April 2018 Featured RPG
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Dalibor is a semi-canon Dragonriders of Pern site. No knowledge of the series or site is required to join; players of all experience levels are welcome here. Founded in 2008 on Proboards and moved to Jcink in 2013, Dalibor has been running for nine years.

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Spring, 19th Turn, 11th Pass

Upcoming Flights/Runs:
Copper Wonder

Upcoming Hatchings:
Red Ingoth

The Expedition of the previous season proved to be far less dangerous than possibly any before, with a handful of newly discovered species, and plenty of wealth in the way of resources. As the snow melts, the cold retreats, and bright green buds of Spring burst forth, Dalibor sets its sights on the future as Red Ingoth lays her first clutch upon the sands of the Hatching Ground and the Weyr prepares for another hatching full of possibilities.
Leadership
Weyrwoman
Rayna of Gold Couineth - Boo

Weyrleader
Z'dyn of Iron Baihujinth - Rhia

Jr. Weyrwoman
Jali of Copper Laanasuth - Rii

Jr. Weyrleader
Os'nin of Blue Alwanath - Aerona

Alphahandler
Norla of Bronze Norsk - Ives

Betahandler
Oreanda of Bronze Osk & Blue Oresk - Ruin
Der of Grey Desk - Rii

Weyrlingmaster
K'ton of Blue Ironth- Jenn
S'vor of Green Absinth - Ruriko
Nia of Pink Koeneth - Catsitta

Wherlingmaster
Ijo of Brown Isk - Rhia
Pavir of Blue Pavisk - Captain
Swithin of Blue Swisk - Ives

Candidatemaster
Ulian of White Rivath - Ruin
Zanii of Black Zansk - Leo

Staff
Admins
Ives
Rii
Ruin

Historians

Tobes

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Captain
Tigersilk
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Dalibor was created by Bre, continued by Cathaline, and is now owned and operated by Ruin. Most of the information, rules, and graphics were made, compiled, or written by staff with credit given to those whose resources they used. Stock thanks to credited parties. All characters and posts are copyrighted to the members of the game. No material from this site should be copied in any way, shape, or form without utter express permission from the members and staff. All references to worlds and characters based on Anne McCaffrey's 'Dragonrider of Pern' series are copyright Anne McCaffrey 1967-2017, all rights reserved. The Dragonriders of Pern is registered U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, by Anne McCaffrey, used here with general permission for non-commercial purposes without monetary gain.

 
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 The Chamber of Secrets, AU:18 {Embry x Rome}
Zane
 Posted: Apr 15 2018, 03:17 PM
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There was thirty eggs. He had seen them with his own eyes. They all had. He could hardly get the picture out of his head. Eggs as far as the eye could see, or so it felt. Laanasuth's clutch practically blended with Zelsk's, making for even more of a sight. All he could see, in that moment, was eggs. Then, out of a sense of desperation, he determinedly waited for a feeling that one of them might be his. When no such feeling came, he found himself turning to Ulian for confirmation that, yes, he had a chance. He would have taken even the smallest sliver of hope. He had spent so long questioning his future, and now he might not have to. Hatch day would arrive, sooner than not, and he would again be put to the test. What was he really made of? What was his future meant to be?

He wouldn't be alone up there. Not really. He had Rome and Xialas to Stand with him. Selfishly, he found himself hoping that they didn't impress before him. What if they left him, like A'dran had been forced to do? No, he couldn't let his thoughts wander there, again, for the hundredth time. He had to move forward, and recall the advice that Ulian had imparted. They were right. It might be that his mind needed clearing, and his approach to Standing needed to change. He was one of the longest Standing candidates at Dalibor, but that didn't mean that his time was up. He was twenty turns, on the cusp of twenty-one, and still had a turn or two left. It wasn't over until it was over, then he'd deal with said crippling disappointment when it came. For now, he was just another candidate. He knew, in his heart, that he had to strive to be more than just a face in a sea of expectant children and young adults. He had to stand out, somehow, either by his conviction or the example that he set... He would think on it some more, and perhaps come up with a suitable answer.

