Northeast Bowl
The northern end of the bowl can be an intimidating area, being that Fort is the largest weyr. The far north wall contains the gigantic opening to the hatching caverns, and to the west of that can be seen the sprawling ledges and carved stair cases that mark the way to the administration complex and the training grounds were candidates and weyrlings can often be found. The west cliff wall towers up, dotted here and there by darker openings that mark individual weyrs before it tapers to a point at Tooth Crag.


Autumn is settling over the weyr and the region, the chill in the air being less and less chased away by the midday sun. This afternoon is no exception. The sky is clear and the sun shines brightly, but the breeze brings with it a chill that makes it necessary for Nyalle to wear a light cloak over her usual dress as she makes her way from the center bowl towards the administration complex. Kayeth follows along behind, the fiery queen alive in this season, her wings fanning the air as she walks, rumbling in delight as she breathes in deeply. Contentment radiates off of her mind, her beachy shore chilled and frost decorating those stiff blades of grass.

The cooler air is enough to have Br'enn favoring long-sleeves again - and it makes him happy to be outside. Autumn has been his favorite time of the Turn for many reasons, and while he can't go be out in the midst of it the way he'd normally like to be, he's glad enough to share the reasons why with Tovihasuth. The little bronze is intrigued by the cooling of the air, vaning bright wings as he follows along behind Br'enn and feeling the difference in the breeze as he moves. Something about it brings brighter, more fiery colors into his mindscape as they move through the Bowl this afternoon - and then there's more fiery in the form of Kayeth doing much the same thing not too far away. Tovihasuth trumpets a greeting at his dam and goes bounding her way in a mental gust of exuberant breeze, drawing a chuckle from the hunter-Weyrling as he glances about. Sure enough, Nyalle is about as well, and he snaps off a salute as their paths come closer. "Afternoon, Weyrwoman," he greets, watching Tovihasuth reach Kayeth with a much more animated hello of his own.

Ha'ze has found a warm jacket somewhere and tails after Kainaesyth as the bronze dragon bounds into the northern bowl. During the last two months Kai has finally learned to lower his mind voice, so that it only reaches Ha'ze's mind, and not all who surround. However, the sight of his brother and mother divert his attention from whatever he had been saying to his person. « Hello! It's cold . » Ha'ze keeps his distance, but salutes Nyalle.

Kayeth dips her muzzle towards the small bronze, rumbling a fond greeting, her mind brushing against his and Kainaesyth's warmly. « Hello, Tovihasuth, Kainaesyth. » Nyalle returns the salutes with a warm and relaxed smile, inclining her hand and reaching up with both hands to pull back her hood, letting her dark braid fall free. "Good afternoon, Weyrlings. How are you both doing today? Your lifemates look well." There is pride there as she looks upon two of the three bronzes that Kayeth and Velokraeth clutched. No one can doubt it was a fine clutch, when the metallics totaled half of the colors.

"Well enough, ma'am," Br'enn answers for his own part with a small smile. Ha'ze is noted in the perhiphery and given a single nod of acknowledgment, but nothing more for now. "Just doin' a little wanderin' with Tovihasuth. He's likin' the new season. Just one more new thing to learn about." Meaning more questions, but Br'enn is becoming accustomed to that. Tovihasuth comes to a stop before Kayeth, eyes whirling bright blue. « Hello, mother! » comes amid the flutter of colorful banners streaming in the winds of his towered temples. Then there's Kainaesyth, and the bronze turns to give his brother a playful head-bump. « It is colder, » he agrees, looking back up at Kayeth. « But the sun is out! Why doesn't it make things warmer now? » he wants to know. It's important.

Kainaesyth rubs up against his brother, but doesn't stop much beyond that. Rather, he's going to keep his steps moving towards the forest he knows is just over that way. « Have you seen the trees? They're not the same colour any more. I'm going to go see them. » His flutelike voice carries over the canyon walls, but without the aid of the warm gentle breezes. Rather, his mindvoice also seems to hold a strange chill. "Kainaesyth, not without an escort still." Ha'ze's voice rings out, as the bronze seeks to move beyond their boundaries.

