Once Upon An Egg (First Touching)

Half Moon Bay Weyr - Hatching Sands
A wide, spacious cavern with a high, vaulted ceiling and ledges high above for dragons to perch upon. The iridescent sands shimmer in the heat, a myriad of pearlescent colors which change and shift in the light. The sands themselves are uncomfortably warm although they seem most welcoming to dragonkind. Scattered shards remain from past clutches although the current brooding queen usually has a cleared spot for her own clutch. Just up from the sands are the ledges where dragons can land to watch, while along the eastern wall are the galleries for humans to watch.


It has been a reasonably fair day, as far as Half Moon's winter weather goes. Massive thunderclouds hover on the distant horizon, promising a deluge, but for now sunshine prevails. "Yes, I know it's nice out, but it's time you start getting familiar with the eggs," an assistant weyrlingmaster argues with a particularly whiny candidate as she leads them in, counting heads as they go. "…Six, seven, perfect, one for each. Now—" And off she goes into the usual rules-schpeal, ending with a sighed, "And no licking," making one wonder just what might have happened to prompt that warning as she gestures towards the eggs and the lurking, inhumanly pleased form of Xermiltoth hulking behind them, tail resting on a dozing Ilyscaeth. "Go on then. Make your greetings and choose your eggs. We'll be here if there's questions." We? Ah, yes, there upon each of Xermi's paws - perhaps keeping the bronze from investigating candidates further - are a pair of familiar bronzeriders conversing in low tones. R'hyn breaks off to offer a salute of acknowledgment before continuing the conversation, content to let candidates be candidates.

There are no protests from Zeltan, as he wanders in with the group, though he does stare at the assistant as the mention of 'no licking'. Uhm, what? A shake of his head, and Zeltan is moving with the group to the Sands, offering a bow to Ilyscaeth and Xermiltoth, nodding his head again to the human counterparts before he find himself the last to choose an egg, leaving him with the black-shelled Destined to Darkness Egg.

< Zeltan touches egg 5 - Destined to Darkness Egg >

Leave it to Zeltan to pick -that- egg first, and the Trader-Candidate blinks a few times, glancing around to the other candidates, watching their expression, their reactions. "UHm.. I think this one is broken.. I mean, I don't know what they are suppose to do, but.." He mutters under his breath, lifting his hand to stare at his palm for a second. "Hey, you." He mutters, fingers giving a soft pat to the shell as he hand returns to it - thankfully he doesn't do a silly thing like knock - moving over just a bit in case it was just that spot.

Eyes flick down to his feet automatically, and when there is nothing there but sand, Zeltan's gaze returns to the black shell and he snorts. "Nevermind, not broken." He says a bit louder, shaking his head as he flattens his hand to the shell, hesitating for a moment before the second hand joins the first. "Come on, now…" He offers, forehead creasing as he focuses, closing his eyes.

Well, if nothing else, -that- will teach Zeltan to let his guard down. Maybe it is the last few nights with a stolen Lime cat sharing his cot, but it seemed the Trader relaxed just a bit too much, because at the final 'attack', he is stumbling backwards from the egg shell, taking a moment to steady himself and slow his breath, cursing once he does so. "Sharding felines." He mutters, apparently lumping the mental presence of that egg in with the fuzzy critters. But then, a candidate is headed towards the dark shell, and he is rotating onwards, headed towards Hint of Glitter Egg, even as his eyes wander over the slight irridescence of the Sands.

< Zeltan leaves egg 5 - Destined to Darkness Egg >
< Zeltan touches egg 4 - Hint of Glitter Egg >

As his palm slips over the mostly unremarkable egg shell, and suddenly everything is.. odd, the first thought through Zeltan's mind may be that he has picked wrong - or possibly it is that starting with the dark egg was a goo introduction. Whatever his first thought, though, it is soon replaced by something completely different as there is a mental yank, which translates to a physical reaction, and Zeltan is sitting on the sands, face inches from the shell. "A little warning would be nice, you know." He mutters, even as he carefully gets back to his feet, brushing at the bits of shimmery sand that will now plague him for days YET AGAIN. With a bit more caution, this time, Zeltan's fingers return to the shell, even as he widens his stance to avoid any more incidents.

