Fort Weyr – Gemstone Tavern

The dim lighting by the flicker of candles lining the walls is enough to offer a view of a room decorated in such a way as to be tastefully appealing. Each piece of furniture and decoration is chosen to accent another piece, and so on and so forth, matching and tying the whole room together in a theme that’s separate, and yet at the same time unified. Tables line one wall, dimly lit by candles hanging in sconces all along. The bar along the far right wall is made of richly toned mahogany, tooled by a master and polished to shine with the soft glow of wood at its finest.

Candles strategically placed add to the atmosphere, accenting, punctuating. Towards the back is an open fireplace, constantly burning with a bright light, warming the tavern on cold nights and serving as a gathering place for patrons’ story-tellings. Across the room, lush pillows and soft-covered floors promote relaxation at ease. Just before the pillows is a long stage, so full of its own vigor and memory – nicks here, marks there, scuffs from footware and other things – that it’s possible to imagine the shows put on for the patrons without necessarily seeing the performances.

Usually the Gemstone is somewhat dark, and the loudness comes later on at night. Today it has been invaded. Taken over with streamers, lights, and a veritable feast that lies covered on the ables along the wall. A huge ‘Congratulations’ banner has been hug above the bar, and a few Harpers are milling around near the stage suggesting that there might be somelive music at some point later on.

Elara steps into the tavern in a simple but elegant dress in Fort’s navy blue color with subtle pale gold details. Pushing a few curls over her shoulder, the retired weyrwoman makes her way to the edge of the crowd, getting herself a mug of tea to sip on during the ceremony.

Th’ero is among the crowd gathered to witness the graduating weyrlings, though the Weyrleader seems to quietly keep to himself unless unavoidable. Dressed in a fine black, brass buttoned tunic, along with his finest pair of black pants and knee high boots, the bronzerider looks rather somber compared to some of the outfits possibly worn this day. However those who know him know that this is just his usual way. An attempt has been made to comb back the dark mess of curls that is his hair though the rest of him is neatly groomed. After making a few polite greetings among familiar and unfamiliar faces alike, Th’ero then turns to take his place. Few would notice that the Weyrleader is without his usual partner, though he isn’t entirely without company.

Graduation is a time for relaxation, no stress, even with the mind pressing for her to be proper and well behaved. While she’s well behaved, alright, the weyrling is indulging in the long abandoned alcohol. Dtirae’s refusal to indulge in the liquid has been abandoned, and it looks like she even got P’on to join her in her indulgences, insisting that the bronzeriding weyrling need some liquid courage to inspire him to give a better performance for graduation. The two are off to the side, chatting alone for the moment and simply watching those who are about the tavern.

A’lin is here! It’s hard to miss the big man strolling in, even when he doesn’t draw attention to himself with a flashy entrance. His coat is hung up by the door, leaving him in a nice new button-up shirt, new slacks and a pair of suspenders. His hair is a little longer than usual, but he’s looking as big as ever. And as mustached as ever. “Hello hello!” He says upon entering, to who in particular isn’t important. To anyone that hears him! He figures drinks and such are best waited on until after any ceremony has taken place, so instead he parks himself at a table to wait.

Melze is here early enough to still be primping a tree in a pot and trying to make it look like it actually belongs in the room – she’s mostly failing. For once she’s looking relaxed, things finally winding down and the worry over the weyrlings all but gone, and even her clothing reflects this – bright colous, airy clothes despite the weather. A’lin’s gretting makes her look up, somehow having missed most of the arrivals. A wave of greeting is tossed in his direction.

Elara sips at her tea and lets her gaze wander around the room, smiling at the Weyrlings as they arrive, and should any glance her way they’ll get a wider grin and a nod of hello from the retired Weyrwoman. Her eyes settle on Dtirae for a moment, before moving on to A’lin, and the others.

Jaye arrives on the arm of a tall dark and handsome Istan brownrider, unlike most women at this happy occasion, the scarred girl doesn’t wear any fancy skirts or flowing blouses. Instead she merely wears a pair of dark slacks and a decent, yet simple, button down blouse. At least she has taken the time to braid her long hair instead of letting it fall in all manners of directions. She’s hanging on K’drozen, looking like she just might have already let herself indulge a bit before graduation has even officially started. She carries some bottles of Istan spiced rum, one is offered to Melze with a bow, another is offered to the weyrwoman and weyrleader.

Neyuni enters dressed in a clean cut shirt with embraidered vest and long heavy skirt. She looks a little tired but mostly relaxed, pausing to take in the crowd and the rooms decoration. Murmuring greetings as she moves through the crowd she notes Th’ero taking his place near the front of the room, and moves to meet up with Melze, sharign a few words quietly first.

Neyuni mutters to Melze, “… more importantly do…”

A’lin gives an excited wave to Melze. “Hello!” Though that’s about all he gets to say to her, as the weyrwoman moves over to speak with her. Though looking around it seems as though everyone else is already partaking in the booze. There’s a wave for Jaye, and one to Deeters once he spots her back with P’on. Then he heads up to get himself a glass of water and chat with whoever is tending the bar.

