Western Weyr - Viewing Galleries

Row after row of hard benches to sit on, with a good view of the sands below and the action that takes place there during every hatching.. Despite the times, people still come to see the new pairs formed and place bets on the outcome.


The news of a hatching spreads in a series of ripples - though, really, the metaphor is imperfect, given the speed and spread of draconic communication. A proper modeling of the data would present interesting challenges, but is likely permanently out of scope. Nevertheless, the primary flow of the news is through the dragons of the primary Weyr involved - hence the hum - and the secondary flow takes the form of communications sent to parents of candidates and incidentals. These incidentals can include dragons formerly of the primary Weyr, or those who otherwise possess ties to such dragons. From these secondary sources, tertiary involvements can be had. For example, Xanadu's steward, on the way back from a meeting on a dragon whose rider was involved with one from Western. Such persons may find themselves diverted to Western, arriving into unexpected skies. Once there, they may find themselves carried along by the gathering crowd and end up in the galleries. Hence, the arrival of Jethaniel, who finds a seat to prevent being swept further along and watches with a somewhat bemused expression.

D'ani is from the Western Isles, has spent a few turns living at Western Weyr, so could conceivably be on a visit home. But no, he's here today in a more official capacity. Having been in his office just about to head out to those camps the holdless are being interviewed in when the notification came through Dremkoth that eggs were hatching somewhere in the world. Free enough to pop over, at least for a short time, because hey, PR is important stuff! He gets the gist of which Weyr they're going to by the time his bronze rises into the Fortian skies, arrives more or less with the crowds and finds a seat somewhere not too far from where the Xanadu Steward sits.

Kiena is another native of the Western Isles and though now wearing a Xanadu knot, she called Western Weyr home for sometime. Her business here had been strictly to visit but her timing is impeccable as always. Not long after Ujinath had landed and she dismounted, barely able to even consider what to do first — the humming began. So she joined the throngs venturing towards the galleries and walked those familiar steps, keeping her head low and unusually subdued as she too finds a seat, flopping down not far from the Fortian bronzerider and Xanadu's very own Steward.

Ah, yes. Public Relations. That's part of being a Steward as well, depending on the definition of the public and the manner of relations. Jethaniel watches the arrivals on the sands; first the humans, then the dragons, and as the first impression happens, he nods slightly before casting his gaze over the remaining eggs. One, two… "Ah. Two queens." Dragons: not one of the purviews of a Steward.

There's going to be chatter in the galleries over the hatching; D'ani knows this. And yet, over the babble of voices greeting one another, the words spoken by the man nearby catch his ear. "They seem to be sharing the sands amicably enough, even though they don't share the skies" he says with a smile. Upon noting his knot, he leaves the simple explanation to say, "Fort's duties to Xanadu and her queens, may they and the Weyr prosper." With a friendly nod in her direction, he includes Kiena in that as brown eyes catch the colors of her knot.

"It's true. Though not all golds will share the sands either. Depends on their personalities, I guess," Kiena drawls, simply joining into the conversation without hesitation as she leans back a bit on her seat, hands at either side to prop and hold her weight. Blue eyes do dart to Jethaniel first and the Steward receives a curious look. What're the odds? Probably higher than usual. Then she shifts her focus to D'ani and her eyes linger on his knot, before she smirks. "Xanadu's duties to Fort and her queens," she replies, though not quite as lengthy and formal as the Fortian Weyrsecond.

The acoustic properties of this area are yet another of the things which might be fascinating but do not merit sufficient study to be properly appreciated. Jethaniel's attention to them at the present time is limited to leaning forward, the better to hear D'ani. "Fortunate they are, in this case," he says with a glance to Kiena and a nod for her addition. "I am given to understand the transport of an egg-heavy dragon is prone to complications; it might be difficult to achieve sufficient seperation, were they not amicable." And that's even after taking into account that theoretical logistics are much simpler than actual ones. Being only theoretical, they can also be abandoned without significant consequence. Jethaniel does so, in favor of a polite response. He inclines his head, saying, "Indeed. Xanadu's duties to Fort and her queens."

"That would make sense given-" D'ani coughs and changes it to, "the circumstances." Yes, maybe it's best not to say female personalities as the former beastcrafter meant to! He's got a lot to learn about dragons yet, totally inexperienced when it comes to how golds handle themselves on the sands. As for PR, he's working on it. He dips his head to Kiena, grins at Jethaniel good-naturedly introducing himself briefly, "D'ani, Fort Weyrsecond." And then, there's action down below, so he pays attention to it.

Kiena only tilts her head towards Jethaniel, wide blue eyes blinking a few times before her expression twists in an utter perplexed look. "What?" Comes her blunt and curt reply, only to be followed by a frown, "I'm… not sure I followed any of that." But boy does she feel a little slow when D'ani seems to grasp it and she pointedly looks away. Oh, look! Hatching. Her head will dip and turn again when greetings are exchanged and the bluerider tosses her name into the mix. "Kiena, Xanadu Wingrider. Blue Ujinath's." Done! Or so one would think, as her gaze lingers again on D'ani, followed by a crooked smirk. "So you've come in place of Th'e— Weyrleader Th'ero?" Quick slip of the rank there.

