a bit grumpy. The sands will do that to a body. "I suppose." Ashli's response didn't precisely answer his question. "Yeah- it's Morchainth who'll be good for X'ian." He scrubs at the back of his neck, shooting a glance at Ashli and shaking his head. "At least someone-" He starts, then cuts off, looking mildly interested in Pyrene's birthday present as well. At least interested enough not to start whining.

Ashli stays silent throughout Pyrene's discussion of X'ian's hormones, and the effect of Isa upon Morchainth, fiddling with the hem of her shirt and missing the speculative expression while doing so, though she glances up and grins at Pyrene's apparent interest in the present. "Well, it's nothing much, something I picked up from a Trader while in Telgar…" Ash removes a sparkly item which looks rather like a necklace from the pouch at her side, extending the item towards Pyrene as she does so, though she finds time to shoot a quizzical look at M'nty about his abrupt ending to a sentence, though she switches her attention back to Pyrene after a moment, azure eyes sparkling hopefully. Perhaps she might even like it…
You hand Blue Star Pendant to Pyrene.

Blue Star Pendant
A thin gold chain, made up of tiny whorls pressed together, encircles a pendant, tiny as well. Glass, dyed a blue deeper than cobalt, is held by small gold clasps as the centerpiece of the necklace, the glass cut into the shape of a five-point star, with delicate rounded edges. This cobalt blue, however, is not perfect, oh no. The glass seems to have been marred, and thin streaks of a greenish-gold color shoot through the star, adding a subtle and delicate sheen to the pendant, easily catching the eye. This marring seems not to truly make the pendant any less lovely - rather, it seems more to accentuate its beauty, bringing a touch of shining light into the deep reaches of the blue.

Pyrene makes all the appropriate 'ooh's as she examines the jewel. "Blue? It's not sapphire is it?" she queries, having no eye for stones at all. When informed that it's only glass, she ahhs. "Well, it's very pretty - proper High Reaches colours," is her diplomatic opinion, and she holds it to her throat for a moment to let them see the effect. "However, since it's glass, I'm going to duck up to my weyr and put it somewhere where Cadge can't step on it." The gold gives a rumble of good-humoured reproach, and Pyrene winks at them. "I'll wear it to the Hatchings," she promises as she makes for the bowl.

Ashli beams as Pyrene apparently likes it, and nods appreciatively at the sight of it. "Brings out your eyes." is Ashli's somewhat biased opinion of the pendant, before she grins and nods. "All right." she agrees, waving as Pyrene wanders out. The girl tilts her head to the side as she listens to what M'nty's saying, flushing slightly. "I hope she does. I had no idea what to get her, truly." The question of what him M'nty is asking about is not asked, and Ash nods slowly. "Against Pyrene's forceful opinion and desires for me, yes…I truly do." she admits, cheeks flushing yet again, though for a different reason this time, azure eyes gazing at M'nty as the girl apparently steels herself for the reaction she's used to receiving upon informing others of this…

M'nty nods, expression turning odd again. He watches her for a few moments, watching her blush before settling his chin down on his fist and leaning forwards. "It's good not to wonder." Only someone like M'nty would wonder, oblivious as he is. "You know who and what he is, Ashli. I'm not going to say I don't agree with Pyrene, but…" He stops, snapping himself out of it. "Don't let him hurt himself, alright? I was wrong before about him. Many times. I hope I'm not wrong this time."

Ashli grins wryly at M'nty's wondering, before her expression turns a bit more serious, and she nods slowly. "I know…I know. He's…not the person everyone seems to think he is, however." Ash defends almost instinctively, before nodding yet again. "I'm watching out for him. He's been…Morchainth's been…" She seems to trail off, stopping herself from continuing that thread as if not wanting to breach any confidences before she shakes her head and sighs. "I worry about him sometimes, but he's got a good head on his shoulders, at the very least."

"He's too clever by half, and knows it too." M'nty says, his tone bitter. "That's part of the problem. Look- Ashli… I'm not going to say anything, alright? I won't try to interfere, though Faranth knows I want to." He stops his babbling, though finally asking and getting a real response after so long of brooding over it is relieving. He watches Ashli for a few more seconds. "Enough is enough. I'm being ridiculous." He says, "I wish you the best. I just hope X'ian knows what he's getting into. And if we end up killing eachother- I just want you to know that I have desperately been trying not to start it." The last bit is said with as much levity as he can pump into it. It's a joke, people.

