How Would YOU Describe The Eggs?


Ciara.jpg E'ro.jpg Uveline.jpg

Date: July 28, 2010
Location: Eastern Weyr: Lower Hatching Galleries
Synopsis: Ciara and Uveline run into E'ro while he is writing a letter to his parents about Rauzath's clutch.
Rating: PG-13 for very mild sexual reference.
Logger: Uveline

Day 02, Month 08, Turn 01, AIVAS Reckoning, First Long Pass

Eastern Weyr: Lower Hatching Galleries

Open sky gives way to stone as one enters the galleries. The small room built into the rock is architecturally designed to draw the attention down below: to the sands. Holding six tiers of five seats each, the room is fairly etched out of the stone of the caldera, giving its occupants places to rest while their focus is on the life-changing space before them. A long rail sits between them and the ground, keeping people from angry dragons or painful falls.

Evening time sees many people crowded into the galleries, seeing the eggs for the first time or writing down their bets for the upcoming hatching. It's a mad house, filled with children and the elderly alike, and there's no lack of noise in the spacious cavern. E'ro is scribbling like mad, sitting on the first row of a tier, and occasionally looks up from his writings. "Twenty-eight Rauzath Alara gold" he mumbles at intervals, which earns him strange looks from those around him - not that he cares. Scratch, scratch, scratch as he writes something wrong and has to correct it. "Ah ha!" spoken loudly and triumphantly, earning more suspicious glances. Then again, it could be the large shiner on his left eye that has people staring so recurrently and whispering behind their hands.

Finally finding the time to get out there and see the much-talked-about eggs, Ciara is a little dismayed to find the galleries so busy. Still, the young woman spots some space near E'ro, and so she shuffles down that row of seats, trying not to step on people's feet on the way. "Sorry! Sorry!" Is her little chorus as she goes along. Finally she gets near him, and leans practically her full weight on the rail, peering down at the eggs. "Neat!" The bronze rider's big ol' black eye is not noticed. Yet.

Normally, the chore of nanny duty doesn't bother Uveline - it's only an extension of her pre-candidacy duties as a teacher, and easy enough to adjust to. But not so today, with her cluster of pre-teen children all extremely excited and running all over the place in the galleries, staring out at the eggs. At least it has Uveline in a place she wanted to be anyway, as she glances out at the sands herself frequently. Most often, she is trying to keep her assigned group together and not running into anyone in the crowded galleries.

"I wouldn't," says E'ro, not looking up from his piece of abused paper, "do that. Those rails can be as rickety as an overused stair banister." His eyes flick up from the words he'd just written, openly assessing the candidate. "Haven't you ever heard the stories? About the little kids who get eaten when they fall from the stands by the hungry clutchmother? She's not choosy when she's stuck here, starving.. waiting for any plump morsel to fall.." He flashes a grin, switching from dramatic storytelling mode to all teeth and twinkling blues. "E'ro.. you're?" Obviously, she's a candidate, but he's not got a name to place with that face. Lifting a hand, he starts to say something else when a hyper adolescent bounces by, churning the air so it whisks his papers off his lap. Dry wit colors his voice as his eyes find the keeper of the child, "Maybe you need ropes to tie them down?" he suggests to Uveline. Damn those kids, now he's gotten actually get up and find his papers, scattered on the floor of the stands.

Ciara jerks away from the rails at E'ro's warning, spinning to face him as he addresses her. "Pfft," is her initial response to his story, before she catches sight of his knot and realises who she's talking to. "I thought dragons didn't eat people?" She manages to be a little more mature with that sentence, and the next. "Ciara." She ponders his name, head on one side. "Isn't your dragon Yzuruth? The one who caught Kaseth?" Then she's having to dodge a bouncing child, eyes widening and her neck twisting to look further up into the galleries to see who Uveline's addressing. Once that's noted, she starts scrabbling around to help pick up E'ro's hides. "Here, lemme just-"

"If I had a rope then believe me, I would. Or at least tie them all to my waist, so they can't get so far away!" Uveline replies, voice strained. As Ciara and E'ro gather the papers, Uveline first warns her other charges off so they don't trample anyone or anything, and then calls the boy who caused the mess back. "You get back here, and apologize to the bronzerider!" she tells him in a no-nonsesne tone. Then, to E'ro and Ciara she muttuers, "You would think none of them have ever seen a clutch before, but more than half of them are weyrbred!" Shaking her head, she glances to see if any more papers need retrieved.

