Game. Set. Match.

Fort Weyr - Center Bowl
The wide center of the bowl is often bustling with activity as riders come and go. Off westward can be seen the entrances for the candidate barracks and the guest weyr, while to the east is a large opening that leads into the dragon infirmary. The bowl stretches off both to the north and to the south, where the sheer stone walls rise steeply to the sky.


The large shadow of a dragon appears overhead as it circles the central bowl of Fort Weyr, increasing in size, until its owner is revealed to be that of bronze Malphath of Ista Weyr. Straps are undone, and the dragon’s rider slides to the ground with the skill that only decades of practice can provide. P’rel removes his helmet and goggles, sweeping a leather clad hand through his fluffy short hair. There’s a few strands of gray mixed in with the sun-kissed blond, mostly around his temples. Dropping the goggles into his helmet, golden eyes scan the area, his free hand patting the dark hide of his lifemate.

Jaelyn knew he was coming. Aria, his father’s oldest and only gold firelizard, had quite literally dropped the news on his head earlier that morning before squawking purposefully and disappearing again. The hide note was written in the beautifully penned hand of a harper, and there was only one harper that Jaelyn knew well enough to recognize the handwriting. All the note contained was a time and place, and it was not signed. Both infuriated and terrified, the computercrafter had had half a mind not to show up at all. What on Pern could THAT man possibly want enough to fly out to the land of his exile? As the time was set for late afternoon, and it wasn’t even dawn when he’d been so rudely awakened, the boy had decided to go back to sleep. He didn’t wake up again until long after breakfast and hours before lunch. He’d lazily hung out in the living cavern, taking apart one the computers someone had discarded, until someone came in from the bowl, excitedly talking about the Istan bronze dragon that had just landed. “Shit,” he muttered to himself, “He really showed up.” There is still a measured amount of hesitation before finally deciding on packing up and heading out there, almost a full half hour passing in the meantime. Begrudgingly, Jaelyn trudged towards the enormous form of Malphath, bundled up in an attempt to keep warm in the Fortian weather.

P’rel is, not pleased. He was never very fond of being cold, and being forced to hang out in the middle of the bowl did not endear the trudging figure now approaching. His gold eyes narrow, and the slim brows set above furrow as his lips turn downwards in his characteristic frown. The turns had permanently etched that expression into his skin, the remnants of them visible even upon the rare occasion that he wasn’t visibly displeased. The bronzerider’s displeasure is not decreased with the unhurried footsteps of his youngest son, grip tightening on the helmet in his gloved right hand, “The fuck took you so long?” he snaps as soon as Jaelyn comes within hearing range, barely managing to keep himself from gritting his teeth and hissing the statement at the boy. “You know how fucking cold it is out here?” Malphath rumbles, eyes that were always an unpleasant red color regardless of his mood, whirling some as he extends his neck and snuffles at the top of Jaelyn’s head. Those eyes certainly added to the bronze’s intimidation factor, but his coloring and sized probably didn’t help much either.

“Ya dun need to fuckin’ yell at me,” Jaelyn barks back, his hands buried deep into the pockets of his jacket, and hunched over himself in an attempt to keep himself warm. He wasn’t used to the weather at Fort, but he was also keenly aware that P’rel didn’t like it either. He might have intentionally taken his time coming out to the bowl exactly for that reason. “Ya, I’m aware.” he replies, shrugging his shoulders as if he couldn’t care less, and the truth was he probably couldn’t. The snuffling that Malphath does at the top of his head, or rather at the hood of his jacket is ignored. It wasn’t that he particularly disliked him, or dragons for that matter, but he did belong to P’rel. This was enough of a justification to pretend the bronze wasn’t even there. “What the hell do ya want?” Rebelliously, he denies the bronzerider any form of eye contact, at least for now, and unlikely will unless his father forces the issue.