The boy, sitting at the edge of the lake, swung his feet over the water. The bottoms of his shoes lightly touched the surface, creating ripples each time he lifted his foot off. When he heard footsteps, he turned. Sacha raised her head up, from where she lay at his side, rising so as to investigate their intruder. When she realized it was someone she recognized, and not just any someone, but Rome and her sister, the grown icehowler wagged her tail violently. She leapt up, and stamped her fore paws on the ground in invitation. Embry reached out to her, patting her fur so as to settle her again. Obeying, for she always did, Sacha laid herself down. Her sister was free to lay alongside her, if she wished; she certainly wouldn't mind the additional company. Embry waited for Rome to sit down, returning to his former activity.

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 Posted: Apr 15 2018, 04:24 PM
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Another clutch was on the Sands – a huge one, this time. Laanasuth did not disappoint. Thirty eggs made for a commanding sight, and that was to say the least. Immured as she was in the conviction that she would never Impress, Rome nonetheless felt a touch of hope at the sight of so many eggs. Clutches warming on the Sands had that sort of effect. Would one of them pick her? Thirty unborn dragonets, and thirteen baby whers… Rome didn’t want a wher, but she did hope that they would all find Theirs. So many other candidates were also waiting to find their lifemates: there were fifty or more of them – nearly twice as many humans as eggs.

Still, maybe one of the little ones would finally think she was worthwhile. Images of newborn dragons kept creeping unbidden into her mind – so much so that she almost didn’t notice Embry sitting by the water until Sacha jumped up to say hello. Amarythea had been quietly following her until that moment, but then the icehowler slapped the ground excitedly and bounded over to flop on top of her sister. Tail wagging crazily, the grey and white creature rested her head on top of Sacha’s, apparently meaning to crush her with love.

Laughing, Rome couldn’t help but follow her icehowler. Letting the silly animal be, since she was behaving, if in the wrong location, she pulled off her shoes and socks, placing them safely aside. Preventing nasty wet shoes, she smoothed her dress and sat next to her friend, scooting over until she was a few inches away. Several seconds passed where she watched Embry’s feet swing back and forth, and then she reached over to poke his shoe with her bare foot, offering a smile. ”So,” she murmured. ”Eggs.”

She flipped a little splash of water into the air with her toes. ”So many eggs.”

@Zane


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Zane
 Posted: Apr 15 2018, 04:38 PM
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Sacha should have been expecting the full on assault that ensued. The more mature of the two icehowlers grunted as she was flopped upon, the air momentarily being dragged from her lungs. Then the other female rested atop her, her head upon hers, and Embry's companion merely gave a long-suffering sigh in response. Resting her own head upon her paws carefully, Sacha stared off. Slowly, her eyes began to flutter closed. She was tired after a long day of tromping around. Thea would have to settle for resting, for she was not in the mood to play (not now).

Embry regarded the two icehowlers, smirking at the sight of them. Then Rome was taking off her shoes, and sitting next to him. She tapped her barefoot against his runner, earning herself the same, amused, smirk. Then she was mentioning the thing that was, most definitely, at the fore of every candidates mind. He quieted (not that he'd spoken). He simply continued to say nothing, looking out over the water as if he expected to find something. "Yeah... I saw." They both saw. What did it mean though? It may mean nothing, which was the most disheartening realization of all. "I don't really know how to feel about it" didn't seem an appropriate thing to say, so he didn't.

"Could change... a lot," he reasoned. It was true, in most respects. A lot could change. They could be separated, the pair of them, just like he and A'dran were. They could both be left Standing, and be left waiting yet another turn. They could both impress, which seemed the most unlikely of all their options. At least he wasn't alone, not right at this moment, and he and A'dran had spent a bit of time discussing matters. It had been a pleasant conversation, though it had occurred quite some time ago now. The young mans graduation loomed, and Embry found himself wondering, secretly, which would come first: hatch day or A'dran's graduation. A part of him was afraid that one may compromise the other, for emotions were running high.

Embry swallowed, feeling the need to discuss at least some of what was swirling about his head. He knew he could trust Rome, though he had proven to her that he was a rather reserved creature. Something like this, well, he was afraid it might scare her off. He didn't want people to know... about him and A'dran. It wasn't that he was embarrassed, not really anyways. In part, perhaps. The real issue was that it wasn't... official. Things could still evolve, and people could just as easily change their mind. A'dran, after things came to light, might decide that he'd prefer to saddle himself with a nice girlfriend. Anything was possible. They were both so young, and A'dran lacked the experience to really know what he wanted... That did matter, right? He worried that, in large part, it did. What if he was left waiting while A'dran experimented? The more he thought about it the more it bothered him, and so by the time he opened his mouth to say something his face was flushed. So, instead, he chose to stay quiet a moment longer.

