Gold Miraneith Clutches

Western Weyr - Hatching Sands
A wide, spacious cavern with a high, vaulted ceiling and ledges high above for dragons to perch upon. The pale white sands beneath your feet are uncomfortably warm, although they seem 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.

That loud rattling sound? It's nothing but the noise caused by Miraneith as she drags her heavy plump tail along over the floor of the tunnel that leads from the Bowl. What does she do, store fat in the thing? The gold, heavy sides bulging with lumps and bumps, scuttles out onto the sands in her usual swinging gait, her tail dragging a huge furrow across the sand as she makes her way towards the very middle, coming to a halt, and turning her head towards the galleries. Watchers! She can't ever thwart them! The gold snorts, air expelled in a rush from her lungs before her rider is approaching her from the same tunnel. "Mir," Enka scolds the gold. "Pick up your shardin' tail, you've gone and made a bloody trench in here." The goldrider sighs, rolling her eyes skywards. "And you're goin' to have to put up with people down here rakin' that smooth again, so unless you want 'em that close, pick up your tail." Duly admonishing, Enka remains where she is, just off to the sides of the sands, a 'skin of water in hand, to watch the event unfold.

Miraneith does pay heed to her rider's commands after a moment or two more of eyeing the galleries with narrowed eyes. Fine! Nothing she could do about anybody watching her, so much for secrecy. With a second loud snort, the queen scuttles forwards, her tail carefully lifted as high as she possibly could as she begins a lengthy prowl about the sands, sides and flanks rippling and shuddering with the contractions that accompany egg laying. Mustard-and-ivory paws claw the ground, a location sought upon the sands, although thankfully for future observers, she has yet to have retreated to the very back of the hatching ground. Finally, spying a likely place, the ungainly queen begins to dig, scraping away the sand to create two little hollows, and there she crouches, short neck outstretched and wings unfurled, fluttering, with exertion. It's when she moves away, retreating a little to mound the sand up lovingly about them, that the first of her newest clutch is revealed.

Fossilized in Blood Egg
Craggily cracks appear to splinter across the surface of this egg. Maroon, burgundy, and garnet swirl around the fractured surface. Some places inch closer to black while other areas are bright ruby only to be shattered, like a piece of glass that has had a rock thrown at it, splintered in every which direction. The crack lines run sporadically, no apparent pattern as it leaves clumps of different colored reds settled next to each other. Perhaps the egg was a stained glass painting once before it was dropped upon the floor and all the pieces haphazardly put back together again. None of the pieces quite seem to fit together and yet it could almost be considered beautiful, in the frenzied way the reds come together.
A Deepening of the Evening Egg
The color of this egg reminds one of the sky at dusk as the blues of day give way to the deeper purples in the fading light. Here and there, a crystalline intaglio of fine white and gray lines emerge out of the fathomless illusion of depth that the deep color provides to seemingly float closer to the surface, like fine spinner webs or cracks in thawing ice. The effect of this combination is twofold. First, new patterns may be found in what seems to be the interior crystalline structure of the egg, as the thin lines of white weave themselves together Second, it becomes clear that although it seems you're looking into the depths of the egg, it's just a surface pattern that provides the illusion of depth, endlessly drawing your eye into its center, when in fact, of course, it's just a shell.

The shadow is brief, one of many crossing the Sands as dragons bring their riders to watch the clutching. But this shadow, rather than crossing from one side to the other, grows darker, more defined, and is eventually swallowed by Zusamenth's landing form. Liandyn is, oddly, not with the green, who prowls around the edges of the Sands, her whirling eyes fixed unerringly on the squat form of her friend. With a low rumble, she flicks her wings and shifts her gaze to the first of the eggs to arrive, crouching so that her belly brushes the sand below as she slinks closer, inspecting it carefully while being certain not to stray close enough to incite Mir's protective instincts.

