Surprise

Who: Isolwyn, C’aol, Eosyth, Daeserath
Where: Hatching Cavern, Fort Weyr
What: Eosyth and Daeserath show off their new clutch.


It’s a little before midnight when Eosyth wakes and lifts her head from where she’s been sleeping tucked with it against Daeserath’s side, her eyes whirling through the yellows and oranges of alarm until the pain that woke her registers as nothing to be worried about. At least, not as long as she gets herself to the Sands of Fort’s hatching cavern. Rather than wake her rider, she noses gently at her mate’s shoulder and slips out of her wallow as gracefully as she can, doing her best to maintain quiet both mentally and physically as regards alerting either of their riders. As the hours pass, she makes little of the whole affair of clutching, only being particular as to where each egg ends up sitting, rearranging them all again once it’s clear that there are to be no more. Tired though she may be, as first light spills out across the Weyr she reaches for both Isolwyn and C’aol, her touch feather-light. << We have something to show you. >>

Daeserath stirs beside his mate and follows her towards the Sands. It is only through Eosyth’s choice of silence that he does not alert C’aol nor threaten any dragons that may be too curious. It is the first time that his snapping anger is not a tingle of threat around the Weyr. He’s proud of the final clutch number and waits for Eosyth to welcome his inspection of them before he comes closer. C’aol’s dream is interrupted by Eosyth’s touch and he stirs at Isolwyn’s side, momentarily confused as to the touch against his mind. “Mother?” he murmurs before he blinks his eyes awake and Daeserath adds to the announcement, following Eosyth’s lead by including Isolwyn in his touch, << A great clutch. Much to be proud of. You may come now. >> His normal tone is a touch of dissipating ice, a cool morning fog, and the promise of a sharper edge.

Isolwyn opens her eyes and rolls onto her back, having tucked herself in against C’aol in her sleep, her head ducked down against his shoulder, and blinks up at the ceiling for a few sleepy moments before it’s Daeserath’s words that help her to figure out what she’s missed between asleep and awake. “…Clutch…” she sighs out, quite without realising exactly why, only then the fog lifts and she sits up, startled. “She’s clutched. They did this without telling us!” Before she can choose to be indignant, she has to smother a yawn. “We should go and see before we really are the last to.” Rush though she may, she refuses to leave the weyr looking dishevelled or as if she //has// rushed, aware that Eosyth and Daeserath will likely not be the only ones to set eyes on them. For her part, Eosyth has her wings swept forward when they finally arrive, some of the eggs visible tucked close to her side, yet she waits until both Isolwyn and C’aol are in her sights before lifting her wings and folding them back, fairly wriggling with excitement to reveal a golden shell between her forearms. The first, she seemed to take in her stride and fully expect, yet this second one must strike her as an achievement or the fulfilment of what she has heard her rider and her own mate wishing for.

“Why do they ever tell us anyway?” C’aol’s answer is laced with grouchiness. “It’s not as if we do much but stand around for hours and watch.” He stretches his arms over his head with a yawn before he sits himself up. “Daeserath’s not going to let anyone enter ahead of us,” he tells Isolwyn after a pause in which his bronze informs him of that. He pulls the blankets off of his body and stands to ready himself to visit the Sands and meet the people who come to view the eggs. Daeserath’s circled himself around Eosyth and the golden egg, his tail long enough to still reach and claim a curl around the rest of the clutch safely enclosed in the sand. “So she has done it,” C’aol says as he eyes the gold and allows a full smile forward. “And we will have our way of it,” he turns and loops an arm around Isolwyn’s shoulders to pull her roughly against his side for a hug. He gives the briefest of kisses to the top of her head before he releases her and strides further into the Sands, not wanting to linger around his public display of affection.

Eosyth drops her head down to rest atop one of her paws, right beside the golden egg and her field of vision one that incorporates the stands, already alert for any she and Daeserath would not have on the Sands, even as the weariness of her recent endeavours begins to sink into her. Her eyes still whirl in happy blues and greens, her tail looped loosely around her mate’s as footsteps bring their riders closer. Isolwyn hums a content note against C’aol’s collarbone as he kisses the top of her head, a smile hidden there that doesn’t dim when she reaches her queen and presses her face to her hide to tell her, “You are brilliant,” before regarding the still soft shell kept preciously close. She offers a hand to Daeserath, knowing better than to simply touch him, her affection no less there for allowing him the choice. “We’ll need to Search the northern Holds. A woman preferably over twenty. Queens rarely seem to choose within the Weyrs. Men too, older. We can’t risk her or the bronzes who might be her mate choosing children. Especially with Vesoviath and Safiye here.”

