Fort Weyr - Hatching Sands
The sands. The most prominant and possibly most important area for a weyr, this section of Fort is no exception to the rule. Completely enclosed from the outside elements by a high rounded ceiling, the golden white sand glitters under the streams of sunlight that manage to make their way in from the upper openings. Ledges abound in the upper areas of the dome, perfect for riders and their dragons to watch the action happening on the ground. At the back of the sands there appears to be a raised section of sand, built over generations by the golds who have laid clutches here, a couch of sorts for basking on while protecting their eggs. Slightly to one side of that, a small nook has been carved for the weyrwoman to take respite from the heat of the cavern.


The hour is late, very late, in Fort Weyr. Earlier in the evening saw the onset of a late and unusual ice storm, fairly mild and short lived but muttered about for it's unseasonal arrival. Now though the skies are clear, a few harmless clouds drifting across the full moons, their light casting an almost ethereal light over the grounds below and setting the thin patches of ice here and there to gleaming eerily. It's rather peaceful, this silence, with all the Weyr tucked away save for the unfortunate bunch slated for late night patrols or duties. But it's not to last, as Zuvaleyuth makes her abrupt arrival to the sands with Velokraeth swiftly joining her even before he's finished relaying the news to his rider and then out to others. By then, the news spreads like wildfire and the Weyr is roused from it's slumber as the message is relayed. It takes Th'ero longer to arrive, having woken from a deep sleep and even then the Weyrleader takes his time apparently, though with what it's hard to say. When he comes striding out onto the sands and towards the makeshift quarters Dtirae has created for herself, he looks dishevelled and hurriedly dressed. "Figures as much that she'd choose the night with the two full moons at their apex and strange weather. We'll have folks muttering about signs and ill timing for sevendays now." he grumbles once he's within range of the Weyrwoman's hearing, frowning heavily as he steps up onto the structure. Provided, of course, that she doesn't shoo him out immediately. By then though his attentions have drifted towards the sands and he lapses into a tense silence.

It's no surprise that the Weyrwoman is well rested, being that she's spent more than a sevenday on the Sands without the eggs there, in her quarters made for the very purpose of an extended stay and never taking her eyes off the eggs for two long. Paranoia or precaution. It's hard to say. Dtirae stands outside of the living quarters and is watching Zuvaleyuth as the gold begins to prep the sands for the arrival of her eggs. Th'ero is given a quick look and eyes roll upwards. "Signs of what? That they've lost their minds? Shells. Superstitions or whatnot. They ain't anything to worry about from 'signs'."

Zuvaleyuth snorts as well, though whether from agreement with her rider or the fact that the first set of eggs to grace the sand follow shortly after the sand has been shifted to her is hard to determine.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ A Galaxy Way Over There Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The infinite fabric of space stretches black and deep over the curved shell of this small egg. Speckled flecks of distant star light seem streaked, as if the viewer is moving closer and closer to the egg at very fast speeds. Drawn in, there are sudden flashes of color when the light hits the shell just right, illusions of red and blue crossing and drawing away again. A hazy aura of blue circles the egg's apex, shimmering down like thin veils of gossamer fabric.
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Sound of Magic Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Small, beige and oblong, this egg would probably fail to make much of an impression if it weren't for the huge splash of color that settles on its exact center - a smooth oval of purplish blue that's almost perfect in its symmetry. A tiny rounded rectangle of the same color sprouts from one of the curving sides, while a line of dark holes march vertically down the center of the indigo backdrop. Spirals of silvery white seem to swirl outwards from the central blob of purple, the lines blurring into a mini cyclone of creams, tans and whites. Miniscule flecks of green, brown and pure white seem to be caught in the spiralling eddies of wind, as though leaves, motes of light and other debris were trapped within. It's even possible to see the vague impressions of shapes within the seemingly random streaks of color that surround the indigo centerpiece - the shape of a galloping runner, the curve of a fishing rod and the serene outline of a face with closed eyes. Who knows what other mysteries this egg may hold?
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Th'ero keeps his comments to himself for now over Dtirae's behavior or the fact that she had camped out on the sands for so long prior to Zuvaleyuth's clutching, though he does turn his head a little to glance sidelong towards her. He's probably leaning towards precaution or inexperience perhaps. The Weyrleader clears his throat slightly, trying not to fidget uncomfortably as he does when out in the wide expanse of the sands. He's pointedly not looking towards the galleries. So many watchful eyes. "Perhaps," he drawls in reply, smirking and wanting to say more only to silence himself when the gold finally settles to lay the first two of the clutch. Then his attention is focused wholly on that, a subtle nod given as if in approval. Velokraeth hums his own respects, lingering not far off from Zuvaleyuth and stepping in only on her requests. Otherwise the pale bronze simply waits, oversized and misshapen head keeping firm watch on her, rumbling low from time to time and the tip of his tail twitching restlessly.

