'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.

Beastcraft Hall - Large Pasture

Several wide open, well grassed fields can be seen in this area. One contains mostly runners, and in the spring or summer, foals might be seen playing or running around. Another field contains bovines and ovines, those beasts contently munching away at the at the lush grass. Each pasture in separated from the other by a thick hedge.


It's a lovely day in Keroon with blue skies and light, fluffy clouds drifting slowly by overhead. In the pastures of the beastcraft, supple green grasses ripple in a gentle breeze. It's a perfect day for riding, which is what Edani is doing, partly to celebrate and partly to assess the mare he's chosen from the stock in the hopes of purchasing her. She's a beauty with her dappled bay coat the color of burnished copper in the sun, black legs, mane and tail, muzzle and ears, even if a little on the small side. He's currently got her in an easy lope, making circles and figure eights in the shorter grassed level area beside the gate.

Kimmila isn't the only one out for a ride, it seems. Kimmila and Th'ero are out too. Kimm is riding a bay roan mare along the fence, keeping her at a trot while she practices not being bounced out of the saddle. The mare has a smooth gait, but Kimmila is far too used to riding Varmiroth, who is probably lurking over There somewhere, not within sight of the runners. He's polite like that. Th'ero is mounted on a blue-black stallion with the name of Legend, and as the pair of riders move further into the pasture, Kimmila lifts a hand to wave towards Edani.

Th'ero is, indeed, on horseback and looking a touch uncomfortable. No fault of the mount he rides, a dark blue-black stallion who suits the sombre bronzerider all too well. His gait is smooth, his rider's awkwardness stemming from one who is far too used to riding a dragon and because he keeps glancing over his shoulder towards said pale bronze, though Velokraeth seems more content to lounge in the sun then pay attention to the activities. He keeps at a respectable distance from Kimmila's mare and likewise returns the wave, though it's slight and not as visible.

Concentrating on the mare's gait and response, the arrival of dragonriders from overhead has gone unnoticed by Edani. He does notice other runner riders entering the paddock, though, go figure. He's giving the runners they're riding a keen assessment and sees the waves, reaching a finger to tip the brim of his hat to them then recognizes one belatedly, "Weyrleader," he says gravely across the distance that separates them. Though seeing him here is unexpected, he doesn't show it. His mare passes Kimmila's and he slows her just then. "Miss." It's a courteous return to her wave.

Kimmila's nose wrinkles at his 'miss', and she shakes her head with a little grin. "Kimm-" she begins, turning her mare around so she can continue talking. But the poor beast stumbles, her slightly turned in hooves getting a bit tangled up in each other when she tries to cross one over the other. She stumbles but doesn't go down, and even though it's a bit of a jolt for Kimmila, she stays mounted as well. Muttering a startled curse, she pulls Ameera to a stop and swings off to dismount, crouching down by the mare's front hoof. "She clipped herself pretty good," she murmurs, peering at the mare's ankle, which is quickly seeping red with blood from the cut. Ameera flicks her ears backwards and wickers, lifting her weight off the hoof until just the point is brushing the ground.

"Journeyman," Th'ero replies formally over the distance between them, likely reining in his mount in order to give Edani a lingering and curious look. When really, the Weyrleader gives no explanation as to why he is so far from Fort and in the Hall, of all places. On runnerback. Maybe it's a strange dream? "Fine runner there. One of yours or one of the local stock?" he asks, simply for polite conversation. No ride by greetings, it seems. It could be an excuse too, for a break. Catching Kimmila's mare's stumble from the corner of his eye, Th'ero is instantly tensed though relieved the bluerider doesn't tumble from the saddle. "How bad?" But it's obvious how bad, just from that sight of red. Grimacing, the Weyrleader dismounts and leads the stallion some ways away before tying him. Then he's striding to Kimmila's side and crouching down somewhat to take a closer look at the injury, frowning heavily and then glancing up to Edani. His look says it all, both questioning and apologetic. Help? Or input at least. "She had been so sound with her footing though…" he murmurs, likely low enough only for the bluerider to hear.

