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Old Jul 21 2008, 02:57 PM   #1
Blue Rider 16
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Blue Pern: Out of Place

Out of Place

By Blue Rider 16

This fan fiction is set in Ninth Pass Pern, following the story of a young boy from a cothold in Ruatha named Denan. All standard disclaimers apply. Enjoy!


6.17.28, Ninth Pass, Fort Weyr

Denan was excited as Reth came out of between in the skies above Fort Weyr. He was going to have a chance at Impressing a dragon of Ludeth’s clutch, even though he was young at twelve turns, and smaller than normal. With light brown hair, and hazel eyes, he had a cute appearance, and was often told so. However, since he had always wanted to be a dragonrider, that tended to grate on his nerves.

R’bot, his older cousin, looked back at him, and grinned reassuringly, “Don’t worry, Denan,” he shouted, “ You’ll do fine. Reth noticed you Turns back. All we’ve been waiting for is you to grow old enough that we could bring you to the Weyr.”

Which was an unusual occurance, Denan thought. R’bot was a good friend of his mother, the second wife of a cotholder in Ruatha, and though a small, slight, balding man of middle age, had managed to survive Threadfall for many Turns. R’bot had visited Denan’s cothold often enough that Denan had got to know the green Reth very well, and indeed, Reth had seemed to have an interest in him from their first meeting.

Denan’s family were by no means slackers. While his parents may only be cotholders, his younger brother was apprenticed to the Fishercraft, and both of his older half-siblings had learned at Landing, and were now a very successful holder and journeyman, respectively. And now he was going to get the chance to make a name for himself!

Denan felt the jolt of landing, and felt a crushing disappointment as he realised his ride astride a dragon was over. He slid down Reth’s side, concentrating on absorbing the impact as he landed. Then R’bot landed on the ground beside him and started walking towards the Lower Caverns, beckoning him to follow.

Yet Denan had only a part of his mind on walking. Everywhere he looked, there were dragons, and dragonkind. Fire-lizards flitted around the Bowl, dragons sunned themselves on the ledges to their weyrs, or flew around the Bowl with passengers, disappearing in mid-air.

D'nan thought he could happily have watched the dragon's and fire-lizards all day, but R’bot’s voice shook him out of his reverie.

“Yes, Headwoman, Denan is a Candidate. Reth noticed his potential herself. He’s a cousin of mine so I’m not at all surprised that he may be acceptable to dragonkind. It is not uncommon for the ability to reside in the blood. If he could have some quarters it would be very much appreciated.”

The Headwoman gave Denan an appraising look.
“What kind of duties would you like to do while a Candidate? Idle hands are not appreciated around the Weyr.” she finished in a stern voice.
Denan didn’t hesitate, “I often minded the children of other cotholders. I could probably do the same at the Weyr,”

The Headwoman seemed relieved and happy, “Very good. I’ll have Camie show you to your quarters. Once you’re settled in, ask for Lorainne. She’s in charge of the children, and will likely give you some of the more troublesome children to watch over,” Apparently satisfied, the Headwoman marched off to the hearths where a debate over the best ingredients to add to the soup was starting.

A young girl approximately Denan’s age appeared.
“Hey R’bot, this is your Candidate?” she asked, gesturing to Denan.
“Yes, he’s my cousin, so take good care of him, girl,” R’bot answered, chuckling.

“While, alright then, I’ll take him to his quarters. Go on, R’bot, shoo! It’s not like I’m going to eat him or anything. And J’rem and Jirth are impatient for you and Reth to return. R’bet and Ruloth are doing their best to calm them down, but there is only so much a son can do compared to a weyrmate...” her voice trailed off hopefully, an innocent expression on her face.
“Alright then girl, I can see when I’m not wanted. Or, in this case, wanted elsewhere. Good luck, Denan, I know you’ll do well.” With a broad wink, R’bot strode off.

No sooner was he gone, then the girl, Camie, was pulling on his arm.
“Come on, Denan, time to get you settled in. We’ve got a new Weyrlingmaster, K’tin is his name. He’s only twenty turns old, but he’s a bronze rider, and very skilled. Nothing on my father, Wingleader J’tan, or my uncle, Wingsecond S’ren, but very good nevertheless.” Camie paused for breath.

