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» NPC Candidates
by Kestrana Thu Nov 08, 2018 12:13 pm

» 3941.03.14 - Fort Weyr/Hold - Settling into Hiding {Silvara, T'lon, Sim, Alyena, H'lee}
by Simmarrah Fri May 20, 2016 7:23 pm

» Poll: DLG or books?
by Simmarrah Fri May 20, 2016 5:21 pm

» Threads to rp
by Silvara Mon Mar 14, 2016 7:34 pm

» New posting rules
by Alina Mon Mar 14, 2016 2:30 pm

» 2789.07.01 - It's back! the future? {T'lon, Silvara, Alina, H'lee}
by Kestrana Sun Mar 13, 2016 7:36 pm

» 2759.05.21 - Boys will be boys {T'lon, H'lee}
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» 2765.09.23 - Halfway there {T'lon, H'lee}
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» 3941.04.07 - Candidate Interviews
by Simmarrah Wed Feb 04, 2015 3:15 pm

» 3941.04.14-15 - Candidate Lesson #7 - Touching
by Kestrana Sun Feb 01, 2015 8:59 pm

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All canon Pern content copyright to Anne McCaffrey. All non-canon Pern content copyright Kestrana. All draconic sprites/button images copyright to various artists (many images from Pern book covers; dragon sprite from "Dragonlady" fantasy portrait of Anne McCaffrey). All original characters copyright of their gamers.

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H'lee was as anxious as any other dragonrider.  He was one of the few who had remained in the Weyrs after Thread had been permanently stopped; as a Weyrlingmaster, he was one of the few who legitimately continued to reside there.  Unfortunately, his position as trainer of new dragonriders also made him one of the biggest targets in the genocide that had been instigated against the Weyrs and their inhabitants.  Early on in the war, he and Seeth had been the target of an attack when he had gone to help the mother of his first child move back to the Weyr.  The pair had barely escaped with their lives, and that of his daughter; Nysa (the girl's mother) and her lover were not so lucky.  The attackers had come armed with flamethrowers and bottles of acid; H'lee and his brown were on the receiving end of acid hand grenades, which had put them out of commission for several weeks, and Nylee received a couple of mild burns on her hands.  After that, his adoptive mother and Weyrwoman had forbidden him from leaving the Weyr.  They had long since brought all the weyrlings back to their respective Weyrs, and all his other family were already in the Weyrs as well, so he had no reason to disobey.

Sikra's dragon was getting egg-heavy with her latest clutch when a gold firelizard arrived with a message and attached herself, literally, to H'lee.  Messages by firelizard weren't unusual, but the level of sheer exhaustion this one exhibited was.  She could barely even stir herself to eat once he slipped the message from her collar.  The brownrider was with Lery and their son when the firelizard arrived, and Sikra had been resting on the couch; Sh'zon's bronze had continued to fly her gold and she often tired of his overbearing attitude, so she'd hide out "in meetings" with the Headwoman to avoid him.  H'lee glanced at the two women, who frowned and shook their heads, also not recognizing the little gold.  He tugged the message from her collar and his eyes widened when he unrolled it to find several sheets of the paper which had become popular in recent years.

"Pretty long message," he murmured.  Lery rummaged up some meat to feed the firelizard while he started to read the message.  "Jays..." he whispered, growing pale under his tan and his eyes widening.  Sikra looked at him sharply, and he numbly passed the top sheet to her and continued to read.

H'lee -
You are the only one of whom I could find a picture to use to send Reese back to, so I hope you'll get this and you'll be in a position to do something.  I've enclosed all of the relevant research and information to prove what I have to tell you, so I'll be brief here: the year is 3941, Thread has returned and there are no dragonriders left, and precious few firelizards.
Please, you have to do something, we don't have the resources to stop it from destroying Pern.

