==== September 21st, 2013
==== Kehemath, Liareth
==== Liareth goes flying with a restless Kehemath, who takes the opportunity to teach the younger green something.

Who Kehemath, Liareth
What Liareth goes flying with a restless Kehemath, who takes the opportunity to teach the younger green something.
When There is 1 Turn, 2 months, and 3 days until the 12th Pass.
Where Star Stones, Igen Weyr; the Skies Beyond Igen Weyr

Star Stones
The climb up here on foot is steep, narrow stone steps carved high into the sandstone, and from the top the precipice-drop to the jagged-craggy stones far, far below is treacherous. It's a wide sweep of ledge, a dragonlength and a half jutting out from a rough cliff wall. The wind here is ceaseless, dusty-dry during daytimes and biting at night. But for those who brave the climb to this lookout perched high above the Weyr's bowl, the view from these sandy-red rocks is breathtaking. Igen stretches wide-wide-wide around, a vast expanse of deep blue lake and lush green swamp and the myriad rust-rich colours of desert and rock. The real purpose of this spot, though, is highlighted not in its view of what is below but its view of what is above. Three tall rocks stand, one balanced across the tops of the other two, at the focal point of the ledge, perpetually framing one slice of the desert sky beyond.

The fact that it's raining and cold means nothing to the Istan born green. Kehemath loves her heat but she also loves the rain, so it's little surprise she's here on the star stones. Away from the miserably hunched watch dragon and his rider, Kehemath looks more like a wild firelizard than the Weyrlingmaster's green, straps off, her paws and legs covered with mud. Eyes whirl rapidly as she rests on her belly, a massive tree trunk gripped tightly between her forepaws, talons digging into the wood as she chews on it. Powerful teeth work at the trunk, ripping off splinters and tossing them into the lake below. Her mind is guarded, not projecting to the world around her as she works off some of her restless energy while her rider sleeps.

Liareth doesn't always like the rain, or the cold. Today doesn't seem to be one of those days, however, as the young green is lounging regally out on her ledge, looking for all the world like some ancient, august, ivy-covered statue of viridian marble being soaked in the fall. Mostly still, she sits in simple observation while her rider sits within the weyr, working at music again. Then something goes sailing past amid the raindrops that isn't water. It's wood, and she gives a light snort of curiosity, glancing up toward the Star Stones that sit not too far above and south of her ledge. When another piece comes falling, she wings upward to investigate, letting Kyara know where she's bound as her gaze rests on Kehemath with a tree in her mouth. The younger green comes to rest a cautious distance from the older, her mind stretching out a curious tendril of heat and humidity toward Kehemath's more closed thoughts. « Hello, Kehemath. Does something trouble you? » Her eyes are on the tree - what an odd thing to go about chewing on! - but she has at least developed enough tact to not jump directly to why do you have a tree in your mouth? now.

Kehemath pauses in her chewing but does not remove the trunk from her mouth as she watches the young green land nearby. Shifting, the older green's tail twitches and then curls up around her haunches as she turns a bit, opening her thoughts to Liareth. The deep forest of Kehemath's thoughts are soaked with rain, sodden but restless. Many creatures prowl through her thoughts, through the underbrush and flying through the trees - movement, constant movement. As for troubling…the older green has to consider that for a long moment, wrestling her wild side back to a more rational thought so she can respond. « Mine sleeps, » is her answer, unable to quite articulate the restless energy that burns through her, the lack of consistent drills, the shift to the old ways after months in the new. She is adaptable though, and is coping by ripping apart a tree. She shares that restlessness with Liareth though, the ache in limbs and the twitching of the thoughts to do something.

Kehemath is one dragon that Liareth has had to take more time to understand than others because of the sheer amount of imagery she uses. Still, Kehemath makes her curious rather than confused (as Vazirynath does), and Liareth takes a long moment considering the older green's forested mindscape, deciphering the meaning of the myriad creatures and their movement and giving a soft hum when she understands. She answers the restlessness with easy, swirling steam above a single, quiet pool, hinting lavender amidst melted wax - a place that she only lets those she truly values see; a subtle suggestion to be at ease, though the younger green also knows it isn't so simple. « Mine tells me yours must, for now. » Though her tone indicates she doesn't understand exactly the reasoning behind this, but she trusts Kyara's word. « That yours will be back in the air with you soon. Though no time in the sky without yours is ever easy, to be sure. I am sorry. » She croons at Kehemath, then shifts around, opening her wings and shaking off some of the water before chirping a question. « Come fly, then? »