Denan took advantage of the interval, “Should you really be so garrolous about Weyr matters to a Candidate?” he asked, deliberately putting a large amount of skepticism in his tone.
They stared at each other, neither refusing to give ground. Then Denan’s mouth twitched, and Camie raised her eyebrow, and together they burst into laughter.

“Alright, then, you got me Denan. Though to answer your question, you’re part of the Weyr now even though you’re relatively low ranked.” Camie answered.
“The lowest of the low, right?” he said with a laugh.
“Yep,”she answered, matching him with a laugh of her own.

They continued to talk and jest until they reached Denan’s temporary quarters.
“Well, here we are,” Camie stated rather unneccessarily, “Good luck at the Hatching, Denan. I’m sure you’ll do fine.” She gave him a quick hug, then ran off.
Denan just smiled.
__________________
D'vin, rider of brown Denth

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Old Jul 21 2008, 03:06 PM   #2
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6.24.28 Fort Weyr

Denan woke suddenly. He lay there, taking stock of his surroundings. It was during this assessment that he realised why he had awoken. A low humming vibrated around the entire chamber. His breath caught as his mind caught up with the astonishing fact—
The eggs were hatching.

He was up immediately, shouting to wake the other three boys sharing the sleeping aclove, as he threw on the traditional white robe, anchoring it to him with his belt, and rushing to the assembly area, as he had been told to do.

Once everyone had assembled, the Weyrlingmaster, K’tin, beckoned everyone to follow him. Just outside the Hatching cavern he halted and turned to face the young boys.
“You’ve all been prepared as best you can for this day. Nothing I can say can prepare you more. You either Impress or you don’t. So think positive and good luck!” Then he stepped aside, gesturing the Candidates to enter.

Denan went with the group and stepped into the great sandy cavern. He was awed by the majesty of the great area, the twenty-five eggs ranged in a seemingly haphazard fashion, the large numbers watching, and the great golden queen, Ludeth, staring at the Candidates, with whirling red eyes, tongure flicking out into the air.

As the intenisty of the humming increased, he and his fellow Candidates, fourty-five in all, spread out, all boys, between the ages of twelve and eighteen, with expressions mixed of eagerness, anxiety, and determination. They were here to Impress, and each one felt as if he must do so.

Then a loud crack resounded across the Hatching Sands, as a young bronze dragonnet broke free. The bronze shook himself off, and looked around at the assorted faces. Then he charged at the eldest candidate, a tall lad from Igen Weyr, and it was clear Impression had been made.

Several eggs broke next, and Denan didn’t know where to look. There was hides of green, blue, brown, and even a few bronze every which way, and he couldn’t keep track of all of the different dragonets, or which made Impression, so he just focused forward, every fibre of his being filled with the thought of Impressing a dragon, of how much he would love a dragon, of how happy a dragon would make him, of everything positive he could think of.

Then he felt a slight brush against his mind and, startled, opened his eyes and looked down into the rainbow eyes of a small blue dragonet.
Hello, D’nan. My name is Derith.

Happiness, exultation, love, every emotion he could possibly name he felt at that moment, almost to the pain, until he felt ready to burst. Slowly, very slowly, he regained control of himself. Aware that he had not responded to Derith, his dragon—who had even known to call him by the traditionald contraction-- he took a deep breath.

“ I know Derith, and I will love you and care for you, and be with you, from now on. I will always be with you, and any desire you have—
Well, Derith said with amusement, you could start by getting me some food. For I am very hungry. He finished with a plainitive tone.
“Oh, I am so sorry Derith, I’ll get you fed right away. Just follow me.”
Alright then, D’nan. Let’s get going.
By the Shell, D’nan, rider of blue Derith thought, this was the happiest moment of his life.
__________________
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Old Jul 21 2008, 03:10 PM   #3
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Five Turns later

9.12.33 In the skies above Fort Weyr

D’nan relaxed as Derith flew him across the land, with the cool, evening air caressing them both. It was during these rare moments of solitude that he was able to sit back and reflect. As soon as Derith had been able to fly with D’nan unmonitored, D’nan had made it a practice to do straight flights with Derith as often as possible. They gave D’nan a chance to think, and as a side-benefit allowed Derith to build a strength and endurance much greater than that of an ordinary blue.

