Scavenger Hunt: A Peorth Paw Log

Pern Weather Report …
Keroon: It is a spring late night.
Ista Island: It is a spring evening.
Southern Hold: It is an autumn evening.
Fort Hold: It is a spring sunset.
High Reaches Weyr: It is a spring sunset.
Tillek Hold: It is a spring afternoon.

Ancient dunes have been flattened by the endless parade of people and dragons that tramp northwest across the bowl, leaving a mere skiff of sand here along lake's beaten edge. Footprints litter the curve of beach, some left turns ago and caught frozen in the heavy clay earth near the water's edge. As the sun sets, shadows invade, creeping like fingers across the gently sloping ground and darkening the distant ledges on the far side of the lake.
To the north, dust rises from the redolent pens while the flattened disc of the main bowl is just a step to the northwest.
It is a spring sunset.
To the northwest, you see six dragons.
Darting here and there are thirteen firelizards.
Green Peorth is here.
Obvious exits:
Stables Feeding Pens Central Bowl Lake

R'gis slides down Peorth's shoulder, hopping lightly from the proferred forelimb.

Darden stands at the edge of the lake, the toes of his boots kissing the water. He is quiet as he looks at it, Dolph perched on his shoulder. Darden gives a 'hmm' and pulls off his jacket, tossing it back up on dry sand. Dolph takes to flight and circles Darden's head, chirping eagerly.

R'gis slips down Peorth's side, which is bare of straps, landing lightly on his feet. He sends the green into the lake for her evening swim and scrub. His fair, enlarged by Rajani's fair as well, descend on Peorth to scrub her ridges and wingsails. He grins at a mental comment and slaps the green on her shoulder. "Have fun, lovey." he murmurs as he moves to perch upon a boulder to watch his dragon bathe herself.

Dolph wings out to the green, circling before he's back to Darden again. The lad pulls off his shirt and throws it aside before looking back up the beach at R'gis. He smiles a bit and waves, "How is Raj?" he calls, wrapping his arms around himself.

R'gis glances away from Peorth briefly at the call from the youngster he sorta remembers though the name escapes him at the moment. "She's doing better. Peorth and Celvy convinced her that she should sleep." he says, waving vaguely toward Rajani's weyr. "After I threatened to sic the Healers on her, at least." He chuckles softly, remembering that his weyrmate thought he was joking with her.

Darden nods, "I'm glad she's okay. She…she seems a little fragile sometimes. Is that because of the twins? I imagine they're a lot of work." He stomps his feet and looks back at the water, but decides to remain dry for the moment.

R'gis hunches down on the boulder for a moment, considering his words carefully. "Well, I suppose she is fragile at the moment." he says softly. "It's not just the twins though." He sighs softly and stares out across the lake, lost in thought. "Partly it's me too. It's not entirely my fault but it is. You know what I mean?" He shrugs as if lost for words, that being the best that he can do.

Darden ohs, looking away from the rider, a little ashamed, "Sorry, I didn't mean…I didn't want to make you feel bad…Hey, you want to go swimming? Swimming always makes me feel better!"

R'gis smiles weakly at Darden and shakes his head. "You wouldn't be able to make me feel any worse than I can make myself, believe me." he says with a chuckle. He frowns at the youngster and glances at the lake and shakes his head. "I don't think so. My old bones would seize up and I'd get grief from both Peorth and Rajani. Thanks, but no." He waves toward the lake in a shooing motion. "If you want to swim with my dragon out there, you go right ahead." Peorth chooses that moment to surface from her dive, breaching like a Terran whale and sending a splash of water toward Darden.

Darden ohs, and then he's drenched, "Aww, my pants!" he says, but he's laughing as he lunges for the water, taking to it like…well, like a Dolphin. Par for the course for a Dolphincrafter lad. He splashes at the green, grinning. "You ever tried surfing?" he calls to R'gis, "I've seen them do it at Ista and it looks like /tons/ of fun."

R'gis laughs as Peorth swamps the lad and shakes an admonishing finger at the green. "Play nice, Peorth." he calls, just as the green sweeps a wing gently (for a dragon) through the water to send another wave at the boy. "Oh yeah, we surf, Peorth and me." he replies with a grin. "Just not in the water."

Darden is drenched again, but he loves it, and kicks out at the green, vanishing beneath the cold water. He reemerges a short distance away, shaking his head to clear the water from his eyes. "Oh. I meant, like…surfing in the water. You know, on a board?"