Learyam (27th great grandson of your Learyam)

Several of the additional sheets of paper contained astronomical charts showing how the Red Star's orbit had restabilized with a new path through the Oort cloud and the asteroid belt that separated Pern from the next planet in the system.  The new orbit was shorter and rounder than the old, which had the unfortunate side effect of increasing the frequency of Passes: Thread fell for four years with Intervals lasting 22 years.

The other papers were odd-sized: newspaper articles.  Some were dated from the last several months, but others were dated a few weeks into the future; one was dated the day that Sikra's clutch was due to be laid.  This is what had caused H'lee to blanch; it talked about how all of the dragonriders and their dragons, down to unhatched eggs, had been destroyed by one of the anti-Weyr factions.  Later articles were tattered, some were scorched around the edges as though they'd been pulled from a fire, but they talked about how those who supported the Weyrs were put to death or banished to the islands as criminals, and how the firelizards and dragonets had also been targeted until the species was virtually wiped out.

"Do you suppose this is a fake? A prank to demoralize us?" Sikra asked softly as Lery finished reading it over.  H'lee, although his specialty was tanning, was somewhat familiar with the processes of papermaking, since they'd replaced leather as a writing medium.

"It could be," he muttered, fingering some of the damaged papers.  "This sort of damage could be faked.  But that," he jerked his chin at the exhausted firelizard who was a wraith of what a gold should be, "that would be hard to fake, and impossible to produce without the willing cooperation of the firelizard.  I think it's real.  I think she was sent between time to bring us this."

The three of them sifted through the message again while Lerane worked on an assignment after H'lee succeeded in coaxing Reese, the firelizard, to eat something before she resumed her nap.  After some discussion, they decided to keep this among the four of them for the moment.  Sh'zon was already on the verge of trying to use dragonriders to flame locations suspected to be housing members of the more extreme anti-Weyr factions; this information would push him over the edge.

Finally, Lery sighed.  "The only answer I can see is for you to go between time with Reesteth," she frowned for a moment, looking at the miniature queen napping on the table, before her lips quirked into a smile, "into the future, past the point of where these events took place. Before she gets so egg-heavy she can't go, just...just in case."

H'lee frowned.  "Not alone.  You should take the whole Weyr.  If Thread is returning, you'll need more than just one clutch of weyrlings.  Besides, that gives you more backup in case something goes wrong."

Moments after he made that statement, someone pounded on the door.  They swiftly slipped the papers underneath another stack on the desk while Lery went to answer.  Lery squawked in surprise and there was a greeat deal of whispering at the door before the Headwoman closed it and returned.  "You look like you've seen a ghost," Sikra said.

"You could say that.  I saw you."  Sikra and H'lee stared at her.  "You said that we had to wait until after the eggs were laid and take them forward, one to each Weyr, and only H'lee could go with them.  You tried to take the whole Weyr, and the anti-Weyr factions were waiting for you and killed everyone when you arrived; you and H'lee barely escaped, and H'lee died before they could complete the journey back.  Judging by how you looked just now, I don't think you'll live longer than it takes to go far enough between times to keep your death from affecting us in the now.  She gave me this," and she handed them another piece of paper.

H'lee snatched it.  "That' handwriting," he said.  "Reesteth must appear to still be egg-heavy when they come, otherwise they'll hunt us down through time.  If too many adult riders come through, they'll hunt us down.  One or two adult riders may be able to escape without arousing suspicion, but not more," he read.  "Jays..."  He dropped heavily onto the couch and the three of them stared at each other for several minutes, trying to absorb the shock.

He looked at the latest note again.  "It doesn't say anything about non-riders.  If we take the eggs that far into the future, and if this is all true, then how do we find Candidates with only one or two riders to make the rounds?  And she said to spread the eggs around the Weyrs...I assume the better to hide them.  But this article," he pulled the one about the slaughter of all the riders out, "says that this happens the day before she's due to clutch.  How do we..."  He trailed off, looking at Sikra's face.