"Hey Rome?" he called out, his voice sounding... off. It was as if he was about to tell the girl that she had a giant creepy-crawly on her back.

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 Posted: Apr 15 2018, 05:11 PM
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Thea – typically for her – ignored her sister’s suffering. Squishing around a little bit, the icehowler decided after a moment that she was quite comfy, and snuggled into her sibling, still happily squashing her. At length her eyes too began to close, and her pointy ears drooped to either side as she dozed off. Few canines objected to naps, and Thea objected least of all when she could use her favourite friend as a bed.

Lacking the opportunity to take a nap on the spot, although she supposed that forcing Embry to be her pillow was a plausible solution, Rome settled for sitting next to him instead. His smirk drew a grin from her, at least until she made the observation she was sure was on both their minds. Yes, there were eggs – many, many eggs this time. Since coming to Dalibor, she had only Stood for two sport clutches – and what a bitter disappointment that had been. Rome tried to dismiss that memory from her mind for now, and focus on the shiny half-hope that was Laanasuth’s clutch. ”Yeah,” she agreed. Frankly, the idea scared her. Impression, faint though it was, was a huge question mark. Being raised around dragons and taught their ways from birth was not the same as actually having one connected to one’s mind. Beyond even that, there were bigger and more frightening issues: what about her and Embry? Would they get to continue on together as weyrlings? Candidates?

Would one Impress and the other be left behind?

She didn’t like to think about losing him. Rome had had friends Impress and leave her behind many times before, until she had all but stopped trying to bond with people. Embry was different, though. He was her best friend. They had been left Standing together twice, and spent countless hours together outside of those Hatchings. Maybe she was used to it, but Rome didn’t like being alone. If one did Impress… who did she hope it might be? Herself, because she had been wanting a dragon for so long? Or Embry, because she wanted him to be happy?

Preventing herself from stating the other truth – that nothing might change at all – Rome stayed silent, dipping her toes in the water. She would have kicked up more water, possibly, but only her toes reached the lake. Curse her little legs. She swung her feet back and forth, just like Embry had been doing, but watching his feet, not hers.

Silence passed, and Embry spoke again. Something about his tone suggested that something was about to land on her; the candidate twisted, expecting some monstrous something to be descending on her head. When nothing showed itself, and she didn’t feel creepy bug-legs skittering down the back of her dress, she looked at him. ”Yeah?” she answered, as if nothing had happened. One hand brushed the back of her head, checking her hair for anything gross. Nothing seemed to be there. Maybe his voice was just doing something weird and deceptive.

Pretending that she wasn’t expecting anything horrific to appear on her body, she curiously noted that Embry was blushing, and offered him a smile. ”What’s up?”

@Zane


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Zane
 Posted: Apr 15 2018, 05:27 PM
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The "yeah" from his friend was confirmation enough that they were both on the same page. The idea of the hatching was exciting, in and of itself, if they hadn't already been left standing for x number of turns. Embry took a deep breath in, and then flopped back. It was his turn to grunt as the ground connected with his spine. He didn't seem to care much, if at all, folding his arms over his stomach as he observed the stars overhead.

Once upon a time he had thought that, maybe, Rome liked him. It was pretty common of a boy to think, with a girl as his best friend, that there must be something romantic involved. As time went on he had convinced himself that their relationship was exclusively platonic. He didn't want to hurt her feelings, and he kept thinking that mentioning A'dran might. So, he contemplated some more. Then she was inquiring what it was he had hoped to mention, smiling at him most innocently after checking herself over for creepy-crawlies.

"Sorry," he apologized, wondering if he should just dismiss the topic entirely with his apology. Instead he was blinking up at the sky, trying to think of how best to word what he wanted to say. It was ridiculous really, he ought to keep it to himself. "I was just thinking about... someone," he admitted, a deep frown setting upon his lips. The guilt wracked at him, not at all meshing well with his nerves. "It's stupid," he added quickly, clearly intending to lessen the weight of the subject at hand. She wouldn't want to hear about his little problem. The less he said the better.