R'gis laughs again and shrugs. "I knew what you meant, youngling." he says. "I'm a Mudslider. We dragonsurf, you know. More fun than water surfing any day." He settles back on the boulder a bit, hitching one leg up to keep himself balanced. He tilts his head slightly toward the boy, wondering. "So, you're one of the Candidates. Have you thought about what color you'd like to have a chance at?" He knows that the Hatching is close but he hasn't made up his mind which Candidate should go on which color.

Darden ohs, and swims back toward shore, treading water. "Oh! Can I see your board? Could I try it out, do you think? Could I try floating on it?" he asks eagerly. Then he looks toward the Hatching Grounds, a little nervously, "I…I don't know. I think blue would be real fun. And fast. And…you know…" he blushes, looking embarrassed, "bronze," is barely audible.

R'gis grins at the boy and covers his mouth for a moment, trying not to laugh aloud. "You're swimming with my board, boy. Peorth slides down a mudslide and I stand on her back." he finally manages to choke out before chuckling into silence. He nods at the embarassed admission as his smile softens a little. "Bronze is a good choice. What if you don't get bronze though, what'll you do then?"

Darden looks confused for a very long moment, looking up at Peorth. "Oh. Wow, that's really neat. That sounds like fun!" He finally steps out of the water, shivering as he picks up his shirt and uses it to dry off with. "I'd be happy with anything," he says honestly. "Bronze or no, blue or no, shards, dragon or no. I'll find happiness somewhere." He looks again at the green and then back at R'gis, "I was told you had an actual…you know. Surfboard."

R'gis chuckles and nods slightly. "It is, very fun." he says. Peorth steps out of the lake as well and courteously shaking herself away from her rider and the youngster. "If you have the makings of a rider, you'll have a dragon at the end of the Hatching. Just remember that -your- dragon may not be in this clutch so don't get too upset if you are left Standing." He sighs softly remembering how close he had come to not having his own Peorth. He frowns slightly at the last comment and scratches his head. "A surfboard? Who in the world told you I had an actual surfboard?" He doesn't and never has had one of those, he doesn't need it with Peorth.

Darden shrugs, "I don't remember, just thought I heard it somewhere. Always wanted to try it, so I thought I'd ask." He drops his wet shirt back onto the sand and huddles in his coat, shivering a bit but smiling. Then his smile fades slightly, "Yeah, that's what they're telling us. We might not find our dragon this time, but to keep trying. I don't know what I'll do if I don't Impress…So hard to choose. But what would a Dolphincrafter do in a weyr?" He shakes his head, "No, if I don't Impress I'll have to go back…leave all my friends." He's quiet for a moment.

R'gis ahhs softly and nods slightly. "Well, just because I don't have one doesn't mean someone doesn't have one around here." he says amiably. "Hmmm, I'm not sure what a Dolphincrafter would do in this Weyr. But it doesn't mean you have to really -leave- your friends, you know. If they Impress and you don't, they are only a dragonhop away and can visit." He represses a sigh knowing that once Impression occurs sometimes the non-Impressees became bitter and refused to keep track of their once-Candidate friends.

Darden won't become bitter. "I'm going to stay in touch," he says firmly, "with everyone. No matter what happens to everyone on Hatching Day." He's very resolved on that. Then he perks up, "Yeah? Could you help me find one? I just want to borrow one - try it out quick and see how it feels to balance on it and stuff."
R'gis smiles and nods at the youngster's firmness. "I'm sure that you will." he says, thinking that this young one just might have what it takes to keep up ties he's making now. He ponders the last question and then shrugs noncommitally, "I can ask around. Might be one of the Tsunami that has one, they have more water affinity than I do."

Darden nods, "That'd be nice of you, thank you." He huddles in his coat, shivering a bit. "So are all the wings sort of the same? I mean, they have the same duties and things?"

R'gis frowns slightly as he thinks for a while. "Relatively the same. Duties don't vary much between 'riders, at least not for those without some kind of a rank anyway." he says. "The difference is mostly in what we find to do outside of our duties, what we find fun." He grins at the thought of the last Mudslide event he attended. "Do you have any idea which you think you'd enjoy being Tapped into? Provided you Impress that is."