Everything seems just fine.. Just fine and dandy, and Zeltan clearly hasn't learned his lesson even a little, because he is shifting, resettling his feet in the sands a bit too close to be really stable, his second hand joining the first on the shell, and looking rather smug - though it is likely that is just from the shared feedback of the mental mind he is currently meeting. The smugness disappears in a split second though, as there is another mental jolt, though somehow Zel remains on his feet this time, and he sighs. "What the shards was that." He mutters, pulling a hand away as if he was bit. "You be quiet.." He hisses back - don't mind him, just talking to giant eggs, this is fine.

Does Zeltan ever learn his lessons?

< Tanit touches egg 2 - Shame On You, Shame On Your Egg >

It has been a reasonably fair day, as far as Half Moon's winter weather goes. Massive thunderclouds hover on the distant horizon, promising a deluge, but for now sunshine pervails. "Yes, I know it's nice out, but it's time you start getting familiar with the eggs," an assistant weyrlingmaster argues with a particularly whiny candidate as she leads them in, counting heads as they go. "…Six, seven, perfect, one for each. Now—" And off she goes into the usual rules-shpeal, ending with a sighed, "And no licking," making one wonder just what might have happened to prompt that warning as she gestures towards the eggs and the lurking, inhumanly pleased form of Xermiltoth hulking behind them, tail resting on a dozing Ilyscaeth. "Go on then. Make your greetings and choose your eggs. We'll be here if there's questions." We? Ah, yes, there upon each of Xermi's paws - perhaps keeping the bronze from investigating candidates further - are a pair of familiar bronzeriders conversing in low tones. R'hyn breaks off to offer a salute of acknowledgment before continuing the conversation, content to let candidates be candidates.

If looks could.. scramble? Zeltan is glaring at the egg shell in front of him, shoulders pushed back as he stands a little straighter, tsking under his breath. "Rude.." He mutters, but yet he lingers for another moment, fingers gently tracing a spot on the shell, before his shoulders relax just a bit and he gives the shell a pat. "Yeah, that's right.." He murmurs, stepping back and out of the way as he waits for the other candidates to decide they have had enough and make some room for him, even as he runs a hand through his hair, somewhat lost in thought.

It is quite possible that Tanit was the one whining. Not that anyone could necessarily blame her given the way that the sparkly stand is just… sticking. To everything. It takes someone elbowing her from behind for the lanky dolphineer to finally move toward the eggs, and perhaps it is only fitting that it’s the judgiest egg that ever judged that the dolphineer is walking towards. Maybe if she doesn’t make eye contact this will be over quickly, or not. She’s just going to pretend that Ila’den doesn’t exist for the moment and be mature enough not to shoot him a sulky look. It’s all his fault after all right?

It is difficult to remain sulky when greeted with such – exuberance? Finely scarred fingers spread and move over the egg and a laugh – no a giggle escapes the dolphineer. “Bet you would actually enjoy this glittery mess.” Tanit murmurs to the egg as she traces the lines of scale marks.

Tanit continues laughing, “Yep. Xermiltoth totally had a hand in making you.” Why does the dolphineer feel sure of this? Anyone’s guess, but she’s still grinning, as her hand moves one last time.

< Zeltan leaves egg 4 - Hint of Glitter Egg >
< Zeltan touches egg 1 - Storm to Sunshine Egg >
< Tanit leaves egg 2 - Shame On You, Shame On Your Egg >

As the candidates shift around the eggs, the large, beautiful silver-white Storm to Sunshine Egg has opened up, and after a moment's hesitation, that's where Zeltan heads, eyes meandering to follow one other candidate in particular as she changes eggs, before his fingers tentatively reaching to brush a splotch of red upon the surface, fingertips lightly settling on the shell.