"I go between times for a couple of days so she clutches early.  I hide...somewhere.  Somewhen.  A week.  Lessa went 450 years and was unconscious for 2 days, then she came back forward in shorter jumps, but it still took two days.  If you're going triple'll have to take all the eggs at once, or we have to involve more people."

H'lee thought for a minute.  "Sikra, what if you and I both go?  Then you return to the same moment we left?  That will give Reesteth the time and give us a way to get the eggs forward relatively easily."

The older woman rubbed her forehead.  Lery piped up. "You should have some non-riders with you. People who know how to handle a Weyr."

"People like you, perhaps?" H'lee quirked a smile.  He looked at the notes again.  "But we won't have much room.  Four adult passengers, tops?  Or maybe six?  I'd really rather have at least one other rider with me on this venture, and if it can't be you, Sikra, let it be Silvara."

"What if there's no gold in the clutch, though?" Sikra pointed out, avoiding the question about her daughter for the moment.

H'lee chuckled.  "And in all the years since I became a Weyrlingmaster, when have you known me to be wrong about the contents of a clutch, even before they're laid?  There will be a gold."  The two women rolled their eyes in exasperation, although there was truth to what he said; although, in truth, it was because he could always coax Silv into telling him what was in the clutch so he could take wagers (she wouldn't participate, and everyone else had long since learned not to bet against him).  "I wish we could bring more, keep a larger gene pool, but I don't know how.  Maybe a little judicious timing it when she's of age...I don't know.  And then there's the question of how to defend against Thread with only one clutch's worth of hatchlings..."

"What about not going so far forward, give yourself a couple generations to build up?" Lery asked.

"No, if we come back before Thread returns, the anti-Weyr crowd will still be trying to kill us.  We'll have to wait until after Thread comes back.  Although...if we have to wait until then anyway, I wonder why we can't bring the whole Weyr forward..."

"Because the anti-Weyr crowd would notice that the entire Weyr went somewhere," Sikra pointed out logically.  "They would have to assume we timed it; it's an ability we couldn't really hide after Ruth led the Weyrs in altering the Red Star's orbit. They'd watch the Weyrs for us to reappear in the future. They've been spreading lies about us for twenty years now, they'd have no shortage of volunteers.  Another 1,200 years without anyone to dispute their propaganda, they might not even be willing to believe that Thread returned."

"Or they believe one of their technologies will be able to save them," the brownrider pointed out dryly.  There'd been a great deal of grumbling among Crafters and dragonriders, and even some holdfolk, about the technological breakthroughs since AIVAS had retired.  Those who embraced it thought it could solve every problem and that nothing anyone had ever done could not be improved by it.  "About Silvara..."

Sikra sighed heavily.  "Alright, alright.  But only if she agrees to it.  I'll have Reesteth call her..."  The Weyrwoman paused to relay the message through her dragon.  "If you're so sure there's going to be a gold in the clutch, you'll need a bronze to keep her in line.  No offense to Seeth, but he just doesn't have the power to keep a gold under control once she's over six months of age."

H'lee winced.  He hadn't thought about that.  "Maybe I shouldn't go, we should just send T'lon," he suggested, a little reluctantly.

Both women shook their heads emphatically.  "No--" they grinned at each other and Lery waved to Sikra, who continued.  "No, T'lon's a good man and he does well with the weyrlings, but you're the one who studied Threadfall charts and maneuvers, even though it was no longer required of you when you were in training.  You have to go.  Maybe we should send you and T'lon and not Silvara," the goldrider's voice was hesitant on that last.  Silvara was her daughter, and the idea of the young woman being killed out of hand like the rest of them didn't sit well with her.

H'lee hummed to himself for a minute, thinking.  "What about sending him 'on an errand' now?  You don't have to tell anyone what the errand was.  When he doesn't return, we can mount a search for him and when no one finds him, everyone will assume that either he was killed or got lost between times?  We send him ahead to meet us.  We can't do that too many times, maybe once more, as though we're trying to complete whatever errand he was sent on."

