Letting Go

Half Moon Bay Weyr - [TP] The Vantage
Every weyr has 'the spot,' that one point as high up as one can manage to go where the trees thin and the skies open up and suddenly, you can see for miles. For Half Moon Bay Weyr, it is a point off in the wilds where a steep cliff rises from the surrounding jungle in an attempt to outreach the jagged cone-shape mountain that surrounds the weyr's bowl. It pales in comparison, despite its efforts, but the view is no less stunning for its failure. Kept partially treeless to allow dragons to land, the Vantage provides a gorgeous two hundred degree view of Half Moon's island. Rolling jungle and crystalline blue ocean takes up the majority of vista, a veritable cacophony of verdant greens and sapphire blues. Brightly colored flowers, fruits, and fauna break up the jungle's tedium, some trees rising to tower over others, allowing viewers to watch a small part of the forest's teeming life. Yet, for as lovely as the view is during the day, it is almost just as stunning after dark. At night, stars blossom to life, seemingly as bright and twinkling as they've ever been. One great stripe of the cosmos always seems more star-studded than the rest, the great arm of a galaxy weaving brilliant, complex patterns into the sky above.


Rukbat is just dipping beneath the horizon, sending a deep splash of vibrant color across the Pernese sky. J’en might not be seen from the vantage point, the enormous bulk of his fully mature lifemate encircling his five foot ten frame. Leaning back against his girth, the sixteen turn old has his arms crossed over his chest as he peers over the weyr and the outlying jungle, paying little mind to the gorgeously hued display shifting and changing just there above his eyeline. The flaming and mating flights lecture became part of the past today, and now only wing selection stood between them and full-rider status upon graduation.

Xermiltoth can likely be felt long before the bronze's dark form can be alienated from other dragons coming and going through the airspace - he is a flood of gold and light, a scattering of diamonds, unable to keep his mind to himself, even if he doesn't afflict his voice on innocent passers-by. Small blessings. J'en and Leketh, though - they know him, and he knows them, and so he is thoroughly unabashed when words break free of the channel he tries to create, overflowing from Leketh and into his rider's mind too (and probably the minds of whoever else is nearby too, but shhhh, bless him, he tries), « WE COME. » And it's less of an arrival and more of a show, harlequinned bronze form coming to a hard landing at the very edge of the Vantage, claws digging in to halt sudden momentum, growled victory drowning out what is likely a veritable shitton of swearing from his less-than-pleased rider. "Fuckin' idiot, just because we're unsupervised now doesn't mean you have to show off," can be heard once the growling stops, R'hyn scrabbling down Xermiltoth's leg the second the bronze makes ground, not even waiting for wings to fold. "Foolhardy son of a bitch." « THAT IS NO WAY TO SPEAK OF FEYRUTH. » Smug candescence turns back to Leketh. « ARE WE GOING TO LET HIM SPEAK OF OUR MOTHER THUSLY? » "Shut up," R'hyn mutters, but he's grinning even as he sheds his riding jacket, making strikes towards the brighter dragon and his hidden rider, though his eyes focus out over the view. "Wow." He might even stop to admire it a moment before flicking his gaze over to Leketh's bulk, blue-grey eyes expectant.

J’en shudders slightly and golden eyes roll close the second that he feels Xermiltoth’s mind voice wash over his entire being. Leketh of course had already uncurled somewhat from where he was wrapped almost completely around his rider, neck stretching upwards in welcome to his clutchbrother far before the smaller bronze could be seen by human eyes. « I think that should be my line, bro. » Stickly silky threads expanding and stretching over the pulsing pudding thickness of the pale bronze’s thoughts.. After all, he and his J’en had been here for hours, ever since the end of the mating flights lecture. The sixteen turn old however, remains where he is, merely glancing over as the other weyrling pair make their landing and greetings. His expression is rather guarded, not quite reminiscent of those days where he hid himself behind a mask of indifference, but close enough to suggest there was reason and he didn’t quite seem ready to express otherwise. Nervousness perhaps? They were free now to do as they would like, and even had their own weyrs in which no one could say what could or could not do within them. Leketh seemed much more amused by the antics than his rider, a quivering and rapid pulse yellow tinged pink (his version of laughter) washing over all present, but did not extend far beyond the immediate area. « I can tell you, it’s definitely not what he meant. My J’en, he says things like that all the time to all kinds of people and he doesn’t even know who their Dam is. In fact, this one time… » Cheerful and jovial as always, it takes but a single narrowed look from J’en, before Leketh buttons his lip, so to speak, and falls silent. Jae’s eyes flick over to R’hyn, and then to the sky he’d been ignoring till then. He doesn’t make any comment about it though, just keeps his gaze fixed.