If he kept on like this, he was going to drive himself mad one of these days. Ulian had given him much to think about, and helped to keep his head from imploding. Having things to think about, that weren't necessarily equated with his impending future, was helpful. He wanted to learn how to better live in the moment, rather than always fretting about the days to come. "I feel like... I shouldn't say anything." Perhaps one of the most honest statements that he had ever spoken. It really did feel as if it would all blow up in his face, but he had to talk to someone-right? He couldn't very well tell the Candidatemaster about his silliness, not without earning himself a hard stare...

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 Posted: Apr 15 2018, 05:45 PM
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Embry, in no way bothered by the thought of creepy bugs, flopped over backward to look up at the stars. His apology seemed directed less at his incidental tone and more at the subject at hand, so Rome remained silent, watching him. Unsure of what he was planning to say, she flipped up a little more lakewater with her foot, and then fell back next to him. Somewhat less haphazard than her friend, she landed more carefully, and sighed slightly as she did. Knowing very well that Embry sometimes needed space to get out whatever words were on his mind, she let him have it, staring up at the dark sky.

Yet his admissions, infrequent as they were, weren’t often like this. Rome had known him for a Turn. She knew that Embry’s ego was dented at best, and he didn’t seem to think much of himself or his own opinions. Much of what he thought about, she never got to hear – so if he was choosing to trust her with something, she wasn’t going to make him feel worse.

Nor was she going to agree with him if he said he was stupid. ”Someone?” she asked, turning toward him. What sort of someone? ”That’s not stupid.” Embry didn’t mention very many people, so she had her suspicions about whom it could be… but Rome wasn’t the sort to put words in his mouth. Instead she waited, returning her gaze to the sky to take some of the pressure off him. Stars hung overhead, as motionless as her life had been for Turns on end. Whilst making the observation, she also suppressed it – right now she was listening to Embry, not contemplating her own existence.

Rome couldn’t help but look at him. One side of her mouth quirked up in a half-smile. ”You should,” she countered, mildly. As a sort of physical indicator that he should go on, she swung her foot over to poke his again. What was on his mind, she wondered? Was it something she could guess at it, or a new thing – something that she wouldn’t imagine?

Either way, she wanted to hear it. Her smile warmed. ”I’d like to hear it.” Embry could be hard to talk to. Sometimes he clammed up, or got mad, or ran away. Sometimes a conversation just didn’t happen. All of that was okay. People needed to do what they needed to do, but she hoped that he would get his thoughts out. Surely by now he knew that he could trust her. Surely she had earned that little bit of faith?

@Zane


"Branches may stop the ordinary man, but B'tor "slapper of jungle cats" is no ordinary man."
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Zane
 Posted: Apr 15 2018, 06:09 PM
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He knew that she would encourage him to say something. She was always encouraging him, and yet he always let her down. He wasn't very good at being a friend, he knew that, but at least he made the attempt. Rome seemed to forgive him his trespasses, every now and then, as frequent as they at times might be. He was trying, especially now, because it did matter to him. He wanted to talk about it, even if it wasn't easy. He was always so guarded, always so turned in on himself, and yet Rome was always so open and seemingly care-free. No, not care-free. He knew her better than to think that she didn't have her own battle to face. She was, like him, good at keeping things to herself. She was looking at him, but he couldn't bring himself to look to her. He didn't answer her query, merely twiddled his thumbs in idle contemplation.

"You might not..." he urged, realizing that he was only elongating the suspense by making little comments here and there. If he was going to tell her, he should simply do so, rather than making her wait an eternity. Sighing, because he got fed up with himself rather easily, he tried a little harder to form words. "Yeah, someone." He shifted, a tad uncomfortably. "He's... um..." He had no idea what he was. "A friend. A'dran? You might know him, maybe... I dunno." She might, given that he was now a senior weyrling. The weyrlings had been involved in various lessons, and he was pretty sure that he'd seen Rome within A'dran's vicinity a time or two. Dalibor wasn't all that big, so people tended to get acquainted fairly fast.

