Egg Touching #1 - '09 Winter Candidacy

Note: The follow-up to this scene can be found here, set in the barracks.

Logfile for Lanti on Harper's Tale
Started at 2009-11-12 21:01:55 -0400

MOO Time: 2009-11-12 17:01:56
And on Pern …
The time is 15:01.
It is sunset of the fourth day of summer.
It is the fourteenth Turn of the Tenth Interval.
It is a summer afternoon. The rain continues, and the wind blows so hard it flattens trees. Even dragons must stay inside now, to be safe from the fierce storm. Lightning cracks across the sky at regular intervals, but it is barely heard over the howling of the wind.

Candidate's Barracks
Long and low, this large room angles back into the mountain in a near-perfect rectangle, devoid of windows and hearth. A functional room — the black volcanic rock has been painted with a cheerful mural, with the other walls painted in green and orange thoughtfully, before resuming the stark simplicity in the seemingly endless rows of cots that scatter back into the shadows. A small clothespress sits at the end of each puce-covered bed — yes, puce. Every cot sports a rather gaudy and obnoxiously purple cotton coverlet, leftovers from PranksPast. Boys to the right, girls to the left. Enjoy.

Andru
Streaks of pale white shoot through light blonde hair, bleached from hours in the Istan sun, as it lies pulled back from his smooth young face in a runner's tail that rests between his slender shoulders. Very long dark blonde lashes frame his large sapphire blue eyes. Thin pale pinkish lips make a contrast against the warm tanned colour of his skin, as they curl into a slight bow beneath his small slightly upturned button nose. High cheekbones give Andru's face a slightly angular impression. A hint of definition has begun developing on Andru's upper body, the slender shoulders not having broadened by age yet, but still his chest tapers neatly down to his small slim waist. The waist then gives way to long toned legs.
Bright silvery grey colours the sleeveless tunic that reveals Andru's smooth firm arms, the v-neck dipping a bit from his neck. The hem goes just slightly over the waist of his jet black shorts. Those shorts stop just at his knees, leaving his firm calves bare to wind and weather, something obviously done as they are well tanned. His smallish feet are covered by dark earthen brown sandals. Two firelizards are perched on his shoulders.
He is a teenager of about 17. He is awake, but seems rather distracted.

Ian
There is something about the sandy hair and that elfin slant about his eyes that gives Ianto an almost angelic innocence, particularly when he should smile and play the part to the hilt. He is often as messy as only young boys can be, a smudge on a cheek, dirt under the nails, or just a general state of rumpledness. The light hair tends to curl about the nape of his neck and flutters all over his face. Those bright green eyes have a tendency to squint up while grinning, which he often does and brings a certain apple rosiness to dimpled cheeks. Overall he's a bit scrawny, a sense of being perpetually underfed, that and being a tad short for his age, he is often overlooked or hides well, which suits him just fine.
What was once merely a collection of rags and castoffs has been replaced by a simple but sturdy outfit. A light tunic in undyed linen and short pants in brown full cloth. A pair of slightly too large sandals grace his feet, though in all likelyhood Ian'll grow into them soon enough. At his waist is a simple leather belt with a few pouches and the sheath of a long fine beltknife that looks far more expensive than the rest of his clothing combined.
Upon Ianto's shoulder is a slightly rumpled but still white candidate's knot.
He is a teenager of about 13. He is awake, but seems rather distracted.

Abriwind
A mountain of dark blonde hair cascades in twists and curls past Abriwind's shoulders; stopping just before the middle of her back. Eyes the color of muted blue twinkle forth from behind any locks of hairs that free themselves from the jeweled barrettes atop her head. Her face is rounded and yet angular, that point at which baby fat is turning into pre-teen muscle, following up with a matching nose that seems to be a bit on the flattened side. Cheeks are high and always tinged with a rosy pink, even during the hottest of Istan days. Abriwind can most often be seen with a straight mouth, with only a hint of a grin upon her lips. Still as lovely as the day she was born, this girl is starting to turn into quite the lady, body starting to become a bit more lanky.
An elaborate yellow sundress, with trimmings and buttons of pink and baby blue, adorn this small child. No loose threads or food stains can be found upon the clothing, for she will wear only the prettiest and most expensive of cloth. Matching ribbons and barrettes, a variety of all previous three colors, are woven in and out between her golden locks. Simple white sandals are strapped onto her feet which match a pretty white ribbon around her waist that serves as a belt. A green firelizard is perched on her shoulder.
She is a teenager of about 13. She is awake, but seems rather distracted.

Ailae
Unruly curly reddish brown hair is barely tamed by a long ribbon that ties this young woman's hair back, except for the tendrils that escape, and curl even tighter, framing her face. Above a gentle nose, dancing green eyes make themselves known from underneath narrow eyebrows. A gentle mouth gives way to a stubborn chin, and her face is marred only slightly by a small, somewhat jagged scar on her left cheek. The callouses on her hands suggest she is no stranger to work, her tanned skin only aiding in that assumption. She stands about 5 feet 4 inches. Her breasts are well formed, and her figure is gently curved and muscled.
Springwear has completely replaced winterwear now as the days slowly grow longer and warmer. A light, though not summer light, tunic in a delicate blue color adorns her thinning frame, and trousers in a slightly darker shade of blue. She still wears boots, though that may simply be for comfort. 4 firelizards are draped about her head and shoulders.
Ailae's knot is no longer the knot of an Assistant Nanny of High Reaches Weyr, but instead a single corded one of pure white, denoting her as a Candie-victim of Ista Weyr.
She is a teenager of about 19. She is awake and looks alert.

