Darapti is an Aspirant at Mi'Ihen Castle.

Darapti sighed. No-one would judge a 16-year old rasta-haired troublemaker. No-one would even come close enough to her to ask for directions. Everyone avoided her. She wasn't a bad person, not really, so she had stolen some small items and had fooled a few people into giving her money, but at least she hadn't killed a person! She just couldn't help it. Sometimes shiney things just begged her to be taken, sometimes the shopkeepers were foolish and left things right under her nose and then she took them. But apparently not all of them had been so foolish.
She had been caught 3 days ago and already she was missing her freedom. A small lizard, a saharel, if she remembered her lessons entered from the wall. The little creature lay there. No doubt he wasn't happy either. She had been praying for days to at least have something to do, so she didn't hesitate and went closer to the saharel. He was looking rather pale although she saw bright colours under the dust. He was about the size of her hand, a very small lizard.


In a whimsey she called him Reason, because he provided her with a reason to stay sane. He shouldn't be here at all. If she ever got out of here she would take him with him, she vowed it to herself. She sat down again and started thinking again.
There was a small opening in the wall that let some light in. At night she could see the moon and in the day she could, if she stood just right, just make out Castle Mi'ihen. There was a clutch at Mi'ihen. She sighed. She would never stand for it. Not if people thought she was just a little troublemaker, someone that would be better off locked away in a cold dungeon. She quietly stroked the saharel who fell asleep in her hands.
Maybe if she was able to escape... But how would she get out of here? Twice a day they brought her food. And they didn't even have to open the door for that. She was convinced they would let her lay there even if she was sick or dieing. She felt a tear running down her cheek. Desperately she pressed her lips together, determined not to cry.
She had always been the strong one on the streets, of all the kids who had no home. She was the smart one, the sneaky one, the one who could do anything and never cried. She clinged to her reputation, it was all she had. The lizard moved in her hand. No, that wasn't true anymore, she had Reason now. She smiled at the little pun.

The next day, early morning she thought, shouting reached her. There was some commotion going on outside. She hurried to the small hole in the wall, Reason sitting on her shoulder.
There was a drak on the square outside! A beautiful sparkling drak in gold and silver. His rider asked for silence and got it. Total silence. Darapti could follow every word said.;
Everyone who wanted to be an aspirant should come forward to be judged. Darapti cried out. No-one heard her, only Reason looked at her. The little saharel stroked his head against hers and made some soft sad noises. Then he jumped out of the whole.
Darapti cried once more. She had really attached herself to the little lizard! Weren't they supposed to stay with you at all times? She got down and sat down crying. Nothing mattered anymore.

Outside the litlle lizard called Reason ran. He ran, something he was good at. He liked running. But he didn't forget his mission. His lady wanted to get to the Big Lizard. She couldn't, so he would. Carefully he ran through the other humans, some smelled good and some had food, but none were as good as his lady.
Finally he reached the drak. The little Reason looked up and tried to get the Big Lizard's attention, but he was too small. He climbed up the Big Lizard's feet and did the only other thing he was good at. He bit.
The drak lounched a big angry cry and lifted his foot of the ground. Reason fell off and ran as fast as he could back to the dungeon. The drak followed.

Suddenly her world darkened. Is this the end? Darapti thought and looked up. In the dark, two soft glowing circles reached her. Eyes. What could be big enough to cover up the hole?
She felt soft paws on her hand and saw Reason was back. Shouts from outside reached her ears.
"Jaletha! What are you doing?"
There isss a ssmall creature that bit me here. And an Aspirant too."
"In jail? I doubt it."
And yet sshe issss."

"She eh? Let's look at this she."
The sun returned and a man looked down into her dungeon cell. He put a hand before his nose when he smelled the rotting scents she had grown used too. She herself wouldn't look too good either. She didn't dare look at the man.
"Come on girl, show your face."
Carefully she looked up, still covering part of her face with her clothes.
"All of it!"
She obeyed.
He left the hole and she could here him ask: "Are you sure?"
But the drak kept his opinion: "
He returned: "Would you like to be an aspirant for the clutch at Mi'ihen?"
She smiled and that was enough.


Darapti returned to her room. Female draks were supposed to know when their eggs would hatch. This one sure didn't. Well it was all for the better, she thought. The longer she could linger here, the better. She was fed and clothed and warm.
When the female announced her eggs hatching she would leave, before everyone could see how she would be left standing. No drak in his or her right mind would ever pair her. That much they had made certain, no-one knew why she was judged. They had shattered her hopes the first day she had gotten here. The other aspirants and knights weren't bad, it were the boys and girls of the castle. Jealous she had thought at first, but still, they had lived here all their lives, if they said a drak never paired a criminal, it must be true.
"It all comes down to you." she said to Reason, already snugly laying on her pillow.
He chirped in reply.
"Of course you are happy, just don't get used to it."
He blinked his eyes. Silly creature.
Darapti undressed and lay down in her bed. At least she had made life for those stuck up boys and girls unbearable. She grinned evilly. She had framed them any chance she got.
With thoughts of sweet revenge she fell asleep.