He peered over at her, if only to gauge her response. She may not need to say anything at all, if he could see the answer written upon her face. He realized that he still had yet to say what he meant to, but at least he'd made progress. It was coming along, slowly but surely. He supposed it was best to just rip the band-aid off. He turned away from her again, watching the sky up above. "He impressed before you got here. It was a queen hatch--Couineth's, not Laanasuth's." It was story-time now, apparently. "Well, he impressed and I didn't..." He was no longer sure where he was going with this. He fought to gather his thoughts, to make a coherent point. "He, uh... doesn't really talk to me much. I mean, he writes. I write to him too. He's worried about his dragon, Wobath. He's a brown. He's lucky to have him." He was nervous, which was pretty easy to tell. He was all over the place. "What I'm trying to say," he spat out sharply, "is that..." and he trailed off, eyes narrowing. He was disappointed in himself for some reason, again feeling like he was hurting someone. "I really... care... a-about him. I've been waiting, um. I've been waiting a long time." There, stupidity over with. He was now afraid that his friend might not understand, even still, what it was he was trying to get at. Embry was terribly vague, even when he tried his hardest to be clear. Coming out and saying the obvious was too difficult, and so he sought round about ways of saying things. Hopefully, if he'd done an okay job of explaining himself, Rome would understand. He waited, anxiously, for her to say something.

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Sakoru
 Posted: Apr 15 2018, 06:33 PM
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Waiting was, unsurprisingly, one of the things that she was best at. All her life she had been waiting for things, so passing the moments while Embry formed his thoughts was nothing to her. Besides, the waiting wasn’t all bad, she supposed. Quiet reigned over the Bowl, and she was in her favourite company, and the sleeping icehowlers made everything feel very peaceful. Stretching her neck, Rome spared them a glance, and smiled. Thea was fast asleep, forming a heavy, furry blanket for her sister. As far as she could remember, the pair of them had never fought. Given her own icehowler’s occasionally obnoxious ways, that surprised her.

Attention returning to Embry when he spoke again, the dragon candidate let the smile flicker across her face again. Rather than confirm that she might or might not anything, she stayed quiet until he answered her. Face turned again toward the sky, she nonetheless let her gaze slide sideways toward him again. ”You’ve mentioned him,” she murmured. Rome herself had finally met the brownweyrling; she would admit only to herself that the encounter had been entirely biased on her side. If Embry didn’t remember mentioning the other boy to her before, she certainly did. Based solely on the fact that A’dran didn’t speak to him much, she was inclined not to like him.

Rome was very protective of her friends.

Right now she said nothing about it; she didn’t want to change the subject and disrupt his train of thought. Embry shifted toward her, and sensing the movement, she turned her face toward him, nodding as best she was able while horizontal on the ground. Again the young man turned away from her, looking back up at the sky in order to speak. Rome’s gaze lingered on him for a moment, and then she too let her gaze drift skyward. Embry’s explanation was met with a receptive silence; she let him meander through his explanation without pushing him. Ankles crossing after a moment of playing with the anklet around one leg, she was otherwise still, taking in his story.

Almost a turn and a half had passed since then. She had asked A’dran about it, wanting to know how old his brown was. None of her questions had been meant amiably, although she had posed them that way. Rome wondered if she was too harsh in her judgment, or not harsh enough. Presently it didn’t matter; she absorbed Embry’s explanation quietly, right up until the last word.

She didn’t make a habit of hiding her feelings, but right now it was necessary. Right now, she turned to him with a smile – one that was genuine, for all that she wasn’t sure of the emotions behind it. ”Does he like you too?” she asked softly, because she knew Embry well enough to understand what he was trying to tell her. His words were vague, but not vague enough to throw her off. Not when she paid attention as closely as she did.

Just because she was curious, she added, ”how long?”

@Zane


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Zane
 Posted: Apr 17 2018, 10:40 PM
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Rome was, in all actuality, too good to him. She was one of those rare friends that came along once in a blue moon, and yet he couldn't manage to treat her properly... She may never even know how hard he was trying, even on his worst days. She glanced over at him, allowing the silence to reign where it was appropriate. He envied her patience, among other things. Her smile was encouraging, and so he felt as if he could carry on. He looked to her, and then down, at her words. It had been so long since he had last brought up A'dran. It was in-between Rivath and Sanarth's hatching's, wasn't it? It didn't much matter now, he supposed.

She was nodding as he spoke, and so he kept on. Nothing the girl did indicated that he ought to stop, or even that she didn't want to hear his words. He may have been reading her wrong, it was hard to say. There was something, at the last, that made him feel as if something had shifted. She was still smiling. She asked him a question then, one that he reluctantly answered. "I... I think so... maybe." It was hard to say, because they had never been specific. Their last conversation had cleared things up, somewhat, but he couldn't help that he still felt unsure. Insecure... that's what he felt. His own insecurities were weighing him down and making him question what was between him and the brown-weyrling.