And perhaps that shuttered-off expression is another reason R'hyn draws to a halt, or at the very least why he stays where he is, lingering awkwardly a moment in the in-between before he drops to a seat on the cliff's edge, not daring enter Leketh's personal space. He dusts off the space next to him, a nonverbal indication that Jae can join him if he wishes, but won't progress further except to say, "Feels weird, doesn't it?" Said freedom. Said ability to go where and when they please within reason, after having been kept after for so long. Xermiltoth is happy to talk enough to make up for everyone, anyways, totally unhampered by J'en making Leketh stop talking. « IF R'HYN CAN TELL ME WHEN I SHOULD WATCH MY WORDS, HE CAN HANDLE A DOSE OF HIS OWN MEDICINE, BRO, » the bronze ascertains, though good-humored flickers of diamond dust never leave his tone. « INDEED, INSULTING DAMS SEEMS TO BE A COMMON THEME. SOME PEOPLE DON'T EVEN KNOW THEIR DAMS. IT SEEMS MUCH MORE FITTING TO INSULT THEM DIRECTLY. » It's a wonder more people don't hate Xermiltoth, honestly. He makes up for his cheek, though, with what is for all the world a mental tapping of knuckles, a golden mental brofist. Because he can.

It’s only when R’hyn takes a seat and brushes at the ground beside him that J’en pushes himself up and off of Leketh, but not without some measure of hesitation. It was always difficult to ascertain what it was exactly that the teen had on his mind without him putting it into words. A thing, that he wasn’t doing at the moment. He makes his way over and lowers himself into the designated spot, letting his legs dangle over the edge with a few creaks of leather. Smoothing his hands over his thighs, he spares R’hyn another glance before retreating the the breathtaking view laid out before them. His hands are shaking, which immediately betrays some form of nervousness in someone who usually portrayed confidence. “We gutta talk.” he murmurs, letting Leketh and Xermiltoth chatter on things like mothers and words in the background. Jae takes a breath and lets it out unevenly, brows twitching downwards in a sort of furrow before he places a palm over his face and lets his elbow hold them both aloft. A sharp intake and he drops the hand way, golden eyes sliding back to his fellow weyrling. “I still wanna fuck ya senseless, be fucked by ya senseless…and I love ya just as much as I did that night ya were willing to murder in mah defense…but…” A sigh, “I dun like walkin’ on eggshells Ryn. It ain’t fair havin’ to watch everythin’ I say. I need someone who wants to hear meh tell them I love ‘em, who wants to share a weyr with meh and dun look at meh like I just described some ornate new form of torture when I mention those kinda thin’s.” He keeps his voice as even toned as possible, but it's difficult, and he has to look away and brush at his face with the heel of his thumb. Now, the scenery to the right had his attention. “I’m sorry.” He turns his head back and gives R’hyn a deeply sorrowful expression, “Please dun hate meh, not sure I could handle that, on top of lettin’ ya out of yer promise.”

R'hyn hasn't stopped being observant, and whatever chicanery and amusement that characterized his entrance is gone by the time J'en brushes his hands over his own leathers. Blue-grey eyes watch the shaky gesture, serious and only getting graver when the boy finally talks. Some things never change, and R'hyn's patient sort of listening is one of them, gaze pulling away to stare at the canopy of trees below them, though he's no less attentive to Jae's words. Lips purse for the idea of the weyrling having to watch his words, but it isn't an angry gesture, judging by the downwards tilt of shoulders and the soft exhale of realization - instead, he's thinking about it, putting things together even as his fellow bronzeling continues. It's only when Jae reaches the end that he answers, considering words before doling them out. "You're right, and I'm sorry. I've been real selfish, haven't I?" Blue-grey eyes spin towards Jae, and away just as quickly, reeling out across the view before dropping into his lap along with his hands. "Expecting you to just follow along even when I can't… When I'm not…" Words fail him as they always do, brow furrowing with frustration and disappointment for his own inadequacies, and what they've done - have been doing - to J'en. "I'm very sorry Jae. It isn't fair to you. Not one bit. You are…" Special. Brilliant. Wonderful. Words he can't find, and doesn't have a place to, not in this moment especially. "You deserve all of that, and more," he settles on after a beat, tone hollow but true, even as he lets silence descend. "There ain't nothin' to be sorry about," is said, after a long moment, blue-grey eyes finally lifting to meet Jae's gaze. "And I don't hate you. I never could. Not for this. Not for… fuck." The last word comes out as almost a whisper, coupled with a self-deprecating chuckle, a hysterical noise that fails to hide upset, that cuts off with a sharp exhale and a pinching of fingers at the inner corners of his eyes, fending off tears of his own more than likely as he gives up on talking altogether, at least for this moment.

