Heloth

Inspiration:

There are soldiers who simply toe the line, yes-men to their superior officers, no matter what ethics are compromised to do so, and then there are those stick to their moral convictions, even if it risks their careers or even their lives, and most especially when they know others’ lives are at stake. Lt. Karl C. “Helo” Agathon was one of those heroes of Battlestar Gallactica, the newer TV series version. He was a skilled pilot, soldier, officer, and humanitarian/”cylonitarian” all rolled into one. Helo eventually became the XO (a few times), Adama’s right-hand-man, but his climb to that rank wasn’t without a lot of trials and pitfalls and risky stands against what he knew were immoral military actions, such as the attempted genocide of the cylons through a downloaded virus, an attempt that Helo personally thwarted. Helo was a man who lived in the moment, impetuous, taking things as they came at him, and making split-second judgment calls based on a good, balanced combination of his military experience and his moral code of honor, some that nearly cost him his career. To those who don’t look beneath the surface, Helo appears to be a man of conflicting loyalties, someone who is unreliable, unpredictable, and flaky, but the fact of the matter is his loyalty is simply to a higher order of justice than any manmade structural hierarchy. Your Heloth is based on this strong, stouthearted, and dedicated character.

Dragon Description:

Long and tall, this brown dragon often stands out among other browns for that quality alone. His greater length rivals even some of the smaller bronzes, and proportionately renders the rest of his strong frame leaner, and sleek. His back legs seem especially athletically strong, lending to the advantage in launching himself into the air faster and farther than your average brown. With a splash-pattern of ochre on top of his wedge-shaped head across his head-knobs and eyes, and another splash of it on his chest, this hatchling’s hide boasts a predominately raw umber tone. His wingtips, tail, and lowest portion of his legs all show a complimenting burnt umber coloring in a casual, striping pattern while the leading edges of his wings uniquely display a sharp fringe of auburn that gently bleeds into the rest of his umber coloring. His talons, on the other hand, shine with a deeper maroon polish. There is a lot going on, visually, with this brown dragon and many may find it hard to tear their gazes away from him at times.

Personality:

QUOTE: “I'm not a traitor. I love my people. I love this ship… . . But I did what I thought was right. If it was a mistake, fine, I can live with that. It's you I can't live without.”

Heloth is an intelligent brown who lives in the moment, makes decisions quickly, puts them in action, and doesn’t hesitate or drag things out with excessive planning or second-guessing. He can be bold with his decisive action and even sometimes extremely passionate with his convictions as he stands his ground. In this sense, Heloth is his own dragon, thinking for himself rather than just blindly accepting what others tell him is “right” or “wrong”. Don’t mistake this for him being a dragon who likes to buck the system for the sake of bucking the system. He knows his duty and is a strong and skilled “soldier” in the fight against Thread, and will often prove himself worthy of his wingmates’ admiration and loyalty time and time again.

QUOTE: “I'm talking about right and wrong. I'm talking about losing a piece of our souls. No o ne wants to hear that, right? Let's keep it o n me. Yeah, I'm married to a Cylon. Who walked through hell for all of us how many times? And she's not half anything, okay. How do we know there aren't others like her? She made a choice. She's a person. They're a race of people. Wiping them out with a biological weapon is a crime against — is a crime against humanity.”

Yet, he’s been blessed with a lot of tolerance for people and dragons who have a variety of backgrounds and points-of-view, and he advocates for the disadvantaged and misunderstood, whether they are the underdog or not. With such strong convictions, he will likely be among the very few dragons who overcome that ultimate drive for self-preservation and would be potentially willing to martyr themselves for a greater cause (outside of the usual risk that comes with the Threadfighting cause), though to be sure it would only be a cause that you support and feel passionately about as well. You will never have to worry about him taking such near-death risks without your full sign-off. He is impetuous about many things, but decision that would risk his life (and therefore yours), he’d show self-restraint on, following your lead. Otherwise, you may have to pay closer attention to things that could set him off and have him suddenly springing to action of his own initiative to make a point or protect someone he values—this will be much more noticeable in weyrlinghood as you are getting used to his behavior and mannerisms and, most importantly, triggers. He’ll never completely outgrow his impetuous nature, and his ability to think quickly on his feet (or his wings) will actually be prized at times when he flames an overlooked clump of Thread or conducts an emergency rescue, but in time you will learn enough about him and his ways to anticipate when his quick actions will be truly warranted and appreciated or not, and able to keep the worst or most unnecessary displays of such bravado minimized.

QUOTE: Helo: What's the matter with you?
Hot Dog: Sorry, I've got the weirdest rash.
Helo: Really? I hope she was worth it, buddy!