Moria
Tall and long-limbed, this woman was born to run. Wherever she goes, she moves with an easy grace and unhurried elegance, though when she wants to be she's extraordinarily fast. Long pale blonde hair is left loose unless she's running, and then it's usually pulled back into a tight braid, emphasizing the high cheekbones and high forehead of her oval face. Blue eyes, the color of snow-shadows, look out onto the world from underneath straight, delicate eyebrows. Her unremarkable nose has a smattering of freckles - the only blemishes on otherwise porcelain skin. Her mouth is small, but prettily shaped and lushly colored, set over a gently rounded chin.
Moria wears a cream-colored dress, fitted at bust and torso to emphasize her long lines and well-shaped bosom, and falling to her knees in graceful folds. Embroidered around the hems are small flowers of many different colors. The sleeves are pretty little cap-sleeves, pleated for just a bit of feminine poof. The neckline cut into a sweetheart shape, modestly covering her cleavage while still giving just a beguiling hint of its presense. In her ears she wears simple gold studs. - Her hair is braided into two braids and wound around her head like a thick golden crown, pinned in place interwoven with matching ribbons. It's a rather regal style. Off-white sandals adorn her feet.
Moria is wearing the white knot of a candidate for Ista Weyr.
She is a young adult of about 20. She is awake and looks alert.

Bajiren
The beginnings of the young man are starting to break through the appearance of the boy; now standing easily at 5'6, Bajiren is also starting to fill out a bit in the shoulders and arms. Though with a bit more muscle mass, he's still lanky by any measure, and his feet still seem clownish compared to the rest of him. Jaw is a bit more defined, though the freckles along his cheeks haven't disappeared with age - and now they have, more often than not, a pimple here and there to keep them company. Eyebrows remain a golden colour, though the tufts of hair on his chin that he likes to call a beard are a darker orange, to match his slightly unkempt, feathery, short hair.
A loose pair of cargo pants, a bit long for him, and wearing at the cuffs that drag below his heels, are cinched tight with a belt to keep from falling off his near non-existant hips. On tap Bajiren has a simple, short-sleeved off-white tunic, which actually fits rather well over his shoulders and chest. Both shirt and pants bear the markings of dirt, kitchen grease, and a few less mentionable things, that go with the daily life of a candidate.
He is a teenager of about 14. He is awake, but seems rather distracted.

Lanti
As the Turns have passed, time has chiseled away most of the softness from Lanti's body, leaving behind angles lean and stark, though not altogether harsh. She is a shade taller than average, but her skinny frame serves to make her look just a bit taller than she really is. Lanti sports the same red-gold hair of her mother, its waves just brushing her shoulders. From her father she has inherited eyes of a clear sky blue with darker flecks of navy, and her pale lips form a generous mouth. The rigors and demands of her profession have given Lanti a muted but harder edge, only strengthened by her intensity.
Lanti is wearing a wraparound shirt of dark blue with the thick strings pulled through to tie in the front with a neat bow. The collarless hem forms a modest decollete neckline, and the sleeves just barely cover her shoulders. The cloth and stitching are of high quality, and a tiny weaver craft symbol is embroidered in gold thread into the bottom corner of the shirt. Dark trousers the color of lightly creamed klah are of similar workmanship and more durable cloth. They hug her form in a rather complimentary fashion. Black leather boots and a darkly stained wherhide belt complete the outfit, though Lanti often accessorizes with a floppy, dark brown hat with a handy drawstring.
Lanti wears the knot of an Istan junior weyrwoman, with brilliant gold thread winding its way between the cords.
She is an adult of about 33. She is awake and looks alert.

Lanti enters quietly as a mouse from the corridor and surveys the barracks, starting at the nearest cot on her left down to the end of the cavern, then back toward the cot on her right. Busy candidates, sleeping candidates, lazy candidates. Some are working with robes, some with journals, some… who knows.

Moria's on her bunk, working on that song for Tyroth. Her long legs are crossed under her and she's carefully making notes on a scrap piece of paper as she goes through the song. Her playing, as well as her humming, is very, very quiet, almost too quiet to hear unless one is standing right next to her. Of her firelizards there is no sign - that is, until the gold on her shoulder cocks her head and opens a jewel-faceted eye to watch Lanti, revealing herself amidst the camoflauge of golden tresses. Moria, as of yet, hasn't noticed the goldrider.

Some are probably up to no good, though you couldn't tell that at the moment with Ianto sitting a top his cot studiously peering through through some notes with that little wrinkle between his brows as he concentrates. He's not a very good reader, so he's practicing as best he can. His lips move as he reads though, sounding out the more difficult parts as he goes. Never the best of students however, his attention tends to wander, thus he does look up when Lanti enters, peering over at her with wide curious eyes.

Ailae falls into the category of candidates working on robes. It's been a sloooow process for her, but hers is approaching doneness. One of the other Candidates, whose mother is a weaver, has been giving the redheaded 'Reachian Nanny advice often - advice the nannidate sought after. Thanks to this, the robe is looking much less like a mess than it did when she was working on it by herself. A green firelizard sitting on her cot croons quietly; Ailae sets the needle down for a moment and reaches over to pat her on the head, glancing up as she does so.

Lanti sets a box down on the floor, a muffled clink sounding from within. With infinite calmness, she lifts the box's lid and pulls out a shiny, new, brass bell and waits. And waits. And smiles. Then a look of glee that borders childlike joy and malicious delight, she lets that brass bell ring out just as loudly as she can without knocking out the nearest candidates. "All hands!" the rider barks out loudly enough to echo off the ceiling, "line up!"

Thunia, one of the newest candidates from around Benden, is startled out of her nap with a high-pitched shriek and promptly falls out of her cot, bringing the covers with her. Just as well, since she's barely clothed.

Moria was concentrating so hard on her music that Lanti's bell-ringing startles her rather badly. The gitar is strummed to a sour chord, quite noisily, and she she jerks forward. The gold on her shoulder squawks and takes off to sit on a less-mobile perch for now. Moria realize who's ringing the bell and stands from her cot, leaving the gitar behind. She's the third in line, simply because she had to close a bit of space between herself and the goldrider.

Since he was watching carefully, Ianto's not too startled as Lanti rings the bell. With some care he sets aside his reading assignment and hops off of his cot, shoving his feet into sandals and scurrying over to join other candidates in forming a line. He squeezes up behind Moria and peers around her with a nudge then whispers. "Whatcha think this is about?"