Kehemath's mind is vast and deep, and has needed a lot of work to ease up on the imagery to communicate clearly during drills with Whirlwind. One cannot take the time to decipher pictures when the message is 'duck'. The steam above the pool is eyed, and Kehemath's mindself is placed on the edge of the shore, muzzle lifted and ears flicking this way and that. Taking in the scents of lavender and wax, her sage is more subdued - second, third, as this is not her place. She appreciates it for a peaceful refuge but is swiftly backing away and running through the woods once more. That is not the place for her now, and she knows it. « Mine pains, » Kehemath says with a low growl, shifting and still not comprehending what is going on with her rider and why things have changed. There is a moment of tension, of consideration before she is dropping the log and without another word she is surging powerfully off the star stones, wings snapping and commanding the air as she soars upwards with the speed of a mating flight. Passionate, too, but not in lust - in a desire to be free. To put this energy to work. So…that was a yes.

It is work, trying to keep up with Kehemath, but Liareth manages to close the initial distance between them a good deal, her still-smaller form keeping a good near dragon-length behind. Pinning her wings for a moment, she takes a short dive to gain some speed, wingsails snapping back open to lift her back up and closer still, just off Kehemath's left wing. It's still work. But such is life until she gets bigger. « But not for long? » Lia is having to check in with her rider to make that clear one more time, huffing in confirmation when she hears it. « No, not for long. Yours will be fine, and soon. » Liareth sends another reassuring billow of steam through Kehemath's forest, then notices another good spot to gain some speed and dives down again, this time coming up alongside the older green for a good, long moment before having to work hard at it again. Then she drops again and barrel rolls, coming up on Kehemath's other side and back still further, rumbling a bit as she tries to distract Kehemath a little. Bet you can't do that!

Kehemath leads them swiftly over the bazaar, over the bowl wall and out to the craggy territory beyond. « Not long, » she says, though there is a lingering darkness in the back of her thoughts. A forest cloaked in shadow. Not good shadows either. It is death that prowls along the outskirts of her thoughts, death that lives in that part of the forest. A constant companion these days, with her rider's pregnancy and worries and stresses, and thread approaching. That shadowed part of the forest never sees the light, but it is as it needs to be. Without death there is no life. It is a balance, though right now Kehemath is stubbornly keeping to the light of things. She flies straight while Liareth dives and climbs, dives and climbs, and at the barrel roll the older green rumbles, a tendril of admiration through the link before she's executing the move as well. Not as nimble or as tight as Liareth, but still executes it. Then she pushes onward. The imagery in her mind fades to offer a complex, spoken thought. « How far have you stretched your bond with your rider? »

Liareth thinks on the shadows that slink on the edges of Kehemath’s thoughts; they unsettle her a little, but she understands them - the balance they make, the dark to the light. Conversations with her rider along the same lines have been frequent, so what those shadows represent is not strange to her. As they wing through and then beyond the Bowl, Liareth warbles with admiration of her own for the older green's roll, though she doesn't do more for the moment as she considers Kehemath's question. « Not very far, » she answers, hissing of steam rising in her mind very slightly at the prospect. « Our bond is strong; we stay close, but have not stretched all that far, in truth. » She is quiet for a good moment before going on. « Mine says it would be good to stretch further, and trusts you and yours, if we are to stretch it now. »

Kehemath slows her flight, pausing to hover in the air above the craggy peaks outside the weyr. Considering, her thoughts shifting less from her wild nature to more of the thoughtful teacher Sienna and D'baji helped craft her to be. Purpose. She has a task to complete, and that helps quell her desires. « Let us test it now, but mine is asleep. » Fair warning. They get Kehemath, and that is all. « We will go slow, tell me when we need to stop. It will stretch. It will never break, but there will be a point when it pains you to stretch it further. » She does not seem concerned for her own stretch from her rider.

The younger green hauls up to hover as well, eyes whirling a slow yellowish-green as she mulls this over - as does her rider. When it is clear that Kyara is stopping her current task, freeing her mind to be able to take this in, new as it is for them both, Liareth gives a determined snort. « I am ready, » she says, the steam of her bathhouses settling like a cloud, swirling but subtle and whispering against hidden coals. « Lead on. » She isn't nervous, simply a little uncertain in the newness of what they'll be doing. She gains her composure quickly in all things…but the slight trepidation that comes naturally with something new must, as always, come first.