The older woman cringed.  "I don't like it," she said flatly.  "But I don't see how else we can sneak T'lon out without raising suspicions.  And no, no more riders after him.  This is going to be hard enough to keep a secret as it is.  And this all assuming he agrees to run away.  Your friend isn't exactly known for avoiding fights," she finished with a raised eyebrow.  H'lee made a face, but had to agree.  Through Roth via Seeth, he asked T'lon to join them.

After Silvara and T'lon arrived, they handed the two riders the messages and let them read them.  There was nothing else to do then but wait for their responses.

"H'lee, darling, if you're expecting Alina and Allie to come along," Lery chimed in sweetly, "I would suggest you invite her up and ask her."  Lery and Alina got along just fine, which was a blessing for H'lee, since he cared for both of them, as well as their children.  However, he occasionally forgot that neither woman would necessarily just go along with whatever he decided.  H'lee reddened slightly and coughed; Sikra smiled, amused.  He reached out to Seeth again and asked him to convey to T'lon and Silv for one of them to bring Alina with them.

#Hlee #Tlon #Silvara #Alina #Site-Main-Plot
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Last edited by Kestrana on Sun Feb 22, 2015 5:10 pm; edited 6 times in total


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Silvara blinked when she was summoned to H'lee's weyr by her mother's dragon but shrugged it off and headed that way knowing he would not call for her unless it was important. She was glad that Sikra was able to spend time with H'lee due to his being mated to Lery even if they had not officially married. Moving out of her weyr and down the hall to head to H'lees's. Once at his door she knocked even as she walked in smiling slightly at her family. The smile faded as she picked up on their emotions and dread filled her belly.

"What is going on?"

Once they handed her the papers she knew. Knew exactly why they were worried but more then that she "Saw" everything her eyes wide and unseeing. Till her legs gave out and she fell to the floor gasping for breath as she had dropped the papers in the fall. She quickly scooted back away from them not wanting to be pulled back into the emotional image storm they kicked off in her mind due to her gifts. Flashes of what was to come and the knowing that her mother and every one else at the weyr was going to die except maybe a handful if they could escape through time. As well as very vivid images of islands off the east coast. Her head full of images and emotions that she found hard to make seance of beyond knowing that what they chose to do now would change everything or nothing. It scared her greatly even as she looked up at her mother and the others.
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Last edited by Silvara on Sat Mar 12, 2016 1:44 pm; edited 1 time in total


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Of the other four in the room, Lerane had never witnessed his Aunt Silv experience one of her visions, particularly not one so vivid as this one.  Neither of his parents had sent him out of the room once they'd started reading the papers: he was going on 15 and they'd deemed him old enough to hear about what was going on, especially since he was of Candidate age.  But Silv's fit was unexpected.  He moved out of the way as his parents reacted to her.

It had been a while since H'lee had seen Silv get such a strong hit off anything.  He leapt forward when he saw her knees start to buckle and tried to catch her arms so she didn't hit the floor too hard.  After she was safely on the floor, he carefully scooped up the papers while Sikra went and sat down with her.  He deposited the papers on the end table next to the gold firelizard.

Lery had been startled by Silv's unexpected reaction to the papers, but after a moment, she headed for the kitchenette and started rummaging around.  She pulled out another mug and splashed some wine into it and carried it over to the pair on the floor.  She held it out for Silvara.

H'lee, meanwhile, noticed Lerane standing off to the side and went over, grabbing a couple chairs as he moved across the room.  He dropped one in front of his son and sat himself down in the other.  "Every time this happens, I'm so glad it's not me.  Best thing I can do when Mother's around is get out of the way."

"What...what happened?" Lerane asked.

"Sometimes, your Aunt Silv can pick up things when she touches something belonging to someone else.  It might be an emotion, or sometimes she even Sees images related to the object she touches.  It's more likely to happen when the objects has a lot of emotional or historical significance.  I should have realized that these would fall in that category," the last was muttered, almost to himself as he ran a hand through his hair and watched the women try to straighten things out.

