Kyri's Cackling Waves in Warp Brown Jakth

••• • –••—••— ›› ∞ ‡ ∞ ‹‹ —••—••– • •••

Everywhere you go… there you are. And you’ve been all over, haven’t you, Ceryeri? — or should we call you Kyri now? We’ve watched you conquer the land, master the road and track MUD into the Weyr with every visit paid at our doorstep. You’ve had us laugh and you’ve had us biting our nails, with your broad range of writing, your wicked humor, your unflinching willingness to throw yourself fully into anything and, most important of all, you’ve had fun doing it. Walked every inch within the mile, now let us give you the sky. Meet Jakth.. A bit of Coyote, a touch of Rumpelstiltskin, watch out! He’s cunning and sharp, so keep on your toes! He’s broken shell, and now… now you’ll never quite know what he’ll be hatching next…

••• • –••—••— ›› ∞ ‡ ∞ ‹‹ —••—••– • •••

You came in off the road, tracking filth and mud and blood.

The Ground is Lava Egg

Pale mare's-tail brushstrokes highlight the wash of crisp autumnal blue at the soft curve of this egg's apex: a child's vision of an ordinary recess-time sky, as seen through the dreamy lens of reminiscence. Beneath such a peaceful canopy, one might miss the danger that lurks behind the idyll — volcanic streaks of red and orange ooze and splash about the shell's nadir, obscured by the cradling sand except to those who look closely at the blue-and-cream form. For one willing to search for it, a change in perspective will surely reveal the adventure hidden in the commonplace.

His first touch scalded you…

Ssssssst! Hot air belches from below you, frizzling your hair, and in your dizziness you almost plunge right into the bubbling, burning sea below. Terror straightens your spine and snaps you to attention, the world stopping its lazy spin and becoming a stark field of black and bright flame-colors. But there is almost no flame; rather, aside from the island upon which you stand, the ground has become a seethe of molten rock so bright it sears the insides of your eyes with slashes of radiant orange and magenta. In that sea swim words — harsh words, hissing and spitting, and for a moment you could swear they were in Akadriel's voice. Then R'yst's, even as he paces the edges of the Sands. You have failed them, you have let everything be destroyed. And then it is Akisar's voice you hear, and then and then and then — so many people, faces from the Chadey, from all the weyrs and holds you have passed through in your life of travel, and they all snake around each other in a dangerous braid of hatred, revulsion, disappointment, angry words cursing in the roar of the melted rock. It is YOUR fault. You look around you at your fellow candidates, hoping they can't see the shame that burns you. And then you see Teya, standing on a rock that is slowly crumbling into the river of fire. And your eyes flash, and your back straightens once more, and then … no matter what disgust you might feel at yourself you will not let it stop you hop-skipping the rocks between you and her, feeling your shoes burning as you soar over the lava. You are almost at her side when you lose your footing, and you hear a great hissss and feel unbearable heat —- for a moment. And then the ground, while hot, is just Sand once more.

Like a knowing laughter.
Making mockery of all that you feared.

Hatching Message

The Ground is Lava Egg tremors and quakes, a violent internal jerking rending deep faults and plates sliding over magmatic contents. Splits run widers, branching and multiplying with each deep shudder, cracking the rounded shell into its inevitable destruction. With a mighty, world-tearing crack, it rends open to pour forth an unpredictable coppery spill upon the land.

Then he spilled forth, like a cackling curse on the world.

Cackling Waves in Warp Brown Dragonet

A lengthy span of spine, a brace of supple muscles, keen-cutting talons of onyx and a taunting rustle of sharply edged sails. He's starkly sizable yet carelessly light at the height of springy long legs. A dark-bodied brown, he struts on sparks, slashing streaks of rusty brass clawing up the back of each limb in bristle-flickers and rustle-whiskers from narrow toed feet to the underside of each angular elbow and heel. His short-wedged face of steady gaze and toothy perma-grin gleams in brushed copper, raveling down to a roiling nova of metallic magic rippling his chest with seared rills of auburn veining. It bursts off a single electric lance of ruddy lightning down each flank, skating ‘cross ribs to terminate at the hip of either rearmost haunch. Between these points, all else is the shimmering void: heated night skies of crushed brown-black velvet peppered with faint motes of russet sparkle.

