The soft spring sun had chased the chill of winter away these past days.
Though the nights still warranted coats and scarves, the days, especially
at noon were pleasant and warm. It was at one such noon that the eggs on
the sands started showing signs of hatching. A small tremor started in one
egg and seemed to ripple through the others, forming a very noticeable
The silver-winged green dragoness Shezare, protectively shielded her eggs
from view while they hatched, keeping them warm and safe. It didn't take
long for the candidates to arrive as they'd all been training nearby,
waiting for this very moment.
Noticing all her hatchlings had safely hatched and all candidates were in
place, Shezare dropped her wings and allowed for the others to get a
glimpse of her progeny. Unlike the usual hatchings at Lantessama, they
didn't need to wait for separate hatchings or pairings. No, these little
hatchlings all wanted the cake two of the candidates had prepared. So they
wasted no time in going over to the candidates and bonding. They all
seemed to know who they wanted as bond, decisions that had maybe been made
before they'd even hatched as the candidates had been allowed to spend a
lot of time with the eggs by their easy-going mother Shezare and friendly
One by one the hatchlings bonded. Stevan looked on with a worried heart,
feeling like he might once more be left behind like the half a dozen
hatchings that had come before this one. He knew he had to patient, but
patience was wearing thin and doubts were growing stronger with each
hatchling that walked by.
Being left standing seemed to be something he'd have to get used to,
thought Stevan. All the others he'd ended up with in this place had
already bonded. Of those, only his grandfather actually mattered. Years
had gone by and he was no longer the uncertain teenager he'd been when
he'd arrived at Lantessama. He'd become a decent man, at least he hoped he
was, and had carried his own weight. Still, standing here and waiting,
seeing the others bond made him feel uncertain again. But Stevan needn't
have worried as the last remaining hatchling did have him in mind as a
bond. She was a turquoise-winged emerald green dragoness of quite large
proportions. She was not very elegant or ladylike, but she was motherly
and thoughtful and wanted to chase his worries away.
"You are a good man." she
told him, "Good enough for me if you'd have
Stevan wondered for a moment why the dragoness left the choice to him but
gathered it was so he wouldn't feel pressured to take her as a last
"I'd be very happy with you, Undroth." he told her.
"Good." she said, "I
wasn't planning on leaving here without you."
With the last hatchling bonded, people turned to the waiting tables where
different dishes both warm and cold shared the space with even more
Undroth flexed her wings and looked behind her to where her bond was
working. They'd been travelling a lot lately, seeing the universe in quite
a different way then Stevan had ever anticipated. Maybe they wouldn't be
travelling under the stars, but they wouldn't lose as much time
Lately though, Undroth had felt time was near. She'd had a ticklish,
jittery feeling that told her a change was due. It wouldn't be much longer
now. It was probably time to talk to her rider about hitting up a nexus
"What's this about a nexus world?" Stevan asked, picking up her
thoughts as she hadn't shielded them from him.
"I was thinking I'd need to rise soon."
Stevan fell quiet. He'd learned a lot about dragon, their biology and
flights while he'd been waiting to bond. Undroth was half Pernese which
meant she could probably start chewing firestone - if there was a way for
them to get some - and be done with the urge. But he'd sensed a longing in
her that made him realise she might actually want to put her maternal
instincts to actually raising a clutch and seeing her children come into
So he took a deep breath, straightened his back and told her:
"Wherever you want to go is fine."
DragonStake - Darkling
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