Fashionably late, yes, that’s what K’hys is. The weyrling bluerider tries to sneak in, pink cheeked and more than a little breathless, shooting a brief look over his shoulder the way he came. He pauses once inside and the door closes behind him, dressed in a pair of nice black slacks, a simple white button down shirt with a fine sapphire blue tunic over it. Brown eyes scan the crowd, looking for someone in particular. Of course the stage is the first place his gaze settles, and hardens minutely as it passes over Th’ero. This vanishes immediately however a few seconds later when he spots A’lin, softening to something beyond fondness. Only once the brownrider is off towards the bar, does Kai make a b-line for the man, sending a smile and wave towards Dtirae, P’on, and Jaye.

Melze smiles as Neyuni comes over, though it’s not the Weyrwoman that gets her immediate attention it’s Jaye and that bottle. “I….” Words fail, which is something of a novelty. “Thank you!” There’s a quick attempt at a hug, but before it gets awkward she moves a little to listen to that mutter of Neyuni’s, and for a second her eyesbrows raise. “Two seconds.” This is directed at jaye, before Mel whispers in reply to Neyuni.

Grey eyes flicker over towards those arriving, her free hand lifting to wave cheerfully at A’lin and then towards Jaye, and finally towards K’hys as he arrives. A pleasant smile is settled upon her lips before she leans over to whisper something towards P’on and the bronzerider flushes a light shade of red from embarrassment before Dtirae breaks off and leaves the man to fend for himself. Her path is an easy one, over towards A’lin and K’hys, and there’s a wave of greeting towards Melze, Neyuni, Elara, and Th’ero as she passes.

Elara stays by the bar as the others begin to gather, her eyes watching K’hys and offering the boy a warm smile and a little nod, though her eyes are a bit questioning when he makes a b-line for A’lin. She give Dtirae a return wave, but approaches no one, letting them all mingle without her hovering and meddling.

A’lin grins to Kai when he spots him heading his way. The big man runs his thumbs up under his suspenders and snaps them against his chest. He’s got new clothes! He stands up nice and tall and chuckles a bit before picking up his glass of water from the bartop. “Didn’t think you were going to make it! I’m glad you did, though. Everything alright?” As the goldrider makes her way towards them, Ada gives her a nod. “Hey, Dei. Getting a drink for your date?” He asks her. They were at the bar, after all.

Neyuni nods, seemingly satisfied by Melze’s response. She reaches out to give the other’s arm a light squeeze in reassurance. “That’s enough then. Be proud, they’ve all made it this far.” then there is business to complete before she can really relax and enjoy the festivity, and she joins Th’ero up front next two a small table which has several items on it. The two exchange looks, the older weyrwoman offering her own measure of support before turning to the assembled and growingly rowdy crowd. She clears her throat, softly at first, unsure of just how much it will take to get the attention of the folks within.

Jaye grins at Melze as the thank you. “Np pro’lem.” And once the gifts are delivered, she even seems to have enough rum bottles for each of her fellow weyrlings. “We made it.” Then, the gifts all passed out, she’s immediately back at Tall Dark and Handsome’s side, sliding her arm into his. Attention is then on Neyuni and Th’ero as weyrwoman joins weyrleader up front.

Melze takes a deep breath and nods at Neyuni’s reply, following her over almost immediately to take her place for the only formal-ish bit of the ceremony. On the way over she pauses near the bar to grab a couple of small packages of her own.

Th’ero turns his head to offer Neyuni a small smile at her approach, his happiness showing in his eyes despite his more subdued expression.

“Yes, Jheth just needed some extra reassuring,” K’hys says, but distractedly catches the smile and nod from Elara. He returns both before giving his attention back to A’lin. “I hope I made it on time?” Spotting Deitra out of the corner of his eye, the blueling turns his head her direction and sends a grin the woman’s way. Of course his eyes dart off to the flushed P’on, and he leans back against the bat, hooking his elbows onto the counter. “Well, well, well. P’on finally work up the courage Dei?” he chuckles with a sly glance between the two. Smug, thy name is Kai. He blinks at Jaye’s gift of rum, and thanks her in passing before handing it over to Ada, “You look very handsome.” he offers softly to the big man, taking a few moments to apprechiate what A’lin was wearing, or perhaps considering the long measured look using his imagination to accomplish something completely diffrent. “Very.”

Dtirae laughs softly, “nah. He ain’t my date.” The weyrling insists, tilting a gaze back towards P’on, “mostly was just teasin’ him. He followed me here, like normal.” She grins and lifts her drink to her lips before nodding her thanks to Jaye for the present. Which is then tucked aside for where she can find it later. Her gaze then travels to Neyuni as she clears her throat but not quieting just yet as she looks to K’hys, laughing. “He wishes. Was just teasin’ him some. Wonderin’ if he’ll crack with the alcohol in him.” Her tongue goes out, teasing before she quickly pops it back into her mouth and looks towards where Neyuni is once more.

A’lin nods to K’hys. “Ah. Yep! I just arrived a few minutes before you did. I’m guessing there’s to be some sort of ceremony or something?” There’s a smile given to Jaye as she hands him a bottle of rum. “Thank you! That is nice of you.” Ada looks over the bottle, but Jaye is gone before he can comment on it. He takes Kai’s as well, setting them both down on the bartop for the time being. He smiles to the younger man. “Thank you. You also look very handsome. You’re more fashionable than I am. I suppose that’s fitting for a weaver though.” Ada nods to Dei about P’on. “You should cut him a break and just tell him you’ll go out with him, Dei.”