And he laughed at that as well, this brave new life.

Public Impression Pose

Cackling Waves in Warp Brown Dragonet makes with lunatic frisks and abrupt pauses to sniff, killing time with a prankish gallop because he’s sure not in a hurry, thank you very much. What white robes he crosses are considered with detached amusement, snapping teeth and slithering past them at a prideful saunter …Then freezes? All his paws hover locked in mid-trot.What? What was that? Hmm hmm? He drops his head suddenly and prowls BACK amongst the candidates. Even now he retains a strange detached humor, but suddenly… suddenly he’s Involved. And there is no more playing around, dearie. He knows what he wants and he will have it. Lightning quick, he jags left and is upon her, is slipping PAST her in a liquid dip, coming around a full entwining circle that he’s wrapped his body around the long brown legs of Ceryeri. Claiming her. MINE.

And he bound you to him. And himself to you.

Take a deep breath.

Private Impression Message

So stealthily it invades, like a seedpuff blown through an open window. « Heh. » And, suddenly, all is in eruption. « Hahahahah! » A high cackle dances and dips, zigs and zags to every corner of your mind, bouncing, tumbling, springing acrobatic. « What’s this? Ceryeri? Tsk tsk, that won’t do anymore, firebrand girl. » It’s a strange metal-scraping voice, hard and humorous and possessed of itself. Beyond it, the world as you once knew it, all its heartbreak and fierce joy, every dark night and rising dawn disintegrates into incomprehensible component parts. The Sand’s heat is now assigned color, lava’s incandescent red, noises are given temperature, color given shape and dimension. It’s expansive, infinite, nothing you’ve ever known… yet? Yet you realize it does make sense, doesn’t it. « Let’s make a deal, shall we? » As the shock rings down, these random spiraling elements weave together into a frenetic new tapestry shaped just like the old world you once knew. Had ever known. …But one new addition. And it’s laughing, it’s /keen/. And it knows you too well. « I’ll make you Kyri. Appropriate, don’t you think? And I? Well. » Heh. The faint ringing takes on sharper harmonics for a moment. « I will be Jakth. We have time to work out the fine print — but later! I am hungry! You will feed me now… won’t you? »

For now your life will never be the same.

••• • –••—••— ›› ∞ ‡ ∞ ‹‹ —••—••– • •••

Inspirations

Theme inspiration

There may be people who like centipedes… Personally, I would regard such an individual with deep suspicion. …What sort of man or woman or monster would stroke a centipede on his underbelly? …If such a man exists, I say kill him without more ado. He is a traitor to the human race.

― William S. Burroughs, The Western Lands

The theme this cycle was Creepy Crawlies. All the little things that slip in and out of shadows and scatter when the light comes on. For a dragon who can somehow scatter in single — with a smile on his face! — dear brown Jakth needed something… special. Something quick to slip the spine and glide like oil in and out of the mind’s grasp.

There’s a certain liquid surreality to the centipede, whose million legs morph and flow like they’re reforming the cosmos, playing merrily entropy with each rippling morphic movement of legs that sort of… shouldn’t… BE.

Or as Dirna put it…

SO MANY LEGS WHAT ARE THEY DOING

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Also contributing to Jakth’s deep bag of tricks is the bizarrely, dangerously organized insanity of Rumpelstiltskin from the series Once Upon a Time, for all his curious requests, fickle nature and fatefully dogged insistence of collecting what is HIS, dearie.

And of course, Gunnerkrigg Court’s coyote.

Because if Rumpelstiltskin is Entropy’s cutthroat lawyer, Coyote could easily be his client.

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Name inspiration

It came to us in such a strange and sideways manner as to oddly suit your mercurial brown, Kyri. Simplified to its barest form, you asked for short and we won’t lie - we threw around names that reached from one syllable to four, testing the limits of each letter and pouring through the fine print of potential pronunciation. And then, like so much sandcastle formed up just to stomp through it, we cast it all aside but the bare minimum.