"Careful!" Edani's hand reaches out in a vain impulse to check the mare's stumble; he's not within arm's length and so the reflex action does little good. The woman gets an approving look for keeping her seat at the unexpected movement under her but he's then watching the gait of the woman's mount with keen interest for the few remaining steps she takes before she is pulled up. He too pulls his mount up to watch hers with concern. Dark eyes flick questioningly around then, to see who else has arrived; that singular 'Journeyman' of Th'ero's not quite registering because, let's face it, this has been a long time in coming. There's no one else around, it's himself that is being addressed and it sinks in after a moment with a pleased smile tugging at his mouth when it does. "Not mine… yet," he answers regarding the mare. So local stock. But the concern for the beast next to him is distracting him from giving his full attention to social situations. He too dismounts, squatting to see more closely, oblivious to the murmuring between the pair. "Looks like she overstepped with her right hindfoot and clipped her hock. See there?" He points to the back of her left foreleg where the white fascia can be seen, "The suspensory ligament looks intact but her hoof cut through the skin completely." So maybe not a problem with those front hooves.

Kimmila glances to Th'ero when he approaches, and nods. "She has been," the bluerider murmurs. Then help has arrived, and Kimmila defers to the Journeyman Beastcrafter. "Ahh. Okay." If she doesn't understand she's masking it well, as she nods. "So what does she need? Stitches? A wrap?" Kimm's fingers are twitching, wanting to wrap it to stop the flow of blood, but not quite positive that's the best course of action. So she just glances at the beastcrafter once more.

Social discussions seem to get pushed to the back for now, Edani's replies not purposely ignored and merely delayed as Th'ero's focus turns to Ameera and Kimmila as well. He seems to watch the bluerider for a curiously long time before it darts to the journeyman Beastcrafter again. He frowns when the injury is explained, most of the terms soaring right up and over the Weyrleader's head. Straightening, he steps back a little, giving Edani some space but allowing Kimmila to work with him if need be. After all, the mare is her mount. "Will she be sound after this?" he adds in after she peppers the poor craftsman with her questions.

"She'll be alright," he says soothingly to the woman. Edani is familiar enough with the empathy a beast's owner will have for an animal in distress. He knows the blood flow is superficial, but the bright red blood is disturbing to people used to healthy and whole animals as their norm. "Well, both actually," he says matter-of-factlywhile meeting Kimmila's eyes with calm brown, seeking to put her at ease. "Just a few though, but before that it should be cleaned to prevent infection. You'll want to lead her to the barn-" he gestures to the not too far distance, gesturing her to go ahead while adding, "She'll limp getting there, but it's better for her there - she'll relax more once inside where her instincts to watch for predators and fight or flee will calm." He stands and waits for her, planning on pacing beside her and simply nods to the Weyrleader, "Aye. It's more a matter of collecting her more so she doesn't overextend." He shoots an apologetic glance at Kimmila for the subtle critique of her riding skills.

Kimmila glances at Edani, then Th'ero, and then the woman sighs. "I haven't had her for more than a few sevendays," she admits with a wince, pushing to her feet and rubbing the mare's neck. "Glad to hear she'll be okay. I'm not used to seeing an animal bleed unless I've shot them myself." Glancing to the barn she nods, and her eyes flick to where Varmiroth has emerged, but before the blue can approach any further, a silent command from his rider has him settling down again. Wouldn't do anyone any good to spook Ameera at this stage. The bluerider shakes her head at Edani's apologetic look. "How do I do that? I haven't ridden since I was a kid so…I'm really rusty."

"Don't be hard on yourself, Kimmila." Th'ero murmurs towards the bluerider and the look he gives her then is unmistakable. There's far more between them as simply Weyrleader and Wingrider and while he doesn't make physical contact to prove it, the concerned look he gives her seems genuine and far deeper than that emotion alone. "I'm glad to hear the mare will recover and that… it's not an issue of her conformation that is the cause." he says in a low and drawling tone to Edani, quieting while the Journeyman gives his orders to Kimmila. With Ameera in safe hands now, the Weyrleader glances between the two of them. "I should bring my mount back then, while you two sort this out." And he glances up, shielding his eyes slightly as he glances back towards the barns. "I'll meet you both once he is settled." And it seems to come out both as a question and not, but regardless Th'ero is nodding briskly and backing away to walk purposely back to where he had tied the blue-black stallion. Riding is over for the day, it seems.