Miraneith's short neck stretches upwards, the gold reacting to the shadows dropping down across the sands, until at last, she sees Zusamenth then, a soft croon given in greeting to the green. The queen gives little else to the green, seemingly content to allow her to remain there, as boundary lines have yet to be crossed, more so content is the mustand-and-ivory dragon at arranging her first eggs to her satisfaction. More sand is hummocked up against them, a slight twitch of plump tail whisking out over the air above the sands before she moves on, that swinging gait of hers a patient shuffle over the pale ground as yet another location is sought. Round and round she goes, sides flexing and a shudder or two running through her frame before at last, she's returned near to the mounded curves of the first two eggs. There she digs a-new, paws scraping out another shallow hole, and then a second. Momentarily obscured from the galleries, the event of laying is quick, a pair of gloopy sounding plops, and then there they are — that makes four. A chuff is sent to the prowling green, Miraneith's head cocked in question. Was it good?

Green Around the Gills Egg
Speckles of brown and white striations disturb the otherwise consistent expanse of pale, blue-green. The freckles become more and more dense and finally come to settle at the rounded bottom of the egg like sandy sediment. A strand of foamy white is almost starke against the aqua blue surface of the egg which deepens to a more vivid azure along the upper half, streaked with wispy ribbons of pixilated white.
Plain of Peaceful Melodies Egg
This egg is shattered and broken! At least it appears to be from a distance. Thin lines are scattered about its surface, forming an array of sharp cornered shapes. The egg is generally a cloudy white, though some of the pools are gentle shades of grey. This makes the surface look rough and pointed in areas and only adds to the shattered looking effect. Each of the individual shapes though looks smooth as silk and almost flat.

The answering purr from Zusamenth, that catty sound of contentment, seems to offer Miraneith her answer. The green is pleased with the newest additions to her collective, her whirling eyes flickering carefully over the ovoids as they lay glistening on the sand. Wings flick once, twice - an instinctive rustling as she seeks to draw attention to herself, away from the egg-bound queen and her growing brood. If the sire can not be here to protect the gold, then it will be her tiny bodyguard and constant companion instead.

And she's got her answer indeed. Miraneith's reply is a throaty little warble, the queen scooping and mounding huge pawfuls of pale sand grains up around the eggs — especialy care taken for the last one. It looks delicate enough that it's already shattered and broken to begin with, before she's moving off once more. Movement appears to help her, the gold inspecting the sands with careful intent — and a grateful croon or two sent at Zusamenth as the green does her best to draw the eyes. Once more, a circuit of the sands is made, the queen seeming to pause at the furthest section of the sands. Will she lay the rest of her clutch there? But no, she's shuffling forward again, near enough to the first four eggs, but yet some distance away. Laying in groups of two seems to be her usual method of clutching, because here come two more eggs, barely even before she's got the hollows dug to hold them.

Color of Life Egg
If it's not easy being green, then it's extremely hard for this very green egg. Smooth and shining, it's shell has been divided into a multitude of bright facets and each one of them is a different shade of emerald. It's as though life itself has fractured upon the surface and scattered into every possible hue nature could provide - the dark agate of soft moss, the sun-kissed green of leaves in the morning, the pale blue-green of algae, the smooth verdance of a meadow, the lush tones of foliage and more variations that can't even be properly described. It's a breathtaking collage of colors that is entirely hard to process all at once, as each section needs to be viewed on its own - together it flows into a roiling sea of shining emerald tones. If plant life itself could be cut, polished and displayed it would certainly look like this egg.
Jewel of the Sea Egg
As if highly polished to a rather iridescent sheen, a lustrous coating of shimmery pale hue clings to the rounded curve of the small egg. Curious in shape, rather more round than oblong, and perhaps one of the smallest eggs in the entire clutch; an air of ethereal innocence enshrouds it. Pale and small, a faint sheen of oily rainbow coating overlays the pearly seashell and snow coloration of the eggshell allowing it to glisten and shimmer in the warmth generated within the Hatching Ground. There is an aura of unearthliness about the egg, as if such treasure might be found not upon the sands in which it lies, but rather in the mysterious depths of a tropical sea.

Flick, flick, flick go the wings as Zusamenth prowls ever closer, never quite crossing that invisible boundary that might excite the laying queen. Like a magpie, she displays helplessness, seeking to draw the watching eyes to herself, to ease the burden of her golden companion. A pause, upon the laying of the fifth and sixth eggs, and she rumbles approvingly, caught up in gazing at the pure white egg.

