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1 Rude Awakening, Part II on Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:55 pm


Random Event Creator
This time, when you awaken, it's a somewhat gentler sensation, more akin to awakening in your own bed, except that you're a bit chilled and what you're lying on definitely isn't a feather mattress, or even a straw pallet. In fact, it's hard ground - pebbles, scratchy plant growth and all. And probably insects.

Instead of a wailing siren, you hear an orchestra of bird calls. These are still being supported by an off-key counterpoint of moans and groans. There's no darkness this time, just light that is getting gradually brighter. No shadows cross your eyelids, no hands haul you to your feet.

The miasma wafting over your nose is a study in contradictions: vomit, excrement, and sweat, mixed with the more pleasant scents of flowers, ocean salt, and decaying sea flotsam. A slight breeze mingles the scents together, gradually clearing the air, although the stenches remained concentrated in the areas where they'd been spilled.

Your muscles ache all over like you'd worked a long hard day and stiffened up and your head is pounding like a Master Smith is using it for an anvil. You realize that you're parched and so hungry you feel nauseaous. The smell of sea water is a goad, and despite knowing that salt water will not satisfy your thirst, it is at least wet. As you rouse further, the idea of a bath sounds good, as well, and at least salt water is good for that.

Those with firelizards, firedragonets, or dragons now start sensing those creatures' consciousness in their minds as their winged companions begin rousing. They were famished and thirsty as their bondeds. Those like H'lee who had managed to rescue their furred pets found them squirming and wanting loose.

When you're able to sit up and take stock of your surroundings, you have your soup cup, your package of bread-like rations, and your blanket. There's something that looks like a marsh not too far away to one side of you; to the other side, stacks of crates. All around you are many other people who are also waking up, and a few who haven't yet stirred. Beyond the crates, a dragon's head rises unsteadily and several rumbles are heard as the dragons try to orient themselves. Behind them, low bluffs slope upward, although they scarcely tall enough to be seen behind the dragons. You're in a field that looks like a flood plain.

As the sun suddenly pops up, giving you compass orientation, you're able to determine that the marshy area is northwest of you, and an ocean is north of you. The crates and dragons are to the south. The marshy area is cluttered with waist-high reeds, some of them topped with clusters of brown flowers. To the east are some trees, and you see bright blue and black avians chattering and flitting about in the reeds before zipping off to the trees with mouthfuls of fibers they are stripping from the reeds.

The avians suddenly scatter as someone stumbles into the reeds and water splashes up around his knees. He bends over and splashes around for a minute before straightenting and sipping water from his cup. After a moment, he makes a face and slogs out of the reeds. "Salty," he coughs hoarsely, waving for the next couple of people heading for the water to move upstream. "Let's try farther upstream."

A couple dragonlengths upstream, a woman has waded out into the wide river and washed out her own cup. "Here!" she shouts. "Here, wade out and form a line back toward the bank, but stay downstream of me. The water here's like what's at Keroon, fresh water on top of salt. Don't stir up the water, and we can fill cups with fresh water. Form a chain to pass the empties up and I'll send them back with clean. Wash the cups downstream from here so you don't stir up the water!"

For most folk, whetting their mouths and throats is the first line of business, followed by quieting the raging hunger in their stomachs with some of the rations. The breadlike substance is dry and flavorless, going down much better with the cool, sweet water that has a hint of salt in it from its proximity to the ocean. Several men, after slaking their thirst and at least somewhat satisfying their hunger, decide a bath was in order and head downstream to do so. Some of the women complain because there is little privacy to be had for them to do the same. One man yelps in suprise as a dolphin pops up in the water next to him and squeaks at them, chattering on about needing their human partners, and the word is conveyed through shouts back to the main body of people that the dolphineers are needed.

Still other folk start moving among the prone forms of those who hadn't woken yet and collecting the cups to be cleaned and filled, then brought back. They attempt to rouse the supine folk, and those Healers who have gotten their bearings begin making rounds. Wailing starts as people identified others who are not going to wake up, mostly elderly family members or those who had been ill before the strange gray-skinned people drugged and kidnapped everyone.

Dragonriders and weyrlings go to their dragons and convince them to move farther upstream away from the people so they could drink water without stirring it up too much. The dragons themselves are looking to the one golden queen among them, Henriettath, for reassurance; she's looking to her rider to explain the strangeness. All the dragons have dry, cracked hides desperately in need of oiling - so do the firelizards and firedragonets, as their masters and mistresses discover when they have time to look at them. The older riders help the younger ones coax their dragons even farther upstream. "Salt water will dry out and crack their hides more, let's get up where there's no salt water left." Several of the dragons complain about how hungry they are and after some argument, bronze Rilath - as the most fit and least cracked-hided dragon in the lot - is sent aloft to look for herdbeasts or wherries for the starving giants, his rider clinging precariously to a neck ridge. One rider is overheard complaining good-naturedly, "You'd think they'd just Hatched, going on the way they are!"