Malphath doesn’t appear to be especially bothered that he's ignored, though he rumbles softly before turning his head away and hunkering down. “I know.” P’rel mutters, gaze sliding to his lifemate. Perhaps Malphath had been irked by the bronzerider's offspring after all. Even if that’s not the case, the bronzerider doesn’t verbalize further either way of what musings the dragon may of shared, and instead lets his ire fall upon the bundled-up child before him. “Fuck, you're rude.” he tosses Jaelyn’s direction, regardless if he himself had little room to talk. Chin tilting upwards somewhat in an old mannerism originating from his own troubled childhood, he decides to inspect the unwelcomed result from that goldflight fourteen turns ago intently. “You haven't gotten much taller…” Just an observation, as it’d been nearly six months since he last saw the boy. This is dismissed with a shrug of his own, choosing for whatever reason to let the comment about the current air temperature go, rather than dwell on it. Whatever else he’d gleaned from boring his gaze into the disrespectful form of the computercrafter, is kept to himself, well…other than the obvious, “…and still getting into fights.” It was rather difficult to miss the black eye and the split lip after all, even if they were beginning to fade. The evidence of the kid’s latest transgression was a little over a sevenday old if he wasn’t mistaken, but he didn’t see anything newer than that. This was a marked improvement from Jaelyn’s stay anywhere else as of late. Keenly aware he’d been asked a question, he chooses to ignore it. Suck on that, you brat.

Jaelyn continues to keep his eyes on the ground, and decidedly does not try to appear restless. This was difficult to do unless he had something to busy himself with, such as breaking down a computer. Even when eating he had to wiggle this or fidget, needing to find some way to expel the excess of his youthful energy. “Whatever.” Yeah, he was rude. So what? His old man wasn’t any better, though there was some small part of him that was thankful that he’d been spared P’rel’s upbringing. He’d heard that his grandfather, E’lan, had beaten the crap out of him for most of his childhood until he and his mother Ponya had escaped to Xanadu. P’rel had impressed there, and a couple turns later ended up in Ista when the senior queen broken one of bronze’s wings during a mating flight. While Malphath fully recovered from the incident, P’rel and his weyrmate I’srie had decided to stay in the tropical paradise. The weather at Xanadu was apparently not as pleasant. “So?” Jaelyn was sticking to one word responses apparently, though the comment about his height had getting his heckles up. P’rel wasn’t very tall himself, but he still had a good half foot on him still. He completely ignores what his father says about fights, his jaw setting, and taking a deep breath. This was one of the differences between himself the bronzerider, unless really pushed to the edge, Jaelyn could control the rage that so easily bubbled to the surface. P’rel on the other hand, was well-known for his lack of self-control in this respect. Not that the fourteen turn old had room to talk, that control was sporadic at best, but it was still better than P’rel’s. That control was beginning to slip however, when the last thing he asked is blatantly ignored. “Ya goin’ deaf in yer old age? What the HELL do ya want?”

How similar this conversation was to those P’rel had taken part in when he was Jaelyn’s age. Were he a different man, he might have found all the banter amusing. Unfortunately for the computercrafter, the bronzerider was who he’d always been, an utter bastard. The prickly teenager’s responses weren’t really winning him over, even if such a thing was even possible at this juncture. That last outburst though, makes P’rel see red. “Why ya little pric…” he begins, feeling the molten hot fury rise and color his tanned features with the blood rushing to his head, far more quickly than the cold Fortian air. It’s actually Malphath that saves Jaelyn’s life just then, as he turns one whirling red eye towards his pissy lifemate, rumbling low. “Whadda ya mean, let it go?!” This is snapped harshly at the bronze, who seems to take it in stride, after all the pair had been together since P’rel was fifteen…twenty-five turns ago. The man might have paused to consider that number and just how old it would have made him feel, if he was in his right mind. “Ya heard what he fuckin’ said to me!” The manner in which he spoke, tended to revert back to days long since past when certain concessions had to be made to one another in their first couple of turns of being a dragonriding pair, but only when he got good and truly pissed off. Malphath merely chuffs and turns away again, letting his head come to rest on the snow covered ground. Not his most favorite thing in the world, but it was probably better than dealing with P’rel. Fuming, the bronzerider choses to ignore the bronze, and instead focuses on the relatively motionless figure of Jaeyln. He attempts to speak several times, but whatever starts coming out sounds more like a cursing than conversation. With a growl so fierce it may startle the darkly clad boy, he suddenly turns and begins yanking and pulling at the storage compartments of Malphath’s riding straps. Several brown paper parcels tied up with twine are unceremoniously and forcibly tossed at Jaelyn’s booted feet, not apparently caring if anything within them might be fragile. A scathing round of obscenities are muttered, just loud enough to be heard, as he finishes his task and tugs the strap storage closed again.