Elara, near the bar, glances pointedly at the Weyrlings. “Ladies and gentlemen,” she whispers, nodding towards Neyuni. “Your Weyrwoman needs your attention.”

Jaye gives a wink to her fellow ‘lings before turning full attention to Neyuni and her throat clearing, she quietly waits.

Last to enter and last to notice perhaps that Neyuni was at the front and had cleared her throat, K’hys tsks very quietly at his goldriding friend and shoots poor P’on an expression of sympathy. “You’re tying that boy up in knots, you know.” he murmurs to Dtirae, now that the room was beginning to quiet down save for a few boisterous folks who were already three sheets to the wind. For the tongue sticking out, all Kai can do is chuckle softly, and shake his head a little. “Terrible.” The blueling then shrugs his shoulders some at A’lin for question of ceremony, “I guess so, that is what Melze and Miki told us.” He grins deeper though when he’s complimented, and self-conciously slides his hands down the front of his tunic. “Graduation gift from my family. The rest of it is some things that were sent to me by the weavercraft.” A pause, and then he leans over and murmurs something privately to the brownrider, before Elara’s whisper clues him in to the fact that he wasn’t exactly paying attention.

A’lin blinks a bit at Elara, then turns his attention towards Neyuni. The big man shuts his mouth thankfully. There’s a smile and a nod to Kai though, for his nice new clothes. The brownrider reaches around to put his arm around Kai’s shoulders and give the younger man a bit of a squeeze. Then he goes back to casually sipping at his water, waiting for things to get started.

Neyuni waits as the room settles and most folks’ attention drifts to the front. She takes the first stab as a speech type… thing. “As much as I could say the same thing of each class, each turn that wouldn’t seem fair as a way to represent how truly honored and fortunate Fort is to have these lively youngsters joining the ranks as full riders. It is just as hard to believe they are ready to graduate, for it seems just like yesterday when we were all watching the eggs crack and these new pairs forged. Since then they have been under the, ah, guidance and teaching of our Weyrlingmaster Melze and her assistants. Over the past turn and a half I have watched the accomplishments, and the failures in this process.” her gaze drifts equally among the assembled weyrlings. “I want those graduating today to know that both are important. As much as our accomplishments give us pride, our failures give us humility and both give us a strength that will continue to grow even after today. Relish your success moving forward, but do not be afraid of failure. There will be good times and bad times moving forward. The best part is even in the worst of times we have our dragons and each other. Never are we alone and never be alone, for this is and always wil be your home and your family.” she takes a breath looking around the room before glancing to Th’ero and then Melze to see if they might have any words to add before knots are given.

As the ceremonies begin, Th’ero watches from his place beside his Weyrwoman, brown eyes following every detail though the Weyrleader remains subdued and quiet. Occasionally, his hand dips down to the dagger at his side, his thumb absentmindedly brushing up against the circular end of the hilt while his focus remains elsewhere. As Neyuni speaks, the Weyrleader lets his gaze move from her to the Weyrlings, and when she looks at him to see if he has anything to say, he just gives his head a little shake. She’s covered it!

Dtirae only grins at K’hys, saying nothing more as the graduation speech is far more important than her teasing the poor P’on. Instead, she turns full attention, body and all, towards the Weyrwoman and listens quietly, even going so far as to settle her drink down rather than holding it near her lips.

Melze waits until it’s her time to speak before declaring, “I hate you all.” A brief pause, long enough for an intake of break, then she adds, “I love you all more though. You given me pain, joy, laughter, tears, and probably a few more grey hairs than I deserve at my age! I know it’s not been easy for any of us, but you’ve done yourselves proud. Just got to hope some of my innane chatter sank in somewhere. I guess now we find out if Neyuni’s faith in me was misplaced or not.” She ends with a lauch, the comment a joke… mostly.

Drinkless, there is no need for anything other than a soft smile in regards to A’lin as the man drops an arm about K’hys’ shoulders. He too gives the Weyrwoman his full and undivided attention. As he listens, he keeps his eyes fixed on Neyuni, only looking to Melze once she’s started to speak as well. He chuckles a few times as she cracks her ‘jokes’, remaining otherwise leaned against the barcounter, and slightly just in regards to Ada as well.

“And thank you to you weyrleaders, wingleaders, weyrfolk and especially weyrlingmasters. For taking us under your wing and turning us bunch of slackers into dragonriders!” A’lin calls out to everyone. Since some of the speeches seem to be done, Ada claps. That’s what you were supposed to do after all of that, right? Then it’s back to listening for the brownrider.

Elara smiles as she sips her tea, her eyes moving over the Weyrlings’ faces as Neyuni speaks, a distant look to her eyes.

Jaye isn’t one for talking or speeches, or anything really formal and all. The scarred girl just shifts a little against her escort, she’s silent, though, nothing to add here.