Ailae eyes the bell with trepidation as Lanti pulls the bell out of the box. At least she has a moment to put down her robe before the goldrider rang the bell! The redhead rises to her feet as the bell rings - she'll make faces at the sound later. The firelizards that were about her are told firmly to "stay put", and Ailae moves into line. She's not shy, but she's also not talking, for the moment. They'll find out what this is about soon enough!

"I don't know," Moria says to the boy, turning to look down at him and smile reassuringly. "I suppose she'll tell us." And then it's eyes front again, her attention on Lanti.

"Get some clothes on," Lanti instructs the tumbling candidate, "and wash your hands," she tells the first one in line with a bit of a nose wrinkle, "and all of you hush. Dedanseth has informed me," she continues more loudly, "that her eggs are now hard enough that you lot shouldn't be able to do too much damage. But barely. If /one/ of you steps out of line, I'll send you packing. If one of you even thinks of sneezing on an egg, I'll flay you. But should you stumble into any of those eggs or do /anything/ that could possibly harm the dragonet inside, I very well may kill you." She stops there, deadpan, voice quite serious as she peers at each of the candidates in line. "Any questions? You all have shoes on?"

Moria nods soberly. She's wearing shoes and ready to go. "No questions, ma'am," she says, just loud enough for Lanti to hear clearly.

Ian shuts up with only the faintest gulp as he stares all through Lanti's list of threats, then peers down at his sandals. They'll have to do because he doesn't own much else. Looking up and down at the line around him, he finally raises a hand slightly and blurts quietly, "What will sneezing on an egg do?"

Bajiren's ears are still ringing from that bell - because of course he's been in here with all his candied fellows - as he shoves whatever it was that he was writing so super-secretively (with an arm snaked around it and head down to try and block any possible prying eyes from nearby bunks) under his pillow, and hops off the cot. It's down to one knee, to pull out a pair of sandals, then standing, and then an awkward hop-dance while he tries to get his socks off without sitting back down. "Getcha smacked." That's a response to Ianto, of course.

Ailae checks her feet, yep, her sandals are still on. Considering that the goldrider sounded /very/ serious, Ailae will just remain hush-hush, though she will shake her head no. No questions here! Since a couple of other Candidates didn't have shoes, the Reachian nannidate has found herself moving a few places further up in the line, just behind Ian now.

"Flayed," Lanti corrects Bajiren, her lips forming a very thin smile. She lets silence reign for a moment longer, then nods. "Follow me."

[Travel spam cut]

Hatching Grounds
The heat here is stifling, encompassing, swallowing mind and hazing sight into waved oblivion. Sparkling, coarse black sand simmers with volcanic urgency underfoot, its hillocks and dunes arranged to queen's liking; reflected light filters in, offered not even perceived respite. When empty, the vault of this cavern is hushed, still that echoes and rebounds; when occupied, it is intensified.
Gold Dedanseth and bronze Tyroth are here.

Dedanseth
Twilight casts a glow to the sheen of her body, transforming rich gold into platinum. Iridescence coats the delicate features of her face, blending a long, well-shaped nose with round, high cheekbones and an elegant jaw line. Gold specks in the shape of a teardrop rest between her eyes, surrounded by tiny filaments of blue that interlock to create a delicate lattice. The configuration of lines cascades down her neck, across her shoulders and over the backs of her wings, deepening the color without marring the brightness of her hide, the evening-washed gold showing through the mesh. Upon this shimmering backdrop, brighter flecks dot the expanse of her body, appearing at times as crisp pin points or casual traces of light that fade from sight at their ends. They mingle over the bottom side of her wings and chin, gliding across her wingspars and down her throat, erupting brilliant white-gold flares at her wingjoints and breast. Shadows of cobalt wrap around her hips and shoulder joints in a swath of darkness before lightening to gold on her willowy legs.
Dedanseth is 14 Turns, 10 months, and 27 days old.
She is 81 feet (27m) long, with a wingspan of 135 feet (45m).
Dedanseth seems to be listening.

Tyroth
Sun-dazzled brilliance marinates drunken shine into a length of wine-chased masculinity: a drama of besotted bronze, he is, an adventurer never far from his nightcap. Brazen, bronzen, cast in daring dalliances and pyrite's false glow, whiskey's golden fire glows bright from tip of impishly cocked muzzle through the drunken sweep of headknobs and lazily arched ridges to the tip of soused tail. Drunken swaggers of gold and glistening buckskin twine past lithe chest to long, straight legs planted well in toasted coconut-rum 'paws. Overlarge, overkill, his wings are of dramatic, poetic, ne'erending proportions swung wide in lo! yet grander scope: only his lank and lean and rangy form could possibly balance those gloriously indulgent 'sails.
Plain, naturally colored straps wrap around the golden whiskey neck of the dragon, contrasting the brightly colored body with dull, yet strong, leather pieces. At the front of the neck, some woolie padding as been added to prevent chafing, and all the way up the stitches have been hammered to to create a smooth surface. Notches of bronzen metal have been added as grips to help the mounting of the large beast, and buckles to clasp rider in are made of the same well-shined metal that shines similarly to the rum-dappled body.
Tyroth is 2 Turns, 5 months, and 16 days old.
He is 76 feet (25m) long, with a wingspan of 126 feet (42m).
Tyroth appears to be dozing.

[OOC NOTE: The list of eggs and their descriptions can be found here. All egg emits to Ian and Jamilah were written by Kangarru. All egg emits to Bajiren, Madeline and Zyrana were written by Pippa. All egg emits to Ailae, Andru and Moria were written by Lanti.]

The troop of candidates follows Lanti onto the sands, and for all that the heat is making some people uncomfortable already, and for all that the eggs are exciting, and for all that the gold dragon is really big, those candidates manage enough organisation to execute a not-quite-synchronised wave of bows to the clutch parents.

Dedanseth is stretched out at the far end of the sands next to Tyroth, her attention lasered in on the group of candidates following Lanti. The group's bowing brings a swirl of ocean deep blue to her large eyes as she sizes them up, one by one.

