S'vor and brown Cleveath
The Road So Far!
It all began at Jessaf Hold, in the protectorate of Madellon Weyr, for Savorek – a young boy of 14 Turns, dreaming of becoming a brown rider.
Savorek was born to unusual privilege – a grandson of Winstone, Lord of mighty Jessaf Hold. Savorek didn't scramble for the attention of the young Search rider, Garlan, who came to Jessaf in early 102 seeking candidates for Madellon Weyr's latest clutch. But as a scion of the Hold, Savorek was among the party welcoming the green rider to Jessaf – and, in due course, became the focus of her dragon Hushith's attention. Lord Winstone wasn't enthusiastic about Savorek becoming a candidate – while conceding that he could spare a younger grandchild. And with Winstone's admonition that he Impress a bronze – or a brown at the very least – ringing in his ears, Savorek left to begin his candidacy at Madellon Weyr.
As a candidate, Savorek was assigned a bunkmate – Martom, a confident young Weyrbred lad, who would soon become his closest friend in the Weyr. He also got to know many of his fellow candidates, including the Weyrbred twins Leover and Leoguy; Zielaph, the nephew of a Madellon bronze rider; and Chiliam, a good-natured highborn lad from Kellad.
But he also made an enemy – Gydeton, the blustering, entitled son of Lord Meturvian of Kellad – who took a firm disliking to Savorek! Backed up by his crony Varell, Gydeton became the thorn in Savorek's side throughout the sevendays of candidacy.
The dragons' hum woke Martom and Savorek on 102.03.17. Following a brief run-in with Gydeton, the pair joined the rest of the candidates for a morning lecture. The Weyrlingmaster, L'stev, gave the whole cohort – increased by three late Searchees to a total of thirty-five – strict instructions about pre-Hatching preparations, including eating, drinking, bathing – and in some cases, getting a decent haircut – and then turned the group loose for the morning. Before Savorek left, Martom – keen to prove himself by Impressing on his first attempt – asked him for help procuring some additional confidence in the form of some alcohol.
The one-armed green rider
Immediately on leaving the candidate barracks, Savorek was flagged down by M'shen – a green rider with only one arm. But whatever he wanted, Savorek never discovered, after making a mean-spirited joke about M'shen's missing hand that – not unreasonably – made the green rider take against him.
Respecting his elders
In the Weyr's kitchen gardens, Savorek encountered R'hren, a former Weyrleader of Madellon, now peacefully retired to potter among his beloved plants. R'hren asked Savorek to help him track down the ingredients for a warming salve to help his elderly bronze, Staamath, with his arthritic forepaws. Savorek duly located the components of R'hren's salve, winning the old bronze rider's approval in the process.
Savorek met G'kalte – a brown rider and Wingsecond, not to mention Weyrwoman Valonna's weyrmate – in the Bowl, and was quickly recruited by him to help with a diplomatic matter. G'kalte had been tasked with delivering two gifts from Valonna to her Southern counterpart Weyrwoman Karika – but he'd been summoned away to collect his own grandmother, Lady Coffleby, for the Hatching.
He asked Savorek to figure out which of the seven Southern dragons visiting Madellon were the correct pair to hand over Karika's gifts. And while G'kalte's brown, Archidath, offered Savorek some intelligence on the Southern seven, his advice was somewhat garbled! Nonetheless, Savorek unravelled Archidath's confusing suggestions and got the right packages to the right dragons – without being growled at!
A Masterful order
In the dining hall, Savorek met his fellow candidate Zielaph, who'd been tasked by his somewhat dim uncle, bronze rider Fr'ton, with delivering a complicated drinks order to a group of Master Crafters. Zielaph had information about their names, beverages, crafts, and fire-lizards – but not in any sensible order!
Luckily for him, Savorek solved the puzzle of Fr'ton's confusing notes adeptly, delivering the correct drinks to the correct Masters, and earning a handsome tip in the process. Savorek even shared the largesse with Zielaph, who then introduced him to Fr'ton – who, having Impressed a bronze in spite of his less than boundless promise, gave Savorek a certain confidence in his own prospects!