Jakth. It sounds like a sharp bark, a curse as easily as a command, and something awkward to say gently. Simply put, Jakth is born from jackal, nature’s original opportunist. A hunter and a carrion eater equally, he’s there in a flash, when the getting is good, and then getting gone when it’s time to go.

Egg inspiration

Even if none of the teachers or parents could see it, the incontrovertible fact of recess was that sometimes, the ground would up and transform into seething, bubbling, red-hot lava. Being the daring elementary-aged heroes that we were, we generally took this hazard in stride and made our way around the playground from swing set to slide to monkey bars without letting our toes touch the deadly mulch—er, magma. While the adults were plodding through conversations about lunch, /we/ were having volcanic adventures in a far-off land — all it took was a willingness to view the mundane world through a more imaginative eye.

Desc Inspiration

Is it gilt or guilt, the faint dusting of gold over the ruins of a past that was? Or maybe never had been? Jakth’s eclectic colors and subtle winking dazzle that does nothing to make him beautiful and everything to make him stark and eye-catching is based primarily on Rumpelstiltskin’s curious character design, where the magical flash of brilliant metallic gleams pay their price in competing dark tones. There are other hints, twinkling stars, a supernova, the horizontal streak of color Coyote wears down either flank, the deadly strike of lightning. But Jakth, with all his metallic copper and daunting size, could almost be a bronze, just as old Rumpel could almost be a creature of gold and miracles… yet isn’t.

And is so much more unsettling for it…

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••• • –••—••— ›› ∞ ‡ ∞ ‹‹ —••—••– • •••

Mind Voice

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At first, it may not seem like a voice at all. There are words, but they seem more etched into the mind, as letters, figures, impressions, than they are spoken. Like someone has imprinted knowledge in your head like a fossil — or perhaps as though it has bubbled up gleefully from the depths of your heart without you having put it there. But as you listen more closely, perhaps, you will become aware of a … sound. Or is it a vibration? The grating scrape of metal whispering on metal, the ghostly, chattering cacophony as a finger squeaks around the rim of a glass, or a spoon dragging along the bottom of a mixing bowl. His words ring in your head.

And they laugh, oh yes.

Something about Jakth makes the world clatter against itself, each molecule buzzing, and these skittering harmonics are the Trickster’s cackle, making a lie of everything he says — even on those rare occasions when he means to be sincere. The words themselves seem to be right at the edge of flying apart into dangerous shards of broken reality.

« Hahahaha, did you see Ryglinath’s landing? » His laughter ripples like the surface of a lake. And like the surface of a lake, it ripples and reflects the sense of marching feet associated with Ryglinath’s own mind. … but in his interpretation, they march deep lonely footsteps round and round in an infinite spiral. « I never knew he had it in him! Hee hee! »
» …Why? I don’t get it. What was wrong with it? «
« Oh ho ho, can you tell? Someone’s been practicing, I think…! »He marches the sound of footsteps away as though escorting his own musing off down a tunnel and out of sight, followed up with an unnecessary and incongruous SLAM of a door.

What sense you have of his voice, as a voice, is spidery somehow, picking-light as insectile feet, feverish and high-pitched as snapping twigs, but it seems substantial as a sound only when he yips and squawks and cackles with laughter, that laughter that makes your thoughts zip and fray at the edges. You can’t really say what his mindscape is, because he doesn’t seem to have one to speak of, so much as a running visual monologue of where he currently is, or what he’s currently thinking about, like an echo of the Present that is, the Past that was, the Future that will be. …Except? Except not… quite that, either.

Jakth’s perception of the world is in constant warp, as transient and hallucinatory as the specks of a disregarded thought, and he longs to share with you the play of it, the fun of it, the sheer craziness of it all. You will feel more than those buzzing words when he speaks to you. With you, at least, he will share his /mind/. He’s a storyteller and a liar, and you’ll have to decide how much of what he tells and shows you is accurate; his mind is the world through a mirror — not darkly, no, but warped, fractured. Jakth sets no store in the truth. The world should be the way he desires it to be, it is there for him to play with and manipulate as he sees fit; and so, in his mind… the world /is/ that way. He will sneak his own suggestions of what is or should be into your head when you aren’t watching, chuckling in the background, or invite you into his own reinterpreting landscape.