Meanwhile, one of the Hold Wardens and his Stewards takes charge of the piles of crates and had starts opening them. Inside, they find plain knives about a hand-span long, small hatches with handles the length of a forearm and palm-sized blades, more packages of rations, and some kits that appear to be medical in nature with some needles, bandages, and vials of various unknown substances.

Rilath returns with news of a herd of large herbivores that sort of resemble herdbeasts some distance south of their position and a sample kill. There is some argument over whether or not they are safe to eat, but Rilath hasn't shown any negative effects of exposure to the blood of his kill. After the older dragons were bathed and feeling more normal, they fly down and hunt, bringing back some kills for the younger weyrlings to eat.

The dolphins, as it turns out, are relatively unharmed, although some are suffering from water inhalation because their captors were less than careful about where they placed the unconscious creatures. They've found a type of shellfish that is edible and have taken care of their own hunger. Complaining about the amount of freshwater where the humans were laid out, they retreat downstream into the bay.

Meanwhile, the firelizards, firedragonets, and canines and felines that were brought with the humans had discovered burrows of some sort of small rodent and were happily hunting and snacking on the dull gray-brown creatures. None of the humans got a very good look at the prey, other than the incredibly long tails that briefly stuck out of predatory jaws before being swallowed. Other people examined the plants surrounding them and spotted a few other creatures in the trees and flying around on the other side of the river.

Once the immediate problems of food, drink, and cleanliness are taken care of, someone points out that they need shelter and that they'd apparently wasted almost half the day, to judge by the height of the sun in the sky. The question of shelter gives people something to think about besides the other question on everyone's minds: Where are we?

There are new galleries for maps and "screenshots" of your surroundings. As you explore, more pieces of the map and more screenshots will be added. We've also commissioned some artistic renderings by a fellow roleplayer; he's not currently a member of the site, but if anyone wants to commission artwork, please let Kes know.

There's also a Flora and Fauna thread so you can see more details about some of the creatures that have been discovered. Feel free to volunteer to be the one to discover one of the species listed! Also, these species still need to be named, and there's a contest for that!

You do not, of course, have to respond to everything in this thread. Primarily, the thread is about waking up hungry, thirsty, with a pounding headache and various other aches. Specialists (such as dolphineers, dragonriders, Healers, etc.) have some additional items they can respond to.

At this point, the characters should fully take over the thread. You need shelter, some source of food other than the (limited) supply of rations, and the dragonkin need hide oils. There will be questions about where you are - the dragonriders may even be wondering when (since they know about going between time, although it's not common knowledge) - and what you're doing there; who the gray-skinned humanoids were who captured you and why they did it; how you're going to get back home....

So...welcome to...wherever this is! and happy exploring!
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2 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Sat Feb 02, 2013 9:41 pm


Artemis, A'lo and Baby

The twins had kept close together, A'lo feeling rather protective of his twin and nephew. As such, when they woke up near one another, A'lo was quick to help Artemis up and help her care for the crying child. Artemis shushed and cooed to the infant, moving from the group so that she could conceal herself. Her child needed to eat. Her brother kept with her, although he averted his gaze.

Before long A'lo had spotted their rations and gave his sister some to eat while she fed the baby, pulling his own out for himself. A moment later, he found two firelizards appearing near them. It would seem that their friends had awoken.

As the dragons woke up, the twins glanced at one another and Artemis gently prodded her dragon into moving. The green and bronze both began complaining about their hides and their hunger... and their thirst.

When their food was done, and the baby was fed, Artemis walked with her brother towards the water and her brother helped her to wash off herself and the baby before he took a dip himself. When done, they also accepted their share of water before having their dragons move upstream for something to drink, and then let the two beasts go off to hunt. Naturally, this meant walking, but at least it allowed them a chance to get some nourishment before Artemis sent her twin to help the others where he could. She would be fine. Although, she did remember that she and D'rick needed to name their infant as of yet.

3 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Sun Feb 03, 2013 5:15 am


Erin, Selisa and Saelit

At first, Erin tried to ignore the hard ground and the feeling of a rock poking into her back. It wasn't anything big, but it was enough that she noticed it as her mind slowly became more alert of their surroundings. However, unlike some in the group, the very pregnant woman couldn't even pretend to get up, although she did manage to push herself so she was sitting upright, looking around.

She slowly found herself able to feel her dragon, smiling softly at that realization. The next thing she did was look around her for her family. Selisa, naturally, clung to A'dam. Saelit, for his part, was slowly waking up as well before he moved over to her.

"Need help?" he asked before she shook her head. Something, she didn't know what, but something was telling her to remain where she was. Of course, it might have something to do with the fact that a second later she was yelping in pain as the first contraction hit her. "Mom?"

