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Dracadia Season: Spring 316AT
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Lesson 6 ~ Hatching Etiquette
Hatching: May 25th

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Lesson 1 ~ Extended Bonding
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The Tiger and The Tinker; tag: Etz
Topic Started: Oct 18 2017, 12:49 PM (84 Views)
Atara
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Axios had spent the afternoon, as always, in training. He'd convinced another Mesai Applicant to fight him from horseback, while Axios stayed a foot. It had been an excellent workout, more of a challenge than Axios usually found in sparring against that particular partner. But then he'd made an excuse and left Axios to care for his mount. Which was ridiculous. Axios had obstacles to conquer. Training to attend to. And if he had the time...a beer awaiting him at the pub. He did not have the hours to spare on properly tending this beast.

But Axios was not the sort to neglect his duties. He would surely take vengeance for the imposition at a later date...But for now he brushed. He hoof-picked. He groomed. And he scowled the entire time. Why did ANYONE wish to own a beast that required such care? Axios would much prefer to rely on his own legs, which were fast and strong enough for any warrior. He rode his own assigned mount only when bid by Master Arc. She was a good mare, nimble and light, and he was an excellent rider, but he did not require a horse to excel. Horses for children and the injured, not hale young hunters.

The horse's stall was also a mess which would require mucking. Axios sighed. Why did the Fort accept applicants who were clearly unready? Neglectful, weak, undisciplined...They really ought to have a more rigorous screening protocol. None the best should be permitted within these walls!
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Etlaayz
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The crazy one (Deborah is just weird).
Matika was whistling while heading to the stables with a bucket full of curry comb, dandy brush, several cloths, a hoof pick, some oils (to help keep the flies off) and a lot of carrots. She stopped at the entry to let her eyes adjust to the darkness and it was never wise to enter a stable without announcing yourself. Horses are pretty low on the food chain and, as such, tended to be very cautious about anyone new. Most that have little experience with them wonder why they got bit or kicked. Especially those that approach from behind without letting them know they were there. They, usually, ended up with a face full of hoof.

Matika spoke up, "Hello." After a moment, she heard a familiar nicker from back in the stables. She had been visiting and taking care of Justin ever since that day they met on the training grounds. She was not sure, she could take care of a horse and do her Applicant lessons to, so, she arranged with the stable master to take care of him for two weeks, just to see how it would work out. She tried to work with him every day, sometimes she just took him out on a short ride.

Today was the last day of the two weeks, she asked if he was for sale and how much. When the stable master told her the price, she was dejected, it was more money than she ever had. The stable master placed his large hand on her shoulder. "When he is ready to be sold, you will have the option for the first bid. I have seen how well you two get along and would hate to break you two up," he said with a twinkle in his eye.

When she approached Justin, she noticed, with a groan, Axios was in the area. Although, she had not have any direct interaction with him, She had seen enough of him to know he was trouble.

She tried to ignore Axios hoping he would go away. Justin poked his nose over gate and nickers. She fed him a carrot, which he took eager, while she entered the stall and prepared to groom him.

"I am sorry to see you have fallen in with a bad crowd," she smirked and glanced over to Axios.
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Atara
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Axios scowled. How humiliating to be caught in these circumstances by a colleague. Best to brazen it out, he decided, "I'm afraid this horse's owner, my sparring partner, is still recovering from his wounds from our last bout. And so sadly...the task of cleaning this stall has fallen to me." Axios had in fact triumphed and quite gloriously, but coward that his opponent was, he had insisted on wearing padded armor while Axios fought in nothing but a light tunic and breeches. As if he did not already have enough of an advantage being permitted a mount.

He didn't recognize this one. A sigum, obviously, but not one in his forced morning drills. Not a regular in blade training either or hand-to-hand combat. Unless he'd missed her...Which was entirely possible. The sigum and thayer all started to blend together in his mind after a while. All soft and weak and not even aware of it. It was certainly possible as her only memorable feature was her unusual coloring, which...Axios probably should have paid mind to...But he spent his time watching threats! Not helpless sigum girls.

