Who K'zre, R'sner
What R'sner and K'zre meet for the first time.
When Winter
Where K'zre's old room, Fort Weyr

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Fort Weyr - Kezresan's Room
A bland but perfectly acceptable series of rooms. The colors are neutral; cream or beige with accents in a dark-stained wood.

Upon entry, the room opens up into a modest but perfectly acceptable living space that holds all of the essential items. A small seating arrangement consisting of loveseat and two arm chairs provides a comfortable place to relax. Along the left wall of the room, a combination desk and shelving unit has been carved into the stone; a wooden chair pushed beneath. These shelves hold the only items that could be considered 'decorative', though hold mostly medical texts and personal knick-knacks.

To the right, through an arched opening, is the modest bedroom. A wardrobe unit sits against one wall, a small bed along the other with a nightstand and lamp beside it. A wooden door offers privacy for a modest half-bath.


Authors Note: This is a work in progress and is not finished. Read, but know that it will likely update/change/etc

The minute R’sner laid eyes on K’zre, he knew without a doubt that this was his son. Not because of any resemblance, though he couldn’t deny that there was definitely a striking resemblance between this young, brown-haired greenrider and his younger self. But because he took one look at those red-rimmed eyes and tear-stained cheeks and felt a swell of protectiveness so powerful he almost growled.

“What did he do?”

The first words out of his mouth to his kid, and they’re in firm accusation of the bronzerider that just left him here. At least he didn’t say ‘I’ll kill him’, which was the first thing that crossed his mind.

When K’zre’s response was to glance to the wall and look like he might start crying all over again, it took all of R’sner’s self-control not to turn right around and hunt down that sorry excuse for a dragonrider and wring his neck. Or beat him senseless. Or throw him Between. None of these were acceptable, or legal. And all of them would require R’sner to leave the room, something he didn’t want to do.

So rather than hunt down the bronzerider, Res bites back his righteous anger, and waits. And waits. And waits. Until he began to wonder if K’zre was going to say anything at all. Began to wonder if he should leave, before he made things worse than he had apparently already made them. While the weyrling stood staring at the wall, a myriad of micro expressions flitting across his face, R’sner decided to try a different approach.

“Your mother never told me about you.”

The statement at least earned him a glance. And eventually, a reply.

“If she had…”

But the sentence trails into nothing, and after a few moments of pause, R’sner decides that K’zre does not intend to finish it. So, he’ll do it for him.

“If she had, I don’t know what I would have done,” he admits. “I’d like to think that I would have been there. That I would have been a good father.”

But the truth is that R’sner doesn’t know if he would have been. He’d never thought about it before, and he won’t lie and say that he would have been someone he wasn’t. But the answer seems to satisfy the weyrling, a shallow nod at least showing that he accepted the answer.

“She… she always told me that… when I asked about… about you…” the words are a low murmur, somewhat lacking in real inflection, though R’sner suspected that was an attempt to keep emotion at bay, and not because K’zre was indifferent to the discussion.

“She never really told me anything. I knew that… I knew that you were a dragonrider. That… you rode a green. That I was conceived out of a mating flight…”

When the pauses come R’sner waits, patient as K’zre searches for the words he wants, and patient when he changes his mind about how he wants to say something. Despite not lingering on the conversation in the training field, he does recall F’inn’s warnings and does his best not to put pressure on him to speak. It’s not difficult. He feels no irritation for it, no annoyance at the amount of time it takes for K’zre to manage to speak.

“It’s not uncommon,” he notes, though there’s sympathy in his voice. “A lot of weyrbred children are conceived in mating flights. A lot of them don’t know one, or either, of their parents.” But just because it’s common, does not make it comfortable. Certainly not for the ones that result from it. “She was probably trying to protect you.”

Or perhaps not, given the sudden, sour expression that crosses the weyrlings face.

“Maybe.” But there’s a bitterness there, an anger that simmers beneath the surface and makes R’sner wonder just what sort of mother K’zre had. And the desire to wring her neck suddenly rises up. He’s known the kid for two minutes, and he already wants to beat his weyrmate and chew out his mother.

This was going splendidly.