He had never stopped to think of how long it had been, so Rome's question caught him off-guard. How long had it been, in all actuality? "Turns," he heard himself answer. It had, in truth, been turns. They had both come so far, he and A'dran. Would it be easier, or more complicated, now that A'dran was to graduate in roughly a months time? Would the boy be any more attainable than before? What if Laanasuth's eggs hatched before then? What if he did impress? What if Wobath decided to chase, what then? He was afraid of losing all of the things that he wasn't really sure he even had in the first place. It was crushing. "I don't know... how to feel," he murmured uncomfortably. Leaning up to fold his arms up behind his head, the ex-Trader cleared his throat. "What about you? There's gotta be someone." He wanted to take some of the heat off of himself, even if his decision to ask about her love life was a poor one. He couldn't tell that he'd make a mistake until it was too late.

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 Posted: Apr 18 2018, 02:43 PM
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Embry’s response made her want to find out more. Rome wondered, if she had the chance to ask A’dran what he wanted from her friend, if his response would be the same. Consideration hovered on her face; the candidate was obviously thinking something, but her smile softened a little after a moment. ”I hope so,” she offered. And she did. Hopefully the brownweyrling did like Embry. Hopefully, even if his Impression was uncertain, the young man next to her could be certain of that.

Turns. Had they met as candidates, or before? Not wanting to pry about it, she filed the question away to ask later, for poking at Embry’s history was something she didn’t really want to do. Specifically, she didn’t want to make him uncomfortable – if she could have made him share without taking an emotional toll on him, she would do it. For now, the dragon candidate nodded, resting one arm across her ribs and folding the other behind her head for a sort of pillow. Rome tried hard not to focus on her own feelings – to think only of how Embry must be feeling. Knowing as she did that he didn’t really like talking about his emotions, she guessed that it must have been bothering him a lot to say anything.

Moments later, he confirmed it, if in a vague way. ”That’s okay,” she reassured, smiling. Really, there was no reason to be disappointed the way she was. Questioning their relationship had never occurred to her before – she hadn’t really thought to wonder if she liked Embry as more than a friend. Even with all the time they spent together, that was all they could be. Candidate rules and her own sense of propriety forbade anything more. Until this moment, it hadn’t seemed important to ask further questions.

So, because she had no reason to be unhappy, Rome kept smiling, trying to ignore the sinking sensation in her insides. She paused after her first words, long enough for Embry to ask his question, and her face reddened slightly. Perhaps it was a good thing that it was dark out. Even so, she turned her face to the sky, hesitating before she spoke. On its own, that was probably a good indicator of her thoughts. ”Well… kind of,” she admitted, because it just wasn’t in her to outright lie. Turns of steeling her voice against her mother proved useful; she steadied her words as she added, trying to smile, ”it’s not going to happen, though.”

Hoping that he wouldn’t ask more questions, because she wasn’t sure she could lie to his face – and didn’t want to – the dragon candidate turned toward him again, expression serious. ”Hey, Embry?” She paused, gaze sliding away before she looked back once more. ”I hope he likes you too. I really do.” Rome hesitated, and then added quietly, ”but if he hurts you, I’m going to kick his ass.”

@Zane


"Branches may stop the ordinary man, but B'tor "slapper of jungle cats" is no ordinary man."
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 Posted: Apr 26 2018, 08:24 PM
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Something wasn't right, he could tell because the girls smile didn't quite reach her eyes. It was forced, and it made her no longer look like Rome. She was pretending, which was something she rarely did, and he didn't like it. She told him that she hoped so, but he found it hard to believe. So, his brows furrowed in confusion. He no longer knew what was happening, but suddenly his situation with A'dran didn't seem nearly as important as the immediate issue of his friends strange behavior.

She answered his question with "that's okay," which was entirely too confusing. What was okay? "What is?" he outright asked her, not liking to feel as if he'd missed something. Whatever was wrong, Rome's issue had only started when he brought up A'dran. While Embry preferred to be independent, and isolate himself in his own little world, he had spent enough time with Rome to know, deep down, what was the matter. He had never thought it possible because he was Embry, and she was Rome, and people weren't supposed to feel that way about him. She was probably his best friend... probably, and it took the unveiling of this awkward situation for him to process that such was, indeed, the case. Suddenly he was afraid of losing something; as was often the case in his broken little world.

