Fort Weyr - Hatching Sands
The sands. The most prominant and possibly most important area for a weyr, this section of Fort is no exception to the rule. Completely enclosed from the outside elements by a high rounded ceiling, the golden white sand glitters under the streams of sunlight that manage to make their way in from the upper openings. Ledges abound in the upper areas of the dome, perfect for riders and their dragons to watch the action happening on the ground. At the back of the sands there appears to be a raised section of sand, built over generations by the golds who have laid clutches here, a couch of sorts for basking on while protecting their eggs. Slightly to one side of that, a small nook has been carved for the weyrwoman to take respite from the heat of the cavern.

Autumn is gradually becoming winter, with the days growing steadily colder. The Sands though are hot, just the right temperature for still hardening eggs and quite possibly a welcome respite for some Candidates. With their numbers growing but at a much slower rate, the Candidates have been split into groups again. Some are on chores, others on excursions and another small number are lucky to draw yet another visit with the eggs. "Same rules you lot!" M'icha intones gruffly before shooing them onto the Sands. "Don't dawdle. Kouzevelth is resting and Kainaesyth is about but that doesn't give you permission to act like fools." Yes, the Weyrlingmaster has his EYE in a few Candidates! He may lurk in the background but be guaranteed he's watching.

Alister has white thread clinging to the black of his trousers as he makes his way in, freed from the frustrating detail work of following Gabriela's instructions so as not to muck up his robe again. Again. It's been a trial. He's not alone this time, either — amongst the group called up today are his Sands-shadows, the skinny-tall freckled boy from Nerat and the pigtailed local girl. They're dogging his heels slightly less, today, and he shoots a quick and easy it's-totally-okay-no-really grin at anyone who needs one before everyone disperses to their eggs. He gives a nod to his favorite from last time, but in the interest of fairness (or something) moves first to Forward or Die egg, and carefully plants his hands.

Alister leaves egg 6 - One Smart Cookie Egg
Alister touches egg 3 - Forward or Die Egg

Beyrl , by one trip familiar with the area, gazes over the eggs. Especially that one. A beautiful rose with acidic thorns. Eyes linger over it for a moment, emotional attachment, positive or negative, unknown, as it doesn't sketch itself in his expression. His eyes move over the others. There lays the egg he had partial discourse with. It had much noise, but not much to say. Deciding to complete the conversation, he moves to the Feathers of Fate egg and brushes a hand lightly against it.

Beyrl touches egg 8 - Flock of Fate Egg

Even Ingan, the usually egotistical and puffed up brat, is a little tentative in walking towards the eggs. At least until he's given a wide enough berth to the ONE egg he had touched prior and then his pompous attitude returns in spades. Him, scared? Pfft. At least he's quiet as he picks his first egg. M'icha just makes his rounds, grim features barely showing the satisfaction in how easily the Candidates are adjusting. No one screaming yet? Good.

Alister jerks his hands back a little bit in surprise, and looks around. "Have you touched this egg?" It might be endorsement. It might not be. He's got that kind of puzzled-scritchy frown thing going on. Speaking of: he scrapes a thumbnail against today's scruff, smushes his mouth up to one side and kind of scrunch-closes one eye, says, "Nnnhh," and touches the egg again. Just so he knows what to say if anyone asks him about it.

Beyrl , arrested in pleasant mental embrace, looks up and behind him, as if expecting, though somehow knowing it would not be so (and disapointment to follow), to see something watching behind himself. All that's seen however is sand, Ingan giving wide berth to that egg. A slightly amused tilt of his mouth, then back to the egg he focuses, returning to it (for whatever he's gaining in return) a warm look. "A walk of life should be shared. Would my footprints intertwine with your's?" he speaks softly to the egg. A thought he keeps in the forefront of the mind, a memory wonderful in some treasured quality. He shifts the hand against the egg. "Shall we share one, or shall we share many?" he inquires of the one who sleeps within its unbroken shell.

Some heads lift up for Alister's question, Ingan's included and he promptly scoffs. "No. Why? Can't handle it?" he says, careful to keep his voice as hushed as possible but that doesn't keep the sneering out of it. Har har, look at the "brave" ex-Guard? M'icha just keeps his distance but perhaps hovers a little closer to that upstart Candidate. Maybe that's why the boy settles and shuts up.

