Fort Weyr - Feeding Grounds
Milling herdbeasts dot this lightly grassy section of the southern end of the bowl. Fences keep them neatly secured on all sides, even extending into the lake, allowing the beasts ample drinking water without granting them an escape. Dragons young and old come here to hunt on a fairly regular basis, though not all come at once of course. From here you can easily make out the entirety of the Weyr's lake as it spreads out south and southwest to the tumbled rubble of the far shore, while the rest of the bowl lies beyond the fences to the southeast, east and northeast.

It's the crack of dawn, and folks are just starting to stir across Fort Weyr when Rhenesath's claxon call blares out from her ledge - a warning of what's to come as she bugles to the rising sun, then leaps from her ledge to glide gracefully to the pens. There's no time wasted as she sets about a beast, sinking teeth into its neck, draining its blood to stoke the furnace of her flame-hot mind.

Patient as stones Kainaesyth has waited, not pushy like some, for the glow about Rhenesath to run its natural course. When that call sounds the wandering bronze rejoices with the heavy perfume of the desert, winds rushing through desert sage and lifting up the stubby leaves that fall naturally in its power. Green tendrils shine in the morning light as he alights at the pens, stretching out towards the gold his sense of joy at the moment. A herdbeast is taken for himself, there is no shame in taking in that which is needed to be powerful. There's a story there- Kai'll probably get to it some day.

Heat rises in Rhenesath's thoughts, her hearth-fire stoked into a lustful inferno - and yet still with its typical warmth; there's no hostility in this mother hen's mind. She challenges those bronzes and browns who surround her, cluck-clucking as she snares a second beast to drain it of its life, using it to fuel the life one lucky suitor will help her create. Then, with little more warning other than the whipping outwards of her wings, Rhenesath rises, a powerful downsweep carrying her brown-gold form up into the lightening sky.

It's at that point that Thys arrives, looking tired and wrapped hastily in a dressing gown, with boots jammed on her feet and left unlaced. After watching her lifemate rise, she begins making her way around to the guest weyrs, though she pauses just outside, looking up to try and trace the path of her dragon.

Kainaesyth does not fight nor jockey with the others. As his sails open he rises into the air, entreaty in his thoughts. He does not so much chase as he does dance, long and languid in the air as he invites the gold to come closer to him. Others push and fight against the other, aiming for the golden creature, desires tangible and sharp within. Kainaesyth is outside of all of this, patient as the tortoise in the race .

Given little enough time to put on his boots and scramble out, Ha'ze is not totally put together. Despite the chill his shirt is unbuttoned and ties to boots simply shoved in rather than secured. He manages to keep his pace steady as he approaches the ground weyrs, giving those who also begin to gather. He's silent as he comes, settling himself by the doorway, but not within. "At least she chose a good morning for his." His tone is deep, careful, precise, showing little of the dragon placed strain.

Up, up and up she leads them, Rhenesath's flock carried to higher heights on the morning's thermals as she leads them on a merry chase, both encouraging and challenging at the same time. Keep up, chase faster, try harder - but you can't catch me! She croons her greeting to Rukbat, taking a turn towards the sun as she lets the freedom of flight take her, and her followers, where it will, dipping up and down in the chill morning breeze.

"I'm beginning to think she'll always choose early morning, good or bad," Thys replies absently to Ha'ze, perhaps not even recognising that it's him as she looks towards Rukbat, shielding her eyes with her hand as a makeshift visor. Then she drops her gaze, tugging her dressing gown around her more tightly. "Ha'ze." Ah yes, she's seen him now. Both hands slip into her pockets, and she leans up against the wall of the guest weyr's entrance, waiting now until it's time to go inside.

Two browns make a fuss, scrabbling at one another, each causing enough fuss to cause them to lose momentum and fall from the race. As the flight continues more fall out, till only bronzes and one stubborn brown remain chasing. Throughout Kainaesyth preserves his strength, keeping up, but staying low. The challenge is met with the rush of river, the power within which will carve solid stone given enough time.

"How are you holdin' up?" Ha'ze's eyes are skyward now, tracing the sight of dragons in flight, attempting to watch their dizzying pathways. Kainesyth's calm infuses the rider. Peace has been made with this aspect of rider life, and he waits. The only visible note of the strain is the way his arms cross on his chest, tightly, as if he is preventing himself from taking any further action.

Thys looks at Ha'ze, with a soft smile. "I'm not nervous this time," she says quietly. Her gaze starts to go a little hazy, a sign that she's slipping more into her lifemate's mind as the flight draws to its close. "She's flying far. It'll be a good… good clutch…" Thys closes her eyes, teeth sunk into her bottom lip in concentration.

Rhenesath is indeed flying far, but her stamina is limited, even if it outlasts that of her would-be suitors, and she starts to slow. She dips lower, inviting those males still in the race to give it one last push, to give her their all, before she tucks in her wings and dives amongst them.

That invitation is met, held, and acted upon. Kainaesyth joins Rhenesath in her downward spiral, for the first time breaking into the pack and sweeping away that last brown. He is apologetic in his thoughts, but there is a sense of finality in his breezes, a sense that what must be must be, and today it would be the start of something new. He reaches for Rehenesath, tail seeking to twine and wings wrap around, his last gentle entrty seeking for her to come and join him, he has a tale which begins, « Once upon a time…»

Kainesyth shift in focus brings a frown to Ha'ze's face, searching out for the pack that now enfolds his lifemate. Almost able to control it he steps away from the wall, his eyes falling to take in the woman before him, dark eyes searching for when those eyes open. A hand reaches out, an echo of Kainaesyth's invitation, not pushing, but hoping still she will take his.

"… the inevitable happened." Is that Thys finishing Kainaesyth's sentence, or is she just saying it out of pure coincidence? Either way, the young goldrider's eyes open, though she's not entirely focused on what's happening down here. "You," she says, glancing at Ha'ze, her voice calm, save for a hint of something akin to knowing. She's not surprised in the slightest as she reaches out to brush her fingers against his.

Rhenesath is ensnared by Kainaesyth, diving right into his grasp and twining neck and tail eagerly with his. He has a story to tell, and she's the main character - he's not walking away empty-pawed this time, for sure.

"Us." As Kainaesyth twines about his golden queen Ha'ze steps forward and laces his fingers into his, other hand reaching around to pull Thys closer. As gentle as Kainaesyth is in the air, Ha'ze is on the ground. For despite the burning rush of flight and desire, Kainaesyth has won by being simply himself, and Ha'ze revels in that complete freedom. Strong arms lift Thys so he can swing her the rest of the way into the weyr, away from the eyes of others, to an end that perhaps, a little bit, he had not quite dared to hope for.

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