Rifts

Who: Nala, Rori, Jynth, Inaskashath
Where: Rori’s Weyr, Honshu Weyrhold
What: Rori finds out Leesa’s fate.


Rori and Inaskashath have been awake since the call went out to help Honshu’s senior dragonhealer Leesa from the Weyrleader’s ledge. Inaskashath has remained on her ledge, her attention on the dragons around her as she sends out soothing thoughts to those who are too distressed to understand the fear circulating the Weyrhold. Rori’s returning from the Infirmary, though it takes her time to make her way home when she’s stopped by everyone who sees her to inquire after Leesa. “Alive,” is all she can say to each. She makes her way inside her weyr and heads directly towards her couch to settle on. Her arm is tossed over her eyes as she heaves a long sigh and lets her mind settle into the quiet her body needs.

There are some things that are not entirely under Nala’s control, and two of them happen to be Jynth and Cinder in the face of something they know has distressed her beyond the point of making sense and reduced her to frozen fear, and so while one has blocked the way out of her weyr until the dragon population of Honshu has calmed down and the blood has been scrubbed off ledges and steps, the other has practically sat on her to guard her from predators. One can only hope that it was Jynth at the ledge and Cinder in Nala’s lap. She’s still pale by the time her lifemate lets her leave, Cinder following at her heels even when she reaches Rori’s weyr, though she manages to get her to go and occupy the cushions she’s claimed as hers in the goldrider’s home. “Is she…? Was it another Weyrleader? The Council? Jynth says he has seen the green before but he cannot remember her name.”

Rori stirs as Nala approaches and shame hits her as she reaches for Nala to hug. “I should have come to check on you. I’m so sorry. Aerishani and O’rlen are nowhere to be found and I had to calm everyone…,” she trails off and pulls back, moving to keep hold of Nala’s hand. “It was not an attack from the Council or any Weyrleader we acknowledge. I think,” she hesitates, frowning as she decides on her choice of words, “it was the Hold that took our eggs. Arlet came with their leader and O’rlen allowed for them to choose our eggs. I knew that O’rlen had sent Leesa to assist after the Hatching… I had assumed they’d have been more prepared but they requested aid.” She shakes her head, squeezing Nala’s fingers, her gaze haunted. “She is alive. All the Healers will tell me is she’s alive. The undercurrent of, ‘for now’, doesn’t get said but that is what everyone thinks I’m sure. They were in surgery for nearly 13 hours trying to repair all the damage that… that–,” she shakes her head and raises her free hand to press against her lips.

Nala tucks her face into the crook of Rori’s neck and stays there for a little bit, her arms settling snugly around her middle. “I wonder what she did to merit such a thing,” she says slowly. “Or what Honshu has done. Perhaps more went on while we were at Fort than we are aware of.” She lifts her head and squares her shoulders, steadying herself. “…Do you think that something happened with the eggs? Do we know that they all hatched?” Her brow furrows. “Were there more like the one-winged blue? Perhaps they thought it was a trick and an affront to them.” Biting down on the inside of her lip, she hesitates, only to say, “…Leesa may be the only one who knows.”

Rori’s face remains stricken as her shoulders shift into a barely visible shrug and she shakes her head. “I don’t know,” she tells Nala bleakly. “I only found out that Leesa went recently and that was because I was doing rounds with our staff and checking in on what inventory needed to be ordered.” She tucks her lip between her teeth and nibbles on it in thought. “More went on when we were at Fort,” she agrees, darkness entering her gaze, “but Aerishani and O’rlen have made no mention to me what transpired in our absence. The rift between them is so obvious… everyone knows something happened. At this point, it has to be something with the offer of eggs. And to a Hold? And foreigners who aren’t a part of a Weyrhold or a Weyr? I know that the Council has left Silverfield alone with their green and blue… what if they had asked for eggs to hatch?” She hand tightens on Nala. “That this is permitted while we fear for ourselves every time–,” she cuts herself off and shakes her head. “It may be time we looked to transfer from Honshu, Nala. They may not be willing nor able to protect us.”

“Where would we go?” doesn’t really sound like the question it’s phrased as. “Fort might welcome you back, but there is not way that C’aol would tolerate Jynth chasing Inaskashath, let alone flying her. None of the northern Weyrs would entertain the idea of Jynth and I having any right to be involved with either of you.” Nala idly tangles her fingers in the ends of Rori’s hair before smoothing it all back down again. “Almost any Weyr would be glad to have you,” she murmurs. “And it is not my right to suggest you should seek to remain here if you are uncomfortable. However, for Jynth and I, it is the only place that tolerates that we are not like any other blue and their rider. Safe or not… another Weyr would seek to actively persecute me. What I might suffer aside, I cannot put Jynth through a move that would have him become an outcast. You and Inaskashath… your futures are more secure without us.”