Then Rome was stating that there was "kind of" someone, and Embry sought the opportunity to erase the awkwardness that had developed between them. Soon after Rome appeared crestfallen, admitting that it wasn't going to work out between her and this person. "Why not? Are they blind, or an asshole?" Rome was pretty, there was no denying that. She was both pretty, and cute, which Embry believed to be rare. In personality she had a lot going for her. She was kind, understanding, sympathetic, and all in all a great friend. Anyone would be lucky to have her attention, even for a moment. The ex-Trader paused, considering his friend far more seriously than he ever had. Propping himself up with his elbows, the young man looked over and down at the dark-haired girl. "Don't waste your time if they don't deserve you." He no longer sounded like himself, he was sure, but that hardly mattered because she needed to hear these things.

Rome said his name, and he quieted. Giving the girl his full attention, Embry waited to hear what she meant to say. Since he wasn't completely oblivious, he noted that she could barely hold his gaze. He had yet to look away from her however, somewhat afraid that she was going to say what he thought she was going to. What she decided to say was something he should've guessed at. It was never about Rome, not when they were together at least. The girl was so focused on trying to make him feel better, always, that she rarely considered herself. He hadn't done much to encourage her in the past, often so lost in his own world that he forgot about those around him. Thinking about other people meant caring about other people, something Embry had difficulty with. He hoped that people were less able to see his flaws, by comparison. He knew that, were he to be completely honest with himself, he couldn't hold a glow to Rome--not by a long shot. His chances of ruining their friendship were pretty high, but he had always known that... right from the very start.

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Sakoru
 Posted: Apr 27 2018, 10:02 PM
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Wingrider





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Rome hadn’t realized that her answer was confusing until Embry asked. Still, she smiled slightly as she answered. ”Not knowing how to feel,” she responded, her gaze warming. ”There’s nothing wrong with that.” Well, perhaps in the sense that it was confusing and uncomfortable, but in the purest sense – no, there was nothing wrong with being unsure how to feel. Plenty of things made her feel the same way, although she didn’t often voice her thoughts. Frankly, there were just bigger issues to be dealt with – in this instance, Embry’s troubles. Reasonably self-aware as she was, Rome nonetheless had an unfortunate habit of writing herself off. When she could concern herself with her loved ones rather than herself, she did so. It was something she very much needed to stop doing.

Ideally, the conversation would not have turned on her. Because it had, she looked away, wishing for one of the few times in her life that she could simply conceal her feelings. She could. It wasn’t as though she hadn’t had practice at disguising her emotions. Yet she didn’t want to lie, and with Embry it was so hard to do so, even if she’d wanted to. ”No… neither of those things,” she said, laughing a little despite herself. Leave it to Embry to accuse someone of being an asshole. Slowly her blue gaze slid in his direction, reaching his face when he moved to prop himself up. Rome didn’t move, but she studied his face as he spoke.

Nothing she could say would be honest without giving away her thoughts. Propping up her knees, the tiny candidate smiled over at the young man. It already felt like they’d known each other forever, although it had only been a turn. ”Thanks, Embry.” Maybe he didn’t sound like himself – but that was okay. What mattered most was that he meant it. Rome didn’t hear those sorts of things very often. So often, she had heard criticisms and sarcasm – little quips from her mother and her little brother when they knew she was listening. In the last few months, her father had sometimes said kind things to her, but he had been a reserved man, not very free with his words or his affections.

Words couldn’t describe how much it meant, that Embry thought so highly of her.

Unable to say it, as much because of the lump in her throat as the inability to choose the right words, the dragon candidate instead chose to scoot closer. Embry, a veritable giant next to her, was still propped on his elbows. After a moment of motionless consideration, Rome sat up, and leaned over to brush her lips gently against his cheek. Watching him fall for someone else was hard, but – right, she thought. She hoped so, anyway. All she wanted was for him to be happy.

”So,” she asked after a moment, her smile brightening as she fell back again, sliding her arm through his, ”are you gonna ask him out?”

If that boy broke Embry’s heart, she was going to break every bone in his body.