The teenager sighs as P’rel starts to flip out and lets his mind wander for a while. Jaelyn might not know his father very well in other areas, but the handful or so times he’d directly interacted with the man had been enough to understand what made him tick and how to set him off. Golden eyes lift however when Malphath looks to be telling his rider to calm down or something to that effect, and he’s oddly entertained in watching the forty turn old lose his shit. A feeling of satisfaction was starting to grow somewhere deep down inside him, and it made him feel warm and uncharacteristically happy. Happy moments were so very rare for the computercrafter, he allowed himself a few precious seconds to savor it before dropping his gaze to his own feet. Mainly, this is because things were being thrown at him now. There was at least a half-dozen packages, but they were all wrapped in the same boring brown paper and tied with equally boring twine. “The fuck is this?” he asks, now risking to meet his father’s eyes, if the man lets him. From a distance the color of those eyes, for both father and son, were identical. Anyone brave enough to get close would be able to see that Jaelyn’s had flecks of sapphire blue throughout the unusual golden hue. The boy is boldly unaffected by the snarl, at least outwardly, and as for the round of cursing? Pfft. Ignored. “Didja come here just to throw shit at me? Ya could have sent Aria, or any of yer ridiculously stupid ‘lizards. The fuck ya come in person for?” he growls, barely maintained control starting to slip away. He’d likely be killed if he ever actually took a swing at the bronzerider, but it was starting to feel like it’d be worth it.

“What’s it fucking look like?” P’rel barks, veins nice and popping there on his forehead. Lucky for Jaelyn he missed any sign of satisfaction his little freak out had benefited him, otherwise this might have turned into yet another interweyr incident. There had been plenty of those in this family, and he really was getting too old to be adding another notch to that particular belt. “I wish,” he softly murmurs under his breath when his son asks him if he came there just to throw stuff at him. Course, if that had been the case, it wouldn’t have been brown wrapped parcels. Rocks maybe. Knives? No, no. Bad bronzerider. Malphath rumbles and eyeballs his lifemate for that especially nasty thread of thought. For a brief second his mood lifts and he tosses the bronze a predominantly wry smirk. No worries there big guy, left the knives at home this time. Malphath, unimpressed, returns to resting those crimson facets of his after a rather exasperated sounding chuff. “It was on the way.” Not exactly a lie, but it wasn’t exactly the whole truth either. P’rel would never let it slip that he’d wanted to see how Jaelyn was settling in at Fort, even if he was literally dying and could manage to say something before the lights went out forever. If anything, he’d likely tell the kid to fuck off and get out of his face, but that was just the way he was. He might not have wanted Jaelyn, ever, but it wasn’t the kid’s fault he’d been born. That particular honor resided with his mother, Jessira. There was some comfort in knowing the bitch took off to High Reaches, far, far away from Ista…even if the reason she had was so she could shack up with R’an, the son of his eldest brother and his partner Yutani. Just thinking about it made his skin crawl, ugh. Even if R’an was his nephew, he was still a greenrider and bumping fuzzies with the mother of his cousin. Seriously, could this family get any more fucked up? When Jaeyln lifts his head, P’rel goes right head and meets the kid’s challenging gaze, and lifts his chin ever so slightly completely without realizing it. Bring it.