Nyalle steps back from Kayeth when she spreads her wings again, rumbling to the young dragons. « I will show you, » she says with eagerness in her voice, wanting to share this with them. Taking three steps back, the Senior gold springs aloft with a powerful leap and circles higher, the sun gleaming off her metallic hide and glittering with all her autumnal fire. She circles higher and then opens her mind to both young bronzes, sharing with them what she sees and what she feels. Not only do they get her sensations of flight, but they can also see the forest, set ablaze with color, over the bowl rim and stretching out for miles, mixed in with the evergreens that have not changed. Below, Nyalle watches her queen rise and then looks back to the Weyrlings. "With an escort you can go as far as the forests?"

« Alright! Can I come? » Tovihasuth asks Kainaesyth, making an eager lope after his brother and stopping at the sound of Ha'ze's voice couple with the mental equivalent from Br'enn. « Awwww… » No road trip for them! Then he rears back when Kayeth takes to the air, watching intently as she rises higher and higher and warbling happily when she shares what it's like to fly - he latches onto that strongly - and what the forests beyond look like now. « Wow! I want to see! » The desire to fly surges through him, and he beats his wings a few times, prompting a stern, "Tov! No!" from Br'enn. Still, the weyrling can't keep a grin from forming as Tovihasuth relays what's being shown him. Nyalle's words sink in, and he blinks at the Weyrwoman, dividing his focus. "I remember bein' told that. 'm gonna have to find one for sure now; he's not gonna let me be about it now."

After weeks of being told to not fly Kainaesyth's wings open wide, casting a wide shadow under them, but he doesn't attempt to reach for the sky like his bronze brother. « It is beautiful. » Kainaseyth wraps around those bright colours, pulling them in and savoring them for himself. Ha'ze smiles, just briefly, and takes his steps towards the pair, so he doesn't have to raise his voice as much to speak with them. "I didn't think as far as the forest? But just the lake. It's close enough for Kai, he can check on his plants and will get distracted."

"Are they rested?" Nyalle asks thoughtfully. "It is not /that/ much further than the lake…" She watches Kayeth circle and then the gold lands with a happy rumble. « Not yet, my dears, not yet, but I promise you some day we will all fly together. Fast and far. » She eyes the bronzes for a moment, perhaps assessing them as bronzes, as her future potential mates, and Nyalle's gaze shifts a bit before her eyes clear and she coughs. "Would you like to take them to the tunnel and let them peek out?"

Br'enn's smile widens and slants to the right as Tovihasuth turns an expectant look on his lifemate. "Tov's rested," he affirms, rolling his shoulders a little. "I'd be willin'." He casts a sidelong look at Ha'ze, a brow arched as if to ask whether or not the case is the same for the other weyrling. Tovihasuth is practically vibrating at the prospect, though he takes a moment to glance up at Kayeth again, his current vantage making it an almost upside-down thing before he rethinks it and cranes his neck around. « It can't come soon enough, » he declares, not quite with a huff, but definitely close.

Ha'ze nods at Nyalle's question. "Kainaesyth rises with the sun and usually sleeps with it too. Since the nights have been longer…" he shrugs, but keeps his worry about that fact to himself. It seemed like the others were sleeping less not more these days. There is a particular zen which creases along Kainaesyth's mind voice, the music not the gay joy of summer, but more the steady rhythms to match the Autumn day. « We will. And patience is best. »

Nyalle chuckles softly, nodding her head. "Then let's go. I don't think M'icha will mind." Look, she's DOING something! Kayeth croons happily, reaching her muzzle down to try and gently bump Tovihasuth's with hers. « It will happen and then you will be in the skies as often as you wish to be. » Her mind gently brushes against Kainaseyth's. « Wise words. Come. » And she turns, heading towards the exit.