She panted after it went away and looked up at him, "I'll be alright. But..." she glanced down just in time to see a nice wet spot appear as her water broke. Saelit got a worried look on his face, but remained close to her as Selisa finally started to get up.

A few moments later, Erin found herself getting hit with another contraction. By this point, Selisa was getting scared. Of course, in her eyes the monsters must have tried to hurt her! It was for that reason that she looked at A'dam with eyes that clearly said she was scared.

Naturally, the pain also alerted Plyath, Coriad and Henry. The two firelizards quickly appeared, watching their bonded with whirling eyes as she clearly didn't pay attention to the work that others were dong. To make things more interesting, a moment later Playth came lumbering over. She was worried about her rider and it was only with the woman's stern command to give her enough space for healers that the dragon crouched down and rumbled her displeasure.

4 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Mon Feb 04, 2013 3:33 pm


Admin / Weyrlingmaster
On the one hand, H'lee was glad not to be waking up on the cold metal floor that he'd fallen asleep on. On the other hand, the ground wasn't much softer. And it wasn't even level, for that matter. His head was placed uphill from his feet, so that was a small blessing. He shivered and clutched at the scratchy blanket and sniffled, and immediately regretted the last action. He groaned and made a face as he started struggling to sit up. His movements set of shots of pain through just about every muscle and, worse, through his temples and he groaned again; moving also apparently woke Squeak up who yowled unhappily and scrambled to get out of his jumpsuit.

After opening his eyes, squinting them shut and opening them again, and then taking stock of his surroundings, he started examining his mental state. He could still sense Seeth, although at first, it was still the distant, fellis-like feeling, but a few moments later the brown uttered an mental snort and started to rouse. The sensations that the dragon noticed on awakening including his own aching muscles, the burning sensation of his cracked hide, and a hunger and thirst he hadn't felt since he'd Hatched so many Turns ago; these feelings were translated through the bond to H'lee until the brownrider closed down the link in protest.

H'lee finally oriented himself as sunlight suddenly washed over him and the predawn light he'd seen when he'd peeked out earlier. With a growl of protest, he shifted so he could raise one hand to shield his eyes from the sunlight and glared around. He didn't recognize the area, and the sunlight seemed a little paler than he was used to. The air smelled funny, too, aside from the odor of bodily fluids. The dragons were uphill behind him and he saw several draconic heads weaving and bobbing as the creatures also tried to orient themselves.

His and his dragon's need for water finally drove H'lee to his feet. By then, the assembly line for water had been formed. Unfortunately, the dragons weren't going to be satisfied with that. And unfortunately for H'lee, although he was far from the first dragonrider to wake up, he was also the Weyrlingmaster and the highest-ranked dragonrider in the group; while the dragons themselves were looking to gold Henriettath, the only gold among them, the riders were looking to H'lee. The brownrider staggered to his feet and gimped over to his dragon. He took a moment to examine Seeth's hide up close and then checked on the weyrling dragons' hides. He swore under his breath as he checked the hides and found them all to be consistently cracked. The dragons were getting very agitated by this time, being very hungry and thirsty.

"Alright, let's move upstream so we're not mucking up the water down here. Besides, salt water will dry out and crack their hides more, so let's get upstream where there's no salt water," he explained. "Someone put the word out that the firelizards and firedragonets shouldn't be bathed in the salty water downstream, either."

After they moved upstream and quenched their thirsts, the dragons made it abundantly clear that food was the next order of business. H'lee smiled sympathetically at the comment that even the older dragons were going on like they'd just Hatched. H'lee and some of the other older riders looked over the weyrlings; the youngest batch weren't old enough to fly yet, so they focused on the Benden clutch, who had only recently returned for their graduation. All of them had, in fact, graduated except for Rilath and Henriettath and their riders, who had only been back at the Academy for a couple of days following the Hatching of their first clutch. Rilath was determined fit to fly, at least to give them an aerial overview and look for some herdbeasts or wherries for the dragons to eat, although H'lee chided them about being careful and not straining themselves. "We don't appear to have any numbweed, so try not to crack his hide any more."

Rilath returned with a kill; the beast was huge, larger even than the oxen that the traders used, and the hide was leathery and low on fur or hair, not quite like a dragon's hide, but not the same as a herdbeast's hide, either. The beast's blood was red and the smell of it nearly drove the dragons into a frenzy. Although the Healers were reluctant to let anyone eat the meat, Rilath had swallowed some of the blood of his kill and wasn't showing any adverse effects, so it was decided that the dragons could eat it.

The older dragons like Seeth were in poor shape and most of them didn't want to take to the air with their hides; some of the cracks in Seeth's hide were oozing green ichor after his bath and the dragon was, to put it lightly, miserable. He'd stretched out on the ground and was trying not to move more than was absolutely necessary. A couple other dragons, including T'lon's Roth, were in similar condition. H'lee asked the younger adult dragons to bring back kills for both these badly-injured dragons and the youngest weyrlings who weren't able to fly yet. Meanwhile, H'lee instructed the riders to obtain some of the knives and hatchets that one of the Wardens was doling out and they went to town on the carcass Rilath had brought back, helping the young weyrlings chop up the meat to feed their dragons.