"I am Axios, mighty warrior of the Firebird tribe," he declared, as if she might have forgotten who he was. Mostly because he'd forgotten who SHE was and hoped she'd take the cue and remind him. Because surely nobody could FORGET Axios. He was memorable, by the gods! A mighty hunter, powerful warrior and elite athlete. He was UNMISSABLE, "And this is...a horse. And not a very good one. I really thought a fellow mesai would have better taste."

The horse was of ordinary, undistinguished build and a plain dun color. His gait was slow, better suited to a beginning rider than an expert horseman. Surely no fitting mount for a warrior of even modest renown! Whose name Axios had also forgotten. His memory was prodigious and his mind was quick...But some things were simply beneath his notice.
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Etlaayz
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The crazy one (Deborah is just weird).
She had heard of his renown ego. But, fortunately, did not have a reason to interact with him directly. Now, that she has both seen and heard him, they have not done him justice. His ego was beyond extreme. She could, almost, see the gods either shaking their heads or laughing at him.

She muttered to Justin while rolling her eyes, "and I thought Thayer's egos were extreme."

She quickly squelched her thoughts, as she remembered, some Mesai could read minds. She glanced over, sheepishly, hoping he was not one.

She gave him a bland look and just loud enough to be heard, "hello, I'm Matika Diason of Hearton. I have heard about you and now that I have seen and heard from you, they did not do you justice." she turned to continue working on Justin.

He really crossed the line when he besmirched another person's horse. Before she did not like him, but, now she seriously disliked him. She looked over to the horse, Axios was with and replied with her most dumb-blond style, "Yes, that is a horse. But he does not look all that bad. There are fast ones, strong ones and smart ones. He looks like a smart one." She dropped her dumb-blond act and continued in her own, albeit nonchalant, voice, "he has you cleaning out his stable and you are not even his keeper."

She was, actually, hoping to tick him off, just to find his threshold and how bad of a temper he had.

(( I hope this is good enough. ))
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Atara
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Fortunately for Matika, Axios was not in fact a mind reader. Nor did he care enough to try to decipher whatever it was she was murmuring to herself/her horse. He simply wanted to finish this ridiculous duty with all due speed so he could devote his attention to the many more important matters awaiting him. He barely even noticed the look she gave him, as he focused on slinging manure into the waiting barrel as fast as possible. If he could at least work up a sweat, perhaps the evening didn't have to be a total waste. It could even be construed as...strength training! Not that such light exercise posed any true challenge to one such as himself.

He smiled a touch at the compliment. Indeed! It was one thing to hear tell of, another to hear witness. There were many in this world who made claim to greatness, but there was only one Axios Firebird, "I am gratified to hear that tales of my exploits have reached your ear. But surely you have seen me at work often enough to verify them for yourself. You are an Applicant, are you not?"

If she wasn't an Applicant at ALL...Than clearly Axios had been paying even less attention to his cohort than he believed.

He looked over the horse skeptically at her words. He actually looked quite dumb, sitting there placidly, chewing his hay, barely a spark of wit or spirit in his eyes. But..."I think you mock me merely because I take responsibility where another has failed. It is not this horse's fault his owner is an indolent and an ingrate."
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Etlaayz
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The crazy one (Deborah is just weird).
She turned to look away so Axios could not see the smirk on her face. because of his response, she was fairly certain he was not a mind reader. It was the response she had expected from him, so, she had a fairly decent idea what he really thought of himself. Now, to get an decent idea on who he really was, would take some time. Mathematics can do wonders and solve a lot of thing, but, the Psyche was so complex and convoluted only the gods could understand it. Although, she had met a few Thayers that have tried.

"Yes, I am a Applicant, but, I barely made it to the first lesson."