Southwest Bowl

The dominant feature of the southern end of the bowl is the blue lake that fills the entire southern tip and the rockslide that tumbles down into its far side. It has been many, many, turns since the slide took place, but it still stands uncleared to this day. Occasionally, smaller pebbles tumble down to splash into the waters of the lake below, but the mass seems mostly stable. Sturdy fences mark the feeding pens that the dragons may choose their meals from, located against the west face. The beasthold here is minor, small cramped buildings, used mostly to maintain the herds which feed the dragons. The major beasthold is located out in the forests, just outside the Weyr. There's a sign which warns "that beasts in this location are fair game to the dragons" and that any domestic pleasure stock should be kept in the major beasthold location.

The other feature that does not go unnoticed in this bowl is the large cavernous archway. There seems to be cobble stone laid down near the archway, which causes a clatter when the wagons and trading caravans arrive. Indeed, it seems that there's a tunnel out of the bowl here, wide enough for two trader caverns to fit through and possibly a small blue dragon. To the opposite end, the great bowl stretches away far, leading to some very interesting locations.



Tovihasuth croons back at the muzzle-bump from Kayeth and gladly lopes after her, most of his newborn awkwardness gone as a rather uncanny grace infuses his movements more often than not these days. « Mine likes to use that word a lot, » he informs Kainaesyth, though he doesn't keep it from Kayeth. « I know how to be patient. I'm trying to do better at being patient at the right times, though. » Br'enn straightens his shirt a little and follows after Nyalle, glad to be able to venture even further now - and not in M'icha's company for it. "Do dragons get much passed on to 'em from their parents?" he asks, noting the liking Tovihasuth seems to be taking to the autumn weather himself. "Other 'n blood. In their likes 'n' dislikes, 'nd in their minds, is what I mean."

Kainaesyth's wings drag behind him, though not as badly as weeks prior when this same pair had made the journey. He's slowly growing into their length. He doesn't move as quickly as Tovihasuth, but instead trails behind, looking backwards to make sure that Ha'ze is actually coming along. He's calmer today, a change from his typical exuberance. Ha'ze steps beside the other, not questioning Nyalle's authority to walk them wherever she wants. Weyrwoman's word = Law. Isn't that how the weyr structure works?

"Sometimes," Nyalle answers with a smile. "But sometimes not. So far there's only been one dragon of Velokraeth's that's inherited his…looks." And thank Faranth for that. "But from what I've seen, most dragons are individuals unto themselves." She offers Ha'ze a smile, watching Kainaesyth move. The queen walks with an elegant grace, her thoughts still extending to both bronzes. « There will be plenty of time to fly, if you wait. If you don't, and you injure yourself, you might never fly. So listen to your riders. »

Tovihasuth doesn't like the idea of never getting to fly one bit. At all. Yes, Kayeth may have just got him to stop being impatient about flight for good! Well, probably not, but for a good seven at least. « I will, » the energetic little bronze assures his dam with a soft snort. « How much further? » He's still going to be impatient about seeing the trees, apparently.
Br'enn nods, casting a quick glance at Ha'ze for much the same reason Kainaesyth just did. He chuckles softly. "Velokraeth is a pretty unique-lookin' dragon," he notes, his humor cautious. Not being disrespectful, just observing! "Good blood to 'im, though, lookin' at our mates, here."

It had taken several dragon's warnings, but Kainaesyth had gotten the message finally about the whole flying thing. When Tov asks his question Kainaesyth picks up his pace a bit, bounding to walk next to his brother rather than behind as he is satisfied that Ha'ze is following along. « Can we bring some home with us? » There is hopefulness in his mindvoice, as a hint of those breezes pick up again. Ha'ze follows along, for the moment not speaking again, and listening to the conversation between weyrwoman and weyrling.