After a few more minutes, he cleared his throat.  Sikra was still fussing over her daughter.  "Silv...sis...I'm sorry.  I didn't mean for that to happen, but...since it did...what did you See?  Anything that can help us?"  Sikra glared at him for being so callous, but Lery nodded.  Lerane make a small choking noise.

"I know it seems harsh, but it's easier for her to recall the memories when they're fresh," Lery said, ostensibly to her son to explain H'lee's questions.  More than once, the Headwoman had availed herself of Silv's visions to help solve the occasional problem in the Weyr, so even though she hadn't seen this level of reaction, she had some experience with it.

When Roth conveyed first the message to meet in H'lee's weyr, and second the message to bring Alina along, T'lon was a bit annoyed.  He was in the middle of pruning the tomato vines to direct the plants' energies toward the green fruits instead of putting out suckers.  In another couple of fortnights, if the warm weather held, the pale flesh would brighten to yellows and reds, or darken to purples, depending on the variety.  Personally, the bronzerider preferred the bite-sized, candy-like yellow cherry tomatoes to the larger, meatier reds and purples.

Grumbling to himself, he finished pinching the last suckers off the plant he was tending and paused for a moment to ride the winds, checking for storm clouds or cooling breezes.  Smiling as he returned to himself, he caressed one of the fruits.  "Looks like good weather for another week, at least," he murmured.  He wiped his hands on a damp cloth and stomped dirt from his boots as he left the garden and roused his gold dragonet Meesha from sleep on the fence, who promptly scolded him for doing so.

With the gold in tow, T'lon headed for the Lower Caverns where he would undoubtedly find Alina tending to things while Lery met with the Weyrwoman.  After collecting the Assistant Headwoman and giving her a hand up onto Roth's back, the dragon lurched into the air, depositing his passengers on the ledge of H'lee's weyr before returning to the heights to resume his interrupted nap.

Upon arriving in his friend's weyr, he was alarmed at the chaos that was ensuing.  He leapt forward to help stop Silvara's collapse, although he ruefully realized that his sweat-slicked arms probably encouraged her fall rather than slowing it.  He scrambled out of the way as the other women descended upon the bluerider.

Meesha found the scene entertaining and performed some aerial acrobatics before spotting the meatrolls that the others had been eating before the arrival of the message.  She was about to make a pass at stealing one when T'lon picked up the papers, drawing her attention to the other gold in the room.  Giving a surprised and curious chirp, the dragonet dropped to the table and strutted up to the unfamiliar firelizard - who dozed on, completely oblivious to the newcomers.  Meesha was about to nip the stranger when a subtle crackle, like static, and a burst of fury emanated from her master.  Squawking alarm, the dragonet lofted herself into the air again and darted to H'lee, trying to draw the man's attention to her bonded before something happened.

Meanwhile, T'lon's hair began to stand up on end, as though someone had rubbed it with a sheet of the plastic he and the other agronomists used to extend the growing season for their gardens. The slightly humid air began to crackle with energy and condense around him and on the glassware in the room as he lost some control over his weather-witching under the emotional strain he was experiencing while reading the papers. He was broadcasting his fury, though for the moment, it was only discernable to those in the room, but soon, any empath in the Weyr would be able to sense it.
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Last edited by Kestrana on Sat Mar 12, 2016 3:58 pm; edited 2 times in total


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Silvara took several slow, shuddering breaths trying to pull herself together even as she took the cup of wine offered her to sip at. She leaned into her mother’s touch, needing that support but also knowing that she would not have her mother for as long in her life as she would like. It was a gut-wrenching thought, to say the least.

