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The Legend of the Dragon's Claw (2/2)

Writers: Estelle, Suzee
Date Posted: 20th September 2018

Characters: Ciara, R'fal
Description: Ciara catches R'fal telling tall tales to new Candidates
Location: Dolphin Cove Weyr
Date: month 6, day 4 of Turn 9

R'fal turned around slowly and saw a greenrider standing nearby, easily
close enough to overhear. He felt a momentary relief that at least it
wasn't one of the Weyrlingmasters who'd been listening to his story, but
this still wasn't good.

"Greenrider, ma'am." He tried a smile, hoping she'd just arrived and
hadn't heard that much. "I was just showing these new Candidates around
the Weyr, and telling them a bit about weyrling life."

Ciara's eyes narrowed and she nodded slowly. "So I heard."

The weyrling's smile froze. He'd definitely been overheard - but would
she tell the Weyrlingmaster? He needed an excuse, or he'd be in more
trouble than he could possibly imagine.

"Ah...I was...giving an example of the kind of silly story you get told,
when you're a new Candidate, and people think you'll believe anything.
So they know what to expect, you see." He sighed and shook his head.
"There are some mischievous folk about."

Her eyes couldn't help but twinkle but she tried to hide it as best
she could. "Well then by all means continue. I'm sure I'd love to hear
the story."

"Um..." R'fal had completely forgotten where he'd got to.

"The blue weyrling who didn't polish his boots," the young girl
Candidate prompted him helpfully. She looked as though she was about to
giggle, too. "What happened to him?"

"Well, I was going to say, they made him walk the plank over an icy
mountain lake filled with ravenous water snakes. But obviously, that
would never happen," R'fal said hastily, "because the weyrling staff are
always fair and just."

The other Candidate, Ketri, looked confused. "You mean the
Weyrlingmaster isn't a pirate?"

"Uh, no, of course not." The weyrling stared down at his boots,
shame-faced. "It was a joke. Sorry."

Ciara sucked in her cheeks in biting them to keep from smiling. "He
can be very intimidating at times though," she finally said to save
R'fal some face. "I imagine he can seem as dangerous as a Pirate." She
looked at the other candidates. "I'd just make sure you do what he
says exactly the way he tells you to do it."

R'fal nodded vigorously in agreement. "Yes. Very good idea."

"We'll remember that," Sayona said, with an knowing look. "And we'll
certainly take care not to do anything that might annoy him. But maybe
now we'd better go and unpack."

"Thank you for the tour," Ketri said politely. He still looked a bit
bewildered as he followed his fellow candidate in the direction of the

The weyrling was relieved that they hadn't repeated any more of his
stories before departing, but he sensed he still wasn't out of danger
yet. "I really am sorry, ma'am. I got a bit carried away." He looked at
her hopefully. "The Weyrlingmaster doesn't have to hear about
this...does he?"

"Actually, he does," she said more seriously after the others were out
of hearing range. "You are a brownrider and potential leader. You need
to take responsibility for your own actions in whatever situation you
find yourself." She bit her lips for a moment before she added,
"You'll tell him by tomorrow or I will."

R'fal could not have looked more crestfallen if she had told him he had
to go and make his confession to a genuine pirate. The very idea of
repeating his story to K'sedel made him feel ill, but he was astute
enough to realise that it would be even worse for him if the
Weyrlingmaster heard it from someone else.

"Yes, greenrider. I'll tell him tonight."

"Good idea," she said as though she hadn't demanded it in the first
place. "Now don't you have somewhere to be right now?"

Last updated on the October 2nd 2018

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All references to worlds and characters based on Anne McCaffrey's fiction are © Anne McCaffrey 1967, 2013, all rights reserved, and used by permission of the author. The Dragonriders of Pern© is registered U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, by Anne McCaffrey, used here with permission. Use or reproduction without a license is strictly prohibited.