She continued with the grooming, checking and picking out his feet, making a note to get the farrier to trim them. They were not bad yet, but, better not to wait until they were. Satisfied this side was done, she started on the other.

His remark about being mocked, did surprise her and pleased her, he was not as dumb as some claimed. Although, she did feel a little bit guilty about her snide remark.

Her logical mind sifted through his words before she replied, in her soft, droll way, "It is good to see you take the responsibility. But, are you not the one responsible for his failure? So, logically, you should be the one to replace him. He is not a indolent or an ingrate, just incapacitated by you."
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Atara
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"I strive to be prompt in all things," Axios said with a nod. He had been early to that lesson and it would not do for anyone to presume him tardy, "I wake before dawn each day so that I may have an additional hour of physical exertion and still be amongst the first to reach the training ground. Because mediocrity is unacceptable. I am a great warrior of the Firebird tribe and discipline is one of my paramount virtues."

Which was not to say he did not possess a great quantity of other virtues. His strength, wisdom, speed, strategic mind and warrior instincts were all amongst the finest on Fin Isle. But it was from discipline and practice all such virtues spread. His native talent was vast but native talent unhoned? Why it was almost worse to let potential go wasted than to never possess it in the first place. Axios was hardly a religious man. He had but one guiding principle. To not squander the gifts the gods had bestowed upon him in great quantities. It would be a crime against nature and the sort of waste his people spoke against with great vehemence.

"And how would you know that the blame is mine? Did you witness us sparring? While my victory was mighty and decisive, with the padded armor he wore,not even the strongest of greys could have done him serious injury," Axios said solemnly. Only a coward avoided the fruits of defeat, but Axios would not flinch from the truth his opponent had proved unworthy. Others ought know that he had no warrior's heart, "And even were he injured, that is no excuse to shirk his duties.
Loss ought be a motivation to strive harder and achieve more, not to neglect responsibility. When I was boy, even when my nose was broken and my eye blackened, my warrior parents gave me no respite from my usual chores. The pain served as a teacher and a reminder that next time? I should dodge. THAT is how great warriors are forged."
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Etlaayz
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The crazy one (Deborah is just weird).
She was working on a a little grime when Axios commented on his promptness. She groaned and rolled her eyes, 'what a braggart!' She was beginning to wonder just how anybody could stand him.

"Well, I would have been on time, but, my ship was delayed by a storm." She blushed, "that, and I can not swim." She paused and thought about it, "Even if I could, I doubt if I could swim faster than the ship. So I would still would have been late." She looked over to Axios, "but, if you have noticed, that was the only time." She prided herself in being prompt, if not a little early, to everything.

As she finished up, she continued to listen to what he said when a plan began to form. Normally she was not a fighter, but, she was curious just how good he really was. A simple challenge on her terms, but, how could she persuade him in doing that? That is when her mind took a devious twist. She had an idea just how to do it. After checking Justin's other hooves, she gave him another carrot and returned her tools to the bucked before leaning on the gate.

"I just assumed, you would not be satisfied until you soundly triumphed over your opponent and you would not select an opponent you did not believed was worthy. Simple logic." She pauses and focuses on him, "which begs the question - why are you here? You went from being the finest warrior ever to be a mere Applicant, definitely a step down. And getting a dragon is not a sure thing. They, usually have more Applicants than dragons, so, somebody must be cut from the ranks. Also, as I understand it, the dragon chooses you not the other way around. So, why are you here?"
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Atara
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"You ought to have foreseen such a possibility and caught an earlier ship," Axios shrugged. There were no excuses for failure. There was only victory and defeat. Everything else was just words people said to make the unworthy feel better about their lack of merit. He had arrived two days before his first lesson, so he had time to memorize the fort's layout and settle in prior to the formal start of classes, "And I did not take notice, one way or the other. Promptness is expected and should not be rewarded. It is the tardy who should be ashamed and punished."