Lanti meets with some waiting riders on the sands to help her keep the candidates' noses clean, shares a look with her lifemate, then waves the candidates toward the eggs. "Just remember the rules," she warns them one last time before heading toward Dedanseth.

The sandals on Bajiren's feet are maybe just a little small, the boy's toes edging out past the ends of the soles (if just barely), and so it doesn't take long for him to alter his stride, walking more or less on his heels - at least until those little digits have acclimatised somewhat. With the bow over, he takes a few quick steps forward, and then thinks to offer a murmured, "Hey Des," to the clutch momma. Head is shaken at Lanti, and then it's a slow motion toward that red and white I Choose You! Egg. Even if it means hiking past some of its brethren.

Jamilah rises from her bow and stands in place to get a good long look at the sands from a grounds-eye view. She notes the looming bulk of the parents, the distance of the galleries, and the heat rising up through her shoes. She presses her hands along the front of her pants, suddenly wishing she had skirts to shake out.

Ian follows along the others, picking up cues as to what to do by sheer observation in order to cover up any hints of clumsiness or just plain confusion. The bow starts with him catching up halfway through, but he manages to look up at each of the parental dragons by the end. Ah, so this is the infamous one that is getting all the flowers that Tyroth made them pick? Ianto grins before recalling the instructions and starts heading off towards the eggs, looking around for a moment before carefully mincing through the hot sand to approach a mottled egg that's caught his attention, staring at the cryptic designs of the Safe in the Darkness Egg.

Straightening from her bow, Moria makes a bit of a face and lifts her hair from her neck. A quick knot is tied and she produces a pencil from her pocket, which serves well enough as a temporary hair stick. A bracing breath of hot air, and she moves forward to the closest egg, the World of Warcraft Cataclysm Egg. For a second, she just gazes at the shell, and then she puts her hands on it and waits to see what happens.

Ailae rises from her bow, and takes a good look around at all of the eggs. It's one thing to see them from the Galleries, and quite another to see them up close and personal. After a few long moments, Ailae heads towards the Twilight Link Egg, hoping that Dedaseth doesn't change her mind last minute and decide to gobble them up for touching her eggs. Once she's closer to the Twilight Link Egg, she really just takes in the sight of the egg, before very carefully reaching out a hand to touch it.

From the galleries, Abriwind walks up the stairs.

Egg emit to Moria: Cold seeps into your fingers in a gradual reach, and darkness touches your mind. There are suddenly sparks of light and pinpricks of heat almost painful, and yet a relief from that initial chill. Introductions complete, the cold and heat, darkness and light begin to meld into a lukewarm nothingness before retreating altogether.

Zyrana stands from her bow, watching the eggs in wonder. Excitement wells up in her chest and she smiles. She looks around at her fellow candidates, smiling widely. She approaches the Las Plagas Parasite Egg, staring openly at it. She takes in the black marks. She traces one of the vein like depictions and then lays her hand flat on the shell. She can't believe she's this close to a /dragon/ egg. She's stunned into silence.

Egg emit to Ian: You are surrounded in the darkness with barely a glowbasket to light your path. Suddenly, footfalls and rustling pierce the silence as your glows go out. Flashes of terrible things come to mind, a bloody handprint on the wall, a dead body hanging overhead, a star-shaped symbol etched into the wall alight with fire, and suddenly, a flash. A skeletal gruesome face approaches you, swings a knife and all is silent. REDRUM.

From the galleries, Abriwind is an unhappy camper. Oh yes, she is. Feet stomp, loudly, as expensive boots meet the ground only to be brought back up and smashed back down. A perpetual scowl now adorns her face as her eyes instantly zone in on the group below on the sands. A group she /would've/ been with… if she had been there. And paying attention. Alas, the invitation missed, the Istan lady-to-be simply GLOWERS at all those other candidates, some gaining more of her vengeful stare than others. Her expensive boot gets kicked, feet still held within, at one of the near by benches. "Not /fair/!" She screeches out, temper-tantruming it up.

Egg emit to Ailae: Bright spots suddenly sparkle through your mind like so many stars, remote and yet beautiful. Slowly, the aroma of spiced rum begins to tickle your senses, combined with a warmth that spreads from your hands toward your shoulders until the unmistakable scent of wet dog douses it all. The stars wink out to be replaced by a warm golden dawn, but that dog needs a bath.

Moria gasps at the feel of the egg, the physical sensations it creates in her. She very nearly takes her hands away from it, but manages to keep her skin pressed to the shell. "Hello," she murmurs.

Egg emit to Zyrana: Darkness lurks about the edges, stalking and drawn with predator lines. It prowls through your mind, seeking places not often traveled, finding the hiding spots and abusing them with that shadows that make up this presence. Danger and blackness, it travels away, receding to nothing.

Ailae blinks rapidly, staring down at the egg. Her nose might have wrinkled some at a smell, but other than that, for a moment, she's just staring at the egg. "That was…" is breathed quietly as she gently pulls her hand away from the egg. /Wow/.

Bajiren is careful not to disturb the sand around the I Choose You egg as he he paces its perimetre, licking his lips, considering it. Hand hovers for a good, long time, and a few glances go to the other candidates, before he finally decides to put a hand on it. Random black band, Bajiren chooses you.

Dedanseth snorts suddenly as Abriwind's screech echos through the hatching cavern. She shares a look with the clutchfather before getting to her feet. A look sent to her rider keeps Lanti where she is. Carefully, oh so carefully (so many eggs and candidates underfoot suddenly), she walks toward the front of the gallery and peers at Abriwind, her golden head tilted. Lanti rubs at her nose and also looks up at the left-out candidate. "She request that you chill out, little one, you can join in next time," Lanti calls upward with the tone of someone being compelled to speak.

Egg emit to Bajiren: To protect the world from devastation! To unite all people within our nation! Peace and love! Lah Lah Lah! Starshowers shimmer and descend, swirling about the mind with scintillate sparkles that at first dazzle in a spinning curl and then zing off far, far, far out into the distant horizon, becoming lost in the ether, fading to quiet again.

