Ista Weyr - Corral
Acres upon acres of grassy plain make up this expanse of pasture stretching out almost as far as the eye can see. It sits half in and half out of the bowl itself, kept lush and fertile by the volcanic soil below. There is a break in the seemingly endless line of fencing around the corral, every hundred feet or so, to allow access to those in charge of tending to the area's varied stock. The nutrient-rich grasses are kept trimmed for the most part by the many grazing animals, the odor of green growing things and manure wafting subtly outwards to scent the air long before it comes into view. Fed by pipes from a set of underground tunnels, a pond more than a dragonlength wide lies toward the western end, and keeps the livestock hydrated. There's a man-made drainage system in place to prevent it from stagnating, so that the supply is always fresh and crisp. A stream has been cut across the plateau, and down to the beach below, allowing the water to escape in a small waterfall, its spray colored often with dancing rainbows beneath Rukbat's light.
Some space has been set aside near one corner, the area cleared and the ground packed hard. It seems there's some ongoing construction on a little building, the workmanship clearly not mastercraft, with tools and spare boards stacked nearby, along with the occasional bucket of paint or brush.


Kershaw is leaning against the railing, a hammer and bucket of nails is situated at his feet as he stares out at the beasts in the Corral. He seems to be lost in thought though signs of his labor's can be seen at the far corner of the corral fence where piles of lumber along with other odds and ends required to build a new stables. He turns at the sound of someone entering the area and gives a bow as the new comer arrives, "Good day to you, Ista's duty to you and yours."

While it hasn't been his first visit to Ista and unlikely to be his last, Th'ero has never really ventured out to this part of the Weyr, though on this particular day the Weyrleader seems struck by a fancy for wandering. And so wandering he is, seemingly aimless as he strides into the corrals, scanning the area curiously and noticing the construction with idle interest. It's the greeting that catches him by surprise and Th'ero turns his head slightly towards Kershaw, a slight smile curving at the corners of his mouth. "Good day to you as well." He replies as his brows knit together in a slightly thoughtful way and a quick glance is given to a shoulder knot confirms rank. "Fort's duty to Ista. Seems like a fair bit of construction work going on."

Kershaw nods his head, "Yes it was decided that the previous location for the stables wasn't suitable so it was demolished and the new one is being built where you see the pile of lumber over there. We're hoping to have it done in time to receive the new shipment of runners that were bought on various trips to hold, hall and weyrs." He smiles in remembrance of the trips they've taken to build up their stock, "It was decided that we build up our stock since we lost so many to the illness that killed so many."

"Ah. That is quite the formidable project." Th'ero muses, taking a few more strides forwards to get a better view of the chosen site. The Weyrleader folds his arms across his chest then, adjusting the jacket he has slung over one of his arms. With it being the end of winter in Fort, Ista must seem so warm to him. When Kershaw mentions the shipments, there's a nod from the bronzerider but it's the mention of illness that has him glancing back at the stablehand sharply. "Illness? Affecting the stock here or…?" And there's a pause as Th'ero mulls over his thoughts, no doubt trying to place a time. This obviously seems like news to the new Weyrleader. "Has it run its course?"

Kershaw slowly nods his head, "Yes its run its course, we lost most of our stock while beastcrafters argued about it cause….sorry shouldn't be saying that, some folks seem to think that they were spending more time discussing what caused the illness than curing it, my dad amongst those that felt not enough was done to stop the deaths among the stock." A soft sigh escapes his lips as he recalls his father coming home from having to deal with the illness and the other beastcrafters.."Anyroad we're in the process of building up a strong stock of runners with the hope of having a really good breeding stock and eventually maybe some really good racing runners."

Th'ero's smile vanishes as his mouth draws down into a thin line and there is a sympathetic look given to Kershaw, though perhaps not directly. "I'm sorry that Ista has had such hardships recently. I'll have to check with Fort's Beastcrafters then to be sure no symptoms arise." But then his smile returns, though faintly and the Weyrleader turns so that he more or less faces the stablehand, while the construction site and work carries on behind him. "Good to hear then that things are mending well. Have you been in Ista long then?"

"Not really no, I left home to travel and spent a few turns on the Leaping Shipfish traveling up and down the coasts transporting goods, and tried my hand at fishing for a bit and found that the work was non stop, and the chances of injury high." Kershaw pauses as he recalls the trips taken aboard the Leaping Shipfish and the people and lands discovered and compared it to his early life at Ista Hold and now at Ista Weyr "I have to say that for the most part my experiences have been really good, my early childhood at the Hold learning from my dad, the traveling and meeting of new people and the time here at the weyr. I don't think I'd change a thing in my life so far, at least not up to this point."

