Login | Register

R'hul and brown Lentibuth

The Road So Far!

It all began at Madellon Weyr for Rhaul – a young man of 16 Turns, dreaming of becoming a brown rider.

Rhaul was born the son of Wingleader R'yeno and green rider Evie of Madellon Weyr. While he didn't have to be Searched, he was 'given the nod' as a likely dragonrider by the Weyr's most senior retired Search pair – S'rius and his elderly blue Padseth. Having been left standing at a Hatching once before, Rhaul wrestled with the fear that he wouldn't live up to his rider parents' expectations a second time.

As a candidate, Rhaul was assigned a bunkmate – Soburn, an anxious Weyrbred youth with one failed Hatching already haunting him, 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 – Rielat, a self-important apprentice Weaver – who took a firm disliking to Rhaul! Backed up by his crony Kestor, Rielat became the thorn in Rhaul's side throughout the sevendays of candidacy.

Hatching Day

The dragons' hum woke Soburn and Rhaul on 102.03.17. Following a brief run-in with Rielat, 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 Rhaul left, Soburn asked him to find out if H'nar, the young Wingleader of the Betweenless Wing, might currently be seeing someone – or not.

The one-armed green rider and the thieving queen

Immediately on leaving the candidate barracks, Rhaul was flagged down by M'shen – a green rider with one arm, a fire-lizard queen – and a problem. His queen, Squiffy, had stolen several pieces of the Weyrwoman's jewellery, and hidden it around the Weyr. M'shen recruited Rhaul to find it. The quest took Rhaul all over Madellon, from kitchens to lake to infirmary – but in the end he succeeded in reuniting the Weyrwoman's jewellery set, to general acclaim.

Respecting his elders

In the Weyr's kitchen gardens, Rhaul encountered R'hren, a former Weyrleader of Madellon, now peacefully retired to potter among his beloved plants. R'hren asked Rhaul to help him track down the ingredients for a warming salve to help his elderly bronze, Staamath, with his arthritic forepaws. Rhaul duly located the components of R'hren's salve, winning the old bronze rider's approval in the process.

Gifted a small pot of the salve, Rhaul offered it to old S'rius, who was equally appreciative of the gift. And while Kisha, the blind old green rider Rhaul encountered in the infirmary, would have nothing to do with one of R'hren's concoctions, she too grew to approve of Rhaul – especially after he solved all three of her fiendish riddles!

Southern comfort

Rhaul 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 Rhaul 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 Rhaul some intelligence on the Southern seven, his advice was somewhat garbled! Nonetheless, Rhaul 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, Rhaul 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, Rhaul 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. Rhaul 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 Rhaul a certain confidence in his own prospects!

A rising problem

Rhaul 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. Rhaul'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. Even if Rhaul did annoy Soleigh, who wasn't impressed with him for prolonging Maris' binge by bringing her more wine!

Kitchen diplomacy

Madellon's kitchens – the heart of the Weyr, and domain of Headwoman Crauva – provided Rhaul with the opportunity to show off his work ethic before the Hatching. A round of chores duly pleased Crauva. And the kitchen was also the source of the hotfruit R'hren had sent Rhaul to find for his warming salve.

A blue lady

Coming across T'gala, Pern's only female blue rider, bathing her Heppeth in the lake, Rhaul offered his assistance – which T'gala gladly accepted.

Friend request

Conscious of Soburn's bashfulness, Rhaul approached the object of his affections – H'nar, Wingleader of the Betweenless Wing – with some circumspection. Still, when questioned, H'nar insisted he had to know who was making enquiries of him. And when he learned the identity of his admirer, he told Rhaul that he wasn't interested in Soburn – or any other men, for that matter. But Rhaul's agile pivot in questioning revealed that a close friend of H'nar's – blue rider M'rany – might be a viable alternative. Thus encouraged, Soburn began to think more positively of life as a dragonrider – even if H'nar would end up being his Wingleader!

Hair today

Mindful of the Weyrlingmaster's orders to be smart for the Hatching, Rhaul visited Madellon's resident barber – green rider Z'fell – for a trim. Very conscious of his dignity, Rhaul ensured he came away with a cut he actually liked.