“Right.” Jaelyn says, lashes lowering slightly, not believing that crock of shit even for a second. A dragonrider, just passing through? Fort Weyr was nowhere near Ista, that would mean a trip *between* and that took conscious thought. If the computercrafter had even the smallest interest in fostering any sort of genuine relationship with P’rel, he might have taken the man’s absurdly veiled lie as a beacon of hope. Fortunately, perhaps for both their benefit, that vein of thinking wasn’t in the cards anymore. Well, he’d at least locked it up in a place so dark and forsaken it’d likely never see the light of day again. Oh, Jae’ll try and stare the bronzerider down, not that his diminutive height and lack of musculature is anything in comparison to someone who’s been a dragonrider as long as P’rel has, but that’s not the point here. Lifting a brow for the classic chin lift, he releases a snort, and gives one of the parcels a none to gentle kick. If it just so happens to launch into the air and hit the man somewhere, that’s not Jaelyn’s problem. Challenge, accepted sir. “I dunno what this looks like. Ain’t like ya ever gave a shit before, so ya can take all this crap with ya back to Ista.”

Oh, it’s on. P’rel was expecting some sort of snarky retort, especially since he had thrown the turnday gifts he’d collected from probably every corner of the fucking planet. Why was the fam so spread out? Ugh. Course, he’d garnered his own kind of sick satisfaction from seeing the expression on the faces of his dear old in-laws. Lord and Lady Breakwater were grizzled in their ancient age, but still bore a grudge against him for ‘corrupting’ their son, and likely against the weyrs for making that son a dragonrider to boot. I’srie would probably get a kick out if the story when he got home and told him. Another of those smirks might be forming, and he’s not even paying attention to whatever it is that the boy was spouting now. What P’rel was not expecting was for one of the gifts he’d bothered to bring all the way to Fort to be summarily kicked in his direction. Now, there are two factors in play here. One, Py was completely caught off guard, his thoughts too busy reminiscing about the looks of disgust and surprise on his in-law’s faces. Two, he’d never admit it, but his reflexes aren’t exactly what they used to be. So when that parcel comes a flying through the air with the greatest of ease, it whizzes by his face, but not without taking a bite out of his cheek. It’s a scratch really and shallow at that, but it stings like all get out, and decidedly begins to bleed. Oh, no he didn’t. There is but a single wide-eyed blink, and P’rel is on top of Jaelyn. He pins his fourteen turn old son to the ground, a leather-clad knee planted into his chest, and grasps the front of his jacket with one fist; shaking with rage. Perhaps his reflexes weren’t as bad off as he thought. Unable to even form words through the haze currently making his head feel thick, he simply snarls right in the boy’s face as he yanks him up close to his own. The other fist is held back behind him, moments away from adding more texture to the computercrafter’s already banged up face. Okay, now Malphath was up! Crimson eyes whirl quickly and the bronze rumbles low and deep, already making a move to yank his lifemate right up and off the man’s young offspring. Can’t take this guy anywhere, can he?