At H’lee’s words, she looked to him blinking a few times, trying to figure out what to say and HOW to say it. With so many images swirling around in her mind’s eye; the slaughter of the weyrs, the exile of those still loyal to the weyrs, the madness of the holders, the awakening of the gifts and the chaos that caused, the holders trying to wipe out all traces of dragons and firelizards as well as trying to make them out to be monsters, the dreaded return of Thread. That last gripped her the most as it came with the most fear attached to it since those in the time of these writings had never known Thread since it was nothing more than a very old story from days long lost and a fear long forgotten not a present threat to their lives and the world.

Then T’lon’s own anger and antics cut across her senses making her snap out of her stupor like a slap to the face. She realized that if something was not done that he was likely to damage the papers and as much as she did not want those items near her they needed to be kept safe. So without much thought she channeled a careful stream of water and air to hit him first in the face then down the back with water that left ice crystals on his skin.

“T’lon set the papers down and breath and get your companion under control of I will.”

The last was said in a very soft voice that did not bode well for T’lon if he did not comply. She was not in a state to be kind right now and his temper would not help them with what was needed. She was shaking lightly as she remained focused on him for a few seconds more before trying to breath in and out closing her eyes before turning back to H’lee.

“I saw… the end of the weyrs… the exile of the faithful, the destruction of firelizard nests, the awakening of the gifts amongst the hold folk, the chaos of that awakening, the wars between holds for dominance, and… the return of thread… It’s bad H’lee… it’s really, really, really bad…”

As she spoke her voice ended in little more of a whisper of fear and sorrow. Her shoulders shaking from all of the emotions and the knowing that so much death was awaiting them unless they could find a way out of the trap at least for a few. Admittedly her thoughts were of getting H’lee, T’lon, Alina, Levy, and several other riders from each of the other weyrs and as many weyr folk to the future as they could do so safely as well as many clutches of eggs they could manage. Her mind already reaching out to the other weyrs to gage how many queens were with eggs and which could be timed forwards. She had not thought for her own sake feeling that she would die here with her mother and the rest of the weyr for she could not see the what good an undersized blue and asexual rider could be in the chaos to come.
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H'lee smiled wanly at T'lon and Alina as they came in, expanding the greeting to a hug for his other mate.  He gestured at the papers, then shrugged, since T'lon had already scooped them up.  "Guess you'll get to see them next," he said gruffly before plunking back down in the chair next to Lerane.

About the time Silv "slapped" his friend, H'lee had just dodged one of Meesha's divebombs.  Fending off the little gold with one arm, the Weyrlingmaster once again went to the rescue of the papers, snatching them away from T'lon and cursing the painful shock he received in the process.  "T'lon, get a grip, man!" he snapped, "I wouldn't have asked you up here if I thought you were going to go homicidal."

With a heavy heart, H'lee practically flung the papers on the counter, out of harm's way near Alina.  He wasn't terribly surprised at how vague his adopted sister's descriptions were.  It was a lot of information to process, and after all, everything they really needed to know was on those pages, in black and white.  Silv could add color to the accounts, describe events in greater detail; maybe those things would be useful, maybe not.  For him, the important thing was that her reaction was genuine and her statements reinforced what was written on the papers.  With a look that said, Sometimes, I hate it when I'm right, H'lee addressed the Weyrwoman softly, "Well, if there was still any doubt, I think we can rule this out as a trick of the AWs to demoralize the Weyrs."

T'lon yelped in surprise at the jet of icy water and air and nearly dropped the already-haphazardly arranged papers on the floor again when H'lee yanked them away from him.  The physical rebuke as well as his best friend's curse and subsequent reprimand brought him back to himself and he locked down control of his abilities. After all, if he did something rash now, it would undo all the good work he'd done in the garden that morning.  With a shuddering breath, he dissipated the energy.

With everyone calm again, more or less, H'lee spoke.  "We need to go between time.  Dragons are needed in the future to carry on their ancient duty.  But we can't take all the Weyrs, like Lessa did."  He looked aggrieved.  "Apparently, we tried that, and Sikra came back far enough in time to tell us not to do that.  And no, don't ask me what kind of paradox that will create, because I don't know."  He gestured at the various chairs around the room, inviting everyone to sit down before he continued. In addition, he distributed liberal amounts of wine, even to Lerane; he knew he needed it, and he suspected by the time they were finished hashing out a plan, the others would, too.

