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On Family

Writers: Avery, Devin
Date Posted: 5th November 2017

Characters: A'kades, A'dryn
Description: A'kades talks to A'dryn and they discuss the meaning of family and love.
Location: Dolphin Cove Weyr
Date: month 13, day 29 of Turn 8

Volaith was flirting with a pretty green he'd never met before when he
felt the surge of distress in his rider's emotions. His rider was sad,
and angry, and conflicted. His own eyes started whirling with facets
of red in response as he tried to figure out what was happening and
what he could do.

His rider was upset and he couldn't explain why, just express the
feeling to his dragon. Volaith wanted to make his rider feel better,
but he didn't understand the things that upset riders. So then he
needed a rider to help make his rider feel better. And he knew a
dragon with a rider who could help.

}:Nalarith, is your rider busy?:{ he inquired of the young green,
lifting his head up to scan for where she was. }:I would like a

}:I would be happy to do a favor for you.:{ Nalarith had always been
fond of the bronze. She checked in on her rider. }:He does not seem
busy, what do you need?:{

}:My rider came here to see his hatchling and then yelling happened.
Now he is unhappy. He thinks of himself badly. He likes your rider. I
was hoping your rider could talk to him.:{ Volaith included an image
of where A'kades was, sitting on a rock outcropping watching the waves
come in.

}:Oh no, that is very sad. I am sure my rider will help.:{

After Nalarith explained things, it didn't take long for A'dryn to
make his way down to where the bronzerider was sitting. "A'kades?
Volaith said you had an argument."

The bronzerider had had no idea that his dragon had reached out to any
other, so he was startled when he heard footsteps behind him. He hoped
it was Vatirel coming to apologize, so as he turned his face was lit
up - and then it crumpled slightly as he realized it wasn't his son -
and then turned into a smile as he realized it was someone he did in
fact want to see.

"A'dryn, how are you?" he asked. "I apologize if Volaith bothered Nalarith."

"It was no bother at all. I regret the circumstances, but I'm always
happy to see you." A'dryn smiled, hoping he could do something to

"I'm happy to visit. Volaith is getting very familiar with the Dolphin
Cove reference point," he said, indicating A'dryn could have a seat.

"I was visiting to talk to my son, and then we argued," he said after
a moment. "He feels betrayed I didn't come here."

A'dryn slid onto the rock near A'kades. "That must be difficult. I
understand why you chose Dragonsfall, even if I am disappointed. I can
see why he might take it personally."

He thought of Garnet Valley, where he'd served as a Journeyman - of
Opal Cove and the Tannercraft Hall, where he'd been born. He still
_wanted_ to overfly them. Those were the closest places to homes he
had, now that River Bluff was in ruins. Didn't his son understand

"I suppose he has a point that I could have gone anywhere, afterwards.
I told myself that Dragonsfall was closest to River Bluff - we shared
some flight territory, we could still protect some of our old lands,
like Holds I used to live in," A'kades explained.

And yet home was also family. Vatirel was family. Just like Kadera and
Jadirel, and even like Jadirah. And if he'd chosen Dolphin Cove at
first, they'd have followed. But now that they'd been at Dragonsfall a
month, would it have been so easy?

A'dryn nodded. "You wanted something familiar." He'd clung to people,
to B'jon and Lanniya.

"Exactly. But he took it personally, as you say, and now it seems like
he doesn't want to talk to me at all. We didn't speak at the party,
and...well, I'm just not used to him being mad at me."

"I'm sure he'll come around. Do you think it would help if I talked to
him?" A'dryn barely knew him, but maybe he could help Vatirel see how
good a man his father was.

"I don't know. You're welcome to try if you like, and I'm sorry if he
lashes out at you," A'kades said. "I do plan to be here for Panitath's
hatching. I hope he'll at least have forgiven me by then."

He was of mixed opinions about his son Standing. Impressing a dragon
had fulfilled him completely, given him a partner for life and a
mission he could succeed in. But Threadfall was dangerous - both his
experience on the weyrlingstaff and his own scars showed him that. He
was also a bit disappointed that when Volaith had won Vilarth and
sired a clutch, that Vatirel hadn't wanted to come Stand for it.

"I hope so as well. I'll do what I can to help." A'dryn wondered what
the best way to approach him might be.

“Thank you, A'dryn.” A'kades felt a bit bad agreeing for his former
student to be a go-between in case it backfired, but he agreed with
the compassion it showed.

He didn't want all of their Turnover conversation to be mournful, so
he looked for something positive he could say instead. “Do you have
any major goals for the next Turn?” was a safe-ish topic.

"I haven't thought too much about it. I suppose I should." A'dryn
looked out at the ocean. "The only thing that comes immediately to
mind is that I'd like for Dolphin Cove to feel like home, rather than
the place I ended up."

"That sounds like a really lovely goal," A'kades said. He wondered if
he could make Dragonsfall feel the same.

"What about you?"

"Find a position I can do well in, and try to feel like I'm thriving,
not just going forward, day by day."

"That's how I feel right now. That I'm just making it day by day."
A'dryn watched the waves lapping against the rocks, the constant
motion soothing. "It's not all bad but it's... hard."

"I know." A'kades wished he could make it better for both of them. "I
suppose all we can do is value our friendships and the families we

"I thought weyrfolk would be cold," A'dryn said. "that because sexual
relationships are casual and there's no marriage, and because many
people don't even raise their own children that the connections
between people would be shallow. That my only source of real love
would be my dragon, and that would have to be enough. But I've found
so many more deeper relationships here. People who love me, the real
me. It's wonderful."

"You know, I thought the same thing. If you'd asked Arelkades the
Tanner about his thoughts on siring children for a woman and not
marrying her, he would have been horrified at the impropriety. Now I
understand that family is more than the Holds let it be."

"They put boundaries around love, and it doesn't have to be that way."
A'dryn sometimes missed the comfort of labels and narrow definitions,
but not enough to want to go back to that way of thinking.

“It's enough to make me wish all the Holders could spend a Turn or a
half at the Weyr and broaden their minds,” he said regretfully. “But
if we can change, they can change. It will get better in the future.
It has to.”

And whether he was talking about the holders, or his own personal
situation, he wasn't quite sure.

Last updated on the November 7th 2017

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