Once the dung was removed, he began on the dust. Shameful, that any stall had been permitted to degrade to such condition, "He was a fellow Mesai and while I knew he was not my equal, I expected that from horseback, he would pose a respectable challenge. I was mistaken."

It was a fair question. He had been mighty and this applicant business...it was a distraction and a waste of his myriad talents, most lessons barely posing even the slightest of challenges. But the answer was simple and the reason he had left, "I was already the mightiest warrior of the Firebird tribe. I could rise no higher there. No beast of the woods or fellow warrior posed me any danger. There is only one kind of prey more dangerous. The next target I seek to defeat. The Ternarium. Before the last of them is gone from this world, I will go on a great hunt with my draconic partner and take the head of the largest Grey I can find, a fine trophy to add to my legacy."

At her challenge, he raised an eyebrow, "Have you beheld the competition? Many should not even wield a sword, let alone fly a dragon. I have full confidence I will be chosen if not this round, than the next."
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Etlaayz
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The crazy one (Deborah is just weird).
Matika raised a brow by he odd comment, "I am many things, but, a fortune teller is not one of them. I took the earliest ship I could afford. Going from Poury on Brast to here by ships is not cheep nor fast. I had to worked to help pay my way." Which was a good thing, it kept her mind off the fact that all around her for miles was deep water. Most of the time she worked in the galley with the cook, fortunately for her, she was a fairly decent cook. It was not long until she made friends a several of the crew mates including the cook, swapping some recipes. The captain commented, this was the best food she had in a long time. Soon the docked at Fort Mein. She was introduced to the captain of the next and final leg of her trip, an old Sigum.

The Thayer captain introduced Matika to the other captain explaining she was afraid of deep water, which caused him to raise a brow, and she was one of the best cooks she had seen in a while. To quote her, "You know just how picky I can be. She gave me one of the finest meals I have had in a long time." She slipped him a 50 gold-piece and asked him to keep an eye on her. Pocketing the gold-piece he led Matika with her luggage to his three masted schooner. The first thing he said was anyone that messed with her would have to answer to him. The crew just smiled, for he always said that when there were passengers. It was not for the crew, but the passengers sake.
They were underway. After a quick stop at Carnea for supplies they headed around the bend to Ludina, but, at the bend they ran into a server storm that slowed them down. After they cleared the storm, the captain knew, with their current course, they would not make to Zephyr in time, he called out, "Lads, we are changing course. Helmsman set a course to Zephyr." "Aye captain." "Boson, call the crew." The boson pipped the crew top side. The captain bellowed, "I want full sails. We have an appointment to keep." Soon the crew were scurrying up the rigging unfurling the sails. Heading down to the lower deck where Matika was, "I know you have a date with a dragon and we are going to get you there in time, or, bust trying." He kept his promise without sinking up the ship.

She chuckled, "There, we agree. Promptness should be the norm."

She looked surprised, "you, mistaken?" What surprised her the most was that he actually admitted it.

But, when he talked about his reason to be here, she saw beneath all that bravado he had a goal and the desire to do whatever it required to achieve it. Most at their age go through life aimlessly, looking for fun and adventure. He was slowly transforming from egocentric megalomaniac to an enigma. Oh, there were things about him that was so wrong, but out of the blue, a small glimmer of a redeeming value shows through.

Matika picked up her bucked and left the stall going over to where Axios was, "That you might do. Do you need any help?"
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Atara
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He tilted his head curiously, having never considered the possibility money might be an issue. When he had decided to set forth for the Fort, a band of Mesai traders had invited him along. He'd stood as guard and they'd paid passage. Their second-in-command was the Firebird chief's uncle. But even had he not been...Axios had never doubted one of his tribemates would know somebody who could get him where he needed to go. They were a strong tribe with deep roots all over Dracadia. He had never before thought that an advantage. It had simply...been.