Jamilah waits for the majority of the others to peel off from the group before making her own move towards one of the brighter eggs on the sands. Curious, she glances out the corner of her eye to gauge the reactions of the other candidates, idly tracing the explosion of color at the apex. Briefly, she pulls away, steeling herself, then presses both palms against the shell.

Zyrana gasps at the feeling the egg sends her. A shiver runs up her spine and goosebumps spread across her skin. Yet, the look on her face says she's oddly fascinated by it all. "Hello there…" She murmers, green eyes wide with an odd mix of fear and excitement.

Jamilah is, idly, touching Band of Legends Egg.

Egg emit to Moria: Little changes as your hands remain on the egg, but there is the muted impression that machinations beyond your perception are going on just on the other side of that shell. Small sounds pop in your mind, perhaps a waft of sulfur, but that is all.

Ian yanks back his hand so fast you would have thought it burned, it's only by sheer luck that he doesn't end up flat on his butt as he backs away, ending up in a half crouch with a furious expression on his face as he stares from his hand to the egg and then looks about at the reactions of the other candidates. Perhaps there wasn't as much safety in the darkness as one might have hoped and the former sneak thief moves on, only a reproachful look at the screeching in the galleries before he heads off to something a little less intimidating. The next egg he pauses at is a cheerful yellow and a little squat, surely less fearsome than the other egg, so he reaches out carefully for the Grilled Cheese Aspiration Egg.

Bajiren pauses just long enough to get his nose all wrinkled up, giving a little cough of a laugh, though not the type you give to something funny. It's a laugh that could just as well have been a snort or a clearing of the throat. He trails his finger a ways along the black band, then crosses his arms, looks back at that little red and white egg, gives another huff of laughter, and then turns just in time to see Des on the move. Maybe he's feeling daring, 'cause he heads toward the outskirts in the direction the gold just passed, and look, that's where the Grilled Cheese Aspirations egg is currently sitting. This one doesn't receive the same amount of inspection. It gets not only his palm laid right up against the oozey yellow bit, but his whole forearm, up to the elbow.

From the galleries, Abriwind grits her teeth at the mild reprimand, her nose going up instantly into the air, shoulders back. Instantly prickly, she is. A glower is sent towards the goldrider, though no words are stated just yet. The clutch parents are given a glance as well, which of course only causes her fists to clench together at her sides. Another stomp of her boot is given, just to emphasis SOME kind of point, along with a snarky, "/Fine/!" being snapped out.

Egg emit to Jamilah: A low bass rumble, the lights go down and you find yourself on a strange platform with only your stringed instrument to save yourself. Suddenly, jets of flame spout to the ceiling and all eyes are on you as you get ready to rock out, with your..lute out? Pernese guitar solo, Holla! There may or may not be panties thrown on stage.

Madeline has totally been here the entire time. She bowed with the rest of the hoarde to the dam and sire of the clutch, and is currently working on finding her way through the sea of white knotted people to an available egg. Stepping gingerly over one of the younger Candidates, she attempts to find any available spot around any available egg, and that egg happens to be the Midnight Bloodbath Egg. As far as eggs go, it's certainly not the friendliest on the sands, but Madeline should practice what she preaches about 'not judging books by their covers', right? Swallowing and forcing what appears to be a nervous grin, she reaches out and places her full palm on the shell of the egg. She shuts one of her eyes, wincing almost in anticipation of any sort of reaction.

Lanti would smile. She's on the verge of /appearing/ as if she'd like to smile. The tiniest muscles in her cheeks give a twitch. Finally, she gives Abriwind a calm nod and turns away while Dedanseth has the audacity to wink at the candidate. She returns to Tyroth's side, amusement rippling through those jeweled green eyes before she turns back to watch over her eggs.

Egg emit to Bajiren: Mechanical know-how boiled down to aspirations at the whim of another. The presence within is constructed, following a path through its very, very young life already. Simple things. Simplicity drawn with a shiny green bauble that twinkles and flickers and every so slowly drains to yellow. Fix this. Now. Or life might change to something less than prefect.

From the galleries, Is that a rude and totally unladylike gesture that Abriwind makes at Lanti, once the goldrider has her back turned? OH YES IT IS. Followed up with a toss of her curly hair over her shoulders and a loud, "HMPF!!". The Holder-lass then gives her own back to the sands, her nose still firmly up in the air, as she proceeds to stomp loudly back out of the galleries.

Bajiren's mouth twitches towards a half-grin, and then the boy looks up to find - another boy. Blink. For a moment, confrontation threatens - look at the set of his jaw - but it's soon replaced with a casual, crooked grin. "Did you just see all green? Or is it tellin' us different things?" His fingers stay on the shell, tracing idly, while waiting for Ianto's observations.

Jamilah pulls her hands back to stare, wide-eyed and cheeks flushed, at the egg. "Whoa." What a rush! She rubs at one palm, gazing at her fingertips, as she gets her breath back under control. She glances at the other candidates, to be sure no one else is watching, slowly reaches out as if to touch it again, then pulls back again and turns her attention towards another egg: Zum-Zum-Zuma Esta Egg.

Egg emit to Madeline: What happened here? What is this? Black soot stains through the mind, lurking with mysterious intent, tickling with its eerie fingerprints across the tracks of your mind. Maybe it'll pluck a chord. Maybe it'll go back into hiding.

Moria takes her hand from the egg and backs away slowly. Almost in the same motion she turns to plant her hands on the I Choose You! Egg. The red is so alluring that she almost can't stop herself.

Egg emit to Bajiren: The green flickers, prismatic lights shifting and twinkling with ever-increasing flashes of light at the touch. Aspiring to be touched? Is this a desire for friends? A want for companionship? Is that cheese you have there on your fingers?

Egg emit to Jamilah: Sticky ooey gooey mud surrounds your being. You are clawing your way up to the top because humans need to breathe. Suddenly, an amphibian like shape pops up. He is wearing a top hat and has a paintball gun, shooting at you. "Say hello to my little friend." KAPOW! Looks like you're getting a second mudbath. On the bright side, your pores look fabulous, dahhling.