« Not much further, » Kayeth reassures the bronze, as they are indeed approaching the tunnel. It's too small for Kayeth to fit though, so the gold extends her wings. « I am going to fly over and meet you on the other side. » Then she's aloft. Nyalle smiles warmly at Br'enn, nodding. "Very, very good blood to Velokraeth, no one can deny that. He's caught three Senior Golds now. So." There's no discounting his record, or the dragons of his bloodline. It's impressive. « Bring what home with you? » the gold asks as she flies over the rim. They approach the tunnel now, and Nyalle dips her heads to the Guards on duty when they salute her from their post. "Just taking them through the tunnel and no further." It's probably unnecessary that she explain herself, but she does anyway. She gestures for the dragons and weyrlings to go first, with a smile. Beyond, the forest beckons.



Weyr Approach

The massive rock face that makes up the outer walls of Fort Weyr dominate your view amongst the small cotholds that dot the landscape. The path is well-worn and well tended, bushes and tall pine trees running right up against the road, keeping it well shaded in summer, and protected in winter.

Next to the tunnel entrance is a small Tavern, sounds of merriment facilitated by alcohol pouring out the doorway each time some one opens it.



Br'enn's eyebrows hike a little at that bit of information, his smirk rather of the impressed variety. "Three, eh? Good on 'im!" The idle thought about how Tovihasuth will do on that count in the future is quickly smothered before it can get to the little bronze, who watches wistfully as Kayeth flies off and restrains himself from fanning his own wings again, earning a pleased, "There ya go, mate," from Br'enn. Tov tilts his head at Kainaesyth, blinking. « You want to bring some of the forest home with us? » he asks, wondering if he's understanding his brother properly.

Into the tunnel Kainaesyth moves, picking up his wings so they do not drag here. His small breeze drips down into the canyon, brushing past cactuses heavy with fruit for the picking. « Yes! Do you think I could bring a tree? The training grounds are sad without one. » Ha'ze, again, simply walks in silence beside them.

Nyalle chuckles softly, nodding to Br'enn. "In Fort, recently, things have been a bit switched. Usually the Seniors last for turns - I believe Elara's reign was somewhere around 20 turns before Wiyaneth's injury forced her to step down - and the Weyrleaders have a high turnover. But in Fort, there have been three Seniors to one Weyrleader. It's odd. But hopefully we have stability now." She certainly hopes so, because if not it means something would have to happen to her or Kayeth. And she does not want that. « Trees are large. Perhaps a baby… »

Br'enn listens to Nyalle's recounting and nods thoughtfully. "Hopefully so, ma'am," he says, becoming a bit distracted by the conversation going on between the dragons and arching one brow high. "Uh…" Tovihasuth considers what Kainaesyth wants. Seriously considers, and a warm gust meaning a nod follows Kayeth's words. « Yeah… Or what about some leaves? Or a seed! Then you can watch it grow, » he says, pleased with the idea. Except he has no idea what sort of seed would be best, or how to find one.

Ha'ze reads that arched ebrow, and shrugs his shoulders slightly. "He likes plants." What else can he say? The pots had disappeared from the barracks, and Ha'ze is too standoffish to have felt the need to explain them. Kainaesyth's breeze warms under the heat of Kayeth's words. « A seed! What does a tree seed look like? Do you think they would let me plant it in the training complex? »

« What does a tree seed look like? » Kayeth echoes Kainaesyth, as she has no idea as she touches down in the road outside the weyr. It's a narrow fit but she manages with some tricky flying. « In the training complex? I do not think so. It would not survive, too many dragons. It should be planted by the lake, or in the forest. » Which stretches out before them, thick and glorious, the leaves ablaze with color. Nyalle smiles. "Perhaps he can help with Fort's farms when he's larger…"