Edani shoots Kimmila a puzzled look, then a slow smile grows on his mouth, "Ah… one…step…at…a…time?" He's teasing, assuming she is really referring to the stitching and wrapping rather than asking about leading her mount slowly to the barn. "I'll stitch her, unless-" He tilts his head, considering her and making sure what he sees isn't shock or numbed distress in her demeanor, "-you'd rather do it? In which case, I'll be happy to guide you?" Meanwhile he takes a step toward the barn, leading his own mount, beckoning her to join him. Shallow or not, the wound needs treatment before insects make it worse. Whether he notes the look that passes between the Weyrleader and bluerider is unclear from his facial expression, which remains pleasantly professional. He simply nods affably to the man; his main concern being the wounded mare and the rider, who, while controlled, must be quite concerned for her mare.

Kimmila glances back at Th'ero, her smile appreciative. She watches him go, and then turns to look at Edani, briefly baffled. "What? I have no idea how to put in stitches. I meant how do I keep her from…what'd you say…overextending." That's what she was asking. She follows after easily enough, a hand absently rubbing Ameera's neck but otherwise looking rather unconcerned about the whole situation. Irritated at herself, yes, but otherwise quite calm. If Edani says the mare will be fine, Kimm will believe that. She's not one to panic, that much is clear. She does look to Varmiroth once more, the blue trying to crawl forward on his belly to get closer, but another look from his rider has him stopping and huffing, still a few lengths away.

The Weyrleader remains absent for the duration of their progress back towards the barns, set as he is on leading the stallion back to his proper stall and to properly untack and brush down the runner as is proper to do. It will likely be several minutes then that pass before Th'ero will rejoin them, hunting them down wherever they may be by that point. If he notices Varmiroth's creeping encroachment on the Hall, he says nothing and likely only flashing the blue a quick, darting look. Velokraeth is still quite a distance away, lounging in the clearing set especially for dragonriders.

Oh that! Edani's concern is for the immediate so he's taken her literally. "Well, it's easier to show than tell," he says as they walk, his attention still on her mare's foreleg. "But basically you want to get her to take shorter, higher steps by using a lighter hand on the bit and relaxing your seat and calves while moving her in a circle and having someone on the ground telling you when she's taking those shorter strides. You will learn the correct feeling by the seat of your pants." He's giving the basics of a fine art - which he's certainly no expert in - as they enter the barn. "Go ahead and cross tie her," he says gesturing to the rings on either side of the aisle, "And I'll get the supplies." He's oblivious to the blue dragon, as is the bay mare he's leading. Perhaps a mount used to dragons is something he'd specifically asked for. She merely whuffs in that direction as they enter the barn and placidly accepts the turnout in her stall with saddle still in place. It's really only a matter of moments before the beastcrafter returns with redwort, gloves, gauze, a threaded needle and some ointment.

Kimmila cross ties the mare, glancing around to see if Th'ero has returned yet. And once Ameera is secure, the bluerider is removing her saddle and blanket, and swapping out her bridle for a halter. She is comfortable doing those tasks at least. "Hmm. Well, perhaps you can show me sometime," she muses, as simply hearing the description is quite a bit different than seeing and doing. "Since I imagine it'll take her a little while to heal?"

Th'ero does make his appearance just as Kimmila is finishing with the last of removing the tack from the mare and Edani returns with medical supplies in tow. The Weyrleader approaches slowly, giving a nod to both but remaining respectfully silent for now, curious perhaps to oversee the Journeyman's work at least. He could be waiting too, to feel out the conversation between the two before interjecting himself into it again. It's by far not an awkward silence, but rather a comfortable one, his posture relaxed despite him coming to stand well enough out of the way with his arms crossing loosely over his chest.