A slithery customer

Early in the day, Rhaul 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, Rhaul strayed into tunnel snake territory! A huge, aggressive, and potently venomous female tunnel-snake guarded the exit to the Hatching ground. Rhaul 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, Rhaul approached the clutch – but not stealthily enough! His presence woke Shimpath from her doze, and she and Muzzanth chased Rhaul off the sands!

The Hatching

When it came to the Hatching, Rhaul didn't have to wait too long for his date with destiny. The grey-mottled tan egg Hatched out a cool dusty-brown dragonet who told Rhaul his name was Lentibuth.

A friend in me

And Rhaul wasn't the only lucky one. To his delight, Soburn also Impressed, becoming the rider of a slender olive-green hatchling, Aeranth.

Whatever happened to Rielat?

Rielat didn't turn up for the pre-Hatching muster, and – Rhaul's own suspicions notwithstanding – L'stev guessed that he had probably got himself lost trying to sneak into the Hatching Ground through the dangerous ventilation tunnels. Fortunately – Rhaul supposed – Weyrlingmaster A'len located the missing candidate, but too late for Rielat, who having been found unconscious, was promptly invalided out of standing!

After the Hatching

"Lentibuth" by Chris S. Baily

The Weyrlingmaster was the first to congratulate Rhaul on his Impression, but it was old S'rius, delighted to have found yet another weyrling, who stepped in to help with the immediate matter of Lentibuth's first meal. That was Rhaul's first opportunity to speak to Soburn, too, and they introduced each other, with considerable delight, to their respective dragonets, Lentibuth and Aeranth. Soburn also told Rhaul that his new name was to be – perhaps unsurprisingly – S'burn.

It wasn't long before Lentibuth's personality started to become evident. The dusty-brown dragonet, while neither the largest nor the most handsome of his colour, proved to make up for both with his calm and helpful character immediately endearing him to all around.

With both dragonets full to bursting with fresh meat, the newly minted dragonpairs left the Hatching sands for their new home: the weyrling barracks.

Big brother

Another friend Rhaul made along the way – a young Holdbred candidate, Nichen, whom Rhaul had encountered in a hopelessly dishevelled state directly before the Hatching – hailed Rhaul at the barracks – crediting him with his successful Impression of a moon-blue dragonet, Yooth!

Meeting the Weyrleader

As Rhaul and S'burn 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. Rhaul was proud to introduce Lentibuth to the Weyrleader. And after a brief conference with Lentibuth, Rhaul gave the Weyrleader his own new name: R'hul, rider of brown Lentibuth!

Following their audience with the Weyrleader, and the application of oily rags to relieve Lentibuth's and Aeranth's newborn itchiness, R'hul and S'burn 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

R'hul and S'burn soon went their separate ways to find family and friends. Many of the riders and Weyrfolk R'hul had helped during the day greeted him with warm congratulations as he hunted through the throng – but, at last, he found his family.

R'yeno and Evie couldn't have been happier to greet their son as a brown rider for the first time . And when the Weyrleaders came to drink a toast to R'hul and Lentibuth, R'yeno was delighted to embarrass his son by insinuating that Gryth would be stiffer competition to Muzzanth in Shimpath's next flight.

The rest of the evening passed in a blur for R'hul, 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, R'hul 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 R'hul'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 R'hul 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 Lentibuth.

A close encounter

On his way back to the barracks , R'hul 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 R'hul 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, R'hul decided, on balance, not to tell the Weyrlingmaster about the stranger.

Returning at last to Lentibuth – billeted between S'burn's Aeranth and a bright bronze dragonet – R'hul 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 – R'hul 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?

R'hul and Lentibuth's story will continue in Dragonchoice: Weyrling, coming soon!

R'hul's achievements

Achievement Unlocked:
CARRY ON WAYWARD SON

I travelled The Road So Far!

Achievement Unlocked:
OUR ROB, OR ROSS

I received a mysterious box!

Achievement Unlocked:
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.

Achievement Unlocked:
THE YIN TO YOUR YANG

Lentibuth and I complement each other!

Achievement Unlocked:
SUGAR AND SPICE

I've been a very nice person (so far)!

Achievement Unlocked:
EBONY AND IVORY

Lentibuth and I agreed on something very important!

Achievement Unlocked:
IN TUNE

Lentibuth and I agreed on something quite important!