Moving Forward (vignette)

Half Moon Bay Weyr - West Bowl
Crom Hold
Ierne Weyrhold

She couldn't go herself, given not only her banishment from Crom Hold, but also her candidate status…so Leeta went through a hired 'helper.'

The dragonrider from Ista had finished visiting a friend at Half Moon Weyr, the young male bluerider dressed for tropical climes and Half Moon's current rainy weather spate in a light rain poncho that covered his rank cord. Convenient, that.

Leeta seized the opportunity as it presented itself, jogged over to the 18 Turn old bluerider on the west Bowl, and made herself a new acquaintence. It took effort to appear more outgoing than she really was, but it was all for a good reason. Ten minutes and an eighth mark later, the bluepair were ascending, Betweening to Crom Hold, soon landing just outside the courtyard, where two other dragons waited for their riders.

It took 15 minutes to find the tall, strapping 50-something man with the gunmetal eyes, and the nearly invisible streaks of grey in his palest-blonde hair. But Leeta had told the Istan bluerider that it was a private, personal matter…and he'd acquiesced quickly (with the addition of one of Leeta's rarely seen sweet and winning smiles).

Davon looked older than his Turns, somehow, his firm thinner than it should be for such a powerful man's frame, and he carried himself with a small hunch that did not suit his 6'5" frame at all. With the approach of the rain-poncho-ed bluerider came his suspicions, then his surprise as the young rider drew him to a private place, and spoke all that Leeta had told him to. The twitching of a wary smile — unbelieving, then triumphant — was the first to find purchase upon the man's face in over 2 Turns.

"I was planning on leaving, anyway. This is simply much more…fortuitous," Davon noted around a mobile smile to his surprise mode of transport. "This will take a little bit…"

"That's alright, sir," the bluerider piped up with a grin. "I was told it would…and payed for my time."

When Davon returned about a half and hour later, he carried with him a large, thick sack over one shoulder full of many somethings, and a weepy 2 Turn old little boy in his other arm. "Shh Dalvan. Father's going to take you on a dragonride!" After some long seconds, the wet-faced child's features finally found a tentative smile and a look of eager hope to replace his surprise and upset at being taken from his playmates and foster mother to move to another place.

After the toddler had been sufficiently introduced to (and cheered by) the blue Istan dragon, the ragtag little family were helped in mounting up, all thrtee humans soon headed skyward…finally to shift Between. But not to Ista. No, that would have been too obvious.

It was Ierne's tropical skies that greeted them as they emerged from the non-space — Dalvan shrieking with fear — his father quickly reassuring him and stopping his cries. "We're *home* now, son. Our *new* home…thanks to your sister." The little boy clung to his father's chest like a tick, and manages to eke out an uncertain, "'lida?"

"Leeta, right…" Davon noted as the air rushed by them on their slow descent, the man knowing the 'd' and the 't' in his eldest child's pair of names could be easily mistaken for one another when spoken by a child.

"Papa…Gon' tell Duke?" 'Duke' was Dalvan's affectionate name for his rarely seen older Fishercraft brother, Ducaine.

"Yes, I will…" Davon murmured near his son's ear, smiling to himself. "We'll be visiting yer sister soon. She might Impress a dragon…and none of us can afford to miss that." The little boy squeaked in excitement — the sound lost on the wind — and Davon was relieved that his son was too distracted to see the momentary pain in his pa's eyes, on his handsome face.

They'd all be there to see 'Leeta' try for a baby dragon… except for Alicaine, deceased these two-plus Turns giving birth to Dalvan. There were times it was difficult to bear his youngest child's presence, knowing that — in some twisted way — Dalvan had killed his beloved wife. But family was family, and his wife would have been appalled if he left their child behind. And so, his heart both heavy and light at once, the big man and his son soon set foot on their new stomping grounds…far away from the ignonamy and pain of Crom… far away from the renegades who'd twisted his family's lives so deeply.

A pair of hours later, Leeta was grasping the young bluerider's forearm in a heartfelt squeeze, thanking him quietly for his kind handling of her father, brother…and slipping him an extra sixteenth mark plus her honest smile for his patience and discretion. Looked like she might have herself a new and hopefully trustworthy messenger and go-between.

Maybe…just *maybe* things were really starting to look brighter for the little clan.

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