@Zane


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- Zane
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Zane
 Posted: May 2 2018, 07:43 PM
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Wingleader





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Emrby could only listen, finding that he no longer had much to say. Rome's feelings were concerning, at least to him. He didn't know how to be a friend, let alone a friend who properly acknowledged another's romantic interests. Was there even a way to do that without someone getting hurt? As the other candidate spoke, Embry merely averted his gaze downward. Nothing he had to say would have made things any better, not if he had already disappointed Rome by having feelings for A'dran. The more that the dark-haired girl said the more sure Embry was that their conversation was going to come to a head. He would have to say something about her declaration, and it was, possibly, going to ruin everything. He was honest with her, and so she thanked him. She was studying him curiously, and smiling. It made him feel as if he had done something wrong. Then there was only silence, and he couldn't manage to fill it. The hatching was quickly approaching, the ex-Trader didn't want there to be a wall placed between himself and one of the only friends he had ever come to know.

Then Rome was moving closer to him, and he froze. His gaze slid over to the shorter girl as she slid over to him, and his mind went blank. She didn't move, merely gazed at him, and he could feel his heart drop into his stomach. What was she thinking? Then she was sitting up, and moving closer still, and the former trader didn't move away. He didn't want to hurt her accidentally, she didn't deserve that. Then she was brushing her lips against his cheek and he could feel the stirrings of emotion. He tried his best to deaden his senses, but it wasn't working. He was blushing fiercely, whilst also fighting the urge to somehow escape. She wasn't intending for her actions to have this sort of effect on him, he was quite sure. She was trying to be sweet--and she was. He just didn't want to be himself; the self that the other trader caravans had come to whisper about. He was a boy, and she was a girl, and it would've been far too easy to focus upon those two simple facts. She was Rome. More than just a girl, at least to him. She was a friend, and he wanted the best for her... he really did. He certainly wasn't it, and even so he couldn't allow his mind to go there.

Then there was a "so," and she was smiling again. He fought to hold her gaze, blue eyes squinted. Then she was sliding her arm through his, and the continued closeness set him on edge. "I don't know." Any confidence he had felt--any ability he had possessed to speak to her--was now gone. "It's getting pretty late though," he mumbled, positive that he was, despite his best efforts, about to hurt her. "I gotta go. We both do. Hatching could be any minute now." It was true, wasn't it?

The young man reluctantly slid away from the girl, pulling his arm free from hers so that he could properly sit up. "I hope you impress Rome, you deserve to be happy." She did, perhaps more so than anyone else he knew. She was ready, much more ready than him, and had been waiting for far too long. "I'll see you soon," he added quickly, trying to ignore the shift in his tone. Embry stood up, not seeming to care that Sacha had fallen asleep. She could return to him, or not, when she was ready. The boy glanced down at the girl for a moment, not saying anything. Then, turning away, hands in his pockets, he quickly made his way back to his room in the barracks.

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Sakoru
 Posted: May 2 2018, 08:13 PM
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Wingrider





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Embry’s face warmed when she kissed his cheek – Rome could just see his cheeks flush when she pulled away. Something changed; he was different now than he had been just a moment ago, and she couldn’t help but wonder if she should have stayed silent. Sometimes, perhaps, lying could be a virtue. Learning how to lie might protect people. Or, maybe it wouldn’t. No matter if she outright lied to him, Rome had the feeling that Embry would know if she tried.

How would that be any better?

She tried to lighten the mood a little, flipping the conversation back to him, but something had changed. Embry’s tone was different when he answered her; Rome held his gaze with a touch of uneasy curiosity. When he said that it was getting late, she nodded, reluctantly agreeing. ”Yeah, you’re right,” she assented mildly. ”Guess we should go.” He pulled away, and she was the last to rise, sitting up but not yet standing. Legs stretched out before her, she let her hands fall into her lap, the very picture of calmness. As her best friend stood, she watched him, smiling slightly.

”So do you,” she said quietly. ”I hope we Impress together.” Smoothing her dress, the candidate glanced out over the water, and then back at Embry as he spoke his farewell. ”See you soon, Embry.” Blue eyes met blue for a moment, and then he turned and was gone. Rome, for all that she agreed they needed to return to the barracks, didn’t move. Not for a moment, anyway, until she scooted forward to hang her feet over the water once again.

Someone had to stay and watch over the icehowlers. It might as well be her, she decided, trailing her toes through the water. When Thea rose some time later, Rome was still there, and the grey and white howler groggily lay down beside her, resting her head in her human’s lap. The candidate ran her fingers through her pet’s thick ruff, and stayed by the lakeside.

@Zane - closer


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