Fort Weyr - Lake Shore
This lake shares many features common to mountain lakes — a brilliant blue jewel nestled amongst the rocks. The waters are crystal clear, and the north shore slopes gently before abruptly falling away into the depths. This lake does have one significant differentiating feature, however. The south shore of the lake is a tumbled mass of rubble, rock and earth of an ancient rockslide smoothed only by the elements in the intervening years. This rubble, as well as the rather sheer east and west faces, makes for the north shore to be the only one easily accessible.


Okay, so it took them just a tiny bit longer getting home from Xanadu than expected, but there's Zeruth's bellow sounding loud and clear over the skies of Fort in greeting to the watchrider and pretty much everyone within earshot as he echoes his rider's enthusiasm to be home. The bronze wheels and drops through the sky, aiming straight for the lake with great speed - apparent winter be damned.

Dragons don't feel cold like their rider's do so what's a good icy dip in the semi-frozen lake? Velokraeth isn't swimming but he's lounging on one of the broader ledges and quite warm given the three — possibly four greens he's sweet-talked, coaxed and charmed to cuddle up with him but he'll answer Zeruth's bellowing with a ringing bugle of his own. « So you return at last! » As for Th'ero? He's bundled up against the cold but his movement is slow and awkward even though the ground is hardly covered with snow and what little there is has been cleared. What's slowing him down are the crutches under his arms and the covered cast binding his one leg. He shouldn't be out so far but… a man can only be cooped up for so long.

«Our purpose there was done.» Is Zeruth's answer as he slows in order to land not far from the shore, his sire, and Velo's harem. «We belong here now.» From his back drops S'ai, tugging goggles from his face and dropping the hood of his riding jacket. Kid's grown some whiskers, it seems, since he last walked in Fort. "I am /so glad/ to be home. I mean, fun times and all, but I've had enough sand to last me a lifetime." There's a pause then as he squints to the Weyrleader. "…what happened?"

« And we're glad to have you return! Shame you missed the fun though. » Oh the "fun" indeed! Velokraeth chuffs, almost as though he's chuckling, from his little vantage point with his 'harem' of greens. « Why not come up here, take a green or two for warmth and we can play some catch up on events. » Down below on the lake shore, Th'ero comes to a stop as he watches S'ai dismount and welcomes the bronzerider with a faint but warm smile. "I heard the good news! Good spread of colours for a first clutch. Welcome back," he murmurs and then blinks. What's happened? His expression twists to a grim one. "Where would you like me to start?" No, he's not joking around. Kind of hard to, when he's on crutches (and probably shouldn't be out as far as the lake — did he escape?).

«We heard.» Zeruth remarks, sounding rather displeased by that. «It is most unfortunate we were unable to be here but we are here now.» And so he takes the elder bronze up on that offer, uttering a low and welcoming croon to the green ladies, politely thanking them for their company as he puffs up just a bit. S'ai can only shake his head after the dragon but leaves him to be. "It was, actually, bronze first too! E'tan's a good kid, he'll make a great rider." He heads on closer to Th'ero so they can talk at a reasonable volume. "I got the basics through all the gossip channels, what with the fires and Renegades, but the past few days I've been jumping around. I had to take my sister back to Monaco, make sure she was settled in okay, and… ya know. That kind of stuff."

Velokraeth snorts, « There is still work to be done. Always is. » the pale bronze admits with a weary sounding sigh. No rest for the wicked! Two of the greens with him will chirp and whuffle, delighted to go entertain Zeruth for awhile (and maybe with a little flattering from Velokraeth). Th'ero's learned long ago to just… ignore most of his bronze's behaviours. "Good luck," he murmurs, shifting his weight to his good leg and side as S'ai approaches. "I do understand. All's well…?" He means concerning S'ai's sister and out of polite respect. Talk of the fires and Renegades brings only another grim look to the Weyrleader's features. "With Ustrr now dead and his band captured and awaiting trial, we hope this is an end to it. I'm sure Wingleader Abigail will have plenty more to debrief you with but we've still the concern over the fires themselves…"

Kimmila wanders down towards the lake, and spying Th'ero and S'ai, alters direction slightly so she can approach. "S'ai!" she calls with a wide grin, "welcome back! How was Xanadu?" She then eyes Th'ero. "Do you have clearance to be out here?" At least she doesn't add 'young man' to the end of that, right?

S'ai gives a nod of his head in regards to his sister, "She'll be fine, thanks for asking. She's tough. No one takes it well, though." Mention of the Renegades brings an answering frown from S'ai, grim but with a furrow to his brow that sets his expressions in a fierce 'good' expression. "Let's hope so. I plan to talk to her as soon as possible." Though further chatting is pauses as she hears as familiar voice and his grin returns and turns towards the bluerider. "Kimmila! Hey! It was a good time, good experience, but I'm glad to be back." As she turns to eye Th'ero, he can only slant the Weyrleader a covert grimace. Someone's in trouble, sounds like.