He outlined the basic plan that he, Sikra, and Lery had come up with: immediately send T'lon between to the Weyr 1,200 years in the future, and he'd take Nylee and one other passenger with him; now they could use Silvara's Sight into the future from the papers to give him a visual. In a few days, after they'd let enough time pass to lend credence to T'lon's disappearance (and presumed death at the hands of the AWs), Sikra, H'lee, and Silvara would start the trek forward themselves with 2-3 passengers each, including Lerane, Lery, Alina, and Allie.  Someone muttered about H'lee stacking the deck with his loved ones; the Weyrlingmaster shrugged and asked if they had any other suggestions.  "If someone can think of a way to sneak a few more adult riders and passengers along, I'm all ears.  But we have to be careful about it!"  Reesteth would clutch on the sands of the future Weyr, and then she and Sikra would return to the same time they left to deflect suspicion.

H'lee felt like they'd asked and answered the majority of show-stopping questions already: how to ensure genetic diversity, how to go unnoticed in this future, and so on.  But he also acknowledged that more minds working on the problem might spot other flaws.  He certainly didn't consider himself omnipotent and incapable of making mistakes, like so many bronzeriders did.  He briefly offered thanks that T'lon wasn't that way; of course, being able to tell when someone is lying makes it hard to believe in the infallibility of other people, let alone oneself.
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Silvara slowly got up from the floor and with Sikra’s help moved to one of the chairs to sit looking to her brother and the others in the chamber. Listening as H’lee outlined the basic plan that he, Sikra and Lery had made so far. She nodded at the idea of sending T’lon forwards with a couple of others with him thinking that several of the other weyrs might be able to pull off the same thing if they made the reason for their heading out to somewhere else believable, maybe looking for another source of food and foul weather if not AW attacks would also work. She was sure H’lee or one of the others would point that out at some point so focused on other matters.

“We should contact the other Weyrs and try and get at least one other clutch to the future. All the queens are laying fewer eggs and if we are to have any chance of rebuilding all the weyrs from scratch we will need more than one Gold dragoness. We will need to be careful though… we can’t let “Him” get wind of any of this.”

The way she said him made it sound like something far worse than slime. She was referring to the current Weyrleader and her mother’s current unwanted mate. He would only use this to start all-out war which would lose them everything. Her thoughts drifted some as she nibbled on her bottom lip trying to sort out what else would need to be done. Her eyes taking in the exhausted little gold and reaching out to gently caress the poor creature, hoping it would recover quickly and be all right.

“Could we possibly time jump several rounds of people forwards with no one being the wiser? I know we can’t save all of the riders but the more of the non-riders we can send ahead the better off we would be. Especially if we can get two or three clutches of eggs on the sands in the future since searching for candidates will be a great deal harder.”

With that she let her voice die away again her mind drifting trying to figure out who else should go with H’lee and T’lon among the riders here to the future to stay vs those who would go to help set things up then return to face their fate. It was a grim thought but there was no use to try and deny what was to happen. Silv’s eyes strayed to her mother feeling like a knife was cutting her heart out. She was just glad that H’lee and the others in this room would get free of this trap.
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H'lee made a face when Silvara reminded them that they had to somehow keep Sh'zon from finding out about this.  And Sh'zon wasn't the only one.  There were riders in every Weyr who felt the same, that the only way to stop the attacks was to kill those who perpetrated attacks on the dragons and riders.  Sometimes, H'lee agreed with them; now was one of those times.  But unlike these others, H'lee knew that mass murder - and that's what it would be - wouldn't help the Weyrs' reputations, no matter how many times they tried to explain that it was preemptive, to protect themselves.  And this journal wouldn't be proof - maybe it was proof enough for the dragonriders, but non-Weyrfolk wouldn't believe it.