His is not what you would call a reliable narrative. Colors are more pronounced, bolder, more lurid; shapes more stylized; patterns stand out where you would not have noticed them before, and shift before your eyes. Everything shifts. Everything hums. When he tells you about people, things, concepts, all appear as through a funhouse mirror — perhaps they shift physically, little details, an odd flicker or flash; perhaps things appear where they are not; perhaps, mind-crackingly, a person’s movements are reduced to symbols that take a moment to fade from view. He could be telling you he saw a woman running up a flight of stairs, but what he’ll be showing you is a flight of stairs peopled with that woman, appearing one by one and frozen over the course of her ascent like a stop-motion compilation. And vision is not the only medium he will use to evoke his ideas. That strange harmonic hum may vibrate with a thousand meanings. He could show you — without telling you, of course, that would be too obvious — that he disapproves of someone by conjuring a whiff of something unpleasant when they’re near.

» That’s… you, isn’t it? «
« No, it is him. » The words are backed by a disconcerting scrape. « He carries the stink of recalcitrant herdbeast. »

Or perhaps it is only a perceptual change — a person will smile and for a moment it will seem the grin of jaws about to snap shut on prey; it will seem gleeful or angry or perhaps even cold, though nothing about the person or their expression is truly different. If you’re really looking through his eyes, you had better not be operating heavy machinery at the time! Although how he would laugh if you believed his tricks and knocked over a fellow candidate or a table or the whole Weyr in pursuit of an illusion…

If it’s bad enough when he echoes his opinions to you, it’s perhaps worse when he speaks with other dragons. Their own mindscapes and mindvoices are mimicked back at them, but tinnily, fractally, and the echoes are mocking and flawed. The voice that replies may be theirs or that of another dragon, but warped such that it feels disturbing and wrong. Ryglinath’s footprints are skewed and their path random; Ligryth’s waves sizzle and her siren song is off-key; Finmaraisth’s warm swamp dances with flashing red teeth instead of fireflies, his bass voice ringing out too high-pitched.

Jakth makes a mockery of everything, even reality, turning the benign into the ridiculous. Even if you keep a firm grip on your control, it is this, his whole reeling, warping inner universe, that sets the atoms chattering when he speaks to you; and you might suspect, deep down, that such vibrations could birth the stars or tear the entirety of Pern asunder.

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Physicalities

He’s a showy dragon, Kyri. But there’s no denying it’s a stark and disconcerting brand of showiness. He’ll pull the eye of strangers with a strange sense of amusement and wariness in one, like a cackle in the night, abruptly cut short.

And he’ll flaunt it with almost spiteful, irreverent insistence.

So big that some might mistake him for a small bronze, he’s colored shamelessly like a filthy penny that turns up when you least expect it: buffed to brightness where a million palms have polished it… and black as night in every point of relief between. (And, oh, a lucky penny or unlucky? Ho ho, you’ll ask yourself this one rather often…) He’s a curious mix of his spidery dam’s powdered sparkle of darkling tones and his father’s flamboyant glitzy glamour, with abrupt copper and brass points climbing up only the back sides of each long, long leg in rough jags and slashes, like brushed scrap metal pieces hammered together at conflicting scratchy angles.

This same disorganized scrap-copper can be found forming his face where he’s borrowed his sire’s mask and then spun it red and ragged, with eyeridges spiked and gaze that prankish middleground between clever and immature - masquerade, clever ruse or childish dressup? Is there any reason it has to be only one? Situations change, after all, and no one is into keeping up with changes (or causing them) quite like dear Jakth…

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Even where his body is black, it isn’t solid, is it. Look closely, Kyri, for Jakth is decked in a velvety night sky full of winking stars. Small shimmery motes of brass and copper shift in unbound constellations from the black base color that covers the majority of your brown’s body. These flecks are Elicheritath’s blessing to her wayward boy, a faint kiss of metallic powder imbues him with a touch of glinting of bedeviled magic.