"I'd be worried if they did take it well," Th'ero admits with a crooked smirk and a nod of his head in return. "Glad to hear she'll be alright." The Weyrleader seems unsurprised by the next reaction and the resulting answer either. "Good! It'll be nice to have you back into the fold," And back to work, no doubt, but he's not going to say it out loud. Kimmila's arrival provides a distraction and S'ai wouldn't be far off from his assumption. In fact, Th'ero's starting to look like the kid who got his hand caught in the cookie jar. "I can go where I want," he grumbles. Which means: no, no he doesn't have clearance. Healers said "to the south bowl". Not "through it and into the lake shore". "And Velokraeth had told me that Zeruth and S'ai had returned. I came to greet them." Yeah, sure, that's it.

Kimmila eyes her weyrmate for a long, uncomfortable moment. But just when it seems she's going to grab him by the ear and haul him back to the infirmary, instead she points at a rock. "At least sit down." Then she's all smiles for S'ai. "Glad it went well but yeah, very glad to have you home. We need all the help we can get right now, with the fire still burning."

"Totally, just flew in.. now, actually." S'ai says to her with a wide grin. "Figured we'd rinse the sand and dust off and get to work getting smoky, sounds like. Abigail around? I'll need to catch up with her and see where the extra hands and wings are needed. I'll be glad to get to do something. Eggs are awesome but sitting there watching them harden is /so boring/. I was pacing knowing you all were having all this trouble."

Th'ero just keeps his chin up and tries his best to keep some of his dignity intact under that uncomfortable staring from Kimmila. He'll look down at the rock she points to and smirks. "That one is too tiny," he remarks dryly. Yeah, he's being a bit of an ass and knows she meant the larger one a little further over and slowly he will shift to settle himself on it. "It'd be appreciated if you could join them out at the site of the fire but understandable too if you wished to catch up first. They rotate shifts and if I recall the roster right, the next one isn't due for a few candlemarks yet." So S'ai's got time! Th'ero chuckles dryly, "No one ever said sand sitting was exciting…"

Kimmila smirks, looking pleased when Th'ero settles, and then she nods. "Looks horrible to me, stuck there forever…ugh. I mean it's great your dragon had babies, but…yeah, I'm glad Varmiroth can never win a gold." She smiles. "Relax a bit, take some time, and I think Th'ero's right, next shift doesn't start for a while. So how's Xanadu doing? I haven't been in ages. Not since Thea died…"

"Plenty of time to find Abby and get back in on the job." S'ai says with a satisfied nod. "And a quick dinner… breakfast.." He squints skyward, trying to see the position of the sun. "Xanadu is doing good from what I saw, seems a bit quiet but I guess folks are busy. Nice and warm there and everything was in bloom. Oh! Your sister says hi by the way." This said over to Th'ero with a chuckle, "But they treated me well, absolutely no complaints."

"So long as it's a good meal, does it matter which?" Th'ero chuckles again as he looks up at S'ai and tries not to be bothered by the fact he's the only one sitting down. Stupid broken leg! There's a slight wince when Kimmila brings up Thea but he otherwise holds his tongue. At least until S'ai brings up Kiena. "Forgot it would be summer in Xanadu and—- you saw Kiena?" And survived?

Kimmila nods. "Right. Enjoy this calm while you can, S'ai," she advises with a small smirk. Then she laughs. "Anything is quiet compared to Fort. If they had no renegades and no fires, then…yeah, it'd be quiet."

"Nope! Food is food." S'ai says cheerfully. "I don't much care what meal, long as it's tasty. Which is probably a reason they're glad to be rid of me. I had nothing else to do but wander and eat, really. Gonna get fat if this keeps happening." Mention of Kiena brings a chuckle from the younger bronzerider, "Yeup, we chatted a few times when we ran into one another."

Th'ero quirks a brow, "Could they not have allowed you to do a few sweeps or join their Search and Rescue Wing?" he asks curiously before shaking his head and giving Kimmila a sidelong look. "Would we want it quiet?" he muses with a grim sort of smirk and then he focuses back on S'ai. "Well… good for you for surviving both those encounters. It's been awhile since I've seen my sister…" And maybe he's going to change that — when he can fly again!

Kimmila laughs. "Quiet? No. Quiet/er/? Maybe. I'm tired." There's another chuckle. "Really? Huh. I'd have thought they'd put you to work. Which reminds me, Th'ero, V'ric is here now…so." Put him to work.