A rising problem
Savorek encountered both Soleigh, whose green Bristath was preparing to rise near the lake, and her weyrmate Maris, who was getting very drunk in the dining hall on account of her fears that Soleigh was having an affair with a blue rider, G'tron. Savorek's intervention successfully got rid of G'tron, whose Imdoth was very sweet indeed on Bristath, from the mating flight – not to mention G'pellas, another blue rider, needed in the Harper ensemble – and reconciled the two green riders.
Madellon's kitchen was the source of the hotfruit R'hren had sent Savorek to find for his warming salve. Headwoman Crauva handed one over immediately he asked for it, pleased to be helping such an august figure as the old Weyrleader.
Overkeen to get his hands on the last bubbly pie in the dining hall, Savorek took it – forcibly – from a small child. Not the nicest thing to do – but mmm, pie...
Eggs and baskets
A visit to the Archives led to a meeting with Tarshe, Madellon's Weyrwoman Second. When Savorek expressed an interested in looking up some Weyr records, Tarshe offered him the loan of a glowbasket – on the proviso that he return it afterwards. Which – mindful of not offending such an important personage of the Weyr – Savorek did!
Weyrbrat by name...
A run-in with a Weyrbrat – Terzon, whom Gydeton had paid to cause Savorek trouble – resulted in an unfortunate public incident. All too aware of being shaken down, Savorek gave the kid a shove – in front of a number of witnesses – doing nothing for his reputation!
A blue lady
Coming across T'gala, Pern's only female blue rider, bathing her Heppeth in the lake, Savorek offered his assistance – which T'gala gladly accepted.
A slithery customer
Early in the day, Savorek found out about a secret way into the Hatching Ground via storeroom that might allow him a sneaky peek at the eggs before the Hatching. Successfully entering the combination to the lock on the storeroom door, and suitably equipped with a glowbasket, he crawled into a confusing maze of passages.
By a stroke of ill luck, Savorek strayed into tunnel snake territory! A huge, aggressive, and potently venomous female tunnel-snake guarded the exit to the Hatching ground. Savorek was lucky to avoid being bitten. But ultimately he evaded the snake, dodging past it and slipping out onto the Hatching Sands.
Having survived his encounter with the tunnel-snake, Savorek approached the clutch – but not stealthily enough! His presence woke Shimpath from her doze, and she and Muzzanth chased Savorek off the sands!
When it came to the Hatching, Savorek had an excruciatingly long wait before the very large dark grey egg Hatched to reveal the deep turned-earth brown dragonet who would choose him, naming himself Cleveath.
A friend bereft
But to Savorek's dismay, Martom wasn't as fortunate. No dragonet showed an interest in him, and he was left among the candidates remaining unmatched at the end of the Hatching.
Whatever happened to Gydeton?
For Gydeton, getting on Savorek's bad side proved to be an exceptionally poor choice. Savorek dosed Gydeton's clean underfurs with hotfruit before the Hatching, and for once, the admonition to always put on clean underpants turned out to have very negative consequences. It took a little while for the hotfruit to take effect, but by the time the candidates reached the Hatching Sands, Gydeton was in considerable distress. Unable to bear the burning sensation in his nether regions, he fled the Hatching Sands – squandering his chance at Impression!
After the Hatching
"Cleveath" by Emily Holland
The Weyrlingmaster was the first to congratulate Savorek on his Impression, but it was Garlan, delighted that her risky choice of Winstone's grandson had Impressed, who stepped in to help with the immediate matter of Cleveath's first meal. That was the first moment Savorek had truly grasped that Martom wasn't going to be a weyrling alongside him – a truth that hit hard. In Martom's absence, Chiliam – the highborn lad from Kellad, who'd Impressed a dusty-brown dragonet, Destrath, and who now styled himself Ch'liam – was a welcome friendly face.