Zuvaleyuth gives a moment for the eggs to be viewed before she is moving the sand carefully around each one. If one didn't know better, it would seem as if the gold was counting how many grains of sand were around. Abruptly, she stops and moves to another spot, but well within range of the two first eggs. It seems she is taking no chances in spreading them out amongst the whole cavern.
Dtirae is shooting Th'ero a brief look before she shakes her head. "I swear, she'd take a week if she had her way." A gesture towards the first two eggs and then the next as the gold takes her time situating the pair.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Like An Illusion Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Oddly shaped, this egg appears as if it were two eggs small placed over the other before forming into one odd blob. The shell of the egg appears to gleam in the light, any angle in which it is viewed, the gleam of light against the shell reflects. Like glass, it appears to reflect the image of what stands before it or, behind it. The sands in which it rests appear to be within it, settling into the curves where the two meet. Pale yellows and dull beige appear to trickle from the top of the egg, down into the base where it never seems to change in amount despite how often the grains appear to fall. An illusion of the mind, perhaps as there is no true movement at all. Or is there?
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Ruled by Superstition and the Sword Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Dreary would be one word to describe this egg, with a good portion of its shell marred by neutral hues of umber, tan and sepia browns that come together in mixed overlapping and subtle patterns much like dirt and stone to form what appears like a broad cliffside palisade that curves gradually upwards to a massive and towering, well fortified castle. Cool grays and ash make their appearance then, lending stark contrast to outline more of the illusion, broken cleanly by pale hues of beige and hints of orange and yellow as though lit from the first rays of the morning sun from one side. It lends a classic halved look, dark and cold and warmth and light evenly upon the stone-like structure and complimented further by the pastel oranges and orange-yellow and pinks that fade upwards to a greyish purple then deep blue like a pre-dawn sky behind it. Beneath it, a swath of steel and cyan blue stretches out, a glimmer of ocean or the sea far below and capped by a small streak of taupe that tapers just enough to create the impression of some faraway and distant mountains. It lends a rather secluded feeling to the castle, perched and almost floating on the very edge of the cliff, a long standing sentinel of stone overlooking the sea below and the lands above.
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Velokraeth hums a little louder as another two are laid on the sands, followed by a low chuff that sounds almost amused as he follows her movements with a slow turn of his head. Biding his time, likely, until he can approach closer for his own inspection and not daring to tread forwards now and disrupt the gold. Then they really will be here the entire sevenday. Th'ero grimaces, scrubbing tiredly at his face before his hand is disappearing under his arm as they fold across his chest. "Let's hope not," he replies dryly. "Though she's already up to four and we've been here but moments."