The Weyrlingmaster shook his head at the idea of taking larger numbers of Weyrfolk forward.  "It's a good thought, but how could we pull it off?  It'll take a week for us to go forward and back.  Even though we'd be timing it so it wouldn't seem like that long for the people here, it'll be exhausting for the dragons.  Not to mention, how do we hide and care for so many people once we're there?  Maybe we could come back and get them after we've found a safe place to hole up and then time it back here to take some more forward periodically?"

Sikra looked nervous about the idea.  "We know the AWs have been slipping spies into our ranks for a long time.  I think we know who all of them are here at Fort, but I don't know about the other Weyrs.  I think we can trust anyone under the age of 10 or whose parents are both dragonriders, and anyone who has been in the Weyrs for 20 years or more, but anyone newer than that, I wouldn't trust.  Unfortunately, that eliminates a lot of the Candidate-age kids.  And the more of those folk we take, the harder it'll be to keep HIM from finding out what's going on."

T'lon chimed in, as well.  "I think it's a good idea to take more forward.  There's no telling what kind of shape the Weyrs are in; most of them are built in volcanic calderas, which for all we know have experienced some kind of eruption in the intervening 1,200 years.  The more people we have who know how a Weyr works, the better off we'll be.  We'll just have to be careful about who we take.  And taking folk who have been in the Weyr for longer will help with keeping the new Weyrs running smoothly."

"That's all fine and dandy," H'lee replied, a little waspishly, "but it still doesn't address the question of how we get that many more people forward without alerting anyone to what we're doing or completely exhausting the dragons!"

Just then, a wave of grief poured into the riders through their dragons, and the Weyr echoed with the keening of mourning dragons.  Shortly prior to Reese's arrival, the Weyrlingmaster, the Weyrwoman, and the Headwoman had been discussing the sickness at Telgar Weyr.  Their information was vague and they'd been discussing sending a couple of riders with Healers to investigate and assist.  The first rider to fall ill had just died and his dragon had gone between forever.

This was hardly the first death they had experienced in the last couple of years, so the sudden change in demeanor of the riders was not surprising for the non-riders in the room.  However, it would undoubtedly result in Sh'zon bursting into the room unannounced, where he would find the exhausted, unfamiliar firelizard and the papers.  And for the moment at least, the riders in the room were useless, so it would be up to Lerane and Alina to hide the evidence - evidence which would send the Weyrleader spiralling into an out-of-control, anguish-fueled rage.

Anxiously, Lerane scooped up the slumbering firelizard and tucked her into one of the cabinets.  He'd leave the papers to Alina, since she was the last one to read them.

Per discussion with Alina, I'll be NPC'ing her character for now to keep things moving forward.

Alina returned her mate's hug when she entered his weyr behind T'lon and smiled at him affectionately. She started to try to read the papers over T'lon's shoulder -- or rather, elbow -- but he was so absorbed that it was basically impossible for her to keep up and she stepped back out of the way and started to observe the tableau before her. With an exasperated shout, she ducked Meesha's divebomb toward H'lee and moved out of the way, near the kitchenette. Muttering to herself about needing a glass of wine, she poured one and pulled the stack of papers over to read. She'd only skimmed the first couple, growing pale at the information written, when the keening started.

Cursing softly, the Assistant Headwoman rapidly jogged the stack of papers. It just so happened, since she'd known she was going to come up here anyway, that she had an inventory sheet with her. She slapped it on top of the papers and sat down next to Lery, as though they had been reviewing it with Sikra. Silvara was essentially the only odd one out - it was H'lee's weyr, Lerane was his son; Lery, Sikra, and Alina could pretend to have been going over the inventory sheet, and Alina planned to say she'd asked T'lon to bring her up.

At least they'd have a couple of minutes before Sh'zon recovered from the shock and took time to ask his dragon where his mate was so he could come harangue her.
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