Off to the side, watching the beguiling and tricksy green with a faint smile, Enka is keeping track of the eggs thus laid. "Six now," she declares to empty air, jotting notes down on a pad of paper between occasional swigs of water from the 'skin dangling over her shoulder. Miraneith has a job ahead, mounding up sand about the eggs, tucking them in as lovingly as any mother might tuck a child in beneath the blankets. The gold takes a break for a moment, with six eggs on the sands, she's well begun. "Four more and it'll be your usual clutch, Mir," Enka reports, she too caught up in admiration for that radiantly pure white egg. So perfect! There's a snort from the gold, Miraneith turning her short neck to prod at her sides with a blunt-snubbed nose. There's more than four in there! Heaving herself forwards, she begins to dig again. No more running around and around, it's time to get to the business of things. In due time, two more eggs lie upon the sands, once more needing to be cozied down beneath a warming blanket of sand. It's only afterwards that Miraneith pauses again, stretching out her neck towards Zusamenth. There's still a line she might not let the green cross entirely, but as long as she's initiating contact, that's all right by her.

Ensanguined Heart Egg
Never one to give the first impressions that might lead to the conclusion of monochromatic pigment encasing the rounded curve of eggshell, continued observation over a period of time emboldens the convictions of that first glance. While indeed, the base color of the egg itself is of a garish glossed shade of fresh-spilled blood, variegated veins of dark magenta and burgundy of a hue dark enough to be nearly black juxtapose themselves across the shell in a curious pattern — an illusionary pattern of planes and angles that almost seem to give the medium-sized egg a faceted appearance. When tilted just so, in the heat that shimmers up from the warming sands below, one might almost see that the egg seems to resemble a heart, clasped in the pale embrace of the sands around it.
Desert Verdance Egg
Sand and sun appear to have roughened and weathered the once smooth features of this egg, creating a textured look of aged parchment that almost begs to be touched. Smooth waves of honeyed gold spread over a layer of deep green, creating a flawless peridot hue beneath the grainy overlay. Ripples and waves stir the soft yellow-green hue, each subtle fold of color forming verdant hills and dunes that rise and fall majestically over the shell. Polished and smooth bits of emerald, saturated throughout with a layer of gold, peek out from the roughened shell like hidden pockets of beauty within a desert sandstorm. Flecks of a deeper green have managed to escape the weathering effects of the phantom winds and sands, though they still have soft undertones of yellow that make them blend in seamlessly.

Slinking across the sands, Zusamenth approaches Miraneith, extending her own neck until her muzzle brushes against the gold's, a soft croon of approval and pleasure vibrating through the slender green's frame. Wings flick, settle, then flick again, and once she's offered that brief caress, she's off again, offering a display to draw the eye, even going so far as to vocalize the occasional chirp and chitter - whatever it takes to have those human and draconic eyes following her, rather than the clutching queen.

With such a vibrant and distracting display about her, Miraneith is sure to have all eyes drawn towards her verdant companion, rather than fastened upon her — or perhaps such are just fantasies for the protective and broody gold. After the brief caress is given, the queen moves about, settling herself, paws scraping and scratching at pale sands until she has arranged another pair of little egg-wallows to her heart's content. Once more, she crouches low, hissing and growling, before at last, the eggs are expelled from her, and maneuvered carefully into those hollows. "Ten," Enka declares, "your usual clutch." But nay, the gold isn't done yet, for she's turning again, poking at her flanks. She's good for a few more.

Fallen Star Egg
Pallid sky coats this egg, such a gentle color, playing across the shell as if dancing in the wind. Streaks of near white slice across the background, converging in the middle to form a narrow spindled six-pointed star. This star gleams and shines, all the while a bright circle pools at the middle, nearly glowing in the eerie hue of periwinkle. On closer examination the sky hue is actually a combination of several different colors, some floating their lazy way across in denim while others cling to azure and powder blue. Moonbeam soft tufts flourish into lazy cloud like entities that almost appear to float across the shell. But alas, there is only movement if one is walking by it, a trick of the gleaming polished surface.
Frozen Iridescence Egg
Flashes of liquid fire roll beneath this egg's surface, the shell merely a window to the chaos and colors within. The juxtaposition of color is complex, with green morphing into violet when the angle of viewing is changed, while red and orange explode in crystalline sunbursts, then dim to a steady yellow flame. Transcended from prism to prison, captured light refracts in infinite pursuit of freedom, hue stacked upon tone to give additional illusion of dimension. Striations on the shell buckle through the shimmering color, stress marks crazing the glossy surface as though the occupant within were testing the bonds of its captivity.