"Because 'm naggin' her to hurry up. She's sayin' how she needs time, but…" The Weyrwoman shrugs idly and watches as Zuvaleyuth cares over the two just laid and there's a gesture from the woman, urging the gold to continue.
Zuvaleyuth gives Dtirae a look, chuffing as she lingers at the two most recently, carefully covering them up before she moves on. Another space is cleared and the gold's hide ripples just a moment before three eggs are settled carefully upon the sands.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Touch The Sky Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Tall, long, or stretched this egg appears as a long oval and oddly sits standing upright and proud. Pale blue settles along the tip of the egg, gentle puffs of white speckled unevenly along the blues . The other half of the eggs tip shifts into a dimgray-blue, obviously tainted by something unseen. Beneath the pale blue, triangular shaped vibrant brown shoots upward, proud, breaking into the horizon and teasing blue with a gentle touch. Supported by shades of red, colored like blood both fresh and old, the blue and triangular browns taunt the pebbled white that rests at the base of the egg, looming above those who would stand at the base. To the dimgray-blue, rectangular shapes of bright metallic grey and silvers stab forth without the gentle touch of the triangular browns. Silver and grays taunt and threaten, blocking out most of what was once pale blue. Pebbles of white now are a deep, unwelcoming black beneath the looming beams of silver and gray, threatening those that stand beneath it.
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Bring Order to Chaos Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Starting a bright pristine white at the top, the egg's smooth shell fades to a rich blue that gradually darkens into a rich and dark steel blue that pools along the broad lower half, the end disappearing and buried under the sands. Seemingly etched into the surface are curved lines of light blue that arch up either side of the egg in rounded shapes, giving the appearance of stained glass though lacking the dazzling array of colors. The design frames the shell, fanning out and up with the tips gracefully curved as though to form the mirror image of two outstretched stylized feathered wings reaching for the tip. In the center, where the shell is primarily white rests two ochre hued circles, the smaller nestled between the larger and from the center of the smallest various sharp edged lines stretch out, much like a sun burst, to overlap the other and the design of the wings beneath it. Each seems equally spaced, linear and almost mathematical despite the artistic flare, with the points being shortest on top and the rest extending lower and the longest set as 'center' as one can be on a curved shell.
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Heart of Eternity Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Open, empty darkness edges the curved horizons of this average ovoid. The depths of space stretch eternally in all directions, but not empty by any sense. Filled with life and promise it is etched upon the surface of this shell in the bright spiral arms of a galaxy that glitters with countless points of colored light. It is a slowly swirling mass of stars that counts ages in spans nearly beyond imagining, certainly beyond our own mortal lives. Driving the engine of this great mass, laying at the very heart of the galaxy is a single point hidden behind the brightness of the surrounding stars. One might think it must be the biggest star which shines brightest to drive such an engine, but the harder one looks the more elusive that central point. It is instead as if there is an empty nothingness. Something you can't quite put your finger on, or focus your eyes to see. A singularity point where normal rules no longer apply, where the very fabric of space may be torn and time itself cease in the forever.
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Th'ero turns to glance back at Dtirae, a frown creasing his features. "Are you sure that's wise?" he asks firmly, giving her a long look before a deep rumble from Velokraeth has him glancing sharply back to where Zuvaleyuth has settled herself. Just in time to witness the next three eggs and he takes a slow intake of breath. "Seven so far," he remarks, biting back his concern and treading on slightly safer grounds.

"Yes. She'll be fine. She can fuss with 'em once they're all settled." Dtirae folds her arms firmly across her chest, giving the Weyrleader another look in return. "Ten. Again, 'm sure. She likes being consistent." Then she pauses and a frown settles into her features as she watches the gold move dutifully away from the eggs.
Zuvaelyuth again remains within range of the other seven eggs, making a full circle, it seems as she prepares another space. No fanfare follows this one as a single egg is settled upon the sands. She dotes on this one a little longer than the rest, straightening it to stand mostly upright.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Fractured Under Pressure Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Is this egg already cracking?! Oh no! Someone get a dragonhealer! Oh. Wait. Never mind. But the panic is understandable, when one takes a look at this egg. The rather bland shell of this oval egg is crisscrossed with unmistakable fractures, dark in color with a thin band of internal red. But it's all in the perception, as the shell is intact and smooth to the touch, though perhaps a bit warmer than it should be. Is it sick? Should someone get that dragonhealer after all? What if it's ill? What if there's something wrong with it?! What if it doesn't hatch in time and what if it hatches too early then what's going to happen?!
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Th'ero nods his head slowly in agreement, "So it seems. Which is a good thing. We can at least know what to expect." Because the Weyrleader really does not like being surprised. Of course, that'd be right around the time that the unusual egg is clutched and he starts a little at first, concern etching it's way onto his features. Jinx? Velokraeth moves slowly, crooning low and sweet to Zuvaleyuth as he creeps over so carefully closer to the egg she's doting on. The bronze makes his own inspection of it and then chuffs again, as amused sounding as a dragon can be outwardly before he's slinking away again to the sidelines. It must bode good news, as Th'ero exhales heavily, some of the tension leaving his shoulders though he watches the gold hawkishly now.