No? Yes, no? (Freckles has. Freckles isn't commenting, though). Alister frowns as the egg's tone changes, huffs a sigh, resolves to do better next time (look, there aren't even ten people on the Sands, come on), and rolls his eyes at Ingan's sneering. "No, it just seems like it wants more people to know about it, or something." There is definitely a trace of 'this is freaking weird,' in his tone, because man it is. He does pat the egg's shell reassuringly, though. It's okay, buddy.

Beyrl focuses more, but gets little further in return. His smile is gentle, his gaze soft. "Perhaps we'll share other things. Perhaps you'll find another path to travel." Alister's query however snaps his concentration and over to the other he glances. "Their story has yet to be written. A book without end, without body, only the beginning. More is what all search for." He stands to look over the other eggs, selecting one with curiosity. Past the egg of honey and fire he steps, with respect he keeps clear, without fear he does not completely avoid. That though is not his target. It wait beyond. To the Cuprum Curse egg he kneels, and a hand is placed upon.

Beyrl leaves egg 8 - Flock of Fate Egg
Beyrl touches egg 5 - Cuprum Curse Egg

Alister leaves egg 3 - Forward or Die Egg
Alister touches egg 1 - Paraskevidekatriaphobia Egg

Alister gives Beryl a look that clearly says 'you're weird too, kid,' but he keeps the sentiment out of his mouth, if not off his face. He sticks close, this time, instead of wandering afar: from Forward to Paradkedidekatriaphobia, which gets a thorough side-eying before his laying of hands.
An egg with a message to spread? Ingan is curious and while he doesn't exactly strut his way over, he'll wait until Alister is gone and distracted before darting over and seeing what all the fuss is about! Everyone ELSE is just going to have to wait! M'icha just exhales heavily and shakes his head and begins his rounds once more to make sure no Candidate has pushed themselves too far — or are pushing the rules.

Kouzevelth opens an eye — one — without lifting her head off her paws to give M'icha an approving look. Good Weyrlingmaster. Nice. Don't let anyone … kick one or anything, that would get her hissing a little. The open eye only lasts a few seconds, though, surveying the candidates before closing again, settling herself under one of Kainaesyth's wings.

Good thing Ingan isn't paying attention to Alister anymore, because the guard-candidate is definitely waiting, waiting, waaaaai— startling!, definitely startling! at his current egg. There's an undignified little 'whuh!' of sound out of him, a sheepish glance that's caught by pigtails, but she's little and her laughter isn't unkind. It wasn't enough to get him to let go, though, and the rest of the experience is … pleasant. He laughs, too, and swipes his fingers against the shell. Nice memories are nice.

An expression of knowing, of recognition, of elation, of staring into the darkness, and the darkness stares back with the eyes of a powerful fate. Gaze peers upon the egg, one part curious, one part fearful. "I shall not shunt from any path offered, though your path may end, a fate I wish not. Shall your night be endless, or turn into day?" Beyrl inquires of the egg quietly, and places his other hand upon the egg. He's willing, ready, to see what possibility lies before him. "Show me a fate that we define, or show me one that defines us." he whispers, diving into the unknown with determined abandon.

Beyrl twists his mouth in a near vile shape, for but the briefest of moments. What lays before him is promise, yet what's offered is still unknown. He follows the path the dragon leads him on. Memories of the Upside Down egg linger, yet a path unfollowed is a path unknowable. And so, to learn this one's path, a story to tell, a fate to see. Mentally he reaches for the prize. Does it teach? Does it care? Or shall it bite and smother interest?

Alister is braced for it, this time, whether the dragon zygote was planning on surprising him or not; he doesn't startle or jerk this time, but he does seem pleased by the responses he's getting. There's nearly a fondness in the way he strokes the shell one more time, just to see what the occupant will do.

Ingan will of course pay for his curiosity, his face scrunching up in a rather comical manner that he's unaware of. He'll shuffle away from that egg, grumbling to himself and to anyone who dares look at him sidelong. Hush it! Back into the fray he goes but he hovers around the same few eggs. M'icha will likewise breathe a sigh of relief, keeping some of his attention on Kouzevelth though when she appears to settle again the Weyrlingmaster will allow the Candidates to continue on. For now.