While Kimmila does that, Edani sponges the leg deftly with water, rinsing any dust, dirt or insects away, then offers her the kit to hold for him and points her to where he would like her to stand with it - at the mare's mid-flank on her injured side. He runs a hand down the backside of her leg along the tendon and the mare lifts her foot just as she has been trained to do. Bracing a hip on the mare's shoulder, he allows her to lean on him while he dons gloves then twitches the bottle of redwort from the kit to squirt on her wound, blotting gently with gauze, fans it to dry briefly then daubs a bit of numbweed on it. The stitching is done within a matter of several swift moves, each knotted and clipped quickly, a dab of some tarry black ointment to cover, then wrapped in thick cotton and wound snugly with gauze and tape. All the while he's talking either to the mare in a calm, soothing tone about nonsense like toasty-crunchy grain, sweet green grass and handsome flashy stallions or chatting to Kimmila about riding. "And so really I know the basics, but you'd want one of the riding masters to really give you the fine points," he finishes as he smoothes the bandages, releases the mare's foreleg and straightens giving her a pat on the shoulder and a word of praise, "What a fine patient you are."

Kimmila does as she's told (for once), standing by and aiding whenever possible. She watches Edani work, clearly impressed by the ease at which he does his job. She is mostly quiet while he works, occasionally staring off into space as if committing his comments to memory, or perhaps she's just daydreaming. Once it's over, she pats Ameera's shoulder and smiles at Edani, offering him the kit back. And there's a new addition nestled in there, among the redwort and sutures and bits of gauze. A neatly coiled, pristinely white Candidate knot. "You're posted at Fort, right?" she asks, her lips curving upwards into an almost conspiratorial smile.

Th'ero can be a silent observer as well, keenly interested in the process and not the least bit queasy looking even when Edani sets the stitches. He doesn't mean to eavesdrop, but he does, likely taking some of the comments made to memory as well. When Kimmila goes forwards with the little surprise, the Weyrleader keeps his reply mute, biting his tongue. He knows the Journeyman is posted in Fort, having crossed paths a few times with him. But he leaves that reply for him to answer.

"Give her 2 weeks to heal while we watch for infection," Edani's saying. "Then keep it wrapped while riding-" he almost misses that white knot amongst all the white gauze. Almost but not quite. The sight of it brings his litany screeching to a halt. Eyes widen fractionally and then lift questioningly to Kimmila's. "Yes?" He is posted at Fort. It's said a touch warily for all that he knows what such a knot means - could mean to him, even. Within the dark brown lie shadows, the type of not daring to hope again, for he's stood once before.

Kimmila smiles at him, nodding. "I thought so, not that it matters. Varmiroth is…quite taken with you," she admits. "He is very pleased with the way you carry yourself, and how you handle the creatures around you." Including people? "And he would like to know if you would do him the honor of being his very first search for a Fort clutch." Outside, there's a distant warble from a hopeful blue who can not approach for fear of startling the runners.

Edani stares at that knot, head bowed for several long minutes. And though he listens with a sort of numb detachment to the rider speak, he is honored and… unsure, for the conflicting sentiments chasing one another across his face readily give that away. At long last he lifts his head, seeking not Kimmila's eyes but the Weyrleader's. "As I understand it, I'd be at the Weyr's disposal and the Weyr's needs come first. But…" he shifts to meet the bluerider's eyes, his gaze firm and steady, "My first priority is and always will be to find my lost kin - when I can get the time to search for them." Back to the Weyrleader, there's almost a question in his direct look, "I won't pretend to deny that it would be far easier for me to do that with my own dragon at my disposal. But would your dragon-" this includes Kimmila now, "still wish to have me knowing where my sentiments lie?" Alas, this is no starry-eyed youngun wishing to flit about the clouds just for flying’s sake and the legend of being a rider. "And would I be able to continue my craft in time?" He's been around both Western and fort long enough to know that Weyrlinghood, should he impress, would sideline that for quite awhile.

Kimmila meets his gaze, and her green eyes flick to Th'ero and back again. Then she nods. "Varmiroth's offer stands," she says quietly, having some sympathy for the man's priorities, which she did not know about until now. "And yes, you would be. After Weyrlinghood. Fort has a wing dedicated to crafter riders, even, who wish to continue."