"Ah…" Jethaniel attempts to replay his own words in order to find the place where he was unclear to Kiena. Unfortunately, it seems likely that the place was 'All Of It', which makes the situation… "Difficult. Moving queens with eggs is difficult." Maybe that'll work? Most of those words had fewer than three syllables, after all. He tilts his head closer to be sure and catch D'ani's words despite the evident dryness of his throat (as the cough would indicate), then nods at the sentence's conclusion. "Quite." He provides a smile of his own. "Jethaniel. Xanadu's Steward." After considering the Fortian Weyrsecond's features for a moment, he hmms. "I believe we may have met before." Ah, but when? "Perhaps one of the joint patrols? Or at the herdbeast collection?" Jethaniel has plenty of technical terms for his own domains. For those of the beastcraft, he is sometimes lacking.

D'ani flicks a faintly surprised look at Kiena's bewilderment. He understood the steward, but then his beastcraft mind made the correlation between hatching sands and alternatives to egg-laden dragons not sharing them. It might have something to do with trying to move heavily-pregnant bovines in from the pastures one too many times? The greenrider looks sharp enough to him, but he's also rather fresh from reading manuals written by masters a wee bit too fond of technical wordage. He winces slightly, understanding when she looks away, brown eyes sliding to Jethaniel. Oops? "Kiena," he repeats the name so he'll remember it. "Th'ero is probably here somewhere," he answers her question. He's racking his brain to remember meeting the Steward. The round-up? A couple of dust-filled days, bawling herdbeast, keeping Hotaru busy and out of mischief, felines attacking (of the non-Hotaru type) confusion and mayhem. "Oh. Right. You were the one hugging the blonde," he says. Two points for PR? Riiight.

Oh. OH. Kiena doesn't quite facepalm — much too much going on for that — but her expression says it all. She's feeling pretty stupid. "Uh… right. Yeah, it would be." she says awkwardly, not quite certain how to salvage that blunder. Nope, it worked. Small words work, apparently. And maybe that sudden flush of red to her cheeks is from the heat in the galleries too. She snorts for D'ani's reply, "Doubtful." she counters, rather brashly. How would she know? With the last of the hatchlings finding their pairs, Kiena exhales softly and stretches, rolling one of her shoulders before she's turning on the gallery bench to peer curiously between Jethaniel and D'ani when she zones in on their conversation again.

Too fond of technical wordage? Such a thing is possible? Nobody tell Jethaniel, he might try to explain otherwise… and Western probably wants the galleries clear sometime before the rest of the eggs start rocking. Granted, sometimes, simple words can suffice. He provides the initial proof thereof, and D'ani demonstrates further. Thundering hooves, attacking felines, and what gets remembered? That. "Ah. Yes." Jethaniel offers no further explanation, instead directing his gaze out over the sands. What he sees there catches his attention. "They're leaving." The humans, at least; many of the eggs remain.

D'ani's perplexed and perhaps a bit offended of the dismissal of a man he holds in high esteem (though knows little about, truth be told). "And you'd know this, how exactly Kiena?" he drawls lightly enough with a puzzled headtilt. And oh, you bet hugging a blonde would be the thing remembered out of the mayhem because, "She was striking," he says casually with a 'you lucky guy, you' sort of envious grin aimed at Jethaniel. He can however, take a hint and drops the subject to peer down at the sands. "I suppose that's my cue to do likewise," he says reluctantly. Probably it has more to do with stopping by Western's 'leaders and doing the formal thing rather than getting back to his work at Fort.

Leaving? So they are. Kiena's distracted again by Jethaniel's (much clearer) remark and her head turns towards the emptying sands, save for the remaining clutch. The bluerider's mouth quirks into another thin smirk and then she is slowly pushing to her feet and brushing her hands idly over her pants. She looks up at D'ani at his question, pushing back a few strands of her hair that refuse to remain put behind her ear. "How do I know? 'Cause he's my brother and if I know my brother well enough, he's either busy," And she'll fold down one of her fingers. Oh, there's a list? "Finding trouble." Check. "In trouble." Check. "Or something like that. Could be wrong," Kiena admits with a shrug of her shoulders, sweeping her hands in a helpless gesture and begins to move away. "Time to go," she remarks and at the very least she dips her head with a half-wave and salute before disappearing down those steps.

When it comes to that blonde, D'ani is correct. Jethaniel acknowledges this with a nod, accompanied by a small but pleased smile. For several moments, while his gaze rests on the sands, he's silent - perhaps because his thoughts are halfway across Pern and responsible both for that smile lingering and for his lack of response regarding Th'ero's disposition… which, all things considered, is likely for the best. In certain circumstances, distraction can be a fine form of diplomacy. "It does appear so, yes," he agrees to Kiena, and offers her a wave in return before extending his hand to D'ani. "A pleasure to meet you in less chaotic circumstances." He says it straight-faced, and never mind the egg shards still strewn across the sands, the occasional penetrating squeak of a hungry hatchling, or the fact that he's no idea at all where his ride home has gone. He'll probably find him at the hatching feast, and until then, well, there's always more PR to be done.

“Likewise.” The Fortian Weyrsecond is mid-shake of Jethaniel’s hand when it sinks in what Kiena is saying. Th'ero has a sister?? D'ani shouldn't be so surprised. "Kiena! Waaait!" And with an apologetic look at Jethaniel followed by a, "Nice seeing you again," he blurts right before he dashes off after her. Probably won't catch up with her, given the crowds. And he probably figures he'll see Jethaniel down there later where he'll say a more proper farewell. In either case, he'll make it a point to visit Xanadu and flounder through apologies for his faux paux later.


'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.