Apparently, E'ro can't fool as many candidates as he'd like too; so much for being young and stupid. "They don't, but that doesn't stop anyone from making up stories, especially the holdfolk." He considers the name with his head cocked to the side, but it doesn't ring any bells. She'll just have to be a new face that requires some getting to know. "Yeah, I'm the one who ban-" pause, as he remembers he's talking to a candidate and not another dragonriders, "banked on Yzuruth catching Kaseth and he did, look at that!" Included is a very fake, very cheesy laugh, as he ducks his head to retrieve the papers. When they've collected them all, he stands and starts organizing them into some semblance of their former neat pile. "See, that's how you tell if they're holdbred or weyrbred. Weyrbrats run amuck, Holdbrats tend to be more reserved. In my estimation anyway." He puts a foot up on the seat above him, addressing Uveline, "Name's E'ro, and that is Ciara," with a head jerk to the other candidate; he'll assume they're strangers.

Ciara shrugs from down on the floor, unable to deny that. "Eh, we're not all wise to the ways of you Weyrfolk." She stands back up with the papers she has managed to collect, shuffling them into a neater pile in her hands. She gives E'ro a long look when he pauses mid-sentence, one eyebrow doing a bit of a jig as she tries to work out why he's laughing so cheesily. She offers the papers she's picked up back to the rider, looking up at Uveline as she does so. "I recognise you, but I dunno your name, sorry." She gives a small, apologetic smile to the other candidate.

Uveline mmms at E'ro's reply, wrinkling her nose at the sheer energy the children display as they continue to run around the galleries - though with a little more attention paid to not running into people. "I have to disagree, since the youths at the Hall and at my home Hold are no less enthusiastic than these when something exciting happens," she says after the last paper is restored to E'ro. "Ah, I'm Uveline. Sorry for the interruption, E'ro, Ciara. I'm not used to my stu- the children having this much exuberance when I'm dealing with them." She shakes her head slightly before claiming a seat near the rider and other candidate, keeping an eye on her charges. "But this is much less exhausting than digging the lake, at least."

All the papers collected and returned, E'ro is happy to sit back down where he was, pick up his stylus and start writing again. There are intermittent pauses where he tries recollecting what his thoughts and next words were, but he'll get it eventually, scribbling madly like before. "You think? Back at Keroon, you couldn't run all around and anywhere you'd like. Someone was waiting to give you a whipping if you did. Didn't have to be your parents - everyone knew that they would do the same thing if they were around at the time." He squints, looking up at the eggs. "How would either of you.. Ciara.. Uveline..," now that he knows their names, "describe the clutch thus far?" Is he writing a letter? A record for the archives? It's hard to tell from his tight, cursive handwriting.

"Certainly is," Ciara comments at Uveline's last, giving the ex-harper a knowing look. She looks down and curiously watches E'ro writing for a moment, before shrugging and turning to stare down at the clutch again. She's careful not to lean too much on the rail this time, though. Even if she doesn't believe E'ro about dragons eating folk, she's not keen on the idea of taking a tumble down onto the sands. "Hm?" She's basically zoned out the conversation about Holdfolk, not massively interested in it, but she can hardly ignore her name being spoken. "Interesting? Big?" She answers, turning her head back to look at E'ro. "Why?"

"Oh, they don't run rampant, but there is a great deal of energy and exuberance. It usually gets channeled into productivity, but there are fewer things here for the children to be a part of, with so much requiring more strength than what they possess," Uveline clarifies slowly. E'ro's question about the clutch sends her glancing out again, but she shrugs slightly. "I haven't looked at them long enough, or closely enough, to have much of a description for them, aside from well-sized and, as Ciara said, there are a lot of them."