There is a blink, admittedly watery, when R’hyn asks if he has been selfish. “Fuck Heryn, it ain’t like that…” J’en expresses, unable to look at him now at all, choking back one of those unmanly sounds that he won’t ever acknowledge even when pressed. He was doing very heroic job keeping it all held back, at least in making some sort of ridiculous display riddled with accusations and pointed fingers. “There ain’t nothin’ wrong with ya, ya…just ain’t ready.” He breathes. If he believed that the former bartender would ever be ready, he doesn’t say. Instead he draws in another sharp breath and this time holds it, as he looks up towards the darkening area of sky right above their heads, where stars were already beginning to peek out from their hiding places. Lonely, and lost in the black. “I probably ain’t ready either.” Admitting this, he closes his eyes for a time and continues to listen to what the older of the two has to say, letting a sort snort escape completely of its own accord. “There ain’t nothin’ to apologize for, and there ain’t no reason to be puttin’ meh on a pedestal or nothin’ like that, I jus’….” He shakes his head then and sighs, heavily. He once again looks R’hyn’s way, not bothering to hasten the removal of his sadness from his face as lashes lower and send one after the other skittering down his cheeks. He stays there, just looking the man over, intensely, and seeing that the struggle was at least being shared on some level. After what might seem an eternity, one of his hands closes the distance, however short, between them and he brushes the back of the knuckles against the unbearded part of his cheek. “I love ya Heryn, I always will…” There’s another pause, and he exhales softly. “…and if ya let meh, I’d still like to show ya how much.”

R'hyn snorts for that, a single humorless sound intended perhaps for the use of his full name, or maybe for the indication that he wasn't ready. "I'm not," he agrees quietly, blank tone seeming to ally itself with words that J'en doesn't express: he might not ever be. He's faced the thought, and faces it again now, lips pursing again as he exhales deep and heavy through his nose. Unlike J'en, R'hyn doesn't move, posture remaining curled, elbow settling on his knee to better perch his face upon pinched fingers. "It's less that, and more… acknowledging you're right. You deserve to be happy, Jae, and I— I can't be— I get it." Closed eyes miss the shedding of tears, and press closed even harder when J'en reaches out and touches his cheek, but otherwise he remains still, so still, until finally he is sure he won't cry when he flicks the boy a red-eyed glance filled with sadness and concern. "Are you sure that's a good idea?" And as always with R'hyn, it isn't a denial, allowing Jae to make up his mind on his own terms, but it's there anyways, the unspoken implication that he worries for J'en, might always, especially in this: in the younger man showing him love and emotion that he has felt hurt for not receiving in kind. "I don't want to hurt you." No more than he already has.

J’en frequently used R’hyn’s pre-impression name, especially when he was being extra serious, or really wanted to emphasize that he was. Though, this was more of really needing to get his point across. Jae nods when the man echoes his sentiment but not because he was trying to rub his nose in this whole situation. He was just being understanding, and accepting that things were never going to be the way that they had once hoped they would be. There’s a short, soft cut off sound that might of been ironic laughter, finished off like the cherry on the proverbial top with a breath of a sigh. “Eh, I dunno if I’ll ever be as happy as ya seem to think I deserve.” He comments ironically, now wiping away the show of emotion from his face as he seems to settling into the reality of the moment. This was happening, this was real, and it just had to be. There was no getting around it or avoiding it, but better now than turns later with so much more invested. Brows lift, having spent the time that R’hyn was using to keep the tears in, to push his own down deep where they couldn’t be seen, at least not until he was alone, “Yer kiddin’ right?” He says softly, now with a gentle and genuine laugh, offering the former bartender a soft and comforting smile, “Been teasin’ meh for almost two full turns, the least ya can do is put out.” He drops the hand away from Ryn’s face when there is no move from the man, dropping it back into his lap along with the other. He waits a moment before leaning forward and dropping his voice in a conspiring way. “And if yer good, I might just swin’ by now and again for an encore.” Golden eyes remain on grey-blue as he leans away again and leaves that small measure of space between them again. There wasn’t any pressure there, merely an open invitation to be whatever it was they were going to be. Take it or leave it, the ball in the former bartender’s court. “I ain’t givin’ ya nothin’ I dun wanna give.”

"I hope you are," R'hyn pushes back, but it isn't intended to argue, merely to instill a last wish, like a dash of sugar atop said metaphorical cherry, or a final period in the last sentence of this chapter of their lives. The thought is bittersweet, and R'hyn forces himself past it before he can dwell, if only to match J'en in terms of sheer resignation and acceptance. Inhale. Exhale. Listening. Quiet laughter. Banter. Flirtation. This he could do. Focus. "If I'm good?," he repeats, tone quietly scandalized, one brow raising ever so slightly as he tries to shift gears, tries to shift the apology and wariness in his gaze into humor and teasing. "How about, if you're good, I might just let you." And for a second it looks like he succeeds, canines flashing in an impish smile, but it fades quickly, if not completely, a small smile tugging feebly at one corner of his mouth when he nods for J'en's reassurance. "Likewise. I just want you to be sure." Because he knows Jae, and his history, and though he might not love the boy the way he wants to be loved, the older weyrling does care for him, for the person he is, was, and will be. He takes a moment of quiet consideration, glancing J'en over before he gives a slow, shallow series of nods. "Okay."


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