Candidate Shandoe's story begins...
You, Shandoe, didn't choose the Healercraft so much as it chose you. Both your parents were Healers, and you grew up surrounded by herbs and medicines, potions and poultices.
You were binding minor wounds and strapping up sprains before you were even old enough to apprentice. But once you did become an apprentice, the endless lessons on things you already knew seemed interminable. It's not that you questioned the importance of bedbaths and chamber pots - you just chafed to do more.
It made you a poor apprentice, always second-guessing the journeymen and Masters in charge - and it didn't win you many friends among the Hall's senior crafters. Your parents counselled you to patience - the Healercraft is notorious for its long and arduous apprenticeships - but you've been doing this for what seems like forever.
And then brown rider P'lian and his Sparth came to the Healerhall...
You were the apprentice on rota when the young rider, P'lian, came into the Healerhall, complaining of numb extremities. You prescribed a warming salve - and thicker gloves! As you applied the salve, P'lian explained how his brown Sparth was one of the young dragons unable to go between, and obliged therefore to fly straight everywhere, including back to the Healerhall where he himself had once been an apprentice. You were fascinated by the story - but P'lian kept breaking off to look out of the window.
"I'm so sorry," he said at last. "Sparth wants to meet you. Right now." You were sure at first he was just joshing you, but you went along with it. When Sparth looked at you with lavender eyes you realised it was no joke.
And when a blue fire-lizard arrived the next day, carrying official notice of your eligibility to stand as a candidate - you didn't think twice about accepting!
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