Half the day was gone before the dragons were all fed and as comfortable as they could be with cracked hides, no oils, and no numbweed. While their dragons ate, H'lee had asked the riders who were not also Weyrlingmasters or Healers to start examining the plants and any critters they could catch to see if any of them produced oils. By now, everyone had figured out they weren't on Pern anymore; none of the plant or animal life matched up with anything they had on Pern, although a few plants were similar.

The riders had commandeered some of the empty crates for themselves as tables while they chopped up the meat for the younger dragons. They were blood-spattered and sore, and H'lee wanted a hot soak. Unfortunately, they didn't have hot water yet, and he was getting grumpy. He rapped on the side of one of the crates; it sounded like plastic, so he wasn't sure it would stand up to fire, but shardit, he wanted hot water, and more than could be produced in the little tin cups. He started looking about for driftwood or anything that could be used to start a fire before someone gently pointed out that others had already started fires and were heating food and water. Some of the ten-legged shellfish that the dolphins had found had been harvested and were being boiled in one of the crates; rather than putting the crate over a fire (which, judging from the melted mess that had been discarded a short distance away, was a bad idea), someone had come up with the idea of heating stones in the fire and dropping them into the water. If enough hot rocks were added at the same time, the water would reach almost boiling, and that seemed sufficient to cook the shellfish. Still others were roasting pieces of a couple extra kills the dragons had made, and another group was boiling the roots of the reeds growing in the marshy area, so there were plenty of alternatives to the tasteless ration bars they all had.

It appeared the area had been divided and the crown of the bluff that they'd all been laid out on was acting as a physical barrier so the men and women could both bathe. The water wasn't as hot as H'lee would have liked, but it beat the heck out of a river wash. Someone pointed out that it must be spring, given the abundance of flowers and the fact that one of the kills the dragons brought back proved to be a pregnant female. "Better spring than autumn," someone muttered. On the plus side, as someone else mentioned, they must be on the southern hemisphere, but on the northern side of it, because it was quite a bit warmer than the similar season at the Academy or either of the Holds. It was still cool enough people didn't want to run around without their jumpsuits fastened, but warm enough that for the most part, no one really needed their blankets after they'd gotten a bath.

While he ate lunch, H'lee finally had a chance to do a head count. All three batches of his and K'then's weyrlings were present and accounted for, which was the first group he looked around for (they were also easily the most recognizable, being the youngest dragons present). Then he started looking for the adults, trying to remember who all had been in the large chamber after they'd received their soups. He knew all the Weyrlingmasters had been there, so he started with them: all seven were there. Then he started trying to recall who else had been there; the High Reaches weyrlings who had graduated just a few months ago were there, all ten of them.

Then he remembered, Silvara had been there. He started scanning for the identifiable form of Warrelith among the dragons, clambering up the hill above where they had bathed and checking each blue dragon. "Anyone seen Silvara and Warrelith?" he shouted.
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5 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Tue Feb 05, 2013 7:49 pm


Moderator / Master Healer
Silvara woke slowly from the drugged sleep filled with visions of the vast star field. It was an oddly peaceful dream, all things considered. She blinked muzzily and slowly rolled to her feet, automatically looking for Warrelith, feeling his mind starting to clear from the drugs only to start to feel the pains of hunger and a very itchy hide. She grimaced slightly as she also started to get the rest of the people's and dragon’s emotions again. She staggered back a little, blanching, realizing that her shields had been shot to the moons and that she was finding it hard to tell what emotions were hers and which belonged to others once again. Quickly looking around, she noted other dragons starting to rise as well as other folks.

Moving around, she noted the crates of stuff even as her stomach and throat reminded her they needed to be tended to. For now, though, her first thought was of getting away from everyone else for their safety as well as her own. She did note the location of H’lee as she moved, avoiding coming into physical contact with anyone else as she was unsure if she could prevent the raw state of her gifts from doing others harm at this point in time.

She watched as folks started sorting themselves out and set up to form a chain for getting water. She longed to get a glass but dared not get too close to anyone, slowly moving to the edges of the field to watch and to try and sort out what to do with her addled brain.

Warrelith watched his rider closely, a little scared by how raw her mind was and how open her gifts were. He clamped down on his own emotions, suppressing the pain of his itchy hide and empty stomach to try and help her sort out what to do, agreeing with her that it is too dangerous for her to stay with the others for the time being and they should get away while everyone else is focused on other matters at hand.