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Amidst this rich inheritance, though, he keeps something unquely his own as well. And he keeps it close to heart. Swarming at his chest is a snarling tangle of brilliant flashing auburn, a reddened supernova in miniature set against the spangled darkness. And from this frontward-facing focal point, two streaks of jagged lightning streak long-ways down either flanks in electric racing stripes.

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For how striking his color patterns are, they almost appear squandered for how flippantly he carries himself.

He’s inherited his father’s panache for coasting in his movements, jiving and lively; his confidence is one that just doesn’t give a crap about looking regal or respectable. He does have quite a bit of almost vicious grace to him, a primal sort of prowling-animal saunter that leans his head forward and places one foot in front of the other in a liquid padding manner that undulates his shoulderblades. It’s hyena-esque and predatory, made all the worse for the smirky perma-grin that seems to twist up his mouth around razor-sharp teeth.

“So brave. So gallant. …So pointless.”

- Rumpelstiltskin, Once Upon a Time

In spite of his natural affinity for smooth sailing, actually moving with grace and dignity is the farthest thing from his main concern. He’s far too expressive, too dynamic, too creative, too careless and, to put it bluntly, he finds pretension underwhelming at best. He springs and romps, frisks and prances, bounding circles around the dragon he’s interacting with and then casting himself to the ground to thrash around for the sheer madness of it, sending up dust clouds. And then going limp. And then springing back up again. There’s a pervasive energy about him, dynamic, playful and effortless, all lazy bones and springy muscles, met in the middle with a semi-chip on his shoulder and a blatant disinterest in meeting expectations.

He’d rather set them, thank you very much. After which he’ll probably ignore them anyway.

He likes motion. He sways. He stretches. He slithers. He moves with a habit of happenstance, like he’s riding the currents of some unknown watersystem, choppy one instant, serene and rolling the next. With his long legs and snap-changing speeds between somnolent stroll, light narrow-footed picking that could almost be called delicate, and sudden slap-ass-crazy bounding, you could look to the movements of a deer. They’re bold and brazen, so long-legged and sleek; they ignore all boundaries that can be ignored, and are built of solid muscle in compact, effortless power.

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It’s no shock then to know - he’s not shy! He likes to touch, to smell, to lick, to lounge on whatever anyone else is doing. Expect to have to go searching couches in the barracks, because it seems any moment you leave him alone, he’s washing up into someone else’s home, and later, sticking his head into someone else’s weyr, grinning, grinning, grinning…

He’s impossibly tactile. Suddenly pressing in far too close for comfort, fetching a shoulder up against a clutchmate or nudging his nose against your side, Kyri, even when he’s so large this might send you stumbling. He has no qualms with dropping down to his belly and scooting forlornly at you to get what he wants, or turning over and rolling around in the dirt for attention. He’ll tug on your clothes, your hair, scoop you up once he’s big enough to do so and take you wherever he has decided he wants you (or just to be with you). He butts and nips, nudges and sliiiiides himself against things. And dragons. And walls. You’d almost mistake him for a cat, for how he likes to grind off his scent on everywhere he goes and on anyone he meets. He paws things around - good luck ever keeping your furniture in one place - paws things to himself, and nips at the heels of his siblings not even in play, but almost in a seeming reflex sometimes. Bored now, futzing-with-you time.

It’ll be worse when he’s younger, perpetually zooming around, chasing his clutchmates. Wanting to smell their food, eat their food, lie in their beds, lie on their food…

It’s how he shows he… cares? Ish? It could easily be mistaken for selfishness, because in deed does he ever have an entitlement streak a mile long.

But sometimes, Kyri. Sometimes, you’ll find yourself sitting with his head in your lap, or a paw, lying by you, lying around you. And he’ll be still. And silent, for a rare moment.

And maybe you’ll wonder.

••• • –••—••— › • ‹ —••—••– • •••

Personality

See the mighty trees, the strong bones of my body!
The rustling of the leaves is my laughter!
The swaying grass is the hair on my back!
The rocks and stones, powerful teeth of mine!
My blood, the water coursing through the land!
My ever watching eyes, the sun…
And the moon!

