There are times when I am really missing home. Today is one of them. I've never realized just how big a Weyr really is. Nor just how isolated we've been. Last night, several of the candidates got hurt because of renegades. Remember how we used to play at it? It had always seemed like so much fun. Playing in the wilderness, living off the land. That maybe they were just people who didn't quite fit in it. These men were nothing at all like that. We're lucky no one died. Several people were hurt though.

I didn't tell you, and please don't tell Mother or Da, because it was so ugly. But we also saw a dead body. This was some time ago. At first I thought it was kind of neat when I heard about it. It was like an adventure, maybe we would get to fight off renegades. It would be really kinda cool. At least that's what I thought. I did get to help pull it up out of the hole that it was in. That she was in. It was a woman. I don't think it some ways it matters that she was a thief. It still was horrible. It wasn't glamorous, it wasn't even cool. It was, ugly. I nearly didn't hold in my lunch. That's how terrible it was. I never realy realized just how easily death could come to someone. Just how painful things really are. Maybe it is because I'm young. I don't know. One of the other candidates. He doesn't think I'm old enough, that I should live my life. Being a dragonrider is dangerous he says. I guess he's right. But I'm starting to think that there is danger in everything. Even the Beastcraft. There was one kid, he got his head sliced open by the hoof of an ovine. An ovine! All because it jumped to avoid being penned and he was in the wrong spot. He's okay. They patched him up and all. But I think about it, it could have been worse, people get trampled by runners all the time and you know how they've told us to watch out for the horns on the herdbeasts.

So I can't see how dragon riding can be any worse. Anything could make you dead. I won't admit it to anyone else, but to you I can. You've always understood me. I am scared. I'm scared about what might be. Or might not be. I do know though, I don't think I will go back to the Beastcraft if I don't Impress. There's a whole wide world out there. I think I might go into the Techcraft. I really want to fly. There has to be another way besides dragons. I've talked to a few people about it, and they even let me use the computer to look up information. Me! I'm nobody and they let me use it. It was really rather cool. I think you would like it. So much information to be had. Though, I think I would have to go to Landing. That's so far away. But I was told that there was someone who's been playing around with flying that doesn't involve fuel like the sleds that the ancients used.

Oh! I must tell you, I found a sled! Not one of the originals I think, but one someone had been piecing together. It doesn't look at all complete and I don't think it would run. But it is pretty cool. I sat in it and pretended I was flying all over Pern. Could you imagine our parents reactions? I think Da owuld have a fit. I dunno about mother. She might not like it either. But I think it would be cool. I think you would love flying as well. After all, you're always climbing as high into the trees as you can. I wish you were here. There is so much I would love to show you.

I met this other girl. I don't know what her name is, she really wouldn't tell me. It's kinda of weird, but I guess that's her choice. So I gave her a name. Sky Dancer. I think it was fitting. I found her up on this bridge that is way, way up in the air. You can see forever!! The wind was blowing pretty hard since there were some storms coming in and she was up on a railing with her arms spread out and leaning into the wind. I tried it as well. It was almost like flying. That's why I called her Sky Dancer. I haven't seen her again though. I think she got spooked because I was a candidate and Kyzen, I told you about him before, but I think she was freaked because he was the Weyrleaders son. Kyzen's just cool though.

I really, really do miss you. I just wish people could be. I dunno. The violence was bad, but I'mm wondering if maybe learning to use a crossbow really wouldn't be so bad. I mean. Then I could protect people. I think that might be something to really try. Maybe I'll ask Rynn, she's the hunter I was telling you about. Maybe she can teach me. I don't think I'll tell Cyrus though. He'll likely say again that I'm too young. I'm so tired of that. If I'm young enough to get myself killed, then I'm old enough to learn how to protect. That's how I see it.

I love you Bery, take care of yourself and I do hope you can talk Da into letting you come to the hatching. Oh! Can you see if maybe mother will let you send that sketch that Cousin Albin did if you? It's a really good likeness, and I'm told I should be able to use it to train my firelizard to go to you. Then we wouldn't have to wait forever for the letters to go back and forth.

Love Skye