< Tanit touches egg 7 - Unlimited Potential Egg >

Maybe this egg touching thing isn’t so bad, sea-green eyes lift to peek at the next eggs, as the storm to sunshine egg becomes occupied, the dolphineer chuckles to herself, moving to another egg less timid this time about reaching out to brush fingertips against the shell. Tanit braces herself for whatever this egg will, um. Throw.

THERE’S A DRAGGO GRUMBLE INCOMING FROM A CLUTCHSIRE! WEE WOO, WEE WOO! And Ila’den breaks away from his conversation with R’hyn just long enough to move between eggs towards Zeltan, to intercept that touch with a smile that’s about as friendly as Ila’den can manage on a good day. “Xermiltoth wants you redirected,” the bronzerider rasps, placing himself between any future candidates and this here egg. NO TOUCHY!

< Zeltan leaves egg 1 - Storm to Sunshine Egg >

A blink, and suddenly there is a person between him and the shell and Zeltan gives a soft laugh and a shrug. "I am not one to argue with something that could eat me as a snack." Though, he does give the shell a slightly side-eyed squinty look as he steps away, before with the departure of one young candidate in near-tears, he finds himself at the side of the Fly Away Home Egg. A long look to the clutch parents, and when there isn't a dragon maw or rider headed his direction, he settles his hand on the shell.

< Zeltan touches egg 3 - Fly Away Home Egg >

The dolphineer clears her throat, eyeing the egg thoughtfully making a note to bet marks when it hatches on what’s inside. Her fingers brushing the shell.

Zeltan may be slightly on guard at this point, though given the glances up at the clutchparents, it is more that he is aware of when they may not want him around any longer. As his fingers settle more firmly on the surface, though, his eyes are dragged downwards, and he blinks a few times, toes digging into the sand slightly, leaning just a bit into the evergreen shell, a wistful sigh possibly caught by any that happen to be close enough.

Tanit doesn’t show much reaction the second time, apparently this egg is polite, moving her fingers over the shell one last time, leaning over as though she is going to pretend to lick it, but watching that big bronze. Hm. Maybe not joking about that, not that Tanit would lick an egg but maybe that’s what Zeltan was going to do that caused the big bronze to move.

A quick yelp is silenced as a 'fire' blooms at his imaginary feet, before Zeltan is looking slightly sheepish. Scuffing his toes in the sand, he clears this throat, and after a moment to make sure no one saw that - even if it was less embarrassing than his earlier fall - and he is switching the hands on the shell, freezing as he spots Tanit leaning over, staring at her as his hand makes contact again.

Xermiltoth has settled after that initial rumble, but he can't resist an opportunity. He EYEBALLS Tanit with all them spiralling facets, rumbling a little growl that sounds suspiciously like laughing. HE SEES YOU, MISCHIEF-MAKER.

< Tanit leaves egg 7 - Unlimited Potential Egg >
**< Tanit touches egg 5 - Destined to Darkness Egg >

Fingers start to curl into a fist for a moment, tenseness showing in Zeltan's shoulders and neck, but then just as quickly as it appears, the trader-candidate is relaxing, and he steps back from the shell, and moves to slide into the spot cleared by Tanit. As he passes the dolphineer, he slows his step a bit, murmuring under his breath. "Let me know who that one reminds you of later." And then, he is next to the Unlimited Potential Egg, brushing a hand over the shell almost carelessly, given Tanit's 'safe' reaction.

< Zeltan leaves egg 3 - Fly Away Home Egg >
< Zeltan touches egg 7 - Unlimited Potential Egg >

Hi Xermiltoth. Very glittery sands you have. The dolphineer just beams at the bronze. She glances over at the storm into sunshine egg, but that one is off limits. Despite it matching the sands so perfectly. Good job Ilyscaeth and Xermilthoth. Ye dragons of Hamilton. Instead she goes to the destined for darkness egg, faintly scarred fingers brushing the shadowy shell.