Ailae, giving the Twilight Link egg one final, and perhaps somewhat bemused, glance, before glancing around to see where the clutchmother, the clutchfater, and her fellow candidates are. After a moment, she heads for the Steering Wheel Not Included egg, and places a hand upon it, wondering if it'll be anything like the egg she touched just a few moments ago.

Madeline's forehead furrows slightly as she and the egg make first contact. Her head tilts slowly to the side, and her characteristic chewing on her lower lip commences. If Madeline's posture and stance could be summed up in one word it would be 'intrigued'. Leaning forward a tad, she moves and places her other palm on a now abandoned other section of the Midnight Bloodbath Egg. Curiousity killed the feline, but Madeline is thankfully not a feline.

Egg emit to Ian: Sizzle, crackle. You're a grilled cheese hot off the griddle. Everyone wants to flip you out of your pan and eat you for lunch! Its not easy..being cheesy.

Egg emit to Madeline: Blood dribbles. It winds its way across the ash, some presence pulling it along instead of gravity. There is a pull here, otherworldly, otherspecies. It is dragon, yet not. It is something more. The trails the blood red leaves sink into the very soul present here. Here.

Egg emit to Ailae: ZzzzwwwwEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE! Watch out, coming through! Like a stampede, a rush of emotions and energy charges through your mind with a cacophony of sound. Toddlers shrieking with laughter, waves crashing, hail pounding, fireworks exploding! And then silence for the span of a second. The sound dies, but giddy warmth bubbles along your mind like a fizzy drink, tickling the nose and threatening to get those tear ducts working.

Perhaps it's only mental suggestion given the outward appearance of the egg that his hand is lying upon, but Ianto is suddenly craving something particularly fried and gooey. His eyes look up at Bajiren over the top of the slightly flattened shell and he shrugs. "Nah, nothing green. Not to me. I'm jist hungry now." But that's more or less his usual state anyway. Giving the shell one last gentle pat, he walks off, shaking excess hot sand out of his sandals. Before the Conquer the World Egg he pauses, staring into the ocean deeps of the blue shell and the suggestions of landmasses scattered across it.

Egg emit to Moria: The sensation of creeping vines winds its way across your scalp, twisting and turning as if trying to find a crevice where it can pry, tickling, reaching, then gripping. All along your skin, a net of frost tightens and tightens as if sheer will can hold you right… there. But for what purpose?

Madeline begins to tense without realizing she's doing so, so when she snaps back to reality there's a moment of almost off balance as she rights herself. Pulling her hands back gingerly, she stares at them for a moment, blinking her eyes, before pulling herself into a standing position and heading towards another open egg. As she walks, she does take a moment to glance back towards the former egg, and lip still being chewed, squats down to lay a palm on the Safe in Darkness Egg.

Moria gives a nearly convulsive shiver, and seems to strain as if she wants to lift her hands from the shell, but is being held down by something. Eyes wide, she stares down at it. "It itches," she says, squirming uncomfortably.

"Huh. I'm just always hungry," is all Baji can say in the way of comparing notes as Ian moves off. He's not quite as quick as Ianto to move away from the egg, though. "Hey, Whatsyernameth. S'good meetin' ya." A final little finger-trail over that shell, and then, grudgingly, he's moving off, scuffing a foot in disappointment - and then hopping, 'cause man, those sands are hot. It's the Raging Rabbids egg for him next. This one he stands one-legged beside, touch is careful to lean away from the egg before touching it. See, Des? He's not just using it for balance.

Leaving one of the eggs that he was inspecting, Andru decides to head over to the Cloud Strife's Epiphany Egg, and move his hand upon its surface. He examines the egg rather carefully. This isn't the first time he's done this, so he sort of braces himself for what's coming.

Egg emit to Madeline: Lines and sigils draw across your mind, defining and creating a language born of originality and personality and something else. Lines twirl about, stop suddenly, come together again across parchment crackle and cool granite. The symbols flare to life, calling for attention. Calling for more.

Egg emit to Moria: The frosty net tightens still more until it seems ready to cut right through your skin, but then one of those creepers makes contact. With your ear. The net melts with the sensation of melting butter, its oil coating everything. With one last tickling poke, creepers, ice and butter disappear with the pull of a backdraft that takes the breath away.

Ailae blinks rapidly, very much tempted to rub her nose now. There might be a headache coming on now too, but it might also just be her imagination.. "Eesh, this one is loud," is murmured to whomever might be touching another egg nearby. Curious what continuing to touch the egg might do, her other hand carefully moves to join her other hand in touching the Steering Wheel Not Included egg as well.

Egg emit to Andru: The murky miasma of sulfur and mud hits your nostrils the moment your skin comes in contact with this egg. It oozes into your pores and threatens to suffocate, to block out all sight and sound. It overtakes your surroundings until all goes black, and the only things that exist are you, the egg, and the broken, burning mud.

Moria jerks her hands away from the shell and steps quickly backwards. "Whew!" she exclaims. Looking around to those fellow candidates who aren't absorbed in their own touchings, she points to the red and white egg and says, "That one is strange. Brace yourself for it!" She gives another shiver and moves along to the next egg. The Cloud Strife's Epiphany Egg is close, and the interesting mesh of chaotic reds and blues are admired for a second before she lays her hands on the shell.

Egg emit to Ian: The call of the sea and exploring new lands touches your heart. But suddenly, it is as if you are an omnipresent being watching over a blue globe. As the continents shift and change, volcanic eruptions sculpt the horizon and new life sprouts everywhere, forming dense prairie grasses and skybroom trees. A feeling of peace and tranquility falls over yourself as your work is done.

Egg emit to Bajiren: RAWR! Out of nowhere, an attack of the senses. Eyes and teeth of legend, flaring bright in a sudden pouncing of the dramatic to gnaw upon your thoughts. It gnaws and chews, takes and owns. The distortions flicker though, not sated but wanting MORE!