Both D’nan and Derith had matured quite a bit in the five Turns they had been partnered. D’nan’s hair had darkened to a dark brown, and he had grown to a tall, though lean height. He had grown much stronger and dexterous as well. The emotional maturity he had gained assisting K’tin with weyrling training had also aided him.

Derith had also matured from a creeling, young dragonet into a lean, strong, clever, middle-sized blue dragon, who had already flown half a dozen greens, even though D’nan only allowed his dragon to participate in flights because it was unfair to deny him. No long-term relationship had ever been formed as the result of his flights because D’nan hadn’t allowed it.

D’nan had already earned some fame on Pern, and around the Weyr. His weyrling class had worked hard in the cleanup of the Hurricane damage. Once he finished his weyrling training he had assisted K’tin in training new weyrlings. Two turns ago, he had joined J’tan’s wing, and worked hard to rescue holders in Southern Boll from the Tsunami. Last turn, he had convinced his friend, Camie, to Stand for Yasith’s clutch at the High Reaches, even though there was no queen egg. He was glad he had, for she had Impressed green Jadeth, and at last word was doing quite well at High Reaches.

D’nan, I think we should be getting back soon. Especially since you’re supposed to do something tomorrow. he finished the last in a puzzled tone.

D’nan laughed, Yeah, I suppose. And, he added in a teasing tone, in case you’re trying to remember, I ageed I’d visit Camie and Jadeth at High Reaches Weyr tomorrow afternoon.

Derith grumbled and D’nan laughed again. He gave Derith the coordinates and they jumped between to Fort Weyr.
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Old Jul 21 2008, 03:16 PM   #4
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9.13.33 Fort Weyr

D’nan was hailed almost as soon as he walked into the Lower Caverns. When he saw who was hailing him, he stifled a groan. It was R’bot and J’rem. They were a rarity. Weyrmates. He was glad they had found happiness. Problem was, they thought that he should have that happiness to. And since they had been in the Weyr so long and were over fifty Turns old, they had the stereotypical mating views. That is, blues and greens should be ridden by males who would then couple when their dragons mated.

D’nan supposed that that wouldn’t have been a problem if Derith had chosen, as blues are apt to do, one that was interested in other males. Thing was, Derith had chosen him who, outside of a mating flight, was only interested in females. Which meant, of course, that R’bot and J’rem were constantly introducing him to any greenrider they could who was near his age, who they thought he might be interested in, and he couldn’t seem to make them understand that he wasn’t interested in males. And it looked like he was in for another session of meet-and-greet.

Breathe, D’nan, Derith said in an amused tone, If you are ever going to discourage them, you must take charge of yourself first.
Thanks, Derith. I owe you one.
It’s what I’m here for D’nan

D’nan took a deep, determined breath, and then strode over to R’bot and J’rem. They greeted him cheerfully enough, but then they exchanged a look and D’nan knew it was going to get worse before it got better.

“So, D’nan,” R’bot began, “I was wondering: if J’tan and S’ren can spare you, we were planning on going to Benden Weyr for a visit. There’s some riders there who might like to meet you...” his voice trailed off suggestively.
“I’m sorry, R’bot, J’rem,” D’nan said in a calm, controlled voice, “I’ve tried to say it, again and again, but I’m not interested in other males outside of a mating flight.”
“But, D’nan,” R’bot said persuadingly, “Derith, a blue chose you,” he would have gone on but D’nan cut across him.
“I understand that R’bot, and out of my bond with Derith, I will do anything for him! But please, don’t force anyone on me outside of a mating flight. That area is mine alone. Good day to you both, and your dragons.” That said, D’nan turned on his heel and marched away, calling Derith to him.

Derith came, his eyes whirling purple with worry.
Are you alright, D’nan? he asked tentatively.
I’m fine, Derith, D’nan answered, Take me to our place on the Southern Continent.
Alright then.
They went between.
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Old Jul 21 2008, 03:23 PM   #5
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Southern Continent

They landed on a small lush area of the Southern Continent, that they had found in their spare time, and that D’nan planned to retire to, once Thread was gone forever. If he lived that long. Derith was still fast and agile, so D’nan had no worries on that score.

You are angry, D’nan.
It’s nothing, Derith.
Don’t shut me out D’nan. I may be able to help you.