Darden shrugs, shaking his head, "Not really. I haven't thought much beyond Hatching Day, if I Impress. Thought a lot about what might happen if I /don't/ Impress, but…no, I don't know much about the wings. I love the water, though."
R'gis smiles and nods his understanding. "I know what you mean. You don't want to get your hopes up too much by thinking about it." he says. "I felt exactly that way too … all 'riders did before their own Hatching." He sighs contentedly as Peorth curls up near the boulder and croons softly, one eye fixed on the youngster and her rider. "Anything in particular you'd like to know about the wings?"

Darden grins, "What does each one do for fun?" he asks, moving closer to the green hesitantly.

Peorth's head is close enough for R'gis to reach out a scratch her eyeridges, which is what he does as he thinks about how to answer the question. "Well, Mudsliders, my wing, like to dragonsurf on mudflats. Inferno, well … they are a bit hard to explain, I'm not sure exactly what they enjoy doing besides having drinking contests. And then there's Tsunami who do the watersurfing thing more than the rest of us." He leaves out the part about the Mudslide and Inferno drinking parties and bar-hopping.

Darden grins, "Sounds like Tsunami would be the wing for me," he says eagerly. "If I could be a dragonrider /and/ get to play in the water, I think…I'd be the happiest person on Pern!" He smiles widely at them both.

R'gis laughs aloud at the boy's comment and shrugs. "Most wings keep their off-duty fun quiet." he says with a wink. "Wouldn't do for the Candidates to start smarming up to the wingleaders and 'seconds to get preferential treatment, you know."

Darden ohs, "So, you can't…request what wing you'll be in?" He looks downcast at the idea.

R'gis smiles and shrugs. "Well, if you're Tapped for a wing and you -really- don't want that wing you can decline the knot." he says. "We usually pick the weyrlings that want to be in our wings, though sometimes someone might get Tapped into a wing that they think they want to be in but really don't." He sighs softly, thinking about Rajani.

Darden nods slightly, "So…the weyr does what's best for each rider? That makes sense." He inches closer to Peorth, offering her a shy smile.
Peorth rumbles softly as Darden moves closer and stretches her head out toward the boy, inviting him to give her scratches. "For the most part, yes. The wings work together so that the Weyr functions the way it should, at least." he says, staring out across the lake but not entirely oblivious to Peorth's cadging of scratches of Candidates.

Darden beams and reaches up a hand to gently rub her eyeridges, just like he would the melon of a dolphin. He glances at R'gis and then leans up to whisper to the green, "Would you mind terribly if I asked you to bite a hole through my jacket?"

R'gis catches Darden's movement out of the corner of his eye and smiles as he watches the boy rub at Peorth's eyeridges. "She likes more of a scratch than a rub." he says. His eyes glaze slightly as Peorth bespeaks him and he laughs and frowns at the same time. "Why in the name of the First Egg do you want her to bite a hole in your jacket?" is asked in puzzlement.

Darden blushes and increases the pressure of his scritches. "Sorry, I bite my nails." But he tries. "Uh…it's too hot now? I need some holes to make it less warm for the spring."

R'gis is still very puzzled about that and shrugs slightly. "She says she'd do it but wants to know if you want to be wearing it when she does." he says with a slight laugh. "Just remember that if you answer 'yes' that she's a dragon and her teeth aren't very dull or small." In other words Peorth could really hurt him if he says yes. "Besides, stores has clothing for all weather in it, you could get a different jacket from there for the warmer weather if you wanted it." He still doesn't understand what the boy is asking but willing to accomadate him if possible.

Darden grins at the green, his smile stretching from ear to ear as he shrugs out of the jacket and holds it up for her, "Here! Just…one bite would be perfect. Thank you so much!"

Peorth pulls her head back as the youngster holds his jacket out toward her and turns an oddly quizzical look on her 'rider. R'gis shrugs and waves toward the jacket, trying to hold back his laughter. "Go ahead, lovey. Just don't take off his hand." he says, watching his dragon and the boy. Peorth snuffles at the jacket a moment and then takes it carefully into her mouth, her tongue maneuvering it around to get it draped over her teeth. Chomp! About half of Peorth's teeth puncture through the jacket making it look similar to Swiss cheese. After that chomp the green opens her mouth and waits for Darden to remove the now holey jacket from her teeth.

Darden beams, taking the jacket, shaking it out and pulling it on. Never mind the dragon saliva. "Thank you so much! Ahh, it's so much more comfortable now!" He grins at dragon and rider, giving Peorth a good scritch. "I need to get back to my chores, thank you!"

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