Things have certainly escalated quickly, now haven’t they? Jaelyn lets out what only can be considered as one very manly squeak when he gets slammed to the ground, that might have been more of an ‘oof’ had the wind not been knocked out of him. Okay, that wasn’t particularly new, as more than a few of his fights had come to this at some point. Especially when not considering size and age of whomever it was he had decided to try and put into the infirmary. Ah, the infirmary. Jaelyn was on a first name basis with the head of staff in at least two different weyrs as well as the Computer Craft, and undoubtedly (given time) this would be the case with Fort as well. Though, now is probably not the time to be thinking about such things. Taking a gasping breath to hopefully ease the ache in his poor lungs, the boy quickly realizes the entire field of his vision is completely useless for the next little while. The pain he finds originating from the back of his head clearly indicates that he’d hit it going down. Did he black out for a second there? He has no idea. What he does know, is that when the sparkling stars and all that other cloudy nonsense does begin to clear there is a rather unhappy P’rel waiting for him on the other end. Fantastic. Golden eyes dart first to the fist being held, poised to strike. Awesome. Next, he comes to understand that the man has effectively pinned him to the ground. Perfect. All these things are equally wonderful, and so is the marvelous seething wrath mere inches from his nose. Jaelyn barely even notices that the hood of his own jacket has come loose and has left his poor throbbing head and rapidly chilled ears to the mercy of the winter air. Excellent. It was like adding insult to injury. Shifting his gaze back, he meets that of his father’s and take one more sliver of precious time to think about what to do or say before he becomes an unrecognizable mess. If he survived, that is. First and foremost, he wasn’t going to show the guy he was scared, even if there was the slightest chance he might just piss himself in the process. Check. Secondly, what could he say? What would have the most impact? Something about kissing? Ew, no. Gross. Don’t even go there, Jae. Okay, think…think…oh. Oh, yes, that would work nicely. He wasn’t even aware that Malphath was coming to his rescue, but he may very well need it here in a moment. He takes enough of a pause to let his attention wander over his old man’s face. There were now very noticeable indents where the bronzerider had once had facial piercings, but had taken them out for good a very long time ago. Jaelyn hadn’t been aware of this when he got his own done. As if to check if that stainless steel loop of his was still secure at the left corner of his bottom lip, his tongue darts to its location, before traveling over the rest to wet them. He takes another uneven, ragged breath, before letting it out to say: “Go ahead,” he wheezes, not letting his thoughts linger on the fact that this sounded way tougher in his head. “Make yer dad proud.” Game. Set. Match.

P’rel, once again, blinks. Indeed, this one unquestionably goes to the kid. The very impact of those words must look like they hit with the intended force, because almost immediately after they’re spoken, Py lets go. Let’s hope Jaelyn is doing something with his hands to keep him from conking his head again when all of a sudden there isn’t anything holding him up anymore. He stares at the teenager with a mix of emotions maybe even he himself doesn’t quite understand right away. Astonishment? Disbelief? Shame? Probably a little bit of all of the above. It certainly does require a minute to collect himself before he’s shoving himself off of the child and getting back to his feet. Malphath backs down, the situation no longer requiring his intervention, at least for the time being. Who knows what the next couple of seconds might bring. “Fuck you, kid.” P’rel growls, and makes for the straps that bring him into a seated position along the neckridges of his lifemate. He doesn’t bother telling Jaelyn he won’t be back, ever…probably…maybe…well at least for as long as it takes to sort out what the computercrafter just knocked loose out of his brain. Though, the kid was clearly not stupid and could probably figure it out. Without another word the bronze pair are in the air, high above the bowl and then blinking out of sight.

The punch Jaelyn was expecting but hoping his words would deflect, never comes. There is a great deal of effort taken not to groan and collapse in relief, thankful that he did in fact have his bare hands supporting his weight for when P’rel lets go of him so quickly. Jae schools his expression into one of absolute nothingness that betrays zero of what he might be thinking, as his father stares at him like that. Again, another swell of self-gratification was rising and he has to hastily push it back down, before it started to show on his face. He doesn’t even let himself enjoy a gratified smirk, doing his utmost to keep up the appearance of cold stone. The bronzerider’s parting words bounce off his newly forged armor, remaining completely unmoved by the retort and staying just as still bodily. He just gives the man that detached look he’d developed over the turns, and lets his eyes follow him as he gets on his dragon and leaves. It’s only once they’ve gone *between* that he allows himself to get up. He successfully does not fall over, hooray, and idly takes a few moments to try dusting the snow off. A wave of disorientation swiftly follows to add to the painful head throbbing and he begins to feel violently ill. Okay, after emptying the contents of his stomach somewhere off to the side of the bowl, he begins to make his way back the way he came not so long ago. The packages that P’rel had brought are left where they fell, having meant it when he said he didn’t want any of it. The journey back isn’t a long one by any means, but there wasn’t any reason to hurry, even if the biting winter wind suddenly causes his eyes to water. At least, that’s what he’ll tell anyone who might ask.


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