Beyrl closes physical eyes, though mental eyes he keeps open. Riding waves of promise and desolation, of a path of gold, and a path of shattered dream. Opening slowly, eyes creased in contemplation typically unknown to them, they stare at the egg for passing eons. An hour ticks by in a second. "Your story and mine dance to a different song. We know what lays beneath, the path that fades from the path dreamed. To another offer the walk. Your fate is strong, your fate is powerful. We walk the same ocean, but swim a different sea. Find your path. I shall find mine." With a small sigh, finely lined with dissapointment, he lifts his hands, and looks about at the other eggs. Toward that other egg, the one that demanded the curiousness of the others, he moves, and brushes a finger down against Foward or Die.

Beyrl leaves egg 5 - Cuprum Curse Egg
Beyrl touches egg 3 - Forward or Die Egg

Alister leaves egg 1 - Paraskevidekatriaphobia Egg

There's a fond little pat that's not quite enough to stir the occupant again before Alister moves on; there's a little bit of a spring in his step, and his smile is benign as he surveys the rest of the handful of candidates, all in various states of milling between or touching eggs. His next quarry is not far: it's a gentle touch of work-calloused hands that meets the shell of Owe Me An Egg.

Alister touches egg 2 - Owe Me An Egg

Alister flinches, just a little, but not enough to let himself be pulled away: it's a familiar sort of chaos, for someone with a multitude of younger siblings, but not an entirely sought-after one. He clears his throat, drops one hand to adjust the fall of his unifo— of his shirt, he's not wearing a uniform, right. Bereft of that meagre amount of authority in the face of the cacophony of the egg's inner life, he sighs a little sigh and puts his hand back on the egg. Yes, dear.

M'icha has his hands full as some of the Candidates touch some of the 'louder' eggs and need a moment to "cool off". One ends up leaving the Sands entirely. "If it's getting to be a bit much, there's no shame in calling it a night." he gruffly reminds the others. Ingan just rolls his eyes and continues to hover around his favourite egg until he has to grudgingly move as another Candidate moves in. Feh.

Alister IS nice, he is totally nice, he is the absolute nicest — well, okay, maybe not always nice. He's definitely good, though, for all that they aren't always the same. M'icha's comments get his attention, and he lifts his head (without lifting his hands) to ask, "You good?" of anyone paying enough attention to him to answer the question. He strokes the egg's shell absently as he waits for responses.

The answers for Alister will all be in the positive, whether in actual words or merely grunted. Hopefully that'll work? Distracted Candidates are distracted!

Alister checks the answers in person one or two, as he ventures away from his side of the clutch of eggs to explore the other. Tucked between two of the eggs he touched last time, he gives Upside Down Egg a long, long look. A long look. "This is weird to everyone else, right?" is quiet enough that it probably isn't meant to be overheard or answered, as he steps forward and touches the egg. Might as well give it a go, right? Right.

Alister leaves egg 2 - Owe Me An Egg
Alister touches egg 7 - Upside Down Egg

"Yeah, bet you can't handle it!" Ingan snickers from his little spot and close enough for Alister to hear without him shouting it over the Sands. He'll duck his head all the same for the warning look he receives from M'icha and scurry off again to take "shelter" by a dark looking egg. Hmm. He's not touched this one before! But he'll hold off… too curious to see how Alister stands against THAT ONE.

Alisters right hand slides up the side of the shell like he's — reaching? Like he's reaching for something, totally. That's how he'll handle this particular egg, apparently, by reaching for the light and then blinking, star-struck, as the impressions fade enough he regains more awareness of the Sands and its occupants. Which is how he totally catches Ingan's — well, maybe not his whole comment but definitely his snickering. He casts a swift glance around to make sure he's relatively unwatched, then flashes a rude gesture in the other candidate's direction. What was that we were saying about nice, and good? Right, then.

Beyrl chuckles goodheartedly. A not-so-loud chortle, amusement lacing the humored warble. "A social one you definitely shall be." he notes with a grin. This moment is brokend by a statement rather rude from Ingan. A look of dissaproval to the source, then over to Alister he gives a look mixed with concern and curiousness. How shall these two, egg and Candidate, deal with the other? He decides to rest a hand on the Eggsplosive as he watches, from a corner of an eye.

Beyrl leaves egg 3 - Forward or Die Egg
Beyrl touches egg 10 - Eggsplosive at Best Egg

Here we go on this rodeo circuit again! Gabriela is not sorry to be pulled from her second round of chores today. Though she is rather timid about the eggs after her first go round. If asked she would voice a harsh opinion about her supposed luck in the draw. Still she figures she knows the WHY of it. The folks in charge are looking to toughen her up is her general opinion of this little foray. Ingan is noticed and avoided as she crosses the sands and eyeballs an egg. Here goes nothing.