Silv smiles softly at that, glad that Warrelith agrees with her and slowly forms a plan, gathering several packs of the odd bread-like rations and grabbing four knives and a couple of the hatchets as well as two of the med kits. She quickly added them to a crate that she emptied by the expedient of turning it upside-down, leaving the bundled blankets that were in it on the ground. She managed to sift things to the point where it would all fit, making it easier to carry wrapped in a second blanket she nabbed. With that she quickly made her way upstream, though keeping her distance from even the other dragonriders, knowing they won’t really notice right now with their focus on their dragons and such.

Soon she spotted where H’lee had set up the dragonriders to get water and moves to the forest edge to watch Warrelith moving to join the other dragons for a drink and a slight rinse before rejoining her at the woods edge to watch and see what they would do for a bit. Maybe they could see about getting Warrelith some food before making their escape from the group. She was glad that they held off when one of the dragons who was in good enough condition was sent out to hunt and soon returned with not just a fresh kill but the knowledge of where a herd of the beasts could be found. Silv looked to Warrelith as if asking if he was up to hunting his own food right now or if his hide cracks were to severe. He rumbled softly and took wing to get himself a kill, sending her a soft mental nudge to start heading into the deep woods and he would find her in a bit.

She was soon walking into the woods, keeping an eye out for anything unpleasant but not really afraid. Flashes of what had happened on the ship, including the destruction of the mind of one of the Grey Skins, remaining to haunt her. She now knew she could, in a way, kill someone with her Empathy. The body would live for a time as a vegetable but the mind would be gone. It made her shiver but also made her aware that she could do that to any predators that came along that wanted to pick a fight. She just hoped none would show up, not wanting to do that ever again. As she moved deeper under the trees the pressure of the other Pernese slowly started to die down and fade, no longer so drastically sharp and painful.

She found it odd, though, that her ability to hear the dragons was still going strong, which meant she could monitor the Weyr folk some to keep tabs on what they were doing and what they learned, but in a more back seat type position. She grimaced when she heard H’lee starting to panic about her and calling out if anyone had seen them. She took a slow breath and reached out to H’lee’s dragon, asking him to pass a message to H’lee.

::Please tell H’lee that I am here but I have to remove myself from everyone. I will try and stay in contact via dragon but it hurts too much to be around others right now. Also… we were in space, on a space ship traveling between the stars…::

She just hoped he would accept that and not try and come after her as she was keenly aware of how dangerous she was right now. She was starting to be aware of her other gifts which were stirring in odd ways, and that worried her greatly.
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6 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Sat Feb 09, 2013 11:13 am


Gold Weyrling
Old habits die hard and the first thing Alyena tried to do as she became aware of something sharp sticking her just below her shoulder blade was make mental contact with Henriettath. This time, although the response was groggy, she did get a response; it felt more like when she'd been awake for a while and Hetty was still snoozing on her ledge, waiting for the sun to come up and warm her hide. But shards, what was poking into her back?!

Grumbling under her breath, she tried to roll sideways a bit to lift her weight off of the object, which set off a chorus of complaints in her muscles, head, and stomach. Especially her stomach. The young goldrider curled up as she started retching; there was nothing in her stomach to come up, not even bile, but she couldn't stop until someone pounded her on the back. Somehow, she'd gotten rolled up onto her knees, and she stayed curled up for a few minutes, gasping for air, with her head on her arms.

As her jangled nerves settled, she slowly sat up and looked around. The fresh air was lovely...until the breeze wafted an unsavory aroma over her nose. Srasih turned up after a few minutes, creeling in distress over her hide, her hunger, and her thirst. Hetty started complaining as well and Alyena groaned. Alright, alright, I'm up, she muttered mentally, since her voice wasn't up to it.

Fortunately, she was near the crates, so she used the corner of one to lever herself onto her feet. She leaned against the cool plastic and waited for her stomach to settle and her balance to stabilize. Someone started shouting something about water and making a line for water and, galvanized by the idea of something cold and liquid, she turned and staggered toward the voices.

Unfortunately, her proximity to the crates meant she was about as far away from the water as you could get and still be on the same hillside, and after a couple of steps, she realizes she can't just make a beeline for the water without stepping on someone. Since her balance still wasn't great and she tended to weave a bit, she decided to stick by the crates and go around the people, the better to avoid trampling one of the prone forms still on the field. She headed upstream along the crates, since she was closer to that end, and found a clear pathway down to the water. She lined up with the others and scrubbed her cup out, then passed it up the line to get it filled. While she waited for it to come back, she started nibbling on one of the bread-like slabs they had been given.

Hetty started getting mentally vocal and Alyena felt her anxiety. It seemed most of the dragons were turning to the gold for an explanation of what was going on, since their riders didn't seem to know, either. Of course, Alyena didn't have an answer, either. Just then, she heard the reassuring voice of the Weyrlingmaster. He'd know what to do! She told Hetty to listen to Seeth, just like they had when they were weyrlings; and then added that if the other dragons kept bugging her, to tell them to bug Seeth instead.

