Candidate Barracks
Carved from a natural bubble in the volcanic stone, this cavern has room enough to hold around two dozen occupants in comfort. Set into one of the long walls is a natural hearth area, not as large as some but more then enough to warm the cavern. Before it lays an old, well-worn rug that's colors have faded over turns of being un cared for. Mismatched chairs, an old couch, and a few randomly placed floor pillows finish up the sitting type area where candidates can relax after a long day of chores.

Along the walls are stationed sets of cots and clothes presses with curtains dividing them for privacy, each made up to the standards of the Weyrwoman. The left hand row of cots is made up with coverlets of brown and trimmed in black for male candidates, while the right hand row is made up with a lighter brown coverlet that's trimmed in white for the female candidates.

Above, the soft white light from electric lamps cast down during waking hours, while basket of emergency glows are stored in corners around the cavern for use during power outages.

OOC note: This occurs before the excursion to the forest.

There’s finally been a seven of restful sleep for Brennan. At last, he’s been able to block out the snores and murmurs of the few dozen sleeping bodies both curled and sprawled on the bunks in the darkness, to ignore the irksome habits and attitudes of some…and to accept and even enjoy those of others. He still grumbles at the schedules and sometimes pointless tasks and lessons, but more quietly now; he’s not been completely out of his depth. Well, perhaps he has with nanny duties, though he hasn’t scared too many kids, and his quiet, brooding demeanor has even seemed…comforting to some of them. He’s more accustomed to the looming presence of the dragons now, having had to wash at least one of each color - except gold. Not that he’d be at risk of bonding to one of them…

The hunter sits on his bunk in the twilight, shirtless and in drawstring linen pants, legs folded and back against the wall. Breathing. Thinking. Why is the pattern of solid sleep ruined tonight? Perhaps he’d been foolish to believe it would last. Questions keep him awake at times - why to some of the sharding Harper lessons, why to some of the tasks, why the restrictions, why did he even accept this knot? He’s probably asked himself that every seven since doing so. The others…a matter of discipline and preparation for what may lie ahead comes Hatching day, so he’s been told by them. He wonders what it is that needs to change about him, in that case. He wonders why the eggs challenged him so, why they drew him from the moment he laid eyes on them…

Change has been pressing in at the edges of his being since he arrived here. He never thought it was something he’d have to consider. Life has always been what he’s wanted it to be, after all.

Shifting, his gaze falls on the bunk on the other side of the barracks where he knows Therynn sleeps. How she became more than just a bit of fun, more than a way to sate the needs of his body, is a mystery to him. She’s a girl just settled into being a woman, still finding herself in some ways, and he entered the picture and readily, willingly, eagerly helped her with some of that…and he found himself caught in the huntress’ snare, quite happy to remain. He could simply push her from his mind - a casual lover now bearing the same burden he does and therefore off limits, so why hold on to whatever it is they’ve discovered in one another? Yet he can’t think that way about her. Somehow she’s become more than that, and worth seeing this through for, worth being there for because it’s something she wants so very much, and he’s determined to be there beside her through it all, regardless of what happens to him…

It is not an attitude the Brennan of six months past would have carried.

So is it just because of her that he tries to make certain the white knot remains on his shoulder? He sighs, eyes shifting to a high window and the slivers of Timor and Belior high in the diamond-dusted blackness beyond. If only the answer were so simple. Some might think it noble - others, misguided - if that was the case. But things have been shifting very subtly for Brennan - the thought of remaining tied to the Weyr rather than roaming for the rest of his life, the lingering idea of becoming a guard, the growing desire for friendship and companionship, fresh and selective though it may be…and the consciousnesses within those eggs questioning him. Are you happy? What more is there to you? Have you found your fullest potential? They’re all things he’s never asked himself before, never found the need to ask himself because life has been ideal, he thinks. Free. Perhaps…carefree?

The questions haven’t left him alone. It could be that he keeps the knot because he wonders if an answer may come on the day those eggs hatch. He doesn’t like mysteries left unsolved, and so he bides his time, follows the rules, does the tasks, attends the lessons.

Perhaps he’s suddenly found the biggest mystery of all within himself.