Sea-green eyes focus this time, nodding to Zeltan belatedly, and the second time she ventures to press her ear against the shell’s surface as if to see if there is even anything in there.

Completely, totally, one hundred percent caught - Zeltan makes no move to pull away from the egg, instead his other hand is settling on the shell, where they both gently follow the line of its leafy cap, chuckling softly to himself as he does so. Wandering thoughts? He is good at that. As the presence disappears, his weight shifts and he settles to one knee, fingers continuing to trace the shell, distracting himself for the time being.

Sitting cross-legged on the sands would probably be completely undignified, right? And yet, there goes Zeltan, settling down on the sands, getting covered in the shimmers while he does so, leaning to rest his forehead against the egg as well. "Hey now.. Come back little one.." He murmurs softly, ignoring the state of his clothes as he tries to coax the mind back. "You don't have to go."

Sitting there on the ground, Zeltan continues to linger, even after it is very obvious that this particular egg has had enough of him for the day. It is only when another candidate approaches, giving him an impatient look that he is sighing, and carefully getting to his feet. A hand runs through his hair, and then he is frowning as the sand ends up everywhere, and he is looking to find a weyrlingmaster. "I, uh." He dun messed up. "Can I be excused?" Even as he is waiting for an answer, he is sketching a bow to the clutch parents, his eyes lingering again on the tiniest egg.

Tanit pulls her head back from the egg, staring at it suspiciously. Oh so suspiciously just in time to watch Zeltan with the smaller egg, and smile.

The assistant weyrlingmaster is a firm woman, but not an unreasonable one. Whether amused by the candidate's prolonged sit or his shiny new decor, she smiles and gestures Zeltan onwards with a murmured, "Of course. You are free to take some time to…" She gestures at all of him. "Compose yourself." There. That's tactful, right? A twinkle in her eye, she nods to dismiss him and then turns back to observing the remaining candidates, amused by their varying reactions.

< Tanit leaves egg 5 - Destined to Darkness Egg >

Inclining his head in thanks, Zeltan meanders off the sands - A few minutes in the galleries to watch the other candidates, and then he is gone completely - probably in a futile attempt to get rid of his vampire-sparkle.

< Tanit touches egg 4 - Hint of Glitter Egg >
< Zeltan leaves egg 7 - Unlimited Potential Egg >

That egg is eyed, oh eyed. “You and Lime would get along.” She mutters stepping back to compose herself, in time to watch Zeltan depart with a curious slant of her mouth. There’s a moment of indecision but instead of following immediately she moves to the hint of glitter egg. Fingers splaying over the shell with a soft smirk.

Her hand moves again as she wobbles back, her free hand rubbing her ears even though the nose has nothing to do with her ears.

Tanit frowns again, eyeing this egg suspiciously. Her hand moves one last time, the young dolphineer unsure.

< Tanit leaves egg 4 - Hint of Glitter Egg >

It's a sunny day outside, but here on the iridescent glittery sands it's dark and hot. Xermiltoth looms just behind the eggs, Ilyscaeth having dropped off to sleep behind him. An assistant weyrlingmaster has guided candidates onto the sands for a touching with the usual rules - no roughousing, no shouting, and no licking the eggs, bizarrely. The weyrleader is perched on his bronze's paw, his weyrmate Ila'den standing guard over an egg that, apparently, is not quite ready to meet minds. SOON, though. Soon. Just not now. There are plenty of other eggs to visit, and several other candidates on the sands, though by now a few have drifted back to chores, lessons, or showers to get rid of the glitter. Moohahaha.

Surprise colors Ashwini's expression briefly when the pre instructions include no licking. 'No licking' she silently mouths. An action that clearly hadn't crossed her mind but since the idea's been planted…. Naw, she'll keep to the rules today. Following the others as they are lead in she is subdued. Gaze flickers around her quickly before zeroing in on the Dam and Sire. They get a bow before she moves to her first egg.