Apparently, the first order of business was getting water and baths for the dragons, something all of them seemed quite amenable to. Alyena moved away from the line of people drinking water as soon as she got her cupful back. Thankfully, she hadn't encountered L'nex or Rilath; the bronzerider would likely be fussing over her. Seeing Erin in labor and Artemis' new baby in the sprawled mass of people made her extremely glad she hadn't gotten pregnant by L'nex, as well! She could just imagine how possessive her queen's mate's rider would be if that had happened to them, and she dreaded that sort of protectiveness.

Hetty wallowed out into the river and crooned happily as the cool water poured over her tender hide. Alyena wrinkled her nose and then dropped her blanket and food safely above the waterline and waded out after her dragon, her green firelizard clinging to the tough fabric of the coveralls. Alyena got her own bath as she gently rubbed the pair down, trying to avoid the worst of the cracks, but still get their hides clean.

Itches. Hurts. ITCHES! Hetty complained. Srasih creeled in agreement, both of them looking rather pathetic, sunk into the river as deep as they could go, with basically just their heads above water. It frustrated and upset Alyena that she couldn't do anything to relieve either of those conditions. Angrily, she sloshed out of the river and started pinching plant leaves between her fingers, looking for anything that would offer some relief.

As she thrashed her way out of the river, she caught a handful of the seemingly omnipresent reeds and inadvertently yanked one out of the soft muck. She inelegantly landed on her rump in the mud and held up the offending plant. After one look at the root of the plant, she burst into laughter. If there was a hysterical edge to her giggles, well, she could be forgiven that under the circumstances, yes? "It looks like a firedragonet's claw," she choked out around her laughter. One of the Academy cooks snatched it out of her hand and disappeared into the throng of humans with it.

She got a grip on her histrionics when L'nex approached. Fortunately, before she had to tolerate his mother-henning for very long, H'lee sent him off to find food for the dragons. When he returned with his kill, Hetty, who had become accustomed to Rilath feeding her while she was guarding her clutch, got overly aggressive toward the other dragons, prepared to steal the kill from her mate and defend it against the other dragons. It took all of Alyena's willpower to control her dragon and force her to allow the weyrlings to have that particular specimen after the Healers finished examining it and Rilath. They were finally given the go-ahead to hunt, the gold lunged into the sky as though she were in flightlust and Alyena sagged in relief at no longer having to restrain the great beast.

Around the same time, she noticed that Srasih had taken off. After a moment, she spotted several of the firelizards across the river, diving into burrows and popping back out, and the green had obtained a certain sense of contentment as she filled her stomach to bloating with whatever type of critter they'd found to eat.

Alyena chose to not assist with chopping meat for the youngest weyrlings. There were plenty of volunteers to do that. Instead, she sought out the cook who had grabbed the reed's root from her hand. She may have specialized in baking, but she knew how to cook other things, too. She found that the cooks - from both of the Holds as well as the Academy - had divided into groups: one to harvest and cook the roots, one to collect and cook the crustaceans with the help of the dolphineers and their partners, one to piece out and roast some of the dragons' kills, and one to examine the other plants in the area (and catch any animals, if possible) to try and find edible things. Alyena volunteered for the last group as it gave her an excuse to get away from the other riders and their dragons and the impression that somehow, she was supposed to be leading them.
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7 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Sat Feb 09, 2013 11:45 am


Apprentice Smith
The young Apprentice Smith was slow to wake. It seemed that whatever drug they'd been given had affected Loraine more than her brother or her father. When she woke, it was her father and brother each holding one of her hands. Her mother was nowhere to be seen, and her male relatives' faces were streaked with tears. She found out shortly that they had been afraid they would lose her, too: her mother had not survived the drug and had died some time before they all woke up. In the wave of grief that followed the announcement, the three Smiths huddled together and failed to notice the beauty around them, or even some of the less pleasant things.

None of them could produce much in the way of tears, however, dehydrated as they were. Someone kindly cleaned and filled their cups with water and they soon had slaked their thirst with the sweet water. None of the three could bear to eat, though.

Someone had thought of a clever use for the younger children: messengers. Several children were darting around among people asking if their firelizards or firedragonets had gotten their baths and volunteering to take them upstream to where the dragons were bathing to get their own baths, if they hadn't already. Signy was among those that hadn't yet had a bath, and although the green was reluctant to leave her distraught mistress, she also desperately needed a bath and Loraine sent her with one of the children to get it. Once she was bathed, the dragonet turned to sating her second need: food.

One of the Healers finally approached the trio and told them that baths had been set up on the other side of the hill and that they really should clean up. They didn't need to contract anything in this strange place. He also told them that some more appetizing food was being cooked up and that he would stand over them until they ate something.