Daeserath allows a huff of hot breath to brush against Isolwyn’s palm as she reaches towards him, the smallest of nudges given before he pulls himself back to focusing on watching the Stands should any sneak in for a glance at Eosyth and her eggs. C’aol is quiet as he watches the dragons and Isolwyn. He gives her a nod in agreement for her thoughts. “I agree, older will continue to serve us. Safiye’s age only highlights the issues of the young when they Impress. I prefer we push the limit and bring in some that are in their late twenties. I wonder if a dragon might still find them a suitable partner. Age will help. No vagabonds or people trying to change their lives by coming to the Weyr. I want serious candidates who understand the tasks that will be put before them. If this queen is indeed to go and take Honshu… we will need a strong-minded woman, however – she must listen to you.” He offers Isolwyn a thin smile, adding, “And men who are not so easily clouded by their ambitions.”

“Even if we were to get exactly our way with the sort of woman we need on the Sands, the matter of the right bronze and rider is more… unpredictable,” Isolwyn sighs, letting a hand stray towards the golden shell to ghost her fingertips over it. “We could have the right man and a bronze not of a stature to catch a queen. Or it might simply be another who catches her. An ideal world would provide us with a pair with some connection that might sway their dragon’s preferences.” Her brief smile is wry. “Unfortunately, this is no perfect world. At the least, we can hope that Aerishani and O’rlen surrender their Weyrhold while it’s obvious we stand prepared to provide a queen of Honshu’s bloodline, should that be a concern or means of swaying opinion.” She dips her head to smother a yawn into her shoulder, saying, “If you want to go back to sleep, I’ll stay here and supervise the inevitable egg-starers.”

“Even if they have a connection, the addition of their dragon’s minds might sway them in another direction entirely,” C’aol drawls, lifting a brow as he adds, “not all pairings are as destined as ours, my dear.” He lets his hand move to rest against the small of Isolwyn’s back as he considers the golden egg. “The Council is idle of late. They will enjoy exerting their power to make a decision. We will have to make sure that we get others on our side to provide the Honshu gold. That Eosyth is prolific in them… may lead to the understanding we must find other Weyr’s for her daughters as she has them.” He considers Daeserath with a sigh and then looks to Isolwyn. “There will be no controlling him if I were to return to sleep. His anger will be quite high if anyone missteps in their viewing.”

Isolwyn smirks as she lifts her gaze to C’aol’s, saying, “I promise I won’t tell anyone that you described us as ‘destined’,” in dry and quiet tones that cannot help but tease, the opportunity taken while no-one else stands to witness it to turn and lift up onto her toes to deliver a kiss that wouldn’t be out of place in the aftermath of a flight. “I don’t think Eosyth will permit many juniors, even of her own line,” she murmurs with the possessive edge she and her queen share for their mates and their home. “If Honshu wishes to survive, they’ll have no choice but to call a meeting of the Council themselves – and sooner rather than later.” Stepping back, she lets her focus momentarily flit from egg to egg and back to Eosyth before she turns to take steps towards the Stands. “Let’s call the kitchens for something to keep us better awake and let everyone get over their excitement for a new clutch before we dare claim more rest,” she suggests over a shoulder. “Once they’ve had the time to look, we could close the galleries, if need be.”

C’aol allows an indulgent smile show as he takes Isolwyn’s teasing and proceeding kiss without any qualms. He follows her as she moves towards the Stands and moves to his arm about her waist. He walks her to their usual portion of the Stands and points towards them. “Stay, I’ll go and get the kitchens to the task. Eosyth won’t enjoy my company nearly as much as your own.” He glances towards Daeserath, “And he won’t stop gloating for some time yet.” He doesn’t linger, not wanting her to possibly stop him from going to handle getting them food. He doesn’t return immediately, as it takes time for him to gather the staff and handle questions of Fort’s residents and rider’s that are already whispering about the clutch on the Sands. He returns with one of the kitchen assistant’s carrying the tray of drink and food he’s ordered. He stays with Isolwyn the bulk of the day as they observe those who come to take a look at the eggs. The pride of Fort is clear as those who come observe another gold egg with welcome comments. “Soon, the world,” he murmurs to Isolwyn at some point during the day. “Soon.”

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