Jakth is trouble. You’re going to know that from the start, Kyri, an itching of your thumbs that warns you of impending doom practically the moment his mind first meets yours. Knowing is not, however, half the battle - because knowing that Jakth is a problem child will only get you so far without willpower to back it up. Every time you think you’ve gotten a grips on the full twisty maze of his personality, he’ll find a new way to slip your wires and surprise you, and you’ll ever need to keep on your toes, keep up with him, or he’ll run right over you. Most riders have gotten a solid feel for the ins and outs of their lifemates by the end of Weyrlinghood. You, though - you’ll still be struggling to really figure him out - and what he wants to get out of it! - turns from now.

From the start, your brown lifemate will often come off as… comical. The clutch clown, full of improbable stories and amusing behaviors. At first, perhaps, even you will be occasionally fooled: it’s easy to mistake the thick shell of charisma for the whole of the dragon. A loveable trickster, full of pranks and outbursts and physical comedy. And really, he is pretty hilarious, especially if you enjoy pratfalls and nonsense. He’ll trip people into the pool in the center of the weyrling barracks, he’ll switch around pairs of first flight straps, he’ll feed his siblings the most ridiculous lies disguised as gospel truths. He might well be, at least in the early days, one of the more popular dragons in the barracks - a source of constant amusement for yourself and your peers.

He is an agile teller of tales, and the limited waking hours of the first few months of his life will likely be spent (when not eating) in weaving stories about himself, his clutchmates, his parents, you. Every accident and embarrassment of a sibling turns into epic and fantastical legend, under Jakth’s agile retelling.

« - And then the shadows themselves came alive around Melosphilith » Jakth purrs, voice rising to an unsettling keen of great amusement. « And she struggled, and tried to flee! But they wove around her, binding, binding, binding! Until - WHOOPS - she fell down, down, down into the bathing pool. »

He waits, a smug little beat. « And then we all laughed! At her! Hahahaha! »

While his brother Ryglinath is conscious of familial ties and obligations, Jakth cares very little for such things. Once he’s old enough, he may well enjoy spinning wilder and wilder tales of his origins: claiming that he was once a moon, claiming he came from within the depths of Pern, claiming you yourself made him out of dust and imagination. If something goes wrong in his life, or yours, expect the tales to pop up with especial regularity: that missed promotion, that failed flight, become explained away as necessary elements of myth.

But don’t expect to always get to hear the tales to their end, or see a planned prank fully pan out. While Jakth is extremely clever - especially by the standards of dragons - he is cursed (or, perhaps, blessed) with a limited attention span and an especially unreliable memory, only worsened by a disinterest in improving. Sometimes the distraction will be himself: Jakth is fully capable of forgetting to finish something because he’s just too busy feeling proud of himself for having started it.

Antimony: I heard a story once where you saw how people were created. And you tried to make some yourself, but…
Coyote: I LAUGHED partway through! Yes, not one of my finer moments!
Antimony: And your creations had glass eyes because of it.

One might like to think he is always merely embroidering on the truth, but this is not… precisely… the case. Because you, lucky Kyri, have stumbled into a rare phenomenon: a dragon who is quite capable of telling his rider falsehoods, all the time, over and over.

It may start off innocuous. Perhaps it seems he remembers things differently from you. Perhaps the words of others take on a different spin, different emphasis, different meaning in the memories he relays to you or the conversations he repeats. But over time, you will come to realize that Jakth sees no difference between lies and the truth. You will have to guard constantly against his conceptual ‘adjustment’ of things to suit himself. Someone yelled at him for a misdeed? When he tells /you/ about it, his accuser will be a hundred feet tall and monstrous, threatening your poor l’il Jakth with huge boulders held in her giant fists, poised to squash him flat. What a horrible creature! Only his cunning and handsomeness saved him from a terrible fate! You should comfort him, Kyri! His Kyri! You will go and set that monster on fire for him, won’t you, Firebrand Girl?