Seeing as they had no shovels, the bodies of those who had not woken up were being taken down to the river and the dolphins were escorting them out to sea for at least a respectful burial, if not a traditional one. The families of those so interred stood on the shore and watched as the dolphins towed them out to deeper water. After the Smith family had taken their turn at this somber chore, they allowed themselves to be guided to the bathing area and then to food.

Their father, as a Master Smith, was hailed and asked to join a meeting after they'd eaten. He started to oblige, then hesitated - what to do with his children? "What's the meeting about?" he asked tiredly.

"Our Crafts and what we can do to help out," was the response.

Biting his lower lip, the big man looked at his children. Sniffling, Aren raised his head proudly before responding to the unasked question in their father's eyes. "We're Smiths, too. We can help."

So it was that all three Smiths answered the call to the Crafters' meeting.
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8 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Sat Feb 09, 2013 12:39 pm


Admin / Weyrlingmaster
K'so didn't want to wake up. His head hurt, his muscles ached, and his hide burned. Couldn't he just sleep in?

No, you cannot! You need to make my hide stop itching!

K'so muttered sleepily until something jolted him awake: his hide burned?! The blue weyrling bolted upright and immediately regretted the abrupt movement as the world spun around him and made him dizzy and nauseous. He tried taking deep breaths to ease the sensations, but that made him gag on the smell. Shifting, he felt moisture around his crotch and realized that he'd disgraced himself at some point. That realization did more to center his perceptions than anything else he'd tried.

I think we BOTH need baths, he complained to Qancith.

I want water first. I don't want to share with anyone. Let's go before all the good bathing spots have gone!

The blue was already lumbering after the other dragons who were being coaxed some distance upstream of the rest of the humans. K'so was torn between following his dragon and taking care of his immediate problem, which he knew he should do downstream of everyone else. He decided that he couldn't walk the distance they were apparently going the way he was.

You go on up there and get something to drink and find a spot to soak. I'll catch up in a few minutes. He only received a mental affirmation and encouragement to hurry.

He tried to be nonchalant as he made his way down to the salty water where others were bathing and taking care of similar accidents, but he ended up in a somewhat undignified waddle. He flailed his way into the water and took his shoes off and tossed them back to the shore once he found he was standing on sand or silt - something not hard and pointy, at least. Then he stripped his coveralls off and did what he could to wash out his embarrassment. The salt water was harsh on his tender parts, but at least he felt clean afterward.

Of course, he didn't consider that walking a mile upstream in wet coveralls might have been a bad idea, and he was more chafed by the time he caught up with the other dragons and riders than he'd been to begin with. "I hope they find something for your hides soon. It ought to be good for mine, too!" he grouched to Qancith.

K'so overheard one of the other weyrlings telling off his dragon in an exasperated tone, "You should be ashamed of yourself! Your hide is barely cracked. Look at Seeth's hide and stop griping!" The blue weyrling grinned down at the submerged head of his dragon, who blew bubbles at him in response.

It was then that Rilath returned with the first kill and after several minutes, the dragons were released to go hunt. Bring back an extra with you, Qanc. The babies need food, and so do us humans!

The blue weyrling snuck away from the rest of the dragonriders while they started feeding the youngest batch of werylings. He certainly didn't want to help chop up unfamiliar meat with less-than-ideal tools! He actually would rather have just slunk off and hid somewhere to be left alone. He didn't have a useful craft, at least not for solving the problem of shelter. However, instead of being left alone, he was recruited by the cooks to help dig up the reeds and cut off their roots. The smell of roasting and boiling roots and meats caused his stomach to rumble loudly and, as a cooks' helper, he managed to filch a roasted root and a couple of the crustaceans to nibble on along with one of the ration bars.
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9 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Tue Feb 12, 2013 6:03 am


Alec was slow to wake. In fact, by the time he had awoken, some of the riders had found their dragons and plenty of others had found their pets. One thing that could be noted... he was not waking up of his own accord. He had two felines who had bolted towards him the moment someone opened their crate in search of their own pets. They may not be feeling well, but they were freaked out and Alec had always been there for them. As such, when they found their master the two cats began licking at his face and mewling in distress.

It was that that woke the man, more so than the rough ground or the singing birds. And the moment he became conscious of all this, was the same moment he realized his head was killing him, his body felt stiff and sore... and the ground felt awefully hard. There was the distinct feeling of something not right in his little jump suit. He must have soiled himself at some point. With a groan he starts trying to push himself up, his eyes remaining closed in protest to the light.

When he finally does flicker them open, he notices two things. One, that there are dragons off in the distance, two that there are a LOT of people around him, and three, that his cats are safe. With a scream that makes his head pound worse, he achingly bursts to his feet and RAN. He didn't care about food or water at this point. The dragons would surely have ruined things. Instead, he darted into the water and started trying to swim to the other side. "YOU EVIL BEASTS WON'T EAT ME!!" he screamed at them, regretting it a second later when his head started hurting more... and he almost went under. His body protesting the movement. Lucky for him, he was close enough to the side of shore he had left.