Dtirae frees her hands to clap for the speeches given, smiling pleasantly and remaining dutifully silent, listening and then making a face after a moment. Her nose scrunches up and her drink is lifted carefully to her lips, though, why is kept to herself.

Neyuni can’t quite help but roll her eyes a bit as Melze concludes. “Things seem to have turned out well, and if they mis-behave to badly we can always send them back for a refresher course under your tender and merciful hand.” A slight flush comes to her face with A’lin’s words and she manages a quiet nod in reply turning to the nearby table. It seems there is a pile of new knots. Once freshly made and sorted they’ve unfortunately becoem a bit tangled and so she goes with the first she can manage to free. Flattening the knot with one hand her eye settles on the extra strand of bronze and she calls clearly “P’on, bronze Davarnesonth’s rider.” and once he joins and claims the knot she adds “Roc wing looks forward to you joining them. They have sweeps first thing tomorrow.” nudging the rider down to recieve congratulations from Th’ero and Melze she finds a second knot calling forth “K’hys, blue Jheth’s rider…”

Brows lift when A’lin calls out and bursts into clapping, blinking once before he joins in the applause. If for no other reason than not to leave the man hanging out there by himself, luckily saved by Dtirae and a few others as well of the weyrling class. He slips an arm around the guy’s waist and gives him a squeeze. He grins and claps again, this time as P’on goes up and gets his full rider’s knot, cheering the lad on with hands above his head. “Wooo! P’on!” There’s a blink that quickly follows as he’s next up, and he pushes himself up and off the counter. He moves through the crowd again, this time towards the stage and heads up the steps until he’s standing before Neyuni.

Elara sets her tea cup on the bar to clap politely for each Weyrling as they’re called, her smile wide though her gaze keeps going distant. No doubt in touch with Wiyaneth, keeping the old queen updated on the proceedings.

Melze eyes her hands for a moment, trying to figure out which is tender and which is merciful, grinning the whole time. Her part now is simple, and as each weyrling passes Neyuni she hands over a small gift from the weyrlingmaster team.

A’lin isn’t left hanging out to dry all by himself! Whew. When Kai’s name is called out to go get his knot A’lin pats him on the back encouragingly and removes his arm from around him. He claps for each weyrling in turn and their wings are announced.

Th’ero lowers his head a little to hide the slight smile that spreads across his features for Melze’s jokes and A’lin’s addition. The Weyrleader otherwise continues to remain fairly subdued by Neyuni’s side. As she turns to the nearby table, his gaze follows and straightens as the first of the knots are untangled. When the first names are called, Th’ero takes a slow inhale of breath and prepares himself to congratulate to first two new riders of the class. As P’on approaches first, he clasps the new bronzerider on the arm should he allow it and murmurs a few quick words with him before letting him escape back to the group. Then his hands return to his sides and the Weyrleader waits, head turned towards Neyuni and K’hys.

Jaye gives a light clap for each of her fellow weyrlings as first P’on and then K’hys are called up, hugging her escort lightly. This is it, and though she may be quiet, klah brown eyes dance as the weyrlings turn into riders, the only true indication of a carefully hidden softness for her classmates behind her hard shell.

Neyuni holds out the riders knot to K’hys with a smile “Congratulations rider. You and Jheth are a fine team. I hear thunderbird wing looks forward to your presence. They’ve a drill tomorrow afternoon if I’m not mistaken.” she winks and then nods for the new rider to proceed down the line at the end of which is Melze and presents. who doesn’t like presents!

Dtirae’s frown clears and she smiles for those being called up, continuing to applaud for each one. First for P’on, before again clapping for K’hys. There’s a woop called out, once, before she grins all the wider.

For K’hys Melze has a small flat package, all neatly wapped up with blue ribbon. She murmnurs a quiet, “Congratulations.” as she hands it over.

K’hys loves presents! And knots, yes indeed. The now offically full bluerider accepts his new knot and wing patch with a lopsided grin, taking one of Neyuni’s hands and kissing the back of her knuckles in gentlemanly flare in regards to the lady. “I hope to do you proud, ma’am.” he winks, and then releases his grasp on the poor woman and backs off. He tosses his classmates a roguish smirk and a jerk up of his chin, followed by a chuckle. He moves on then to Melze, accepting he gift from her with a quirk of a brow, but at the same time passes on to her something paper rolled up and tied with a red ribbon. “THanks for putting up with us, and being our teacher.” he says back, taking up her hand and kissing the back of her knuckles as well, brown eyes fixed to her own gaze over them. That done, he lets go and steps away. He pauses before Th’ero, all pretenses falling away and merely cooly regarding the man. He snaps off a crips salute, and then turns, walking down the steps and off the stage without another word.

Elara frowns slightly even as she’s applauding K’hys, lifting her tea mug and turning to request a refill from one of the bartenders.

A’lin cheers. “Hooray K’hys! Show us what you got!” Because that box looks suspiciously like a present. And Ada is curious! Very curious! He’ll wait until K’hys shows them, or until someone else’s name is called, at the least.