Kehemath rumbles, both pleased and encouraging as she sets out again, flying slow but steady. In some ways, this will tire her out more than swift flying, as each push is steady and there is no reliance on updrafts or speed or gliding. Her thoughts swirl into an open glade, a protected little meadow that is her special and quiet spot, for her rider alone. But she shows it to Liareth, lets her see the shimmering imagery of a sleeping Sienna resting on a couch, her belly massive, supported by pillows, paperwork strewn across the floor. This representation of her rider helps keep Kehemath's link strong.

Liareth follows alongside the green who has been as much a mentor to her as Kehemath's rider has been to hers, attentive to each moment that passes as she feels the stretch of her bond to Kyara becoming very gradually longer and longer. She takes in the glade that Kehemath is showing her, the image of Sienna, contemplating this and what it means for the older green. She understands, finding what it is that defines the strength of the link between her and Kyara. Her rider, sitting quietly back at their weyr, is singing in her mind, giving Liareth her voice and the music to gauge by. That is the place they are closest - the music, resonating beautifully above a great, still bath beneath an open twilight sky, starlight shimmering upon the nearly motionless water along with dancing candlelight upon carved relief, column, and fountain. That is the glimpse she shows Kehemath in return. Now she is beginning to feel the stretch more strongly. « What would take us so far apart, aside from a test like this? » she wonders to Kehemath, still holding fast to the music wafting through her mind.

Kehemath studies the other green's image but - for once - she does not mess with it. She doesn't touch it, keeping her thoughts and Liareth's apart save for their link of communication. « You never know, » she admits, struggling for a moment with memories buried deep within her rider's mind. « Search and rescue. If you must fly someone to get help, but yours cannot go with. Emergencies. » So it is best to be prepared. « This is not normal. But, » here she gives a mental grin, « it is always good to know your limits in all things. »

That glimpse of the special place that is for Liareth and her rider fades back away into the humid fog for now, giving way to what is more familiar on a regular basis to those encountering the young green - though the music still persists on the periphery as the stretching continues. She grumbles slightly, beginning to become more uncomfortable with it, but doesn't say so yet; Kyara, while not comfortable with it herself, is urging her to keep on a little longer. This is good for them to go through right now. « I want to be prepared for whatever may come, » Liareth asserts firmly over the increasing discomfort, and she follows quietly for a while longer until she gives a somewhat plaintive call, slowing a bit. « I am ready to go back, » she says, using imagery of her own to let Kehemath know she's reached the point where it pains her - water bubbling with a bit more energy than usual, the sound of slightly over-full fountains and steam upon coals enough to overtake the muted conversation at the edges of her bathhouse.

Kehemath pauses at Liareth's words, hovering there right on the edge of the green's comfort zone. « This is how far you can go now, » she says, her thoughts calming and soothing. Tendrils of vines and flowers creep into the bathhouse seeking its humid warmth and life. « Do not let fear or panic take over your thoughts, young Liareth. This is your limit now, but it will expand as you grow. Should you ever be required to be parted from your rider, now you know that you can do it. There is confidence in that. »

Liareth stops, hovering as well, and lets herself feel this, becoming familiar with it, aware more keenly now of how her rider is handling it as well. She takes the encouragement from Kehemath, sensing it also from Kyara at the moment. « It is…unnerving, » she observes, though the way Kehemath has altered the baths of her mind is helping the aesthetic-minded young dragon quite a bit, on that front. « I do not wish to part with mine, but I will do what I must. » It's just an idea she's going to have to do some more growing into, it seems. She drifts a short distance back in the direction of the Weyr, watching to see if Kehemath will do the same. « Will you help us do this again, soon? » It's uncomfortable, but she wants to get past that as soon as she can, impatient as she is.

Kehemath follows, not pushing Liareth further than this. « Whenever you wish, » she responds, twisting to angle herself back towards the weyr. « Race? » she asks, her teacher persona slipping a bit, playful coyote rearing its head in her mind as she is also very eager to get back to her gravid rider. « Mine stirs and is hungering. » Not that Kehemath can do anything about that.

« Race! » Liareth affirms, a happy bugle punctuating the thought as she takes off, back to lessen the stretch, away from the discomfort. And giving herself a little bit of a head start because she knows she won't be able to beat Kehemath just yet and she can be a brat like that from time to time, thank you very much. Indeed, she's a good dragonlength behind Kehemath when they come rocketing back over the Weyr, but her eyes still whirl happily because it was fun anyway, and once they are slowly circling in, she hums at the older green once again. « Thank you, Kehemath. » With that, she is back to her ledge, back to dry off now; that's been a good amount of rain for today, she's decided. But most importantly, it's time to get back to her lifemate.

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