Gabriela touches egg 1 - Paraskevidekatriaphobia Egg

Ingan caught that! Before M'icha can turn back to him, the bratty Candidate will make good on the Weyrlingmaster's distraction and stick his tongue out at Alister. He'd have flipped him off too if M'icha wasn't looking their way again. Do do do. Nothing to see here! He's totally behaving — oh wait, here comes Beyrl. Glower. Off he scuttles again to crouch behind another egg and 'pretend' to touch while waiting to see how it goes down.

Gabriela is almost comforted by the lack of a sudden barrage and even glances down the sands at her fellow Candidates. Idly wondering how their gowns are coming along when.. "Ahh!" The exclamation is less a sound of fear and laden with surprise. She had almost forgotten she was touching the egg at all. Now though she tries to relax and focus on where the entity guides her. It pays surely to go along to get along. Just as she is left curious and delighted in memories long forgotten she finds herself alone in her skin once more.

Less discotheque the second time around, apparently: Alister's hand slides back down to its original position, and he repeats his performance of the first touching. That is to say, shining example that he is, the guard-candidate makes a sour face and turns his head to spit onto the sand. Is this a thing, Alister, is this going to be a thing? He shifts back and forth uneasily, and slants a slightly-guilty look to Kouzevelth as he toes some sand up over the spit-spot.

Beyrl is immediately and roughly startled as his hand land upon the egg. He gives a light grunt, as if a headache took violent occupation in his head, and his free hand comes up to shield eyes, little good as that'll do. A couple moments later however, that hand slowly drops, and a gaze almost tender peers down at that egg. A heartbeat later he gives a small shake of his head. "No, don't go." he requests, rubbing a finger slowly against the egg top.

Kouzevelth's eye opened then, right on time, to give Alister another look. Somehow she does it so well with her head down on her front paws and only one eye, too! And with no eyebrows, at that, though her eyeridge is definitely somewhat mobile. Still, though, at least Alister is cleaning up after himself. As she's already paying attention, Beyrl's momentary sadness at someone's departure gets the softest, gentlest croon from both clutchparents.

Back again? Gabriela was unaware she'd ever left in the first place. Apparently she was lost in her own little memory walk. A journey she strangely doesn't feel bad about sharing. Perhaps the egg touching in general is the cause for her earlier remarks to Alister about her past. This process might just be cracking her shell. Possibly. Maybe. Time will tell. For now she travels in memories that she hasn't allowed herself to remember since her arrival in Fort. So many moments spent with her Foster family and the boy she'd held a crush on as a young girl. Dances, gathers, and trader shows all memories she keeps carefully locked away.

"Whf," is a sharp-exhalation sound, as joy turns unexpectedly to pain; Alister doesn't quite stagger but he does pull away sharply, dropping his hands to his knees and folding over himself to catch his breath. He stays like that for a little while, then surreptitiously checks himself as he pulls up; there's no sign of wet save sweat, though there's a little more of that than there was before he touched the egg's shell. He covers the pee-check by pulling that forgotten white thread off of his pants, and rolling it into a ball between his hands. He'll — he'll take a minute, here. Keep an eye on those couple of kid-candidates he's always got tailing him; check in with Gabriela. Walk a little beat around the eggs without touching them.

Just ignore Ignan's quiet chortling. HE KNOWS! He touched that egg too and Alister's 'cover' doesn't work. He saw Gabriela fall to that egg and had his own round with it. Now he actually does return to examining the poor egg he used as cover all this time. M'icha won't breath a word about Alister's unusual behaviour aside from the usual: "You alright?" in the same gruff tones he uses with everyone.

Feeling gloomy is something Gabriela knows on a personal level. So perhaps this is why she fails to be put off by the egg she is gently petting. It seems the memory flickers toward her wedding day and she feels a pang of panic. That day is most certainly NOT a happy memory as she'd fled her home, what family she'd had left and struck out lost and alone. Fearful that the memory makes her somehow unworthy she almost pulls her hand off the shell. Almost. But just as she moves a feeling of calm erases the painful moment and she smiles slightly. Perhaps it really wasn't so bad after all. She is making a new home for herself here. And so far it hasn't been a complete disaster. With a feeling of confused wellbeing she steps away from the egg and looks around. Catching Alister's eye and the expression on his face. Concern. For another person? Don't judge her! Off and away she's moving to fall into step with the man. "You okay?"