Th’ero gives a subtle nod of his head in agreement and approval to Neyuni’s words, most likely echoing the same congratulations in a lower voice. He’s never been one for public speaking or large crowds and is making an effort to at least look somewhat at ease. The kiss to the knuckles for both Neyuni and Melze earns a quirked brow and he ducks his head again to mask his sudden amusement. Any hint of it is gone though when K’hys approaches him, Th’ero only nods at the salute, his expression neutral as the new bluerider turns to step off the stage. Exhaling in a near sigh, the Weyrleader then moves from his spot to take his turn at sorting through the knots, flashing a quick look to the Weyrwoman as he does. It takes only a few moments before he has two knots in his hand, one twined in gold and the other in green. Clearing his throat slightly, he calls out in a level tone, “C’or, green Aravith’s rider.” Once he approaches and the new knot claimed, Th’ero then adds with a small smile. “Congratulations and welcome to riderhood. Thunderbird looks forwards to having you within their ranks.” As C’or moves off down the line to Neyuni and Melze, the Weyrleader looks up to call out the second name, “Dtirae, gold Zuvaleyuth’s rider.”

Dtirae continues to clap for K’hys, chuckling at his antics before attention shifts towards Ada with a teasing grin playing on her lips. “You might want ta be careful with how yer sayin’ that. He might drop his pants.” Entirely teasing, though, she winks over at the brownrider before she’s straightening as another is called. Clapping continues just a moment longer until her own name is called. Dread briefly flickers over her features before she’s making her way up towards the Weyrleader. She gives a salute upon arrival before smiling just a fraction.

K’hys makes his way back to A’lin, grinning ear to ear by the time he arrives and sets the gift that Melze had given him on the counter beside the two rum bottles. “Okay, okay. Give me a second.” he laughs, unpinning his weyrling knot from his tunic, and replacing it with his new one. The patch is slid into one of his pockets, along with his old knot before he finally opens the box. Inside, a sketch pad bound in leather, and a set of charcoal sticks. “This is beautiful.” he murmurs, running his fingers over the cover, he absently flips it open, only to reveal a handwritten note tucked inside. The bluerider picks it up, eyes scanning the words and his smile softens, becomming far more genuine, before he glances back Melze’s way. The note is then put back and the cover closed, the box’s cover closed once more. As Dei’s name is called, Kai looks to the gray eyed woman and his lopsided grin returns. “Good luck.” he calls after her, clapping with the rest as she ascends the stage.

A’lin blinks a bit at Dtirae. “Why would he drop his pants?” If Kai does drop his pants… well, wouldn’t -that- be a graduation ceremony to remember? He waves the goldrider up as her name is called, he can ask her questions later on. There’s some whooping as Kai holds up his gift. “Ooh, very nice!” Ada parks himself on a barstool for now, clapping as Dei goes up to accept her knot.

Melze grins as K’hys kisses her hand, locking gazes for a second as she takes the gift and very nearly moves to give him a hug. Instead she settles for a quiet, “My pleasure.” and a very fond look. As things move on more gifs are given, and the gift for Dtirae is smaller than K’kys’, and oddly shaped. This package tied up with gold ribbon. “Congratulations Dei.”

Jaye applauds for first C’or, and then Dtirae, softly. Klah eyes take in the gifts and the knots, and she remains ever the silent watcher, much like the shadow of a lifemate that is likely stalking just outside watching, listening, and waiting.

Th’ero waits patiently while Dtirae makes her way up to the stage, his smile broad but reserved. Once she’s close enough, he offers the knot for her to claim, thereby cementing her as junior goldrider. “Congratulations and welcome to Phoenix Wing,” he begins, hesitant, slightly awkward and uncertain and no doubt leaving the bulk of the rest to Neyuni to cover once more. But before Dtirae moves off, the Weyrleader adds in a soft voice, “You’ll do fine.” Whether or not it’ll be accepted (or even heard) is one matter but the bronzerider says it all the same. He’ll then step back a little, hands coming to clasp behind his back as he returns to being simply no more then a silent observer, his gaze occasionally distant but for the most part focused and alert.

Neyuni looks a bit surprised by the gentlemanly nature, retreiving her hand with a bit of a bemused look. Lost in internal thoughts in those next moments she misses K’hys interaction with Melze and Th’ero, coming back to the present as the weyrleader speaks and calls forth the next. She adds her congratulations to C’or, shaking his hand and helping to keep him from dropping his new knot before he moves on to Melze she turns to greet the next. Ah, Dtirae! Once Th’ero is finished she adds her own “Welcome and congratulations. It’s been interesting watching you and Zuvaleyuth grow up together, but you’re a fine pair and you should be very proud. A gold’s duty is a bit different than others, but no more or less, ” she emphasizes ” important than any other. I’m sure you will represent Fort well in the turns to come. Please come by my ledge tomorrow morning… but not too early, for your assignments.”

K’hys claps and cheers for the weyrlings on the stage, but all the louder for Dtirae of course. He orders himself a mug of mulled cider and once he gets it, he narrows his eyes some at A’lin, “What was that about my pants?” Does the kid have superhearing? Perhaps.

If Dtirae happens to glance her way, Elara will lift her tea cup in a silent salute towards the newest Weyrwoman, her look both fond and very proud.