Because Jakth is a manipulator. An opportunist. And, so much like his father, he has an eye for someone in need. At first, it will seem relatively innocuous in nature: little nudges, little pointed jests, little bargains struck. He’ll wiggle out the vulnerabilities and desires of the people around him, and dangle… solutions. Ryglinath wants the iridescent sparkles out of his hide? Oh, brother, let Jakth help, hahahaha! He’ll fix you riiiiight up, you just need to roll around in that bottle of wine R’yst has been saving for a special occasion, he’ll get it for brother dearest if brother dearest will only give him that nice juicy rabbit! Cacymarth is embarrassed about his dainty little wings? Hahaha, has Jakth got an offer for YOU! Just give him those nice fancy straps J’sin has been working so hard on, and he’ll reveal the special exercises under the light of the moon that are SURE to give big, manly wings!

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Maybe it’s not surprising Jakth Impressed onto a Trader, because your brown knows how to sell a pitch, take a swing, seal a deal, and the exchanges he barters always sound so good for everyone involved - but himself especially. If for no other reason than he also got the entertainment out of it There’s a sort of capricious lack of necessity for half of what his requirements are. Small favors. TINY favors. Maybe Melosphilith agrees to get her rider to trade chores with you for the day… But if you watch, if you suspect enough, you might see that in time, many of his little quid pro quo can gradually become huge and important. Maybe the day your chores are traded, R’yst dumps extra duties at your doorstep.

Maybe it’s luck, maybe it’s madness. Whatever it is, when you boil him down, you’ll find for all his rambling disorganization, Jakth… is the King of Fine Print. He writes it. He reads it. He loves it. He is grasping, collecting, ever hoarding of favors, of knick knacks for a rainy day.

Of all of his clutch, he will understand his parents best; no other amongst Elicheritath and Finmaraisth’s brood has so thoroughly inherited their shared skill in subtle maneuvers. This may lead to friendships, in time, from those few able to keep up with him. Because he doesn’t slow down for anyone, except for maybe you. Sometimes. But parental love is more likely with his meddlesome but ultimately courteous mother; with his father, every gesture of friendship and solidarity is counterbalanced with veiled menace and attempts to get the upper hand. With his siblings, he will usually be one step ahead. Ryglinath may occasionally manage to catch up by sheer dint of effort. Cacymarth and Melosphilith will regularly be left in the dust.

//‘I like small weapons you see—the needle, the pen, the fine point of a deal. Subtlety.

Not your style, I know.’//

-Mr. Gold, Once Upon A Time

Oh, how he’ll needle you. You’ll have to be tough, Kyri, and you’ll have to stick to your guns. He’s slick and wily, playing the fool as easily as the architect, and he’ll ride you about your tact, your act, the way you react. But if you stand your ground, you might find, in time, a certain sort of… balancing. A mutually beneficial middle ground where you, his Firebrand Girl, can perhaps ground him when it’s needed. And he, in turn, can be your subtle negotiator.

Just… make sure to keep an eye on him. He’s more than willing to use others as gambits in his schemes, even if it incidentally might put them in harm’s way. Remember how we said, earlier, that Jakth will likely be a popular soul in the weyrling barracks… at first? This is why that disclaimer clause is there. Because your Jakth, Kyri, is capable of flippant and unnecessary cruelty if it really suits him. Unless you are there ALL THE TIME to rein him in, fully expect that Jakth will cause at least one injury before graduation, and he’ll land you in hot water more than once. He just doesn’t possess a strong moral core, to put it mildly. But far be it from him to be consistent; Jakth is equally capable of the occasional rather startling act of great, staggering helpfulness. It’s just random, with him. Sometimes he’ll be kind for no conceivable gain. Not often. But sometimes.

You, Kyri, are not immune to his mad experiments, though he recognizes he needs you, cares for you, and his instinctive need to please and protect you is a very potent check on some of his darker impulses. He will lie to you, often. To make you mad, to feel you out, to see what he can learn about you, to see what you might learn about yourself. Maybe to make you love him. And you will be forced to decide whether you respect his right to do so, or intend to use your mental leverage to force the truth out of him. It may be wiser, most times, to simply let it slide.