Gabriela leaves egg 1 - Paraskevidekatriaphobia Egg

Alister's "I'm good," carries to M'icha, a little gruff on his own; it's softer for newfound friend Gabriela, to whom he presents his balled up bit of thread with a slightly sheepish grin. "I'm good. That last one was just — intense," he'll go with, and scrub a hand through his sweat-damp hair. It kind of sprays sweat a little. Grody.

Beyrl stares at the egg as the young one inside wanders through his thoughts. An action he not only allows, but welcomes, offering happy and interesting memories for the other to share. Though memories of things and those long since past are pressed to the back, some of which he wishes to hold onto. But the other wishes to clear the path of the dying, and fill it once more with the living. And he choses the path the dragonling walks, joining with to find a more wonderous and exciting fate. So engrossed is he entwining this moment with the tiny one inside, he nearly misses the crooning of Kouzevelth. Vibrations in the sand, traveling up the egg he's so focused on, pushes into his conciousness.
Responding to the tangible noise, he glances up to Kouzevelth. Slight surprise in his expression, he nevertheless offers the dragoness a respectful smile. "You have very interesting young." he tells her, before giving the egg another rub to see if the one inside has anything else to say.

Gabriela reaches out and takes the ball of thread from Alister. Tucking it into a pocket to discard later. "Can't drop that on the sands. I'd hate to know what kind of chores that pair would come up with for littering the Sands," she glances at the clutch parents. Which egg was intense she wonders and glances at the line. "Was it that one?" She points toward the Upside Down Egg. She reaches to pat the taller man's shoulder lightly, "That one doesn't like anyone I don't think. I had a run in with it myself that made me run and hide. I'm not proud of it." From her expression she tells the honest truth about it. When she notices Beyrl between eggs she offers a smile of 'hello'. "Don't let it chase you off too or Ingan will tease you to no end. It's why he's been messing with me the last couple days."

"Have not!" Ingan's voice can be heard protesting it. Gabriela's all about truth and he's all about lies, especially to save his own hide. M'icha just makes a slicing gesture with one hand in the simplest of warnings meant more for Ingan than the others. "Watch it." is the growled words and the Weyrlingmaster won't quit on staring down the boy until he turns his back to them. That's better. "You two done for this day?" he asks curiously of Alister and Gabriela, followed with a grimace. "Seems that egg tends to end it for most…"

Alister nudges Gabriela with his elbow, tipping his chin toward One Smart Cookie. "That one's gentle, if you don't mind chatter." He'd definitely trying to steer her toward touching more of the eggs, rather than hanging out with lame-duck him. "I got a couple left I haven't tried talking to," he tells M'icha, "But we've been out here a while, so I don't mind hanging back." NOT because that egg was a hell of a thing.

For a very tiny woman, Gabriela's head can snap around with that 'I'll cut you' expression just as fiercely as a woman twice her size. She's put up with Ingan in favor of not losing her knot so far. But the little prick is pushing it and about to earn himself a basket to the head. She's got good aim with those baskets! As she has no basket on hand it's something she'll deal with later. "I'll touch one more," she says bravely. "That is the /only/ egg so far that has done me like that," she says more for Alister than anyone else. She flashes /him/ with a sweet smile and heads for the egg he suggested. With a haughty flip of her hair she walks right past Ingan and lays her hand upon the shell. Take that Ingan!

Gabriela touches egg 6 - One Smart Cookie Egg

Alister puts his MONEY where his MOUTH IS, and after his encouragement to Gabriela, he moves off as well; he doesn't quite manage stoic, but his face is set and determined as he reaches out to (carefully!) decisively plant his hands against the shell of Not Your Typical Scapegoat egg. He would probably give Ingan a death-stare over it, but he's choosing to ignore him instead. High road. Totally.

