Darkling Dawn
Dragonhope Weyr
You walk into a weyr, knocking on the opened door first to alert whoever's inside. "Hello?" You call out. "Anyone in here?"
Inside, the weyr is...well, not scrupulously clean or grandiose, considering it's basically a glorified cave, but...homely. There's a sturdy cot in the corner, with rumpled white sheets on top and the rest of the room is fairly tidy; a nearly full bookshelf stands against one wall, and opposite it lies a chest which, you suspect, contains the candidate's clothes and personal effects. There is a small table, also, with several rolls of parchment and a flickering candle on top, shedding light on the room. A young woman sits at the table, looking up as you come in.
She fits the room, you think as you see her. Attractive, but not the kind of girl the bronzeriders fight over to escort to the hatching sands, she is cute and appears friendly. She is tall, but not imposingly so, and she is not fat or stocky, but neither is she twiglike-thin, like some of the girls hoping to Impress gold are when the searchriders bring them in. Her skin is tanned, and it looks like she spends a good deal of time outdoors. Her dark hair is pulled back in a simple ponytail, and her eyes are a deep brown.
She stands as you approach, and you shake hands. "I'm Mahri, a candidate for the clutch, obviously." She says with an ironic smile. "A fellow candidate?" She questions.
You introduce herself, and ask her, "Are you excited about the clutch?"
Mahri smiles. "Of course! Who isn't? I was brought here as a queen candidate, so I'm a little nervous about Impressing at all."
"You were? How did you get searched?" You ask.
"The dragons came to my hold and I went with them." She says with a smile, but seeing that you're not satisfied, she continues. "I lived with my uncle in his hold, actually. He runs a farm, but he does some woodworking on the side, and I sometimes help him with that. His own son's not interested nor good at it, and he doesn't have any daughters." She smiles fondly. "He always said I was like the daughter he never had. Anyway, we were building a table for a neighbor when the dragons came, a couple of greens. I was, of course, excited and Uncle finally let me go see them. Two other people were searched, but one didn't want to leave their family and the other was needed at the hold. I wasn't sure if I was going to leave at first either, but Uncle knew it was something I really wanted to do and he wouldn't take no for an answer. And, here I am." She finished with a little shrug.
You relate to her some of your own experiances, then you realize one thing she never mentioned, and you have to ask, curious. "What happened to your parents?"
Her eyes are downcast now, as she says. "They died." That's it.
"What happened? How did they die?" You press.
"It's not something I like to talk about. I don't routinely blurt out my entire past to random strangers, okay?" She snaps.
You quickly apologize, then it looks like she realizes what she just said and blushes bright red while bowing her head. "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have said that."
Desperate to change the topic, you glance around the room for inspiration. "Hey, do you have any pets?" You ask, seeing the room is bare except for the two of you.
"No, I don't like animals. The fur makes me itch." She says, wrinkling her nose distastefully.
"Oh. What about firelizards?" You ask.
Mahri shrugs. "Isn't a dragon enough?"
"Do you get along with the other candidates, what are they like?" You ask.
Mahri scowls. "Most of the girls are conceited airheads trying to impress their bronzeriding loverboys by Impressing a gold, or else busy sabotaging each other. Don't get me wrong, there are a few girls worth talking to." She adds, seeing the look on your face, "But sometimes I wonder what the dragons are thinking. The boys aren't much better." She scowls, and appears lost in thought for a moment.
Suddenly, she stands up, and you hurry to follow. "Look, it's been nice talking to you and all, but I have to go. Show yourself out, will you?" And she leaves.
You go to do as she said, but then you notice something peeking out of her chest. It looks like a leatherbound book. In looks like a diary.
Well, you know what they say about cats and curiousity, but...Me-ow.
Do you dare? Open the diary.