Things that keep R'xim up at night.


The first day of the first month of the thirteenth turn of the 12th pass.


Guest weyr, High Reaches Weyr

OOC Date 18 Jan 2018 05:00



"Wait. Wait…"

Inner Ground Weyr

Widest at the wherhide-hung entrance, the neat cavern slopes back to barely man-height. There's room enough in here for an ailing bronze, a pair of cots tucked against the inner wall for any accompanying riders. Glows are tucked along niches in the wall, shaded to provide a semblance of peace and privacy.

Pale moonlight streams through a window of a guest weyr at High Reaches, the faint scent of local flora wafting upon the cool night air. Such fragrance jogs memories of R’xim’s youth even while he dreams — some good, some bad. Over the past sevenday he’s had a combination of pleasant stories unfolding from his subconscious as well as a few nightmares that claw to the surface after being suppressed for decades. Tonight, however, he is dreamless.

It’s hard to believe that ten Turns passed since he lived at High Reaches as a wingsecond to F’dan’s wingleader. By Faranth, they were a holy terror. When they were not at drills, PT, or threadfall, both bronzeriders were together in some fashion — usually getting shitfaced in some random pub at some random location on Pern. If Rix had a mark for every broken bone he inflicted or inherited during a bar fight, he’d be richer than Fort’s Lord Holder.

A cold breeze touches R’xim’s bare chest and he shivers at the sensation felt upon his skin. Gathering up a fur next to him on the large bed he hears a voice just outside of his consciousness, a voice that does not belong to Shalnth, and his body stills to fall back asleep. Another light breeze causes a second shiver when that same voice is heard a bit louder.


It’s enough to draw him into some form of lucidity. No. It can’t be. R’xim cracks open his eyes and look at the foot of his bed where a figure stands, someone of lean familiar build, when he realizes that he needs to blink to focus. When the figure doesn’t vanish after a moment’s pause, R’xim’s hand lifts to rub the crust from the corners of his eyes in hopes that the moonlight will be enough to identify the man in his weyr.

“What the fuck?” R’xim props himself up on elbows and curls forward to see F’dan standing at the foot of his bed, his expression unreadable in the pale light. There is a slight curve to the entity’s lips and an overwhelming sense of familiarity washes over R’xim when he realizes that he’s staring at his best friend and clutchmate. “What’re you doing here?”

F’dan half grins and lifts his chin in greeting like he always used to do. It’s an unspoken language they have and one that R’xim never found with another person after all of these Turns. They could look at each other and know what the other was thinking through body language and a deeply rooted knowing that stemmed from both Kadanth and Shalnth. The bronzes shared the same intense bond that their riders had.

R’xim’s pulse spikes and a jolt of adrenaline sets him into action as he attempts to get out of bed to reach for his friend, but F’dan calmly steps backward. The action is enough to keep R’xim where he is when he sees that the closer he gets to F’dan, the more the figure fades. He’s out of reach and meant to stay that way. The lump in R’xim’s throat is swallowed and he settles back onto the bed to watch the dark figure now barely touching the moonlight.

A cold air settles throughout the weyr and a matching silence heightens R’xim’s senses when he understands that F’dan isn’t meant to speak to him. He can’t. He’s dead. And even though the fallen bronzerider won’t initiate conversation, R’xim does. “I fucking miss you. You’re a piece of shit for leaving me here alone.” The words flow freely and with a sense of normalcy — something that R’xim hasn’t felt in Turns. For the first time since that fateful threadfall at Igen, he feels pain. True heart sinking, soul wrenching loss and pain. F’dan remains near the foot of the bed, shadowed and still.

R’xim runs both hands through mussed hair and then draws them down to scrub over his face when the emotional pain grows stronger. A shuddered breath exhales from his lungs and into his hands, his upper body hunches into what sounds like a grunt of exasperation. What he suppressed for so long still lives inside him and when it’s given the slightest opening, when it’s shown the smallest sliver of weakness, it roils somewhere deep within the pulse of his being.

Being home at High Reaches is enough of a trigger to weaken the barrier kept between R’xim and what he’s kept hidden deep within his subconscious. Not even Shalnth can scratch the surface of what his lifemate has locked up and pressed into near nonexistence. A piece of R’xim died when F’dan left this world and yet another piece was born from death.

He looks up from his hands and sees the figure step back further into the a darkness of the weyr. "Wait. Wait…"

R’xim gasps and opens his eyes.

« Are you alright? »

The feeling of R’xim’s racing pulse and knowing that sleep apnea often plagues him at night alerts Shalnth to inquire. The bronze can sense something is straining his rider’s heart muscle and without being there to see with his own eyes what the problem is, he can only rely on how R’xim responds. After sitting up in bed, the stream of moonlight provides enough glow to confirm that Rix is alone in the weyr.

» Yeah. «

« Then come to the sands. I am watching the eggs while she is in the pens. »

R’xim nods his response and allows his pulse to slow down before glancing near the foot of the bed for any trace of F’dan. Nothing. It was only a dream.

» Be right there. «

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