With that in mind, he finally gave up and decided he would bide his time. As such, he bathed in the salt water before walking over just in time for a cup of water to be thrust into his hands. Eagerly he drank it, noting that no dragons had touched the cup. When done, he handed it back and soon his stomach started yelling at him.

It was about this point in time he also noticed that some peole were walking around with knives. He wanted one. Thus, he made his way over there and retrieved a knife and a hatchet, figuring he would need all the help he could get in defending himself. After all, clearly the dragons were getting ready to eat him!

With that in mind, he grabbed some of his ration bars and started eatng them, momentarily forgetting that they were part of the evil dragon plot to kill him. At least he wasn't hungry afterwards, or at least not as much as prior. By this point in time, his felines had eaten their meals (having caught the whatever it was they had found. Alec truly wasn't paying attention to that.

Like many others, he didn't know where they were. What was worse, there were no computers and the dragons didn't let him have his research! How was he supposd to study more about how to defeat the dragons without that! The lack of shelter hadn't really phased him yet, although he did wander far enough away from the group that he didn't feel like the dragons were going to eat him right away. They had closer meals. Although, before long he was certain he would have someone asking for his help with something. And they would be safe doing so... as long as they didn't have a dragon with them...

10 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Tue Feb 12, 2013 1:41 pm


A'dam became immediately aware of several things at once. One his head felt like there were several very tiny miners inside it trying to chip away at his skull. Beyond that...his whole body hurt and there was a sharp stick or rock piking into his back. But most importantly, he heard voices. And not of the people waking up around him. These were dragon voices. And they were considerably louder than he remembered after having been silent for so long. All of which added up to one very unhappy Bluerider. His head already hurt and though he blocked out the dragons as much as he dared, he didn't block them entirely because he had not yet heard one voice in particular.

Uncomfortably, he rolled onto his side and curled into a miserable ball while he waited for the various aches and pains to subside. He closed his eyes and focused on trying to sort out the various problems he was facing when several more problems presented themselves in the form of Erin yelping, the kids fretting and a confused voice reaching out to him with complaints of it's own. A'dam? Where are we? My hide itches and hurts and I am hungry. The familiar pale form of his Blue made it's way over alongside Plyath as A'dam forced himself up to try and take charge of things. Luckily, healers were already there to help Erin and as much as he wanted to do something to help, he also knew he'd just be in the way. The kids, however, could be useful and he gathered them both to him. He squintedagainst the light of the sun as he held Selisa to calm her. Saelit would be alright but he didn't really need either of them hanging around watching this.

Glancing around for answers did actually supply him with one. "Saelit, why don't you take your sister go get some water and get cleaned up. When you're done you can bring some water back here for Erin." He told them, not including himself in that statement if only because Saelit didn't like him much and A'dam could go get water for himself later. For now, however, he had to be there for Erin, even if he didn't have any idea what use he would be considering he could barely think past the pounding in his head that was getting gradually worse with each passing moment.

11 Re: Rude Awakening, Part II on Tue Feb 12, 2013 2:16 pm


Selisa clung to A'dam, whimpering in fear until her brother went over to her. Amazingly enough, the boy didn't argue. In fact, he responded instantly to what his adoptive father had to say, which was likely a nice change of pace. Either way, he paused before leaving and nodded to him, "Sure, we'll bring water back," he promised before heading out with his sister as healers crowded around his mother.

When they were far enough away, Selisa slowly started to calm down a little bit. "Is mommy going to be okay?"

"Yeah, Dad's with her." Saelit responded, not even thinking about it. In fact, his term caused both him and his sister to pause. He'd never called A'dam that before. Maybe it was the new respect he held for the man after watching him take whips from those aliens in order to protect them.

Luckily, his sister didn't say anything but just nodded her head and walked with him. Before long they managed to get drinks of water for themselves as well as cleaned up a bit. It took a little longer, seeing as Saelit had to help his sister a bit. When they were done, he told his sister to wait for him while he ran and asked if he could get two extra glasses of water for his parents. Since they were busy and unable to get the water themselves right then. When he had them, he walked back to where Erin and A'dam were.

By this point, Erin was propped up with her back against Plyath (who moved in the second the healers handed over the infant and she was given the okay to do so). Although, the woman was exhausted, she was rather worried about her mate. After all, she could see he was in pain. When she looked up, she noticed their kids coming back as Saelit went to had a glass to her first. She shook her head and nodded towards A'dam. Sure she had a headache and was exhausted from giving birth, and rather thirsty, but her mate had an even worse headache with the sound of dragons complaining.

"Here, we got you some water too," he told A'dam as he held the glass out. Selisa, naturally, was over by Erin and looking at the baby.

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