"Well, hopin' it isn't /exactly/ the same." Dtirae mutters under her breath and then attention is focusing on the egg that looks damaged. Lips are pressed into a thin line and the woman looks ready to spring forward to check herself. But, Velokraeth is on it and when he moves away, tension melts from the goldrider's frame. She doesn't rush her lifemate, this time.
Zuvaleuth lingers at that one egg in particular a moment longer before she's covering this one completely with sand. No one else gets to see it. Whether from shame or in protection is anyone's guess. And then, she moves on, pointedly giving the previous egg a little more space in the circle. Another space is dug and two more eggs are deposited onto the sands. She does not seem so inclined as to continue and the circle is completed.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Walk the Broken Walls Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Greens and grays mingle in blocky sections upon this egg, each striving to gain dominance, and neither seeming to succeed. Patches of gray - some darker, some lighter - lay together, like stones built upwards in a once great structure, creeping upwards towards the narrow end of the egg, the general shape of a tower stretching above a lower wall. And yet, despite the strength of the stone, the rich greens of new vegetation seem to be gaining traction, peeking from between sections of gray, leafy shapes flowing over the walls, and threatening to tear down the tower. The variation in green hues is wide, from darker jungle green in the shadows, to a pale yellow-green, as the rays of sunlight dance downwards.
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Roads Not Required Egg ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Murky swaths of gray and deep blue circle over the surface of this squat egg like a sky of turbulent storm clouds. Blobs of deep iron hues roil together in an angry mass, the colors blurred together as though moving at high speeds. Streaks of silver slice across the dreary hues in sleeting patches, while a forked tongue of brightest white traces down one side of the egg in a jagged slash of brightness. Patches of blurred forest green and dirt brown spread over the bottom of the shell like a wind-swept stand of trees, the earthy colors interspersed with patches of smooth black. As subdued and dark as the colors are, it's fairly easy to spot the one feature that sticks out like a sore thumb - twin parallel trails of flickering fire leap in an ascending spiral across the backdrop of gray, the paths blazing hotly in the wake of some invisible force before fading away into the blackness.
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Th'ero doesn't have time to reply to Dtirae, not with Zuvaleyuth burying the one egg and then moving off to circle for the next. He simply shakes his head, making a quiet mental note to speak with her later. Now is not the time and the Weyrleader goes back to observing the next two to grace the sands. Velokraeth has resumed his watch as well, waiting patiently and proudly from his vantage point. When it seems as though the gold has finished, he makes a quick count and then smirks. "Ten. Just like you assumed it would be. Unless she is simply resting?" And he casts a questioning look towards Dtirae, hiding his surprise well enough that the clutching went so swiftly and smoothly, with only that slight hiccup.

"Can't ya just say I /knew/?" Dtirae smirks at the Weyrleader, "she's done. Goin' ta keep a watch on that one. You want ta get back ta bed?" It's a mild question before she considers the galleries briefly. "Be sure ta post two guards at the entrance…" Shoulders roll and the goldriders strides forward, to have a closer look at the eggs, herself.

Th'ero smirks right back at Dtirae and keeps stubbornly quiet, not giving her the satisfaction of a reply though his eyes flash more with amusement then annoyance. The Weyrleader figures she'll take it in stride and only shakes his head again, "As much as I'd love to, I need to get to the living caverns and be sure they're not overdoing it in the kitchens. Shardin' awkward hour but I doubt that will keep folks for seeking out some celebration and feasting." At her request, he does frown and looks ready to protest her order only to relent. Another bone to pick at another time. "I will notify Captain Breshir then to accommodate that request." They're going to run out of guards at this rate! Watching as Dtirae strides off towards the eggs, Th'ero turns to stride back off the sands at a brisk pace without looking back. Velokraeth remains though and the pale bronze makes his own approach, hovering a little closer to Zuvaleyuth as he does.


'The World of Pern(tm)' and 'The Dragonriders of Pern(r)' are copyright to Anne McCaffrey (c) l967, 2000. This is a recorded online session, by permission of the author but generated on PernWorld MUSH for the benefit of people unable to attend.