"That's a piss poor description of a clutch." E'ro is full of dry wit today, a shading of humor underlying all of his words. "How can I write a letter to someone, telling them about it, and all I can say is big? Interesting? You have to paint a picture when you're describing something." He taps his stylus against the paper, looking from Ciara to Uveline. "That's better - well sized and a whole lot, but you've got to dig deeper. Take this for example.." Time to weave a sentence, harper style. "Say I want to address the cavern. I can't just say it's big and open. Or, you could, just where's the fun in that?" He clears his throat and looks out over the cavern. "It is a large cavern, open at the top, with many tiers of seats for the onlookers. Rails keep the weyrfolk from falling to the sands below. One would describe the atmosphere as warm and dry, filled with the smell of earth and dragon oil." There you have it, folks. "As opposed to.. big and open. When someone can't see it, they can envision it at the least."

Ciara rolls her eyes when E'ro comments on her description of the clutch. "Well, I didn't know what you were asking me for. I'm not exactly a harper, either." Touchy. She looks back at the clutch, squinting at the eggs. Then a thought occurs. "I thought you wanted to describe the clutch anyway, not the hatching grounds? How much can you say about eggs? They all look kinda the same to me. Egg-shaped. Sorta soft colours." She's not exactly intending to be rude, her words not carrying that sort of intonation. "Who're you writing to?" Ci adds, turning round and leaning her back against the rail, glancing at Uveline and then looking at E'ro.

Uveline stifles a laugh at E'ro's dissatisfaction with their answers. "I may be a harper, but my talents lie in teaching and singing. And the eggs are far enough out and enough covered with sand to be hard to pick out specifics. They are the eggs that hold the future for the Weyr. What is more important than that?" Shrugging, Uveline returns her attention to minding her herd of children, calling out a warning to those who lean out farther than advisable to stare at the sands. "Back off a bit. If you go tumbling over, Rauzath will be /quite/ unhappy with you, I'm sure." That warning is enough to cause most to take a step back, though one daring boy - the same that set E'ro's papers awry - remains staring out at the eggs at the utmost limit of safety.

"That's the problem. You can't think in terms of limitations and what you don't know. Fill in the blanks. Most people can't visit the eggs like we can, so you give them a slice of the pie." E'ro is looking between the two women, making sure they both get his point; harper or no harper. "You don't have to be specific, just thorough. I would say that.. there are many eggs, all shapes and colors. There are big ones, small ones, pink ones, and white ones amongst the bunch. Some are nearly completely covered, some barely. Rauzath guards them vigilantly, like any mother would." See, not so hard, right? Much better than the excuses they're giving him, or so his pointed gaze seems to say. "My mom, in Keroon. They've been to a hatching once, but they're always looking for details on the current clutches. It's how they keep abreast. And, they can tell their friends that their son told them all about it." Parents and their pride. His smile is subtle, a gentle up-curving of mouth.

Ciara nods thoughtfully at Uveline's comment on the eggs 'holding the future'. "They're interesting now, but it's when they hatch that they're gonna be really exciting, right? At the moment they're just sort of…there. No offence," she adds for E'ro, giving him a quick apologetic look before looking over at the eggs again. "Fill in the blanks? Like…make stuff up about them?" She sounds unsure about that. "Anyway, it sounds like you're better at this stuff than I am." She looks back at him, interested when he explains about his parents. "Maybe I should write to my parents. They've never seen a clutch. Well, neither have I but…they might not get to. Unless they can come watch this one hatch?" She ends that on a question, looking at E'ro and Uveline for an answer from either.

Uveline shrugs at E'ro's words, answering him with, "And if I was writing to my parents, I might take the time to truly /look/ at the eggs and think about what I want to tell them, but in general, I'm much more interested in what they mean than what they look like, and really, so are my parents. You, however, know what your parents want to know, and shouldn't you be the one to tell them that, rather than us?" At Ciara's half-question Uveline tilts her head. "I'm not sure how the Weyrleaders are planning to handle that. You could ask Alara when you see her next? I'm sure she wouldn't mind answering you, though she might not be able to make sure they are able to be here." Uveline doesn't seem concerned with the idea.

Ciara bites her lower lip, a little bit of a smile appearing as Uveline talks to E'ro. The ex-fishergirl's eyes show her amusement, even if she's trying to control her expression. She manages to school herself to reply gratefully to both of the others' suggestions. "I'll go and try to find them then, I reckon. Then I can tell them if they'll be able to come or not when I write to them…saves paper, if I can get it all in one letter." Satisfied that she has a task to do now other than look at eggs which aren't quite as exciting as she'd hoped, Ci gives a smile to Uveline and E'ro. "Catch ya later, Uveline. And…nice to meet you, E'ro." She doesn't sound completely sure on that one, but scarpers off out of the galleries quick enough that she can avoid any questioning of it.