"Oh, probably, but things seemed really quiet." S'ai says with a faint shrug of his shoulders. "We actually ended up Searching out several candidates and keeping an eye on them, help keep 'em busy. I never realized how … kind of good Zeruth was at this all. It's not a bronze thing. He said he could see the purpose of a candidate. Got me, but, he picked out a handful of 'em. Then he usually minded the eggs. Kairoikyriath usually didn't want to be around, so he usually was the one on the sands." Mention of V'ric brings a lopsided grin to the young man. "Ah, the brownrider? Zeruth said a bunch of the dragons were gossiping about that."

"Sometimes a bronze can have good intuition on Search," Th'ero admits with a knowing crooked smile to S'ai. Wasn't it Velokraeth who snared him? You're welcome. "How many did Zeruth Search? And… odd. Usually golds are maternal — aren't they?" Fort's seem to be! In spades. "Maybe you should sit too then Kimmila," he drawls and while he doesn't grin, it's implied. Where would she sit? His lap? How improper! "So? Are you saying I should send him to firefight?" Th'ero chuckles and then nods, "Zeruth wasn't wrong. Rhenesath rose not long ago and Loxiath caught her. We've Kouzevelth on the sands too with Tovihasuth as sire. Iaverulth…" Never rose but was kicked out.

Kimmila looks a bit surprised. "A queen not interested in her eggs? That's strange…" She then looks down at Th'ero and…sticks her tongue out at him. "Shut up. And I don't know. Depends on his brown, but if he's got the time might as well give him something to do, right? If he wants something to do."

"I heard about that too." S'ai says as the exiled queen is brought up, a faint flicker of regret but a tone of 'what's to be done?'. "Mmm, true on Search though. Four of 'em total, from there in Xanadu since he wouldn't go far. Best I could figure is she, and Innes, aren't fans of being restrained. Zeruth didn't mind one bit. He was quite focused on his work so I wasn't going to burst his bubble. They all hatched perfect so nothing wrong about it."

Th'ero looks perplexed at Kimmila but it's hard to tell if it's genuine or if he's pulling her leg again. "What? You said you were tired…" he mutters and then snorts softly. "Fair enough. I'll speak to him then and see if he'd like to pick up some shifts." But it's not something he'll force. As for Jajen and her stupidity, Th'ero only grimaces and nods to S'ai. Figures he'd have heard of that too. Ahh, gossip! "Four! A good number. And I suppose all golds are different." There's a faint shrug there. Not much can be done and S'ai hit the mark. They all hatched perfect!

Kimmila whistles softly. "Four is a very good number. How many of them impressed?"

S'ai crosses his arms as if strictly for the purpose of drumming and counting out with taps of a finger to armtop. "Kaitro, Ka'ro now, who Impressed a blue. Two girls didn't Impress, but another did - a brown. So, half. Not too bad at all and there's always a chance the others will at another clutch. Big guy may have a knack, who knows. I guess we'll see as time goes on. This may have all been a fluke!"

Th'ero's brows lift in a rather impressed (no pun intended) manner. "Two out of four are good stats. Usually how it goes, right Kimmila? Velokraeth's Searched many and I think just about half have Impressed. You're one," he flicks his hand idly to S'ai. "And… shards, I don't even think I can remember them all. I know Dtirae was. C'rus, R'yal… Lana." The list is probably greater but the Weyrleader stops there. "Can never really guess when they'll decide to Search someone. And maybe it's a fluke! Just as much as winning a gold flight on the first time, hmm?" Smirking, Th'ero will start to arrange his crutches and prepare to stand. He's starting to get cold and has a slow, shuffling walk back to the Infirmary.

Kimmila nods. "Half isn't bad at all, considering how many get Searched for each clutch. I can't even remember how many Varmiroth has grabbed…" She trails off when Th'ero makes to stand, moving over to pretend to help him while really staying out of his way. "Glad you're back, S'ai," she says genuinely to the young bronzerider. "Let us know if you need anything.

"Heh, if the flight was a fluke then this whole clutch probably has some hidden issues." S'ai says with a laugh as he sees the Weyrleader rising. "Anyway, I should go find Abigail and prep to help the next shift. Zer, come on pal, we got work to do." The bronze, having been lounging near his sire and sharing the company of several greens, looks towards his rider with a soft snort. Grudgingly though he does get up, crooning flattering farewells to his company (Velo excluded, who gets a more respectful rumble) and moves over towards his rider. "Course I will, Kimmila. Glad to be home."

Th'ero appreciates Kimmila's subtlety in helping him to his feet so his pride doesn't suffer too much. With the crutches firmly under his arms and weight properly balanced, he will stay close to his weyrmate's side but dip his head respectfully to S'ai. "Or perhaps Zeruth was simply lucky and those he's sired will be just fine." Not many can brag that their bronze has sired clutches! "We won't keep you. It was good to see you, S'ai. Welcome home and clear skies!" And back to work! Th'ero will turn then and begin to hobble away, slow going as he's still not entirely used to those crutches.