“She doesn’t… she doesn’t approve…,” continues K’zre, a wrinkle creasing across his forehead as he figures out how to explain or speak what is on his mind. “Of… well…”

And there’s a hand gesture, a little flick of fingers between R’sner and K’zre to indicate ‘them’ that, at first, Res takes to mean ‘men’ only after a moment of consideration he realizes the actual implication is “Men who prefer other men.”

A nod of K’zre’s head confirms it. An audible exhale, but at least R’sner keeps his frustration from manifesting any further.

“I see.”

That would explain it. Judging by the kid’s age, R’sner would have already been weyrmate and his preferences known. Even to a foreign brownrider from Telgar.

“She doesn’t know about me,” comes in quiet confession. “She doesn’t know about… about F’inn.”

A frown. A moment of consideration and R’sner wonders, “Do you want her to?”

The next pause is lengthier, and there are enough conflicting emotions running across the weyrling’s face that R’sner is almost immediately sorry that he asked. Especially when there’s a well of tears, and then an angry expression, and Res becomes certain that speaking about the bronzerider is not a good idea just yet. For either of them. He still hasn’t ruled out bodily injury.

“There’s nothing wrong with you,” he declares, feeling that perhaps this is a better approach. “Nothing. It’s perfectly normal.”

“I know that,” declares K’zre, sounding rather firm on the matter.

But even so, there’s a rush of tears and enough sounds of upset that R’sner has to fight the urge to go and hold him. He’s pretty sure K’zre is not ready for that. There’s just something about the way he stands, facing him but also slightly inclined away. Bracing. As if he might turn and run, or fight back, if approached. And it tells the weyrlingmaster pretty clearly that any sort of contact would be unwelcome and have the opposite effect than what R’sner would be going for.

He maintains his distance, arms stubbornly left hanging at his side despite the urge to cross them, so that he doesn’t appear closed off or defensive in return. And he waits, as patiently as possible, until K’zre has composed himself once again.

“Yasminath is proddy,” comes blurting out. A moment later, he follows it with. “I’m not usually… like this.”

“It’s alright.” And R’sner means it entirely. “That’s pretty normal, too.”

“Is it?” There’s relief in that tone of voice, and enough wistful hopefulness that it breaks his heart.

“Yes. She’s very close. And it’s your first time. Emotions… they tend to run high. But it’s alright. You’ll feel better after she’s gone up.”

“I’m not ready for that. What if… what if she… what if someone /else/…”

A twitch of an eyebrow. A touch of a frown. A moment of pause, and R’sner finishes that sentence with, “someone else wins?”

A nod of K’zre’s head.

“You want F’inn and Nymionth to win.” It’s not a question, and so R’sner doesn’t wait for a reply but jumps right into the next question.

“Have you spoken to him about it?”

Another nod.

“And what did he say?”

A long pause. Another myriad of expressions that renews that desire to hunt down the bronzerider and beat him senseless. He’s not sure what it is that F’inn has done, but it has clearly upset K’zre. Which just serves to upset R’sner. Only R’sner doesn’t want to cry. He wants to hurt something.

“He… he said he’d be there. That he wouldn’t let anyone touch me.”

Well. That at least earns the kid half a point. So long as it’s not an empty promise.

“But…”

“But nothing,” decides R’sner, interjecting before the protests can be made. “Do you love him?”

“Yes.”

“Does he love you?”

“Yes…”

“Then he’ll be there.” And if not, then R’sner will definitely be hunting him down and making good on the promise to kick his ass.

“I suppose I don’t,” he admits at long last. “But if he loves you, and if he means to keep his promise, then he will be there. My weyrmate rides a green. I’ve made the same promise to him that F’inn made to you.”

That gets a look, a long and critical assessment that R’sner meets with a long but patient look of his own. There’s no challenge in that regard, and he can see the wheels turning in K’zre’s head as he sorts through this information and seems to think how best to voice his opinion, or his questions, about it.

“Your weyrmate is very young.”

It wasn’t really what R’sner was expecting, but he takes it in stride.

“He is.”

“Younger than me?”

“Possibly.”

“I’m twenty-four.”

“Then yes, he’s younger than you.”

It should feel awkward, talking about this. But K’zre was speaking in facts, with an assessing gaze rather than the judgmental expression R’sner might have anticipated.

(TBC)


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