While he isn’t exactly a “chatty” type of dragon, he is as sociable as the next one, particularly enjoying aerial acrobatic games with his fellow dragons, either in participation or observing, as a guy in the real-world might enjoy a Sunday afternoon watching football with his army buddies. He’ll even enjoy human competitive sports, should he have the opportunity to see it, most especially the fighting circuits. Slightly competitive in nature, himself, his humor is of the gently ribbing variety, taunting and teasing both male and female dragon friends alike. In addition, his extremely tolerant nature allows him to appreciate human friendship on a level many other dragons don’t share, and your own friends may, on occasion, be just as subject to his gentle ribbing as his dragon friends are. On that same sociable level, he is not afraid to speak his mind to you or anyone else, even if his view is the unpopular one, and generally he does attempt to get people to see his way of things before giving up and just shutting them out. He will, of course, be respectful about it when addressing superiors, but he will still speak his mind. The same can also be said about his feelings; while he is not someone who exactly wears his emotions “on his sleeve”, Heloth isn’t afraid to express his feelings and emotions if he thinks it will help a situation or help convince someone to support his moral convictions. If he’s angry or frustrated, he will say just that. If he’s in love, he’ll tell her he loves her. All without shame or fear or embarrassment. He doesn’t gush, but he doesn’t hide or try to deny his feelings.

QUOTE: “One of the first things they taught us at the academy was that symbols matter. Uniforms, flags, banners, even mascots. They're like pieces of your heart you can look at. This uniform? It means a lot to me.”

He has leadership skills and would be content and good at anything along the way up to a Weyrsecond position with you. Should he ever catch a senior queen, he will handle it well from a tactical and skillset sense, but will emotionally find himself conflicted and awkward and uncomfortable. He will doubt and question every decision that you and he carefully make together, perhaps especially the ones you both agonize and spend a lot of time over and planning out. He will often be quiet and sulky and moody, not finding as much pleasure in many of the things he used to take pleasure in. The weight and responsibility will simply weigh on him in a way that all the other positions of leadership didn’t. That’s not to say you and he will make terrible mistakes as a Weyrleader pair and be the worst ones ever. More than likely, as a Weyrleader pair, you and Heloth will handle all the responsibility as skillfully and wisely as you both had done so before in other leadership roles. But Heloth’s self-confidence will flag noticeably in that particular highest position and role, and it will be up to you to find ways to keep him de-stressed and less preoccupied and fretting. He generally feels much more comfortable in a Weyrsecond, or even lower, leadership position. He does well as a leader, just isn’t really comfortable as the ultimate “Top Dog”.

As an adult dragon, Heloth will be among the longest and tallest of his fellow browns, rivaling or even surpassing the smaller bronzes. His build will remain a little on the leaner, sleeker, more athletic frame, with the bulk of his strength being in his back legs and wings, the legs more so the wings, but not by much. This makes him a better launcher than most, even some bronzes, and it will be more noticeable when he gives chase in a mating flight. Whether he ultimately catches or not, Heloth will very likely be the first one in the air after the female dragon and will, more often than not, be the one that the rest of the dragons work to catch up to in the first leg of the chase, unless something unexpected distracted or stalled him out of the proverbial gate. Of course, whether he is able to maintain that initial lead or not will depend on all the other variables of the chase, but his powerful back legs give him that little advantage in any case. Considering his size, he will be able to fly a full Fall with energy left over, usually. His sleek, athletic build suggests some agility (and to be sure he is no lumbering mountain), but he’s not as agile as many of his more compact fellow browns, and he definitely can’t compete with blues and greens on the agility scale.

While he enjoys athletic pursuits and competitions, he is no stranger to lounging, either, especially after a full meal or a bath in the lake, freshly oiled, and most especially after a mating flight. It will not be unusual for you to find yourself stuck in some strange greenrider’s weyr with little memory of the mating flight that your Heloth won, and the brown himself too drowsy and sated to want to move, even if just to carry you back to your own ledge and weyr. It will take a lot of convincing, with Heloth himself counter-arguing and trying to coax you back into the greenrider’s bed, before you finally get him to get you out of there. While he is still a dragonet, you may enjoy his easy-going nature and complete willingness to just settle back and soak up some of Rukbat’s rays in the afternoon after lunch, as long as it doesn’t interfere with any duties. He will be among the more enthusiastic and eager to learn to fly, but not out of a sense of wanting to get away and having that extra freedom as is often the case with dragonets, more for a sense of having that additional means of playful activity and athletic competition opened up to him.

QUOTE: “You were a person before you put on that uniform, okay? You were a person before I fell in love with you. You don't have to prove that.”