M’lo has been rather absent lately, and everyone knows it’s because his sister, N’drei, was lost with her lifemate between. In the rare glimpses people have seen of him, he’s looked pale and sad. But he’s here, today. Dressed all in white and black, traditional mourning colors, he makes his way quietly into the Gemstone Tavern and looks around. He drifts toward Neyuni and Elara, moving quietly through the small crowd, a far cry from his usuall jovial and outgoing personality. “Weyrwomen,” he greets them softly. He gives Th’ero a nod as well.

Elara turns her head at M’lo’s approach, reaching out her hand towards him with a soft smile for the man. “Evening,” she says quietly, her look understanding and sympathetic.

Dtirae is hesitant at first to accept the knot, eying the symbol of her ranking with a very cautious eye. But, there was no way for her to avoid it, obviously and after a moment she reaches out to take the knot between her fingers. It remains in her hand and she smiles at Th’ero as he welcomes her to the wing, nodding her thanks and then giving the man a teasing grin for his on hesitation and lack of words. His vote of confidence is heard before she moves off and gingerly accepts the package from Melze. She does not open it, yet, and instead, settles before Neyuni. The words of welcome do sober the weyrling turned rider, nodding once, then twice before she finally finally allows a smile upon her lips. “Thank you, ma’am.” A nod is given in confirmation for her assignments before she’s shuffling away, moving to return to her previous spot.

Neyuni pulls up the next knot, moving right along. “As’trix, blue Obelizkth’s rider.” the weyrling pushes eagerly to the front, squealing with delight as he comes to a stop before Neyuni. The weyrwoman doing her best not to flinch from the overly excited rider. “Congratulations rider. Simurgh will use your skills well. Please check in with Wingleader Ely tomorrow.” the man grabs his knot, wrapping Yuni in quite a bear hug before moving on to the weyrleader and looking to do the same in his enthusiasm. Taking a deep breath to settle herself Yuni calls up the next. “Jaye, brown Maehwazeyeth’s rider…”

A’lin shurgs a bit to K’hys. “I’m not sure. I said to show us what you had, Dei said that might be an invitation for you to pull down your pants.” Maybe the bluerider had a better idea of what it mean than Ada did? As Dei makes her way back to them Ada looks at her expectantly. “Well? What did you get then?”

Jaye applauds for As’trix, daring to let a chuckle escape her lips at the bluerider’s overexcitement. But, oh wait, that was her name that was just called, wasn’t it? Just a moment’s hesitation has Tall Dark and Handsome nudging her forward. She moves to the stage, not too thrilled about the whole spotlight’s on her thing, so her legs carry her quickly to Neyuni to recieve her new knot. Despite the rather loudly exuberant bugle from outside, a respectful bow given to both Weyrwoman and Weyrleader. “Thanks.” She murmurs quietly before moving along to recieve the gift from Melze, who also gets a respectful bow. And scarred brownrider is only too happy to slip down the steps and off the stage.

Th’ero remains where he is next to Neyuni, hands still clapsed behind his back as he observes quietly. His head turns to watch the exchange between Weyrwoman and the newly made goldrider. As Dtirae pauses by Melze before returning, the Weyrleader’s attention is caught by M’lo’s arrival and the nod is returned. Then another name is called and he too is trying to keep himself from flinching too much from As’trix’ exuberant response to his name being called. When Neyuni is wrapped in a bearhug, Th’ero has to mask his grin behind his hand and his chuckle is masked as a cough. Karma has a swift payback though and the Weyrleader is the next receipient of said bear hug. The bronzerider weathers it politely enough, giving the new bluerider a quick thump to the shoulder before taking a subtle step or two back to escape. Giving his head a slight shake, he turns his attention back to the next weyrling to approach, eyes quickly spotting Jaye amongst the crowd as the new brownrider to be approaches and bows respectfully. “Congratulations.” Th’ero will murmur gently in turn.

K’hys claps for some of the others of his class, but is soon distracted when Dei returns with her gift. He’s sidetracked on asking her about it, as A’lin shrugs. He nearly chokes on his drink as he hears what the brownrider says, and has to pick up a napkin to dab at his mouth. “I’ll explain it to you later.” he laughs, tossing his goldrider friend a look and a shake of his head. “Again, terrible.” he teases her.

Still quiet and somber, M’lo discreetly orders an ale, and once it’s been delivered into his hand he starts drinking from it. He watches the riders getting their knots, and with misty eyes he touches his own knot – the brown cord and ribbon the only color on him. “N’drei and I both Impressed from the same clutch,” he murmurs to Elara. “Got our knots the same day…” his voice breaks and he had to blink his eyes rapidly. He has another drink.

Elara steps closer to M’lo, reaching out to rest her hand on his arm if he allows it. The goldrider says nothing, but she is there in silent support for the brownrider.

Neyuni has to add after the shy new brownrider “Be sure to report in to Thunderbird tomorrow.” it echos and the weyrwoman look suncertain if the new rider heard amid the appause and congratulations of the room. She sighs and looks to Th’ero. Almost done!