Tovihasuth is about to pick Br'enn's brain for information about tree seeds when the view of the forest is suddenly right there. The little bronze stops and stares for a good long moment, then lets out a sudden raspy bugle, fanning his wings. « This is AMAZING! » he declares, bounding around Kainaesyth and around one of Kayeth's legs before coming to a stop again. « Does the cold make this happen? » he wants to know. Then he remembers the seed, and cranes his neck to find his lifemate. « Br'enn… » The hunter-weyrling, in the meantime, is standing and surveying the scenery, blue eyes lit by an unabashed grin. He breathes in deeply, folding his arms. "Good to get the view again," he says. "Everything out there's gettin' fat now; it's good huntin' I wish I could get out for. But I guess I've got a good reason to lay off for a Turn." Then Tovihasuth is questioning him, and the weyrling scrubs a hand over his face. "A seed?" » It'd take a little searchin', Tov. We can't go out that far yet. «

The sight of the forest has sent Ha'ze spiraling away from the conversation, his mind drifting away to other matters completely. His expression has smoothed leaving no hint of what thoughts have wrapped around him. « I don't like cold very much. » Kainaesyth's mental breezes are wistful, pulling warmth from Nyalle's and keeping them close. « Maybe Niumdreoth would help me plant it by the lake… Will we be allowed to go further soon so I can get a tree seed? » Ha'ze pulls himself finally, "They're called nuts, Kai."

Nyalle smiles, wide and warm as she watches weyrlings and riders see the forest again or for the first time. Kayeth rumbles, watching Tovihasuth bound around with an amused wuffle to the small bronze. « It does. Then the leaves will fall, and coat the ground. In spring, new leaves grow and the old ones wither and soak into the earth to begin the process anew. It is a cycle. » Nyalle smiles at Br'enn. "You miss hunting?" She looks back at the walls. "I suppose for someone used to freedom, the weyr's walls can be stifling rather than safe." For her, they've always been safe. Her eyes track to Ha'ze and she smiles. "Do you know why he loves plants so much?" Kayeth extends warmth towards Kainaesyth, enveloping him in it. « You do not? I find it refreshing but many dragons prefer warmth to cold. It will be a bit longer, Kainaesyth. There are dangers in the woods. It will probably not be until you can fly, that you will be allowed fully into the woods. »

"I do," Br'enn admits easily, "'n' I did think that about the Weyr when I first came. Had good cause t' get used to it before gettin' Searched. Now, since I've got Tov, I've got no choice but to be used to it…though I'm glad to be. Not as if I won't be able to hunt ever again. 'Sides, I gotta get Tov to understand why I do it, still." Ha'ze's comment earns a somewhat offhanded reply. "Some of 'em. The evergreens don't have nuts. Some of the leafy ones have small seeds with winged coatings t' carry em on the wind. Can't eat 'em, either," he notes, making a face. Apparently he found that out the hard way once. Tovihasuth understands the concept of the cycle, the various realms of his mind fading one into the other in quick succession for a moment along with the seasons that accompany them. « It's different, » he says of the cold, his mind settling on a high, breezy temple with towers spanned by bridges. « I like it! » At the mention of danger in the woods, the bronze calms a bit. « Dangers? Like the men mine remembers sometimes? »

"We should go." Ha'zes decision to draw away is very abrupt. Perhaps spurred by some hint of the conversation between the dragons and his desire to keep Kainaesyth ignorant for a bit longer about those same dangers. "Thank you, Weyrwoman, for walking us so far. Common Kainaesyth." He turns and begins to walk way, fairly quickly. Kainaesyth hesitates, wanting to stay and view those leaves some more and talk with his friends. But… « Thank you for coming with us! When I get a tree seed I will make sure to show you before I plant it. » The breeze wraps tightly around both of them, as the vague scent of sage punctuates the promise. Turning, with his wings dragging again Kai trots after Ha'ze.