It wasn't long before Cleveath's personality started to become evident. The substantial dark-brown dragonet – chunkier than any other hatchling – had a stolid, non-nonsense character to match, speaking his mind without hesitation or tact.
With both dragonets full to bursting with fresh meat, the newly minted dragonpairs left the Hatching sands for their new home: the weyrling barracks.
Meeting the Weyrleader
As Savorek and Ch'liam wiped the worst of the blood and sand from their tired new dragonets, the Weyrleader, T'gat, came to inspect both boys' dragonets, to ask after their names – and to ask the two new weyrlings how they should now be called. Savorek was proud to introduce Cleveath to the Weyrleader. And after a brief conference with Cleveath, Savorek gave the Weyrleader his own new name: S'vor, rider of brown Cleveath!
Following their audience with the Weyrleader, and the application of oily rags to relieve Cleveath's and Destrath's newborn itchiness, S'vor and Ch'liam headed into the boys' barracks to claim the billets that would be theirs for the next Turn. Choosing adjacent cots, the two new weyrlings got their dragonets settled on the couches that they would take months to grow into. But there was no time for them to sit and admire their new dragons. The Weyrlingmaster soon came along to give them their new weyrling shoulder-knots, before chivvying them off to the Hatching feast!
The Hatching feast
S'vor and Ch'liam soon went their separate ways to find family and friends. Many of the riders and Weyrfolk S'vor had helped during the day greeted him with warm congratulations as he hunted through the throng – but, at last, he found his family.
Lord Winstone, S'vor's grandfather, was grudgingly satisfied with Cleveath's colour, if clearly disappointed that his grandson hadn't managed to Impress a bronze – a criticism that the Weyrleaders were quick to cut short in their toast to S'vor and Cleveath.
The rest of the evening passed in a blur for S'vor, and it came as a relief when the Weyrlingmaster ordered all the new weyrlings back to the barracks for a good night's sleep. But en route to bed, S'vor was flagged down by a Weyrbrat, Emry, bringing the message that Weyrwoman Second Tarshe wanted to see him in the Archives.
Setting the record straight
Tarshe, tasked by the Weyrwoman with converting candidate documentation into weyrling records, went through S'vor's background with him – including much of what he had got up to on the morning of the Hatching – for good and ill. She offered S'vor some advice about paying attention to his new classmates and surroundings, lest he fall foul of the Weyrlingmaster's penchant for snap quizzes, and made some observations on Cleveath.
A close encounter
On his way back to the barracks , S'vor had two peculiar encounters – first, with Tarshe's queen, Berzunth, who seemed quite agitated by one of the visiting dragons on the Rim; and then with a mysterious hooded figure, smelling strongly of what S'vor would later realise was firestone, who called him by name – and gave him a curious wooden box.
"The Watchful Queen" by Chris S. Baily
Back at the barracks, S'vor decided, on balance, not to tell the Weyrlingmaster about the stranger.
Returning at last to Cleveath – billeted between Ch'liam's Destrath and a bright bronze dragonet – S'vor was too tired to examine the strange wooden box very closely, and put it in his clothes' chest for later examination. But even as he went to sleep – a dragonrider at last, his brown beside him – S'vor was struck with a deep sense of foreboding. Who was the mysterious dragonrider in the hooded cloak? And what was the significance of the strange wooden box?
Find out more about Savorek's Impression here. S'vor and Cleveath's story will continue in Dragonchoice: Weyrling, coming soon!
Find out more about Savorek's Impression here. S'vor and Cleveath's story will continue in Dragonchoice: Weyrling, coming soon!
CARRY ON WAYWARD SON
I travelled The Road So Far!
OUR ROB, OR ROSS
I received a mysterious box!
A HORSE WITH A NAME
I have a name and it's a good name and I don't need to fix my name. Probably.
BIRDS OF A FEATHER
Cleveath and I make a very strong match!
SNAKES AND SNAILS
I haven't been very nice!
EBONY AND IVORY
Cleveath and I agreed on something very important!
Cleveath and I agreed on something quite important!
Cleveath and Sespanath took against each other!