Dtirae claps for those who are called up next before settling down her present on the counter. Her drink is finished off before she’s carefully peeling it open to get a peek at it. Inside the package is a knife and the goldrider visibly perks up. “A new knife. Ooh. I can’t wait to use it.” A grin grows wider on her lips as she takes the handle, and slips her hand carefully into the loop, finding a more comfortable position to hold it in though never drawing it from the sheath as to avoid freaking anyone out. K’hys’ statement of her being horrible is met with soft laughter. “Oh, I know, dear Kai. I know.”

Th’ero catches the sigh from Neyuni and flashes a quick small smile to the Weyrwoman before approaching the table containing the few knots left. Carefully, he gathers the next knot in his hand, this one also twined in green. “C’arl and green Elliveth’s rider.” The Weyrleader calls out in his usual level tone, voice carrying easily over the din of the taverns. As C’arl weaves his way through to the stage to accept his new knot and begin the start of his newest adventure, Th’ero only lingers with the new made greenrider to offer a few words. “Congratulations and welcome to riderhood among the Roc Wing.” A few more words are murmured, in a lower voice and then C’arl is left to continue down to Neyuni and Melze before striding back proudly to the crowd. The Weyrleader then steps back again, one hand coming to rest almost absentmindedly on the hilt of the dagger at his side, thumb running over the circular inlays. Turning his head to Neyuni then, he gives the Weyrwoman a subtle nod. Almost to the end!

A’lin blinks a bit at Kai and then nods. “Well… alright. Just don’t have a wardrobe malfunction until after the ceremony.” The brownrider peeks over Dei’s shoulder as she opens up her gift. He is big, and nosey! “Ooh, nice. Good for skinning? Or threatening wingriders?” He chuckles a bit and pats Dei on the back gently in congratulations.

Jaye may or may not have heard Neyuni’s addition to the congratulations, she doesn’t give any indication either way. Pocketing the wing patch, she makes her way back to her Istan escort who offers her a shot of rum. She tosses back the shot before fingering the knots on her shoulder, separating chewed dragonhealer knot from nearky chewed through weyrling knot. The weyrling knot gets pocketed and now full fledged brownrider pins the wingerider knot in her old knot’s place. Her fingers linger a moment, fussing with the knot briefly before her attention is turned to the gift from Melze, eyeing it warily.

More applause from the now bluerider, for Jaye and the others that have been called up. K’hys goes back to sipping at his cider, simply looking at A’lin over the rim of his mug. “I have other plans for after the ceremony.” he murmurs to the brownrider to be, grinning soon after. Dtirae gets another shake of his head, but this soon ends and he glances at her new knife. He makes no comment about it other then seeming to apprechiate the blade’s design or something.

Neyuni offers her congratulations to C’arl and then clears her throat a final time for this ceremony. She nods slightly to Th’ero and looks back to Melze. A conspiratoral look passing between the two and Yuni finishes. “Congratulations to all our new riders! Please enjoy the rest of today in celebration for your accomplishment.” and since it’s likely to be noticed that one name hasn’t been called up. “Oh A’lin,” as if its no big deal and in almost to sweetly of a tone. “Melze has a few more words of advice for you before we pass along your knot and assignment. Be sure to catch up with her tomorrow.” gaze sweeps in the entire room “Well, and with that until the next queen rises Fort has weyrlings no more. Welcome our Riders!” and she applauds loudly.

Elara looks a little surprised when A’lin doesn’t get a knot, her eyes darting from Senior to Weyrleader, and then to see how the brownrider is taking it. Still, she lifts her tea mug in a toast to the newly graduated riders!

M’lo claps, because it’s expected of him. He even looks like he’s trying to smile. “Congratulations,” he tells any newly graduated rider that comes close enough. “We’re all so proud of you.”

A’lin looks around. All the other weyrlings have gotten their knots. That means it was his turn! Right? When Neyuni calls his name he puffs out his chest and starts walking. Then when she says Melze has more work for him. Or… ‘words’ his jaw drops. If he wasn’t so tall his jaw might be on the floor. “B-But… I…” Ada’s shoulders droop. “Yes, ma’am,” he squeaks out and goes back to his spot at the bar. Sad bear.

Dtirae blinks as A’lin isn’t called to accept his knot, giving the brownrider a curious look and a small little frown before she gives him a rather apologetic smile before she’s attaching hew knife onto her belt. “‘m sure it’s fine, Ada.” She offers softly towards him, giving a cheerful smile in his direction in attempt to offer some comfort.

K’hys pats A’lin on the back when he hears his name called, but freezes when Neyuni follows it up with not a new knot for the brownrider but words instead, and an appointment to see Melze the next day. Brows knit and furrow and Kai actually frowns, so when the big man moves back to his spot at the bar he sets his cider down and rubs a hand up and down his back, murmuring something softly to him. He gives a thankful yet breif smile over his shoulder towards Dei when she offers her comfort, before going back and giving his own.

If Th’ero is surprised or if he’s in on the whole thing, he masks it well. There is a slight look of sympathy for poor A’lin as the weyrling begins to walk forwards. Awkward? Just a little. He tries to give a reassuring smile at least, before his attentions are drawn elsewhere. His voice adds to the congratulations being shared and then the Weyrleader seems to exhale in relief, shoulders dropping as some small part of his tension in such a large public gathering eases off. Turning towards Neyuni, Th’ero smiles faintly, “It went well, I believe.” he tells her, before glancing back out over the crowd. For that brief moment, the Weyrleader allows himself to look proud at the new riders gathered among the old.