It seems that Madeline has a penchant for touching eggs that just command more from her. Her eyes shut momentarily as she soaks in all of the images that are flashing in front of her eyes. "What?" she whispers softly, raising one eyebrow as a less nervous grin appears on her face. In a similar motion than her touching of the previous egg, she places her other palm on the Safe in Darkness Egg as she stares at the patterns on its shell.

Egg emit to Ailae: Oh! Now hey, that's better. A little more control. Better feel for the sand. Ahhh, yeah. Rumbling vibrations ripple up through your arms with a steady rhythm, and light flashes across your vision in red, yellow and green. The rumbles slow to a gentle, content crawl so close to a purr, and the lights cross to a checkered pattern before retreating for the night.

Bajiren was trying to be all cool here, and then bam, rabies. Despite himself, the boy jumps back, all adrenaline-rushed and not even bothering to realise how hot those sands are on his feet. It's not long before his features harden, and it's back up to the Raving egg he goes. Hands are held out in front of him, and though he knows better than to shove the egg, they're put back on its shell with a certain firmness, everything in his posture and intention looking to challenge the thing for dominance. Bring it on, Rabbids. Baji's an alpha, too.

Ian sucks in a deep breath as he holds himself steady, exerting almost no pressure upon the shell as he caresses over the surface, tracing the patterns of land masses before letting it all out in a sigh and feeling oddly peaceful. He blinks a few times before looking around furtively, giving the egg one last parting touch with a grin before he moves on. Quietly he trudges over towards his adoptive brother. "Heya Andru, how's this egg?" He waits patiently however for the older candidate to stop touching before reaching out to put his hand on the Cloud Strife's Epiphany Egg as well.

Egg emit to Madeline: This foreign language is born again, lost and now found within the recesses of this egg. Ancient symbols chiseled into time that mix with those that you recognize. That was a circle there. Encompasing. A triangle. Uniformity. They blaze in jewel-tones as they are sketched, and then diminish to nothingness.

Ailae almost visibly relaxes when there isn't as much chaos as when she was originally touching the egg, and shakes her head softly for a moment, before letting her hands drop from the egg's shell. "You'll be an interesting one, won't you?" she asks, as if asking the egg. The nannidate definitely doesn't expect an answer, and she heads over to the Conquer the World egg, touching it carefully, if daringly, with both hands.

Egg emit to Moria: Mud. Lots of mud. Luckily it seems to be receding, perhaps the aftereffects from one of the other candidates' interactions. But this? Hmm…. this is new. A hint of flowers curls into your senses as if testing. Just testing. No? Brandy then… it coats the tongue, it tingles, it numbs… that too disappears. Hmm…. how about… oh yes. Yessssss. A rumble through your mind, distant thunder, the report of dynamite, then the acrid taste of burning sulfur and sweet, sugary caramel. Perrrrfect.

Egg emit to Bajiren: And what is here pushes back. Hard. Fast. RAWR-RAWR! Not a nibble, but a chomp to take your mind and take it well. A white not a bit virginal, but blaring and hard and intense comes alive at this devouring of a second coming. Wanting more. Wanting this.

Moria coughs and nearly gags at the putrid smell in her nose combined with the rich taste in her mouth. As such, she's a little bit too weak to back away from the egg, and remains where she is for a moment longer, touching the shell.

Zyrana approaches the Twilight Link egg next, finally able to break away from the frightening feel of the Parasite egg. She actually takes longer to look at this egg than the last. When she finally gets an eyefull of the egg, she lays her hand on it. Bracing herself this time.

Madeline emits a soft and perplexed "hm" with her released intake of breath. "Hmm, indeed," she repeats, offering the egg a parting smile as she gingerly pats the shell a moment before she's back on her feet, and searching for another open spot. Fellow Nannydate is spotted, and the younger redhead trods over to where Ailae is situatated, peering at the Conquer the World Egg as she moves to lay her left hand on its shell. "You mind if I join you?" she asks Ailae with a slightly overwhelmed expression. "Mum never told me they'd be so… /there/ at this point."

"Not entirely pleasant." Andru says lifting his hand from the egg he was at,"It was a bit like a miasma." He says laughing softly and shaking his head before he moves on for now and heading towards I Choose You! egg. He's still trying to get the noxiousness of the prior egg out his mind and his nose. It's worse than changing a baby's diaper. Ugh.

Egg emit to Ian: The stars twinkle in a dark moonlit sky over a calm, glassy sea. Lightning rends the sky in two as a storm rolls in. You feel as if you have to defend your home and all of your being against some unknown invaders. Jumpy much? Fight or flight has kicked in as you prepare to do battle. Its much safer in the dark confines of your shell. But also, much more boring.

Rules, schmules. Bajiren is gonna hog this here Rabbid egg. His feet move back, as if about to push - but he catches himself well enough. Fine then. Shoulders roll back (though not enough to remove his hands from the shell), and while his outward posture seems a bit more relaxed, his face is still set. There's even, from between teeth that are almost gritted, the warning of, "I ain't backin'."

Dedanseth begins easing the muscles along her wingspars, then clenches and loosens her claws. The green in her eyes is taking on a rather jaundiced yellow tone. Lanti breaks off her conversation with one of the weyrlingmasters to peer at her lifemate, then she quickly approaches the candidates. "All right, everyone! This is it. If you're not touching anyth…" Pause. "If you're not touching an /egg/, walk, DON'T RUN, to the entrance over there. IF you're touching an egg, you have thirty seconds. Let's wrap it up, kids. Des wants to eat something." That wasn't /exactly/ a threat.

Egg emit to Zyrana: There is a quest here. There is something that needs to be done. Something that needs to be accomplished where the small become mighty, where the anonymous rise to become a legend. Forest greens wind their way out of obscurity, drawn with gilded promise, coming to adventure, touching and seeking deep within your mind.