“I wasn’t trying to imply that I would leave without you,” Rori shakes her head and lets her face fall into the exhausted and sad lines she’s been trying to hold back. “I worry about us,” she tells Nala, “I worry about //you// and Jynth. It’s not Inaskashath and me face the world and play at being normal. It’s us and //you//. Always.” She tips her head down towards her chest and sighs. “We’ll remain at Honshu. They need us, clearly. I don’t know what is going on with O’rlen and Aerishani but we’ll have to help them through this.” Her attention draws back to Nala. “How can we make you feel safer here? If they can make attacks on dragonhealers… what is to stop them from making attacks on dragonriders? What is their motivation? They’ve got our eggs. I wonder if I should ask Inaskashath to feel for them. I know Amorenth likely has the mental power to do so… I’ve never tested Inaskashath’s.”

“I was not suggesting that you believed that you should,” Nala says slowly, “only that perhaps you ought to. I am not suggesting so to be a martyr or because it is what I want, but because you would be safe. In the end, if I cannot hope for that for myself, I still can for you, whether you ever intend on taking the steps to be so or not.” She wraps her arms back around Rori and holds her close. “How I feel here or anywhere is unlikely to change,” she tells her quietly. “If I were unbearably afraid, I would never have let Jynth chase Inaskashath a second time. It is what it is. All of it. Leesa’s fate… It seems unlikely that it is to have a bearing on ours. We are an affront to the Council, not somewhere or someone who has taken Inaskashath and Jynth’s eggs for their own.” Resting her chin on Rori’s shoulder, she supposes, “You could see if Inaskashath can sense any other dragons nearby. Dragonets are loud. They have little control or power of concealment.”

Rather than continue the conversation of whether or not Rori should, when she so clearly won’t leave Nala, Rori closes her eyes and leans her head back against the couch. “Inaskashath says she cannot sense anyone. Maybe if we were to go flying but even then… that seems like a futile effort since we don’t know //where// they were taken.” She sighs and opens her eyes, reaching to wrap her arms about Nala and hug her. “We have more to worry about than our eggs, I’m afraid. We’ll have to hope that they didn’t turn out deformed like Malynth. That he has learned to Between is a wonder. I didn’t think Fort’s weyrlingmasters bothered to teach them.” She considers Nala for a moment and then offers, “We could find a place. Of our own. A little cothold… where all of us can go and have no one weigh in on what we’re doing.” She smiles and shrugs, looking a little embarrassed as she declares, “I’m not much of a help with many things. I do think I’m good at the basics… cooking, cleaning, baking. We could make it a lovely space.”

“We could have a cothold built where no-one would find us,” Nala supposes, tucking her face back in against Rori’s neck. “Somewhere we could go when we do not have to be here. Inaskashath deserves to stay among her kind and be respected and pursued in flight as all other queens are. But the times Honshu doesn’t need the two of you…” She lifts her head to meet her gaze. “You are more of a help with more things than you ever realises,” she says softly. “And maybe we need not wonder about Inaskashath and Jynth’s babies forever. If Malynth can go Between… Even if there are any more like him, it shows it can be done. It is highly unlikely they would stay wherever they are for the rest of their lives and never travel. We might meet them one day.”

“I don’t think it’s so uncommon to want space for ourselves outside of the Weyrhold,” Rori tells Nala as she tucks a strand of the bluerider’s hair behind her ear. “We shouldn’t be worrying about Jynth and Inaskashath’s babies,” she says with a small shrug, “we have more important things to worry about.” She glances towards the entrance of her weyr as someone calls out to enter. A moment later, one of their Healer apprentices appears in Rori’s living room. He blushes at the two women sitting so near each other as he bows more than once in his flustered state. “Leesa woke up,” he tells them both, scrubbing his hands together. “We didn’t want to disturb the Weyrlord or the Weyrlady,” he looks uncomfortable and then adds, “and were hoping you could tell them? My Master says she is still in critical condition but this is a good sign of her fight to live.” He gulps as Rori offers him a small smile. “Thank you, Ederick. Please return to your Master and let him know I will pass the news along to our Weyrlord and Weyrlady.” As the boy scampers out she looks sidelong at Nala with a wider smile. “And that is some very promising news, isn’t it?”

“You should go and tell them,” Nala suggests, pressing a kiss to Rori’s cheek. “Maybe it will ease whatever it is that is keeping them from functioning as a unit. If this continues, I would not be surprised if we found ourselves with a new Weyrlord in the coming months, not that Amorenth seems the sort to let her rider’s feelings sway her.” She pushes up from the couch and straightens her shirt, saying, “I will make us a meal in the meantime and then I think you deserve to stay here and get some rest. Let them deal with whatever it is that they have brought upon Leesa and Honshu. You have more than done your duty today.” As she heads off to the kitchen area, Cinder promptly trots across the room and leaps up onto the couch to occupy the space that she’s left, planting her paws down in Rori’s lap while she noses at her for pets for the time she has her there. “Cuddles later.” Whether Nala means to tell Cinder so or Rori herself, she leaves it ambiguous enough that she hides a tiny smirk as she turns towards a cupboard and gets started on the task she’s set herself.

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