Jaye starts to tug the bow off of her gift when the ceremony is decalred finished, and klah brown eyes seek out A’lin curiously. Aww, look at the sad teddy bear person. Ahem! She doesn’t let her eyes linger too long because she still has a gift to open. And the ribbon is tugged and box opened. She blinks a little at the bracelet sitting in the box, running a finger lightly over the deep brown stones on it. “Wow..” And she does let her surprise slip, closely followed by a shooting of glances around the tavern. Bracelet is slid over a slim wrist, and the brownrider finds herself another shot of rum to hide any expression other than her cool collective one that might escape.

Elara sips at her tea and hangs back against the bar, sitting on a stool as she watches the party continue around her. She admires the gifts, but keeps to herself for the most part.

M’lo just steadily finishes off his ale. There’s a moment when it looks like he might order another, but he resists and asks for a tall glass of water, instead.

After a few more words are shared between Weyrwoman and Weyrleader, it’s Th’ero who turns away first, no doubt signalling the end of the actual ceremonies and the start of the actual festivities. Free to mingle as he chooses, he wastes little time in walking from the stage and approaching the bar. Having had to bear all of that, he’s itching for one drink at least and promptly orders one of the strongest stouts the tavern has to offer. While he waits for the drink, he’s polite to all or any who approach him and once his drink is served, he promptly takes it in hand and begins to drift away. As he takes the first few sips, his eyes scan the room and seems to consider his next move.

Jaye urges her escort to find a booth, somewhere in the back hopefully, where she can covet him and the rest of the rum. She probably should be going around and congratulating her fellow clutchmates, but she’s just not one of those sentimental kinds of people. She’s just fine with drinking quietly in the shadowed corner booth with Tall Dark and Handsome K’drozen.

M’lo tosses the water back, stands up, and moves toward Th’ero. “Weyrleader,” he says quietly. “Congratulations. And thank you for being so understanding about… about N’drei.” His voice cracks and he takes a long, deep breath. “I’m gonna go, leave everyone to their celebration. I don’t wanna bring anybody down.”

K’hys grunts a little into the hug he’s beared into, returning it tightly after a second or two. “Come on, Cielyn and the folks are here. They want to say hello.” he tells the brownrider, and then releases his hold on Ada everywhere save the fingers of one hand, that interlace with his. He tugs the guy along, pausing to murmur to Dtirae. “Come see us later?” he asks, “I need to get him out of here.”

After a few more words are shared between Weyrwoman and Weyrleader, it’s Th’ero who turns away first, no doubt signalling the end of the actual ceremonies and the start of the actual festivities. Free to mingle as he chooses, he wastes little time in walking from the stage and approaching the bar. Having had to bear all of that, he’s itching for one drink at least and promptly orders one of the strongest stouts the tavern has to offer. While he waits for the drink, he’s polite to all or any who approach him and once his drink is served, he promptly takes it in hand and begins to drift away. As he takes the first few sips, his eyes scan the room and seems to consider his next move.

Dtirae nods to K’hys, smiling pleasantly before she’s finishing her drink off and looking to P’on who appears to be on the prowl. The bronzerider murmurs something to the goldrider, who laughs and nods. Another salute is given to all those present before she’s departing with the not so timid P’on. Seems the liquid courage finally kicked in.

Elara finishes her tea and sets her cup down, giving the bartender a tip before she slips away, leaving the Weyrlings to their festivities. Before she goes, though, she passes by Neyuni and then Th’ero, offering them both her congratulations.

A'lin takes up their bottles of rum as Kai interlaces their fingers. "Ooh, alright, then." Ada follows along like a puppy on a lead. "Bye, Dei! See you later!" The brownrider waves as he's led out.

Th'ero pauses midway through his next swig of his drink, turning his head to glance at M'lo as the Weyrsecond approaches him. "Thank you," he murmurs in turn, before he straightens his shoulders a little and gives a subtle, but awkward nod. "Of course. If you need, I'll be in my office tomorrow." The Weyrleader offers and then his attention is drawn to Elara as she passes by. A small smile spreads across his lips then and another nod is given, a low thanks given to the retired goldrider before she slips from earshot. With Dtirae then leaving with a suddenly bolder P'on and the other newly made riders beginning to drift off into their own groups, Th'ero looks both relieved and, once again, proud. Suddenly, the bronzerider seems in a hurry to complete his drink. "Seems everything is in order here." he murmurs to no one in particular and mostly to himself.

M'lo nods at the Weyrleader, and quietly makes his exit.

Setting his now empty drink aside, Th'ero lingers only for a moment or so longer among the crowds, offering a few more congratulations and a few words with new and old riders alike before the Weyrleader finally finds his escape. Politely excusing himself on the pretense of "duty", he'll find the next opportune time to quietly slip away.

'The World of Pern(tm)' and 'The Dragonriders of Pern(r)' are copyright to Anne McCaffrey (c) l967, 2000. This is a recorded online session, by permission of the author but generated on PernWorld MUSH for the benefit of people unable to attend.