Kuniri burried her eggs in the sands of the deep cavern. One of the walls
was open and supported by more pillars. It let in light and the warmth of
the day. In front of the opening, benches were placed in a half circle. A
large set of doors, framed again by pillars and wall fountains, could separate
Kuniri and her eggs when they hatched.
"How many eggs are there?" Her mate
Plant Decalan asked.
"You'll find out at the hatching."
she replied sweetly.
"How many candidates should we judge?" Xander asked.
"Hmm... at least three and preferably five."
And then some
"What do you mean you need to be in the deep cavern, Corilyn?"
The brown-haired High Knight of exploring cringed a bit at the serious tone
of the High Prince. She couldn't help it that her drak had snuck off with
her mate to have a clandestine rendez-vous that had resulted in eggs. If
they'd been that eager to create offspring they could have just added their
names on the list of waiting pairs.
"It seems Meyanal is expecting eggs." Corilyn sighed.
"Does Hael know?"
"Of course, Luďkios is the father!" Corilyn called out.
By now the two humans had reached the deep cavern where they found rain
Meyanal happily providing company to a bored Forest Kuniri.
"Kuniri said it's okay if we share." Meyanal
"Some company will do me good." the
other drak sighed.
"Apparently that worked out well." Xander noted.
As usual the day was pleasantly warm at Dawn, with a light breeze cooling down the
stone-covered area that led to the sheltered deep cavern. It had rained that
morning, and the area around the castle seemed to be caught in a fog that
made the stories about pirates and bloodshed all the more believable.
Of course, since Raf had taken up the rule of Dawn Castle, more than one
pirate had come to land. In fact, two of the resident aspirants were
pirates. Flint, an accomplished second in command, the other, Eleuterio, a
lowly cabin boy. Other than that there were a few delegates from the other
castles, Phende, the son of the High prince of Castle Yavier and Dahmura, a
tribesman from the desert villages around DesCas Castle. Acicade had sent a
very young girl, though it had been a few years since she'd come to Dawn to
study. Raf had felt it only right to let her mature a bit before letting her
pair. The last three aspirants were travellers: A Kynnese native with
platinum hair and grey eyes by the name of Yanna, a blonde healer from Pern
called Tillimey and Seanna, a wayward earthling that had arrived by some
unknwon magical means. Nobody really cared about that, it had happened
Once everyone had gathered, the heavy doors to the deep cavern opened and
the two draks strode out, each accompanied by her draklings. They settled on
opposite sides of the door. Meyanal waited patiently as Kuniri strode
forward and said:
"Myrian. Be careful not to let your passion rule your good sense."
A golden drakling with vibrant red wings stepped forward, bowed to his
mother and turned to the waiting aspirants. He had a lot of choice but did
not stray from the path toward the pirate Flint.
In the stands, his younger brother Xaedan, already a knight at Dawn Castle
jumped up and cheered, some of the other attendants joined in with clapping,
but the commotion died down quickly as Meyanal now raised her head and
"Foosla. May join and happiness be part of
A dainty grey-silver female drakling pranced forward. She did make a show of
going toward the aspirants, parading herself in front of them, snapping her
tail and flapping her wings, until she finally sat down in front of
Again the assembled pirates cheered and Eleuterio smiled so wide some would
later say they were worried his face would crack.
Kuniri gently pushed a little duplicate of hers forward as the forest
drakling had been too busy playing with her siblings to realise she was up
"Gisanri. Live every day to the fullest."
The little forest drakling let out a call while advancing to the aspirants
and nearly tripped into the arms of Yanna who somehow managed to keep her
from going down.
"Rügosla. Don't worry about limits."
Meyanal advised and another forest drakling came forward. She was a bit more
relaxed than Gisanri and took her time to make her way to the aspirants
where she sniffed and nuzzled Seanna. The drakling pushed her little body to
the girl and refused to budge.
Kuniri looked back at her draklings and two stepped forward at the same
moment, causing a little bit of hesitation and commotion among the
draklings. Kuniri snorted and finally the beige desert male gave way to let
his blue-green sister go first.
"Leanri. May grace be your guide."
The water who took the message from her mother to heart, seemed to glide
toward the aspirants, wings fluttering gently in the breeze and almost
seeming to shimmer in the faint light. Attracted by the calm and quiet
confidence of the Pernese healer, she sat down in front of Tillimey and let
her tail twist around the woman's wrist.
"Yrian, let righteousness guide your
The desert wasted no time to cross the short distance toward the aspirants
himself and quickly let his eye wander over the three remaining humans. He
could see himself fit with all of them but was drawn to one in particular.
He went forward and bowed his head in front of Phende McDairmid-Ridsaw,
second-born to the High Prince of Castle Yavier and offered his
Meyanal let her last remaining drakling crawl in front and called his name:
"Hyalos. Be steadfast and sure in all your
The little white and brown drakling looked up at his mother and nodded
solemnly before walking over to the desert tribesman who'd fought more
battles than he would admit to and went to stand quietly by his side.
That left one more drakling. Hardly noticeable against the shade in the
cave, Kuniri stepped aside to let a little beam of light fall on her black
and gold daughter.
"Allanri. May you experience as many
adventures as there are stars in the sky."
Even knowing she should wait to see if maybe this drakling would choose not
to bond, Etyl couldn't contain her excitement and ran straight to the small
female drakling. Stopping just in front of Allanri, Etyl held her breath and
waited until the night butted her head against her side and let out a
With all aspirants and draklings paired, the crowd gave a final applause and
the cheers lasted longer now as onlookers and family members swarmed around
the new pairs to wish them luck and hear their stories and expectations.
High Prince Raf gestured for the food to be brought around, knowing all
those pirates would get rowdy without some food and drink to keep them
entertained. Meanwhile Xander let in the trainers and some experienced
riders to introduce them to the squires. Tomorrow morning they'd start
training but tonight was for dreaming and being merry.
Forest Kuniri & Plant
(f) & Night Allanri (f) - trained by Wim & Mud Fregiki (Knight)
(f) & Forest Gisanri (f) - trained by Rowan & Forest Paienna (Judge)
(f) & Water Leanri (f) - trained by Hael & Night Luďkios (Healer)
(m) & Fire Myrian (m) - trained by Xaedan & Fire Reenkios (Pirate)
Phende (m) & Desert Yrian (m) - trained by
Aaryn & Earth Myrundios (Defence)
Rain Meyanal & Night
(using Savannah images)
(m) & Rain Foosla (f) - trained by Caylea & Wind Hyenna (Knight)
Dahmura (m) Earth Hyalos (m) -
trained by Gunnar & Desert Phakios (Fighting)
(f) & Forest Rügosla (f) - trained by Corilyn & Rain Meyanal
Night Allanri (f)
Forest Gisanri (f)
Water Leanri (f)
Fire Myrian (m)
Desert Yrian (m)
Rain Foosla (f)
Earth Hyalos (m)
Forest Rügosla (f)