< Ashwini touches egg 3 - Fly Away Home Egg >

Well that was – odd. Tanit Steps away, glancing at the remaining eggs with a purse of her lips. Nope, she is done with this for a while, bowing to the clutch parents and giving the weyrlingmaster a pathetic look. “Can I go -bathe- now?” Please?

The assistant weyrlingmaster looks overall unbothered by the curiosity surrounding her guidance, shrugging in an 'I've seen things, man' fashion before fixing her gaze on Tanit. "Of course. We might have to… build time in for bathing after each touching," she ponders aloud, "or perhaps you will have to simply attend lessons like that." Because the JOKE'S ON YOU NOW. "We will discuss. For now, you are dismissed to clean up," she says with a nod and a small smile for the prevalent predicament.

Despite somewhat being prepared on what is to happen Ashwini still give a startled little squeal that she cuts off mid sound. Glancing around clandestinely to see if anyone heard that. Maybe. Maybe not. Reaching out carefully one finger traces along the tattered lines with her eyes peering at the egg but undoubtably not really seeing the egg but something all together different.

Ashwini absently shuffles her feet as the heat seems to wrap around her though her focus remains forward. Tanit's plaintive request for bathing time is missed completely. Turning her head this and way her head ends up looking downwards to the sands at her feet.

Ashwini's breath catches in her throat as a slash of fear skitters quickly across her expression. There and gone so quickly that it'll be easily missed unless someone is watching her closely. Drawing in a deep breath she merely nods her head once and slowly withdraws her hand from the egg as she steps back and away. Blinking quickly as if seeing the sands around her fully again she peers at the other eggs, making this second choice slower than the first one.

< Ashwini leaves egg 3 - Fly Away Home Egg >
< Ashwini touches egg 7 - Unlimited Potential Egg >

"Awe…it's so small." Ashwini decides to choose one of the smaller egg tucked in close it's brethren. Shuffling through the sand she squats down to run a hand along the slowly hardening shell. So far so good. No crazy antics in her head. Soon after her first touch she can't help but grin and simply shrugs her shoulders at something clearly in her head only.

Ashwini can't help but laugh softly. "Big happiness in a small egg." murmurs the candidate as she rocks back on her heels. Perhaps a little overwhelmed by the amount of sheer presence in her mind. "Wow." is all she can really say. Whatever her thoughts are in response it's hard to tell cause she ducks her head just a bit and her hair tumbles briefly over her face to cover most of her face.

Standing fully Ashwini gives this egg a bemused smile before departing. Glancing around it doesn't seem as if anyone is in a hurry to rush them away so she simply picks out a third and once more completely random egg.

< Ashwini leaves egg 7 - Unlimited Potential Egg >
< Ashwini touches egg 4 - Hint of Glitter Egg >

Ashwini is learning that once can't simply touch an egg and know what to expect. A hand lifts to rub nervously at the back of her neck and she looks nervously around. Squinting at the riders not the sand she seems surprised they aren't reacting. Suddenly she ducks her head. "Oh." she realizes nothing is actually heading towards her and then suddenly there's a presence with her. "Um, hi. I'm Ashwini and I walked here." here being the sands.

"Oh..well..um.." Ashwini is figuratively plumped and preened. But no one is watching!! And then… "Shh…?"

Oy! So much is going on! Ash finally steps away from this one after a long, long time at it. Blinking owlishly she pauses, unsure if she should touch another egg.

< Ashwini leaves egg 4 - Hint of Glitter Egg >

« That is enough I think. » It doesn't even take a translator to hear that: Xermiltoth bespeaks as indescriminately as he always has, thoughts washing over into everyone's minds in a sparkle of gold and diamonds. Several candidates wince, and even the assistant weyrlingmaster rolls her eyes, though she does straighten her posture and gesture for the candidates to exit. "Let's move along then. You can all get washed up and continue on to your afternoon duties." Hup hup hup and away they go, leaving dragons, eggs, and the pair of bronzeriders to their glittery 'sands'.


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