And yet… and yet, he loves you, honestly and sincerely, with every fiber of his being. His utter disinterest in what anyone else thinks only means he will encourage you to do whatever you want, repercussions be damned. He’s always game, always eager to back you up on whatever mad capers you may go on (even if he might try to get you to persuade him) with an enthusiastic humor. Sometimes, he will be a driving force in and of itself. He’ll go behind your back, arrange things for you. You may not want them. But he’ll do it almost compulsively. Guard your secret weaknesses carefully, Kyri: if Jakth gets wind of them and thinks he knows better, you’ll find help thrust upon you whether you like it or not.

« Ligryth! » Jakth’s voice comes as a high-pitched yelp. « Kyri doesn’t want to ADMIT it, but she’s having trouble learning those wing diagrams! And I think that might be a problem! Don’t you think you’d better tell R’yst? Hahaha! »

He doesn’t do it to hurt, or embarrass - not when it’s you, or any other person or dragon who eventually wiggles their way into his genuine esteem. All the potent force of his manipulative urges get harnessed, in those rare urges, into a sharp knife of determination. A knife so sharp, it will seem at times, that it could cut the very face of Pern.

Jakth will be a thorn in your side, Kyri. He will trick, lie, and cheat you. But at the end of the day, you are the one thing he’ll never, ever trade away, because you are also his partner in crime, and his dearest treasure. No bauble, no laugh, no story is your equal.

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Flights

You may well know the power inherent in trading, getting the better deal, the power of shining gold, and the power and loyalty of the clan. Well, Jakth knows that too and it becomes an underlying obsession when it comes to Flights. His clownish nature may take on a darker hue as females become proddy and obsessively so when that proddy female has a golden glow.

Power. Gold. Prestige. Clan. Progeny. Dynastic Tendencies…

His brown father won Flights with Queens, surely he can do better. He may attempt to trick other males into leaving the Weyr before a Gold Flight - he may even lurk obsessively near the Queen’s Weyrs in a calculating attempt to know just exactly when a gold will rise.

Flights aren’t all sweetness and light…

After the Flight perhaps he’ll use his powers of persuasion. For really, who can fly the Golds like he can, breed the next set of warriors like he can, create a dynasty of dragons like he can? The afterglow is the perfect time to implant seeds of strength and supremacy or notions of distrust and spread discontent in the ranks.

In Green Flights, you may find Jakth especially interested in those greens that are extremely talented and are making their way up the ranks, or are already in positions in power in the Weyr. Think conniving and sleeping his way up the ranks, in a way. R’yst’s Ligryth may be eyed in a particularly obsessive light when she gets proddy, mostly because they are in charge of sculpting young, innocent, malleable minds…mmm delicious delicious minds…

All in all, the gold is merely the currency of the transaction. Gold for Power. Gold for Increased membership in the clan.

On the other hand, while Jakth will be extremely keen on producing offspring, if he /does/ ever manage to mate with a gold, he will take little to no interest in the actual dragonets thus produced — at least after the initial period of glee at his own accomplishments. Unlike both his mother and father, he feels he has far better things to do than pay attention to his offspring, whom he will likely declare to be quite boring if you prod him about it. It is quantity that he’s concerned with, here, and someone so clever and interesting as he should not waste time caring about the details when he could be having FUN or being wise and charming and excellent somewhere.

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Or so the fairy tale goes. But as Jakth himself might point out to you, in such a rare moment that he might speak so plainly, the best details of any story are in its fine print, and the fineprint is written, in the end, by he that tells the story. Legend, myth, history or fantasy, this tale is yours to write, as is Jakth for all his wily ways. He is yours to take and mold, to fit his reality to yours (or will it be yours to his?), to have and to hold as you or he see fit*. Welcome to High Reaches Weyr. Welcome to the sky.

(*warning: always read his fine print!)

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Credits

Name: R’yst, Dirna, Tuli
Egg Desc: Sigalit
Dragonet Desc: R’yst
Messages: R’yst
Puppeteer: Dirna
Inspiration: R'yst, Tuli, Kalifa, Dirna

Clutchmates: J'sin's bronze Cacymarth, Teyaschianniarina's brown Ryglinath, Wynne's green Melosphilith

Harper's Tale's 64th PC Clutch
High Reaches Weyr's 24th PC Clutch
Tuli’s gold Elicheritath and Rysta's brown Finmaraisth
November 24th, 2012

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