It was still dark when she awoke from a deep sleep by a strange sniffing sound. Reason, she thought, but no, he was on the wrong side. She could barely make out a form on the side of her bed in the darkness of early morning.
Darapti reached out her hands and touched it. Soft and Warm, but definatley not clothes.
"Who are you?" she asked, making out some hair as her eyes adjusted to the dim light.
I am Aosihari." The drakling said.
The thought had to work in for a while, her eyes wide open to see the most she could. She reached out further and felt wings. A soft sound escaped her lips as she realised she was paired. The first thought entering her mind was: "The things I could do with a Drak!"
She had proven the children wrong and they would pay. She giggled.




Alas, paying back wasn't really high on her to do list the next year or so. Darapti and Aosihari trained long and hard with Judge Tayli. The judging stuff wasn't so hard. She knew not to judge a book by it's cover. She felt herself change over the years though. She still liked teasing, but it became a more harmless kind of fooling around. Revenge was out of the question. She didn't dare with Tayli around.
"Ready to go Judge?" she asked Aosihari.
What they did in fact was look at people and tell Tayli what they had seen and who they would have chosen. So it wasn't really important. She had told herself not to get to friendly around Tayli, she would have to leave some time. There were already two judges at Mi'ihen and they didn't need more. No, she would have to leave. At least no-one would know who she had been before she became a Knight. Those children still didn't talk to her. Maybe she should go observe them. She patted Reason on his hand, telling him to hold on and started walking.
"You stay here Aosi," she said to her Drak, "we'll go out later."
Inside the castle she quickly made her way to the areas around the kitchens were most of the kids would be this time of the day, it was noon and they'd be hungry. She placed herself in an alcove not far from where she could hear their voices.
"I'm going to pair a drak." she heard a young boy say.
"Why?" one of the others asked.
"Because I'm a Knight's son. I'm better than any of you."
This was an interesting conversation, how would those brads react to it? They had told her the same when she had first come to the Castle.
"A drak doesn't choose that way." one of them yelled back.
"oh no? I don't see you pairing wearing what you have on now." he said, letting his disgust ring in his voice.
"There was a girl dressed worse than us that paired, so shut up." This was clearly one of the more elder boys that had known her. His voice was changing too, it shrieked up and down all through that sentence.
"You're just making that up!" he yelled.
At this the other boys and girls turned back and made the first tell the story.
"She was a criminal, but wrongfully accused, must have been. The judges got her from a jail somewhere off in the mountains."
Darapti smiled at the thought. She had been locked up in a dungeon cell below the town plaza and she had definitely been guilty, though not of anything serious. That seemed eons away.
"She entered here all dirty and wild. She could hardly speak. We tried to make friends with her, but she never talked back. And then one day she disappeared. She paired and flew away, they say."
Darapti nearly broke her cover with laughter once she heard that. It had only been a few years, how could a tale get corrupted like this?
"So you see, clothes and parents don't matter. She was a real hero." the boy ended, admiration in his voice.
Darapti carefully walked back up the stairs and towards her Drak. Maybe she didn't need to get vengeance after all.



Darapti was busy grooming Aosihari when the dragon appeared. How odd. It was strange to see a drak with only two wings. The blue dragon landed and his rider climbed down. High Princess Marysia was waiting for him.
"We're glad to see you made the trip. We've been expecting you." she said.
"Yes, everything for cross-world relations" the bluerider answered.
"Weyrwoman Jeyann lets you know that she is sorry that she couldn't come, but she's very busy with Ryslen."
"I understand. Please join us inside for a drink."
"That would be wonderful."

Darapti sighed. No more listening in for her.
You can alwaysss follow them in." Aosihari said.
"I know my sweet, but they would find out, I know better than to get caught."
"But I can linger here until the off worlder returns. Can you speak to his dragon?"
"Well ask what they are doing here!"
He issn't much of a talker. He ssays it's important and that he's not supposed to tell."
"Silly dragon."

Another hour past before High Princess Marysia and the off worlder came back out. Things must have gone good, because both of them were smiling. The off-worlder was even carrying some of the tea they grew around here.
"Oh before, I forgot, Jeyann asked if one of the Draks would like to fly at Ryslen."
Before High Princess Marysia could reply, Darapti took her chance:
"I'll go!"
"Are you sure?"
"Yes, you've managed a long time with only one judge, you won't miss me for those couple of months."
"ok, you're free to go."
Marysia said.
I'm going to sssssee more dragonssss?" Aosihari asked.
"Even better, you're going to be able to pick one you like."
Good."Aosihari replied, pleased about it.

Aosihari is flying at Ryslen

Castle DesCas