Shiny. Zusamenth's wings still, her eyes rounding, whirling, as she creeps closer to the last egg, chuffing quietly at the sparks it throws in the light. Nostrils flaring, she whuffs softly at it, drawing in the scent - then scurries away before Miraneith can upbraid her for being too close. Jaws gaping, she releases a bellow, rising up on her haunches and flapping her wings furiously. Nothing to see here, folks, but some crazy green making a scene. Don't mind the shiny eggs!

She /is/ a quick and fluttery green, see, just watch Zusamenth, folks. Keep your eye on the green, keep your eye on the green. Miraneith might well have upbraided the green for being too close to that last egg, but fortunately, the gold's was busily poking around at her rear end to have noticed the quick and agile movement of the other dragon. On the other hand, she'd be hard put to blame the green for being attracted by it. It is a shiny flashy sort of egg. Thick tail thumping across the ground, Miraneith croons, stretching her neck first one way, and then the next before she heaves herself upwards, moving towards the rear of the cavern — but not so far that she can't get to her other eggs, and flops down, panting a bit. And then she heaves up again, and scuttles forwards, the closer to the rest of the clutch, the better. She's never had this many eggs before. No wonder she was so lumpy. Because when the gold is all finished and done for, twelve little egg mounds lie in a cluster about her, to be protected beneath the shelter of her wings, and doted upon until they hatch.

Beguiling Wealth Egg
Richly saturated in a warm mellow tone that might put a sparkling cider to shame, a hint of sunshine suffuses the broad curve of eggshell — this, perhaps one of the larger eggs of the whole clutch. Amber, of a hue rather tending towards an orange-ish hue rather than a clearer honey-gold, lies enameled in a veneer of perfect symmetry across the rounded shape of the ovoid in an even clear coating, the base coloration never wavering in its tint and hue except where the egg curves, and there, a faint tint of darker ocher and saffron suffuse the eggshell in shadowed bulges and arcs. Across the shell, faint line, deeper and darker than the base color, fool observers into believing they are trails, runnels carved shallowly into the actual shell itself, and a haphazard strand of bronze — the shade perfectly that of greeny-gold — weaves and wends its way across the shell, a confusing twisting pattern that fools the eye and the mind.
The World Engendered Egg
Crackling lines of thin black cover the shell of this blue-green egg in its entirety, tropical waters split by basalt reefs in etched, circular patterns like a dragon's footprints. The dark, starling black fades out grey and then in most places melts into the shell's natural hue, settling at the base of the egg where, in some places, the seawater-colored shell is entirely obscured by shadow. The shell is perpetually smooth, catching light and reflecting it back evenly.

With the laying finished, Zusamenth lowers her wings, clasping them to her side, and creeps closer to the clutch and Miraneith, settling down to lay at the edge of her boundary. Unblinking eyes, whirling blue-green with contentment, are trained on the gold. Though duena isn't really the term to describe this green, it's exactly the picture she grants - a nursemaid watching dotingly over her charges.

For her own part, Miraneith seems more than willing to grant the green her space upon the sands — doting nursemaid she might be, and sore in need of one, is the queen. With a soft rumble of approval in Zusamenth's direction, Miraneith drops her head, wings tucked up against her sides as she settles into the usual post-clutching haze, tired from her exertions. The gold tucks herself about her clutch, brooding protectively over them, but perhaps with such an attentive nursemaid on hand, she might well even manage to doze a bit. "Twelve," Enka sounds pleasantly surprised and pleased all at once, taking a final swig from her waterskin, and writing down the final number in her notebook, the goldrider squares her shoulders and beats a retreat off the warm sands. Time to go send out word, and start mustering the search riders.

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