Jamilah pulls her hands away with a gasp for air, blinking as the renewed light strikes her. She flushes as she realizes that it was just an egg-induced hallucination. Stiffening with ire, she glowers at the egg, but manages to resist perpetrating any further evil against the beast withinit shan't defeat her! Her head whips up at the warning, and she takes a deep breath only to let it out in a bit of a huff. She glowers once more at the eggshe'll be back—then turns on her heel and makes her way towards the exit.

Egg emit to Madeline: Start small? End up big. Unproven ground, unknown and raw and filled with promise with earth and dirt and sea. You can settle here, Madeline. You can make a new life here. You can grow up and take over the world. Conquer civilizations. Build an empire. Own it all. We can do that. Lets do that.

Ian has to stare at Andru and his reaction for a moment but it doesn't stop him from boldly laying his hands upon the egg. He jolts at the sensation running through him, his breath catching as he feels the rush of adrenaline for no reason and the quickening his heart as if in anticipation. Battle? There is none here, but later perhaps. It brings a grin to his face and he caresses the shell too, almost a reassuring gesture that is pulled short as he blinks away the imagery with the shouting from the goldrider. "Awwwwh." he murmurs, daring to give Cloud's egg one last pat before moving away. Let's mosey.

Egg emit to Ailae: Is that the sound of trumpets? Nah, impossible, right? Right. And yet… it's as if a parade is slowly approaching, marching in time to the distant beat of a drum. It nears, and the tramp of thousands of steps in unison causes the ground to quake, it fills your chest cavity with thuds so near to pain. But those trumpets mean victory! Though… one victory means another's defeat. Whose side are you on?

Zyrana backs away from this egg with adventerous mischief in her eyes. That one had had a very nice feeling. She approches the World Of Warcraft Cataclysm Egg. She circles around it, inspecting itwith her keen greens. She still feels adventurous, so with a excited squee, she lays her hand on the egg, eyes flying up to smile at all her fellow candidates.

Egg emit to Bajiren: No nibbles. Chomps. Great gaping mouthfuls of soul and life. The white shatters into bulging red, cockeyed and crazy with promise. It swirls with unpredictable intent, other than that to Own Your Soul. Force is applied, flashing to the forefront with sterilized blues and chewing reds. No. You. -Or you can join. Come here.

Egg emit to Andru: It is entirely possible the being inside is worn out from all those other candidates. It's a pretty popular egg today! In any case, little is transmitted as skin touches egg aside from a hint of lavender and the… *yawn*… unmistakable… *rustle*… need to sleeeeep. Zzzzzzzzz.

Ailae's hands snap away from the egg, a hand pressing to her chest. The nannidate almost entirely missed Lanti's words, and entirely missed Madeline's, so when the other is noticed nearby, Ailae quite nearly jumps. "Made! When did you..?" She hisses quietly. "This egg…/wow/. Did you…?" She starts towards the exit, still a bit startled from the eggs. Wow.

Egg emit to Zyrana: Magic shatters the heat, it's electric touch fizzles with purple-bright beauty to clash with that of sword-hard might. Triumphant with the fantastic, it gathers up your thoughts to try to bring them into the fray. Battles, hard won. Fight with me.

As Lanti's beginning orders reach Madeline's ears, her head turns and views the Weyrwoman, before she is distacted by the Conquer the World Egg. Her eyes glaze over for a moment as she turns back to it, simply staring in silence, before Lanti's words again cut into her haze. "Right, we should go. Let's go, Ailae," she directs. She does, however, keep her hand on the egg until the last possible moment, hesitant to remove it. The seperation, once achieved, stops her in her tracks for a brief second, and she stares at her hand before rushing to keep pace with the others. "I know, right?" she asks of Ailae, wide smile replacing her somewhat dazed expression as she exits.

Egg emit to Moria: No? Not quite right? Then check /this/ party. Shazam! Forget sulfur and caramel. Meet… oh shells. Dragonets probably know what comes out of their tail at this point, right? Let's hope that taste doesn't last long.

Sorry, was there yelling? Baji doesn't here it. If he was a dragon, his eyes would be all orange and red. As it is, his hair will just have to convey that message, even as he bites hard into his lower lip. Shoulders are tense again, and nope, the kid isn't joining the mass exodus. He doesn't even seem to be aware when some former weyrbrat nearly walks into him, looking over her shoulder at the egg she was last touching. No, Bajiren is busy, pushing only one emotion at that egg. And he vocalises it. "No." Resistance is so not futile.

Moria takes those thirty seconds provided, and almost wishes she hadn't. She retains the contents of her stomach though sheer force of will alone, and stumbles back from the egg, a hand clapped over her mouth. She doesn't quite run from the sands, but her long, long legs take her from them quickly enough, anyway.

"Oy!" Lanti calls toward Zyrana as she sees the girl disobey. "Shoo! I don't usually warn people twice. Git." And then there's Bajiren. Lanti has absolutely no reservations about walking right up to him and pinching his neck. Hard. "Out."

As Lanti's order is given, Andru removes his hand from I Choose You! Egg, and that's when he bids his adieu to the Queen and walks carefully towards the entrance wandering off to do more work.

Bajiren is all guard-trained (well, somewhat), and he's certainly fixated. So Lanti's pinch has the boy wheeling to grab her arm - only to have that dragon-induced tunnel vision clear. And the boy's eyes are wide. "Shit." Pause. "Oh, no! Sorry. I wasn't swearin'." That's at Des. Goldrider's arm is released even as the other hand is taken from the egg. "This ain't over." That's to the ovoid opponent. And then he's hurrying off, not really running away from Lanti, but certainly moving quick.

Zyrana backs away from the egg and hurries out. A hurried, "I'm sorry ma'am" is given to Lanti. She smiles, takes one last look, and is out the door.

Lanti groans just a little, echoed by a similar sound coming from Dedanseth. The gold sends a tiny, jovial thought toward Tyroth, requests a quick guard duty from him, then heads toward the exit with her rider. Someone's hungry, and not for eggs. Faranth, anything but eggs. Something bleeding and bleeting sounds good.

[Fade to black]

Note: The follow-up to this scene can be found here, set in the barracks.

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