“Why did you pick me, Derith,” he began, the words bursting forth, “I’m not like the other blue riders. Or even the male green riders for that matter. I’m not like them. I’m out of place! There! I said it. Out of place. And no one seems to understand. Everyone’s always surprised when I don’t like males, or do something that would normally be reserved for leadership roles. K’tin understood. He trained me, as well as the bronze riders, and a few of the browns in our class for leadership, even though N’ton was reluctant. Why did you choose me, Derith?” he ended with a plea for deliverance.

Perhaps, and D’nan could hear the amusement in Derith’s tone, I did not choose you for your preference but for your inner nature. And how that inner nature meshed with mine.

D’nan mulled that over, and for a long time was silent. Then he nodded.
Thanks, Derith.
No problem, D’nan.
Let’s get to High Reaches, dear heart.
Alright.
They went.
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Old Jul 21 2008, 03:27 PM   #6
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Afternoon, High Reaches Weyr

“It’s good to see you, D’nan,” Camie said with a grin. She had matured into a beautiful young woman. With light brown hair, green eyes, slim figure, a bit flat in the breasts for most people’s taste, but fine with D’nan, she made for interesting company.

“Camie, how fares Jadeth?” D’nan asked.
“She’s fine, D’nan.” D’nan frowned. That reply had come out a bit snappish to his ears. By the contrite look on Camie’s face, she realised she had been a bit short with him too.

Her next words tried to make it up to him.
“I am grateful that you encouraged me to Stand, D’nan, you know that. I don’t know what came over me.” D’nan had been about to reply but something she said caught in his mind. He held up his hand, his eyes begging her to wait. Then he reached out to Derith.

Derith, what do you think of Jadeth’s condition? he asked, a notion tingling in the back of his mind.
[ I]She rises, [/I]Derith’s tone picked up an urgency and he radiated excitement. She would make a good mate.

I understand Derith. Be ready.
I am!
“Camie, listen to me,” he said quickly, urgently, “Jadeth is about to rise. You must be ready.”

Fear shone through her.
“But, Jadeth, sh-she was sleeping,” desperation was clear in her tone.
“It’s okay, Camie,” he said with a reassuring grin.
“Help me, D’nan,” she whimpered.
“I will, Camie. Derith will pursue Jadeth. Be strong! Be strong, for Jadeth!”
“Jadeth,”she whispered, eyes wide.

Two browns and seven blues circled down to land. Their riders jumping off and forming a semi-circle around Camie. Jadeth, shining a brilliant green, screeched as she jumped from her weyr ledge landing with a ground jarring thump near the hopeful riders and their dragons. She gave another screech at the males surrounding her, then leapt into the air. The blues and browns followed, wings beating to catch up with their lighter, faster, weyrmate.

D’nan fought to control his draconic urges as he half-stumbled, half-ran with the other participants of the flight into the mating chamber. Once safely esconed he allowed himself to be fully with Derith, and hoped for the best.

* * *

Derith was one of the first off the ground in the pursuit of Jadeth. Knowing from previous mating flights he had been involved in, that if he did not get to the forefront of the pack, the browns, with their larger wingspan would speed ahead, so he manoeuvered himself to be one of leaders of the charge. After that, it was only a matter of using his color’s natural speed to stay ahead of the browns, and using his strength, increased from the long straight flights he had done while D’nan reflected on the world, to outlast the other blues.

Then Jadeth dove through the male formation and he added his natural agility and cleverness to his list of qualities he must demonstrate, as he found his way out of the milling confusion that resulted.

There! He spotted Jadeth, flying upwards. He soared to interecept. She saw him at the last second and tried to pull away, yet he had already enfouled her. Together, they flew back to the Weyr, locked together in passion, the same passion enveloping their riders; body, heart, mind, and soul.
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Old Jul 21 2008, 03:29 PM   #7
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9.10.34. Fort Weyr

D’nan entered the room to find Camie holding his daughter in her arms.
“Say hello to Jubilia, D’nan,” she said with a loving smile.

“Hello, Jubilia,” D’nan said dutifully, feeling as always when in the prescence of his weyrmate, awe that she had accepted him, and that Jadeth had accepted Derith. “Welcome to Pern, sweetie,”
He smiled with exuberant joy, which Camie matched, as they watched their daughter, Jubilia, mouth agape, hands moving, and their dragons bugling echoed their triumph and joy.

He had found his place.

THE END
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