Uveline ventures softly, "They may like the unique touch that is the way you phrase things, more than hearing about the clutches themselves. Wouldn't it sound less like you to borrow the words of others than to just write them as you see them?" As Ciara speaks, the woman focuses on her, and nods. "Good luck with that," she calls after the departing candidate and then brings her gaze back to E'ro. "So are you going to send the letter now, or wait for the second clutch to be laid and compare the two?" she asks curiously, half her attention still absently tracking the children - most of whom have chosen to sit now, and talk amongst themselves about the eggs.

"I suppose they do," E'ro counters back, looking thoughtful, "I just think it would better them if they had different perspectives than mine. I try not to, but my writings do get biased sometimes." He turns to face Uveline, now that there's only the two of them; the other candidate isn't spared a wave or goodbye, just a following gaze as she departs. "They might get something different out of another person's words than mine. I try to let them see the world. They've never left Keroon, except for that one hatching." His parents never get out, is what he's saying. They're stuck in a rut - one that has lasted, no doubt, all their lives. "I think I'll send it out and either send a new one when Kaseth clutches, or find some time to go see them myself. It's Yzuruth's first gold catch, and they're quite proud about it. Ma has sent me about three letters already, since he's caught, just with questions and accolades of Yzuruth." Despite his sarcastic, I-can't-believe-they-did-that, tone, his own pride glimmers in his eyes. "But that partially to her neighbor having a firelizard and they send off messages left, front, and center." Eye roll.

Uveline's lips twitch into a smile as E'ro describes his mother's interest in Yzuruth, and she slowly nods. "Well, if I get a chance to take some time and examine the eggs, I'll write up a description for you, and you can send it, too, how's that? Or for Kaseth and Yzuruth's clutch. Though if I were you, and thus rider of the clutchsire, I'd just bring them out myself and say 'Look! This is what he has done!'." Uveline turns away a moment to call the more daring boy back and away from the edge of the galleries, directing him to join the others instead of leaning out so far, before turning her head back toward E'ro. "They might enjoy sharing that with you, if you're of a mind to do such," she finishes, that tenative smile still on her face.

"That would be nice, actually, thank you." E'ro gives her a grin in return, a genuine one filled with joy and happiness and excitement, oh my. "I've thought about that. Pa's a workaholic though, and I'm not sure if he'll come. I'll ask them and see. At the very least, I think my ma would come. She's more excited about this than when I Impressed Yzuruth." And that was a big occasion, indeed. "I guess there's something about knowing your son's dragon sired the future wings of Pern." His grin switches to a bit of wryness, coupled with his usual humor. "Appreciate the sentiment. I think I've got it all down. You'll send your description my way, when you think of it?" He starts preparing to get up, shuffling his pile of papers again. "Just give to one of the other riders to give to me or drop it off at my weyr. Ferry dragons know where it is and if I'm not there, you can always put it on my desk or my bed."

"I just hope I actually do get some free time in the next several days," Uveline replies, voice one part rueful and one part resigned. "It's amazing how much there is to do that never occurs to you as being part of what makes a Weyr run, until you're there and doing it yourself." Shaking her head, Uveline rises herself, though she doesn't move away just yet. "I'm glad I could be helpful in some way. I hope both your parents are free to come - I'm sure your father is just as proud as your mother, but if he's anything like mine, he just doesn't show it as well. Mothers usually are better at that, I've noticed." She pauses, then nods. "I'll get it to you then, as soon as I can. I hope the rest of your letter goes well."

"It gets better," the bronzerider assures of the hard and never-ending work, "Weyrlinghood chores and everyday are the real work. Raising a young dragon, keep abreast with your lessons and chores. Enjoy the freedom now." Because if she Impresses, she won't get such hours for long. "I thank you again. I'll be sure to let them know who helped shed some light on the subject." There's a wink from E'ro and a brief nod. "Well met, candidate." With that, he's away, leaving the noisy cavern and all thoughts of parents, eggs, and letters left behind in the dust.

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