Th'ero meets Edani's look without hesitation, his features set neutrally and a touch reserved as always. If he's surpirsed by the Journeyman's response to Kimmila's offer of Search and the rank of Candidate for Fort's clutch, he is hiding it for now. "You are correct in that sense. However," And he pauses, as if considering his answer quite carefully before resuming. "Matters of family are always given some leeway, if you are required to leave at times." Which means he understands, to a degree to what Edani is trying to explain. He glances then to Kimmila, when the Journeyman directly asks her if Varmiroth's offer still stands and once the confirmation is given from the bluerider, the Weyrleader nods his head to add his own agreement. "Kimmila is correct as well. Should you Impress, you do have the option of continuing on as a Craftrider in Simurgh. You do not have to waylay your studies entire either as a Candidate, though it may be tough to balance the time. I know of very few who could manage it, but so long as you are not shirking your duties, I see no harm."

Edani loves his craft - this much is clear when the set of his shoulders eases and some of the darkness lifts from his brown gaze as he nods gravely to Kimmila, a half-smile tugging at his mouth. "Then I am honored and I accept." This is not a decision to take lightly and he knows it. It could potentially be life-changing in many ways. Ways he most likely, in his intent focus in finding his sisters, has not begun to delve. His gaze swings Th'ero's way then, expectant and open to whichever way the man answers. He'll accept it and deal patiently as he has since the floods swept through his life. He pays keen attention, absorbs the answer and mulls not only the information, but whether he can pay the price. "I wouldn't want to shortchange Fort in any way. I think it will be a careful walk to avoid that," says the young man thoughtfully, adding with the barest of smiles, "should I impress." If not, well. He'll be taking very good care of their cows!

So he'll be important to the weyr either way! Kimmila smiles, offering him her hand to shake. "Then welcome to Candidacy. You want some time to gather your things or whatnot? Get things settled with the craft? I can go talk to them if you'd rather I make the formal request for you." Following weyr/craft protocol and all that good stuff. "Then we can go? Unless you'd rather return to Fort later this evening, with the watchdragon?" So many options!

Th'ero only graciously nods his head towards Edani, the vaguest of smiles quirking the corners of his mouth upwards in response. "Of course and I didn't mean to imply that." he says in a low tone, before adding in on Kimmila's remarks. "Welcome and congratulations." It's murmured and sounds a little rehearsed, but the Weyrleader does seem pleased enough that the Journeyman has accepted. So many options indeed and he'll slip in a few more too, "There is no rush. So long as once you do return to Fort and are settled in the barracks, we'll need you to report to the Headwoman briefly." Odd request but not entirely without logic. Fort could just be very strict with their record keeping. Right?

"Sh—!" The oath nearly makes it out of Edani’s lips before he bites it back. There is that little detail, isn't there? He's just sat for his journeyman exams all morning, passed them with the result now fluttering proudly from his right shoulder. How couldhe have forgotten?! "I, uh, have nothing to collect here, but the permission of my craftmaster," he says to Kimmila with dry chagrin. The craftmaster may still say no, after all. "I'll speak to him and come back with you either way," he says with a quiet fatalism. "Of course you didn't imply that, and thank you Sir," the beastcrafter says with his smile, somewhat dazed by now, growing. Barracks - Residents Dorm - whichever, doesn't seem to faze him. It's the sort of life he's become accustomed to. Forgotten in all the recent events is that mare he'd come to try out and the stablemaster, lingering on the perimeter steps forward inquiringly with his clipboard. So there's that little form to fill out and the mare to arrange transport for. Seeing the Master is a little more sticky but when he emerges, he's got the proverbial pink slip - and an outright grin - for Kimmila. The signed form reads: ‘Released for Search, may continue studies as able.’

Kimmila returns that grin, having seen her mare settled comfortably back into her usual stall. Then she'll lead Edani out to Varmiroth, so the blue can properly (and quite happily!) greet him. Waiting for Th'ero to be ready as well, both blue and bronze depart with Edani, back to Fort where they can get the Candidate settled.

And that blue will get all of Edani's gratitude as well as the pats and scritches he deserves. Even if the young man might secretly wonder just what the blue really saw in him, the beastcrafter will nevertheless pin that knot where it belongs and assure the blue he will make him proud.