Alister touches egg 9 - Not Your Typical Scapegoat Egg

Beyrl notices Gabriela's welcoming smile, and returns with one of his own. But that only lasts a moment before the egg grabs his mind and tugs it down the path of the little one. His eyes glaze over, and a world that only he and the egg's dragon walk engulfs him. He shares with the egg. A love of life, of fate, of stories and art, a passion shared by the explosion of colors that surround him like a sea of welcome visual cacophony. Yet, like all things, it ends, and with a slightly shakey breath, eyes reopen. Unknown to him, until it starts to travel toward his cheek, a single tear slips from an eye. He raises a finger and brushes it off, looking momentarily at the moist finger with confusion. The day of leaving, when off to Fort he went, leaving family behind, brought a feeling rather simular. Yet this, leaving an egg he barely knew behind, it makes not much sense to him. He accepts it though, and lightly caresses the egg for a moment before standing. To the other eggs he glances, though he feels curiously fulfilled. He mulls over with contemplation if the others he should check, or the last he should remember.

Beyrl leaves egg 10 - Eggsplosive at Best Egg

Gabriela's tummy rumbles a tad loudly as the little one inside the shell stirs up memories of sugary goodness. For a moment she would swear her imagination is playing tricks on her and looks down at her fingers splayed upon the shell. There is still a chance she is hearing things though. This is certainly an entirely new experience to be having. Not that all the eggs have failed to be individuals. Most definitely they are that. But this egg right here? This egg right here? This is one nice egg. She arches a brow and wonders what it is she should get started on exactly.

Ingan may as well have a target pinned to his back right now. He's not the favourite of many, that's for sure and even M'icha may turn a blind eye to a bit of basket tossing to the head should that ever occur. Weyrlingmaster figures it's justly deserved and it's not like the boy will be seriously injured. He glares at Gabriela though as she beats him to that Cookie egg. He'll get her back somehow but just settles for a low hissed: "Try not to run crying this time." Flounce! Off Ingan goes and to the opposite side of the clutch with M'icha's eyes following his progress.

And Kouzevelth's. Just in case. That one has attitude.
Except in Kouzevelth's case it is actually just the one eye, still.
It's a very big eye. There need only be one.

If Gabriela wasn't distracted she might just flip Ingan off right there in front of everybody. After all who is the one who screamed like a girl and got drug off the Sands? Hadn't been her weeny boy. Rather than bother with the brat she has no doubt she'll be dealing with later, she focuses on the experience with the dragonet. A message is being received that she really needs in this moment. Gabby really sucks at patience. So is it something she can learn? A skill worth having perhaps? She ponders the thought while she interacts unknowingly with her thoughts to those filtering into her mind. The thing that drives her; that force that keeps her going to a close guarded secret. But she has a good grasp on exactly what it is and shares the forbidden fruit with this little essence. Helping others is the only way to help one's self. That is a concept she grasps well in her odd and pushy way.

This one's definitely more pleasant, although Alister hasn't let his guard down; his expression goes from stone-faced to contemplative as he strokes a thumb against the shell. "Dunno," is quiet, "but Captain might be nice, some day." That's about as far as it goes for goals and the height thereof, for him.

M'icha begins his rounds again as everyone seems to settle, even Ingan now that he's moved well away from Gabriela and Alister. Slowly the Weyrlingmaster moves and then stops by Beyrl. "How're you holding up, lad? Not to addled?" he mutters and lifts a hand up to tap the side of his forehead.

Gabriela actually swallows at the taste of sweetness, and finds herself really hungry now. Yet instead of being consumed by that she is intrigued by the sensation. The darkness to her lends to the unknown and yet not of fear. She is still in the darkest moments and more sarcastic as protection. There is no one to tend to her needs or assuage her fears in the lowest moments of life. And thus she feels mildly jealous of that which has protection. A silly feeling for which she quickly feels apologetic. She is Gabriela. In need surely of no protector. Though she could do with some therapy on letting go of past grudges. They really will weigh her down. "Well put," she tells the egg and finally steps away. "I hope that one finds what it's looking for," she whispers softly. With a slight shrug she walks to join the other Candidates who are through for the evening. Content for the moment to wait for permission to head on back to their semblance of home.

Gabriela leaves egg 6 - One Smart Cookie Egg

Beyrl still rolls the decision of stay or continue over in his head, until which time it's interrupted by M'icha's query. He looks over to the weyrlingmaster. "Though intense the experience, and duplicity their nature, none have been found overwhelming. Though the last.." he adds, glancing one moment more toward Eggsplosive, "has a potential path I happily would join." He glances momentarily to the other Candidates as they gather, giving each a smile. Yes, even Ingan, though that smile seems to be somehow shorter.