Nyalle nods at Br'enn's explanation. "That's a good way to think of it. Ah. I'll admit I've never needed to know about tree seeds before. Crops, yes, but not trees." Kayeth rumbles curiously at Tovihasuth. « What men does yours remember? » she asks curiously. Nyalle and Kayeth both turn to watch Ha'ze and Kainaesyth leave so abruptly. "Ha'ze? Is everything okay?" Nyalle calls in concern. « What is wrong? »

The wind that whistles around Tovihasuth's towers briefly twines with those of his brother, a feeling of puzzlement to them. « Okay! See you later, Kainaesyth! » At Kayeth's question, there's a slight darkening to bright skies, a transition to a place warmer and lower where a bolder, broader tower stands alone. « The ones who tried to hurt ours before we found them, » he explains, and then he pauses. « Mine says I shouldn't talk about them. It's probably why Kainaesyth's got upset. » Not that Br'enn feels anything but mild exasperation over the fact that Ha'ze is being mercurial again. The weyrling is silent for the moment, watching Ha'ze and Kainaesyth make their retreat and giving a nearly imperceptible sigh, waiting to see if the younger man will answer the Weyrwoman.

"Yes ma'am. Just have work to do." Ha'ze's answer comes quietly back as he keeps his boots pointing outwards. With Ha'ze not wanting him to speak, a rather uncommmon tiredness comes over Kainaesyth. « All is well, I will see you again! » His breezes fall off quickly though, as his mind pulls away. « Ha'ze, could we take a nap? »

Nyalle looks concerned, but she lets Ha'ze and Kainaesyth go. Then the Senior looks back to Br'enn. "Do you know what that was about?" she asks gently. Kayeth is silent for a long moment and then rumbles softly to the remaining bronze. « Then we shouldn't talk about them. »

Br'enn reaches up to shove his fingers through his hair, giving a quiet rumble much like Tovihasuth might in reply. "I have my suspicions, ma'am, but I'm not much about Ha'ze's business. Mayhap y' might ask Kayeth? Tov probably let on a little somethin' to 'er, but I'd like to keep him from beatin' at it too much. He brings up certain things 'round Kainaesyth, 'n' those get to Ha'ze, 'n' then off he goes sometimes." The weyrling gives an indifferent shrug, though he'll allude to something if Nyalle presses him. Tovihasuth gives a mental sigh and sits still for a moment, staring at the trees. « Some of that out there looks like you, » he notes rather randomly to Kayeth, and Br'enn chuckles. "Mayhap we ought to be getting back, too, ma'am?"

Nyalle looks thoughtfully back down the tunnel where Ha'ze and his lifemate went, and she sighs softly. "I'll see to it," she murmurs. "Thank you. Yes, we probably should." « It does, » Kayeth agrees with a flick of her wings and a proud arch of her neck. « This season is my favorite. »

« It's very beautiful, » Tovihasuth remarks happily, and then he's back on his feet, giving a small croon up at Kayeth before turning around. « I guess we have to go back now, » he says, disappointment at having to leave behind their view of the autumnal rainbow coloring his tone. Then, of course, the split-second rebound. « But we should come out here again soon! » Br'enn is just as hesitant to leave, but much less demonstrative about it, taking one last, long look out over the woods before turning and gesturing for Nyalle to precede him with a sweep of his hand down the tunnel. Just a bit more of the world to add to his lifemate's mind, and another notch to mark the march of time for the weyrlings added with the incursion of autumn.


A letter arrives from Nyalle in the Weyrleader's inbox one morning. Neatly written on a piece of her personal stationary, it reads:

Weyrleader Th'ero,

I think you should speak with Ha'ze. I have seen a few things that have me concerned. On my last meeting, Tovihasuth mentioned something about men and dangers in the forest, and Ha'ze abruptly took Kainaesyth away from us and the conversation. Br'enn seems to know something about it as well, but would not elaborate as it's not his story to tell. I am concerned that Ha'ze might not be dealing with his past well. Could you look into it? You know him better than I. Thank you. -Nyalle