Ashli takes a deep breath and nods, recognizing M'nty's desire not to interfere, though she smiles softly as she notes, "I'm touched by your concern…truly…but I do believe that there's no need for interference." Well, of course she would, but Ash seems to be truly sincere in what she says, and she manages to concoct up a wry grin at his last statements. "Knows what he's getting into? Aye, you know me…" she teases, before she wrinkles her nose. "Don't worry. I won't let either of you kill the other." The young rider seems to be assured in this, though just how the small rider would manage to stop either of the bronzeriders, both of whom easily could overpower her with no problem, remains a mystery.

M'nty grins at Ashli, pleased in the way that only straightforward men can be after having gotten that off his chest. "Good. I shall count on you." He says, turning in his chair to face the sands. Minoyath there, whuffling over one of the eggs at the edge of his little grouping. "Enough about that." He pauses, at a loss for words for a moment. "Er- Sure I can't get you any more water?" His turn for teasing.

Ashli laughs wryly, before she groans and dramatically places a hand upon her chest, noting, "Faranth, no. Any more water and I'll float away, I tell you." She wrinkles her nose at him merrily, before she seems to decide it's her turn to pester M'nty with questions. "How are things between you and Pyrene, if I'm not too forward in asking?"

M'nty chuckles at Ashli's dramatics, amused, and still managing to keep at least a semblance of amusement at Ashli's question. "Well-" He trails off, furrowing his eyebrows. "I don't know, honestly. She's been treating me carefully, though Faranth knows she still considers me a bit of an idiot." He rubs a hand over his face, wiping the frustrated look off of it. "Needless to say she's dissapointed that I'm still around… but she needs a weyrleader in accord too much to /do/ anything about it." He stops then, giving Ashli a wry look. "That's not what information you wanted, is it?"

Ashli nods sympathetically, though she shakes her head. "She'll come around, M'nty. Pyrene may be stubborn, but she's too intelligent to let someone like you, bright as you are, slip by simply because you were new at the weyrleader business and had the gall to hold your own opinions." Ash grins, before she shakes her head. "Relax, M'nty. You're a fine weyrleader, no matter what Pyrene's opinion is. The weyrfolk like you - you've a friendly personality. Pyrene'll come around." she repeats, before the girl quirks an eyebrow at his last question, not replying with more than a wry shake of her head.

M'nty shrugs slightly. "It's been turns, Ashli- and I'm nearly tired of waiting. I'm just about ready to say 'thread take it all' and damn the consequences." He shrugs then, glancing away from Ashli as he scratches at his chin, trying to figure out how to word his reply. "I respect her. She's forceful, opinionated, infuriating… drives me up a wall, and not usually in a good way." And here he turns back to Ashli. "There's so much I've had to forgive her for again and again. But for all that, I still think she's one hell of a woman." M'nty is, apparently, a glutton for punishment.

Ashli considers this for a moment. "You might try getting Minoyath to convince Cadgwith that you're a fine weyrleader? Pyrene can't evade both the truth and her dragon for too long." She grins wryly, and nods. "Pyrene is an enigma, and all that you say she is. But don't you go getting yourself hurt, M'nty. Pyrene's a tough nut to crack." Ash tosses out a seemingly random metaphor at the end of that, a sympathetic look still upon her features.

"We'll see… we'll see." M'nty says quietly, looking partially amused. "Although I'm loathe to involve Minoyath. I don't want to ruin whatever he has with Cadge." He still sounds partially entertained by the very idea that he might /do/ something about this. "And Ashli- it's not even worth worry about me getting hurt anymore." The last is accompanied by a small laugh.

Ashli shakes her head at M'nty. "Of course it is. I've known you too long, M'nty, not to be worried about you." The girl winks at him at that, a grin tugging at the corner of her lips. "Just don't be too self-sacrificial, you. I'm sure Minoyath wouldn't mind a few subtle suggestions. Only you, M'nty, would worry about your dragon's relationships." Ash shakes her head wryly at that, knowing all too well that dragonic relationships rarely last too long - mostly due to their forgetfulness. Though, who knows.

"How are you girls doing out here, hm?" X'ian announces his presence with a cynical undertone that's already less than pleasant as he makes his way down to the sands through the galleries, his brows lifted slightly as he picks his way over and around various benches. "Not too warm for your sensitive complexion, I hope, M'nty."

M'nty laughs at that. "Alright alright- well, I'll see what I can do then. It's just that Mino's been pestering me for so long to let him fly-" He shrugs, knowing full well that it's an incredibly flimsy excuse. "Erm- right. Where were we?" He stops his 'serious' conversation as X'ian arrives, glancing over at the man and studying him for a moment. "No- it seems those milk-baths you suggested were right on the mark. I've not had a blemish since I set foot on the sands." He returns the greeting with a smile.