Ambitious is not really a word one could apply to Alister, not really; he gives the egg some judicious side-eyeing for its … well, its get up and go. "Mmmmmmmmmkay," he tells it, or maybe tells the Sands at large; on another glance around little Pigtails has been taken down by the Upside Down egg, so he starts to break contact with Scapegoat to go deal with that little mess. He's not quite entirely let go, though, just definitely on his way to.

"Not guaranteed that whatever hatches out of that one will be yours," M'icha bluntly reminds Beyrl with a grimace that softens to a smirk that might just be a smile or as close as the Weyrlingmaster can manage. The colder the weather gets, the grouchier he gets. Bad leg, y'know? "But you never know." Is it time to go? M'icha will weigh the reaction of the Candidates, testing to see who looks exhausted by the experience and giving them the signal to start slowly gathering themselves. No need to rush, right? Even as poor Pigtails meets her fate with Upside Down. M'icha sighs, "Another for that one."

Gabriela returns Beyrl's smile with a kind one of her own. He's a confusing lad on the best of days, but a sweet one. She really doesn't mind him at all. Unlike Ingan. That guy gets no smile and even a turn of cold shoulder. Not talking to you jerk face! And down goes one of the younger Candidates. The newest victim to the egg of doom. She heads that direction and scoops the girl up with a smile. "It'll be alright."

Today's egg touching will be a lesson learned. Namely in NOT what to do and just how FAST you can run while on sand! Ingan stubbornly refuses to start calling it quits even as his fellows begin to drift back. Nope, he puts a hand on Eggsplosive while distractedly glancing at his "enemies" among the group. The shock from that egg brings a sort of knee-jerk reaction and thankfully he's not so dense as to actually kick the egg but he does give it a good *SMACK-Smack!* with the palm of his hand and freezes in horror in the next breath. Oh shi—- "Oh, NOW you've done it!" M'icha, lame or not, can MOVE when he has to and he's already grabbed Ingan by the back of his shirt after smartly smacking him upside the head. This Weyrlingmaster? Not afraid of a bit of physical punishment. "Everyone out!" Comes the barked order, his features twisted in the first expression of actual anger he may have ever shown so far. He figures no one will argue. Ingan will be dragged out by M'icha himself if Kouzevelth doesn't get to the Candidate first. At least the other Candidates won't see the brat for several candlemarks? It'll be a quiet night for once!

Thankfully, M'icha is fast enough that Kouzevelth doesn't, though Inri's time in the records room is now being loudly and aggressively interrupted. As is the life of every dragon in the Weyr, as a momentary flash of protective anger bursts out from the clutchdam unshielded, flooding Fort with the touch of a startled, angry queen. She reins it in quickly, but Ingan is still the receiver of red-eyed ire and low throated hissing, as Kouzevelth reared up and backward the second the untoward contact happened. Everyone else has now been treated to a view of something you never, ever want to see, espeically not directed at you … so it's a good thing, really, that she isn't even noticing the other Candidates. Inri's entrance is as M'icha is exiting with the group, and she's exhaling a, "Thank you, thank you," to the weyrlingmaster as she dashes to calm her dragon. Just another day at Fort, folks.

Beyrl gives a nod not too slight to Mi'cha as he's told (again, in another way) that his favorite egg may not be his. "I remember weyrlingmaster. Yet I am hopeful." he adds. He settles in with the tiny crowd of Candidates as they slowly gather.

Alister sure as shit isn't banking on his pseudofamilial credit, here: he is hustling his charges off the Sands, even going so far as to scoop Pigtails up onto his hip for the final leg out. (That last egg of hers plus angry momma dragon? You bet there's some crying.) It means he's offering a sketchy salute at the edge instead of a bow, but. Then he's gone. Man, he can book it over sand when he needs to. Dang.

"Uh oh!" Angry momma!! Whoa crap!! Gabriela looks up at Alister in horror for a scant moment. The child she had been consoling is nearly as big as she is in truth, and this poor child winds up dragged from the sands by the force of a terrified Gabby. "Nope, nu-uh, all of my no!" She pulls the kid along in a stumble on their way O-U-T.

Beyrl goes wide-eyed as the events tumble over quite quickly, and he wastes not a moment scrambling along with the others off the sand. He steals a quick glance toward that smacked egg though. Just making sure its alright. Ingan? Not of concern.

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