"Seems like you have lived a fairly active life so far, compared to most." Th'ero admits with a dry chuckle as Kershaw shares his past. The Weyrleader turns his head away to glance out over the corrals, looking distracted for a moment before side glancing back to the stablehand. "And you were right about the fishing. It's hard work with a lot that can go wrong." There's a bit of a smirk from the bronzerider at some inner thought, though eventually he manages another smile. Kershaw is given another long, thoughtful look and suddenly the Weyrleader is chuckling again. "I don't think I've caught your name…?" he asks, though he seems to sense some form of recognition in the stablehand.

Red slowly creeps onto his face as he realizes his mis-step, "My apologies, I'm Kershaw stablehand here at Ista originally from Ista Hold and the Leaping Shipfish." A quiet sigh is barely heard escaping his lips as he gives his head a shake at his forgetfulness, "You'd think I was a youngster whose not learned his manners the way I was carrying on, again my apologies for the omission weyrleader." Yes he spotted the knot and recognized both rank and origins. "My dad would have tanned my hide for being so forgetful…"

Once the name is offered, a silent bell must ring somewhere in Th'ero's head because he's suddenly much more alert now and quite focused on the stablehand. Though he stifles the grin from Kershaws reply, his amusement still shows in his tone. "No apologies needed. You greeted me just fine and your manners have been solid. You've given no offence." The Weyrleader points out with another dry chuckle, though he frowns a little when Kershaw mentions his father's possible punishment. Another smirk and he's suddenly rubbing a hand up along the back of your neck. "Well, what your father doesn't know can't hurt, right?" Th'ero muses, giving a shake of his head before clearing his throat and straightening his shoulders. "To be honest, I'm here on formal duty. Came to see if Ista had any former candidates to spare…" He pauses there, to let the hint sink in, watching Kershaw's reaction carefully. "I'm not wrong in assuming you were one?"

Kershaw stops dead still for a moment before slowly nodding his head, "Yes I was a candidate for the last hatching here at Ista, and before at Western left on the sands both times. I admit to being less than a very happy person after each stand but had a talk with an old rider who set me straight on things, now I take them for what they were life experiences that helped me grow as a person and let me realize that not everyone gets a chance to stand for a clutch let alone two so I should feel privileged for the opportunities I was given." He looks at Th'ero and smiles, "So I suppose you could call me a 'spare' candidate amongst other things."

Th'ero shifts his weight a little as Kershaw confirms his question, head tilting to the side as he gives the stablehand another curious look over before shaking his head again. "I wouldn't quite put it so harshly." Even if it's technically the truth, else why is the Weyrleader digging around other Weyrs? "But that older rider was right. It's a good life experience and not many can say they've ever stood for one clutch, let alone two." There's a pause then as Th'ero pauses to scrub thoughtfully at his jaw before he continues on. "Would you accept to Stand then again? For Fort's current clutch?" And there it is and while the Weyrleader formally extends the offer, he's reaching into his jacket pocket for the tell-tale knot that will clinch the deal, should the stablehand wish to accept.

Kershaw doesn't say a word for a moment or two as he considers the offer to stand for Fort's clutch but he already knows what his answer will be for better or not, "I'd be honored to stand for Fort's clutch Weyrleader, can't have it said that I refused a chance for another life experience now can we? So yes, I will stand for the clutch." It almost seems as if a weight had been lifted from his shoulders as he agrees to accept the offer to stand one more time, and who knows maybe there will be more new experiences and friends to be had from this experience after all.

Th'ero seems equally delighted and relieved when Kershaw accepts and the white knot is handed over to the stablehand with a faint, if not crooked grin. "Excellent! And sorry to take you from your work, though if you'd like you can finish here. I've some matters to attend to first, so you've some time if need be." The Weyrleader then glances back towards the bowls, before glancing back to the newly made Fortian Candidate. "Don't forget to notify those who need to be aware of your change in position. But whenever you're ready, Velokraeth and I will be in the northern bowl. I'll warn you know… you may want some warm clothes. Or at least a jacket if you've none — though I'm sure the Headwoman at Fort can supply you well enough for what you may lack."

Kershaw takes the proffered knot with a smile, "I think I'll leave the work to the others, its not as if they can't manage without me but I do need to let the weyrwoman and the headwoman know of the change of my position." He ponders for a moment or two then slowly nods his head, "Fortunately I still have the cold weather clothes from my time aboard ship, we sailed into a few northern ports during my time aboard so was able to get some really good cold weather gear so I'd not freeze to the mast." The white knot is held in his left hand, which works the knot through his fingers as he speaks.

Th'ero gives a nod of his head to Kershaw's reply, smiling faintly. "Alright, then. You take care of that and then meet us in the northern bowl?" The Weyrleader laughs softly when the stablehand-turned-candidate mentions a stash of cold weather clothing. "Sounds perfect and like you're pretty much all set!" he muses, before gesturing vaguely to the bowl. "I better go take care of my own business then. I'll see you again shortly, Kershaw. And then we're off to Fort." With a brisk nod and a half-salute, Th'ero strides off, quickly looking distracted again by this thoughts.


'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.