Ashli grins at M'nty and nods. "All right." she agrees with him, before her head quickly turns at X'ian's statement, and she frowns, standing from where she was still curled in her pillow-nest and eyeing X'ian. "I'm doing quite fine, X'ian, but Pyrene has already left, and unless your eyesight fails you…" Ash notes softly, brows furrowing together as she takes a few steps forwards, with the idea in mind of heading X'ian off 'fore he gets in closer range of M'nty. A glance is sent to M'nty, meant to be soothing, before she relaxes somewhat, glad for M'nty's laid-back personality. "So Isa tells me Morchainth has calmed down a bit, X'ian?" she steers the topic of conversation into the first area she can think of, which is perhaps not the best.

"I was being sarcastic, dear." X'ian mutters to Ashli, glancing sharply at M'nty over the top of her head at his reply even as she moves to head him off. "Yes. I'm sure he'll be sniffing around later tonight in an effort to determine where he would be best posted for the remainder of Isamath's eggs stay on the sands."

M'nty takes in X'ian and Ashli's interaction, his eyes following them as they move and noting the mutter, though not the words. With a slight nod of confirmation, he stands, pushing himself out of his chair and looking over the eggs. "Ah- well, it was lovely chatting with you Ashli, but it seems that you've little need of a third wheel. I'll bring you both some cool water when I come back." He gives them both a casual salute before picking his way forwards. "Have a nice day. Glad to see you looking a bit better, x'ian."

Ashli feigns a cough to hide a wry grin, eyes sparkling innocently. Perhaps this diplomacy business may not be all work and no fun after all. Ash stays silent for a moment, apparently considering and filing away in her mind that the tactic of a bit of airheadedness may just work at times. She breaks her silence with a nod, and a wry grin, "Will he? Isa tells me he did leave of his own volition, and that she truly doesn't mind his presence on the Sands." Ash trails off for a moment before adding, "As long as he keeps what she informed him in mind, she tells me to add." Upon M'nty's escape, Ashli waves, "Pleasure speaking to you as well, M'nty. Don't be a stranger, now!" Her eyes sparkle as she calls after him merrily.

"Spare me, M'nty. There's no need to sulk off now - I merely stopped in for a few minutes to inform Ashli of Morchainth's imminent return to the sands." Folding his arms across his chest, X'ian scowls faintly in return to Ashli trying to mask her amusement - his own attempt to mask a roll of his eyes failing miserably as he lowers his voice slighly. "I'm sure he will remember it as long as he believes it convenient to do so."

"Who's sulking?" M'nty says, the slight smile still plastered on his face. But that seems to be the end of it as he makes good on his escape.
M'nty escapes the earth-born heat and heads off the sands.

Ashli nods at X'ian. "Considerate of you to do so. Would've been…rather un-nerving to suddenly see him about the Sands later on, searching for Faranth knows what." she murmurs, before grinning wryly. "And I don't doubt you on that. Here's hoping Isa doesn't make his life miserable trying to continue that remembrance. Goodness knows she'll forget soon enough, I'm sure."

"Mmm. The last time a dragon pestered him he nearly drove me insane, so I highly reccomend that you at least make an effort to keep tabs on how much she's bothering him about it." X'ian murmers, still glaring distractedly after M'nty. "Anyway. I thought you might appreciate the warning."

Ashli raises an eyebrow silently, before she nods. "And I do." Silence permeates for a moment before she queries, "How've you been faring lately?" Ash takes a slight step back so as not to get a crick in her neck from looking up at the odd angle which she was to meet his gaze, cursing her height 'neath her breath and apparently vowing that any day now will be her growth spurt.

"Better. Try not to worry yourself, Ashli. As you said, I end up in the infirmary frequently for stress-related problems. I'm used to it. Anyway, I suppose I should get back to the records room. I still have a ways to go before I catch up to where I'd like to be in consolodating certain records. And try not to coddle M'nty too much, hm? It only encourages him, and I might get jealous." Smirking just enough to prove that he is only kidding, X'ian nods a polite farewell before turning to leave.

Ashli shakes her head and grins. "How could I not worry? But, I'll try to restrain myself." she vows with another grin, before she laughs softly. "Jealous? You've nothing to worry about in that respect." Ash teases with another soft laugh before the girl quirks an eyebrow at the polite nod and steps forwards, moving as if to give X'ian a quick hug before he heads back to the records…

X'ian, resigned to the fact that hugs are a necessary part of relationships, doesn't resist. He even hooks one arm loosely around her waist to return it before he really does turn to go. "I should hope not. I shall see you later, Ashli. Have a good evening."

Ashli grins and nods. "And you as well." she returns, moving away and heading in a meandering path back towards her pillow-nest, stopping to peer in a fairly worried fashion at that strange spotted egg, still excluded from the other little pile of eggs, the girl grimacing as she eyes it. "Don't worry, little egg. You'll find someone."

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