"You could have arrived early for the next clutch," he said, but even as he spoke it, he knew it was qwibusish. She'd arrived with time enough that having her wait would have been a waste, "But I suppose that would have been inefficient, wouldn't it? One must use one's time wisely. Because there is never enough. That is what makes me a great warrior. I train every moment I get...And am also blessed with myriad innate gifts, of course."

He nodded as she agreed with his simple statement of fact. It shouldn't have been a surprise, meeting another who understood the basic rules of a warrior's training. The fact that it was said much about the quality of his classmates. Little of it good, "It never fails to surprise me, how few of your people understand something so simple. Me...I was born with a need for perfection and an urge to excel at all things, amongst many other exemplary qualities, but even the lazy of my tribe quickly learned to be where they were told when they were told to be there. Our elders would make them regret it if they failed. I'll confess to some confusion as to why those of your kind that have neither a warrior's abilities nor a soldier's discipline choose to come to this Fort. And are permitted. It is naught but a waste of their time and their teachers' talents."

Axios shrugged at her surprise, "He had an excellent record in practice matches. I did not realize he sparred against the weak like the veriest coward, seeking to avoid challenge." Axios could hardly be expected to keep every Thayer, Sigum and Kodakai straight in his mind. He knew today's opponent had been undefeated. He had merely misdiagnosed the reason.

He smiled and said, "Me, a mighty warrior, defeated by a single stall? If you must exert yourself...an admirable enough desire...check and see if any of our other colleagues has been remiss in their duties. Why should the mount suffer because the rider does not deserve to be here?"
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Etlaayz
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The crazy one (Deborah is just weird).
She chuckled, "yes that would be a waste. Which is why I tried my best to get her in time. but, it was not easy." She did not mention most of the time, she was deep in the bowel of the ship working to keep her mind off all the water around her and fending off the fear of sinking. She knew, in time she would have to confront that fear and learn to swim.

She rolled her eyes as he bragged about himself. All the time she wondered just good he really was? Some day she will have to find out, just to satisfy her curiosity, but, not today. She other things she needed to do and never enough time to do them.

She had to chuckle at his confusion, "I am surprised you have not figured it out. I mean, if all the eligible members of your tribe, or all the Mesai tribe, joined, do you think there would be enough to fill all the wings in all the forts? I seriously doubt it. So they have to take what they can and hope for the best."

"We can not all be as good as you, now can we?" She hoped he did not detect the touch of sarcasm she added. She, definitely decided to challenge him to a simple game they played at her home town. She smiled as a plan began to form. She might not be one for violence, but, she can be quite devious.

His suggestion had merit. She got a mucking rake and a wheelbarrow, the started to look around at the other stalls. There were a few that needed some touch-ups, which she did. But, one was pretty bad. She dived in and cleaned it up, in good time. Heading to storage room she got a arm full of straw dropping off some for Axios, before taking care of the ones she worked on. The bells rang out the hour for the next class. As she left, she called out, "you might want to hurry up or you will be late for class."
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Atara
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Axios' tales twitched at the confession. He had hoped he was wrong but...It seemed these people truly were the best the Sigum and Thayer and Kodakai nations had on offer. His lip twitched despite himself into an incipient scowl. How these nations had ever survived even before the Ternarium if THIS was their best? They were barely worth troubling himself about.

"Just because not all can be a Mesai warrior does not make it unreasonable to expect a modicum of competence," he growled out. They were holding him back. Him and any others who he grudgingly admitted were not entirely hopeless. It was unfair to expect them to learn besides such sorry examples of humanity. How were they supposed to excel with the weak weighing them down?

He kept cleaning. This stall and a few others. Because he hated incompetence in all its forms. And...now that he was at it...it was SOMETHING of a workout. More than fighting with the cowardly pissant had been, at any rate.

But by the time Matika reminded him of lessons, the rake was already thrown casually onto the floor as he sprinted for lessons. He'd done his good deed for the day. Let someone else deal with the resulting mess. If he went at a sprint, he'd bet he could still beat the Sigum there. Because anything less would be unacceptable.
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