Towards the end of his adolescence, perhaps a month or two before he would be considered a fully matured adult, Heloth will suddenly seem to pay more attention to any female dragons rising to mate. You will likely be able to assert your will enough to prevent him from chasing any greens, but should the timing of his maturing to this level hit at a time when one of the queens rise, well, you will have a much harder time keeping him grounded and not wanting to chase. His libido will awaken just a little bit sooner than most of the other dragonets. When he actually starts to chase in mating flights as an adult dragon, it will be very hard for you to be selective of his chasing and keep him only in the running for the ones you want him to chase. He will want to chase any and every tail any way anyhow and he may even try convincing you to visit other weyrs with him to see if any of those females are going to be rising soon. It will take several turns, perhaps even to the middle of his expected lifespan, but eventually his libido will settle down and he will get more selective and potentially even just find one female he mates with consistently and to the exclusion of all others. A lot of that will depend on your influence, but in the beginning he will be a veritable “womanizer”, tapping everything and anything he possibly can. He won’t be a love-her-n-leave-her type, however, as he isn’t quite that inconsiderate a dragon, and will likely hang around whoever he catches for a few days with a lot of affection and “cuddling” until the memory starts to fade or if the female dragon prefers he leave her alone sooner. Should he ever be lucky or skilled enough to catch one of the queens, he will be even sweeter and more endearing and attentive and extremely protective of the queen and their eggs, once she clutches. He will be the dutiful and caring “dad” and not just merely a sire. You will find him very reluctant to leave the sands during this time, unless the queen is the sort who doesn’t want him there or she needs him to hunt for her, and if the queen does not want him physically present, he will stand guard at the entrance, dedicated and protective.

Mind Voice:

The smithy is Heloth’s mindscape and all the sounds that come with such a marriage of technological industry and the perseverance of humanity accompany it. The slow, rhythmic clanging of metal on metal as the tools of civilization are forged is the predominant sound, shifting between tones as different items are created: pick-axe heads giving a deeper clang than say the head of a pitchfork. But just beneath that clang of industry and progress is the more primal whispered roar of the forge fire. When Heloth is upset that fire rages hotter and snaps and pops, and there is the tale-tell hiss and sizzle of red-hot metal dipped in water.

Mind Scent:

The underlying scene of burning wood sets the foundation for the more pungent scent of what can only be, literally, metal cooking and the less pungent, musky odor of a man’s sweat from hard labor in a hot, steamy space. When upset, the smoky scent becomes overwhelmed with smoke and ash, chokingly so, and the unmistakable sickly sweet smell of burnt flesh accompanies it.

Physical Voice

Heloth’s tenor is crisp, firm, and full of hard, resolute edges, even his rumbled murmurs when he has reason to give them. He neither tends to be loud and boisterous nor is he given over to being heavily quiet or husky, but somewhere in the middle. The most distinctive aspect of his physical voice is that there is no mistaking its beginning or end, or mistaking it for some other dragon. It rarely grows faint or hoarse, even when he may be feeling tired or weak, short of actually having a respiratory illness of some kind.

Growth

There won’t be anything exceptional about the speed of Heloth’s growth. He will not be the fastest in the clutch or the first to get to a certain physical milestone, but he will definitely not be the last, and more often than not will probably attain those physical milestones maybe just a step or two behind the more accelerated growers and a step or two ahead of the average. So, you will find yourself oiling him more often than many but not as frequently as some. Where Heloth will stand out with his growth will be the growth of his legs and wings and his overall longer, sleeker length for a brown his age. His legs and wings will tend to develop first at each stage, leaving him a little more lanky and awkward, and sometimes making him clumsier than some of the other dragonets. You will likely be oiling his wings and legs more often than the rest of him and he will put up with a lot of itching in silence if he knows it’s not a convenient time for you to oil him, so it will sometimes be up to you to recognize the feeling through the mindlink and know that it is time for yet another oiling of those appendages. As an adult dragon, Heloth will be among the longest and tallest of the brown dragons, though he may not have the broad shoulders and brute strength of some of the dragons who are of a similar size, and his growth over the two turns of weyrlinghood will only serve to emphasize that future athletic build.

Eating Habits

Your dragon has a crazy high metabolism, and this will begin with his first meal after hatching and continue on into adulthood. He has an appreciation for his meals, but he is not what one could call a food-lover. He eats, and he eats a lot with that metabolism, but it all seems simply because he’s hungry not because he particularly is savoring the taste. He will constantly seem hungry and when most dragons are graduating to a single meal a day, your Heloth will want seconds, or even thirds if he’s had a particularly active day and burned a lot of calories. When he graduates to hunting for himself, he will really love it, seeing it as another bit of sport to compete with the others, though he won’t get too carried away, neither picky nor possessive of his chosen herdbeasts, generously willing to give them up good-naturedly to a green or a struggling blue if they had their eye on it. There’s more where that came from, after all, and he can just go chase down another one. The fun is in the chasing anyway!

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