Having been woken up in the middle of the night by her sister’s mating flight, Verrath was not in a particularly good mood, even with the glorious morning sunlight warming her hide. Having to endure an early-morning bath in a frigid lake by a cheerful and well-rested rider didn’t make it much better. Adding to that the arrogant bragging that she’d been listening in on for almost an hour by three very self-important pale bronzes and one jokester blue, the rest of the day wasn’t looking to be a very good one either.
“Maybe the only reason you’re being so moody is that you’re proddy, love,” her rider suggested, eyes bright with amusement. “You always get touchy when you’re right about to mate.”
Since when have I ever been touchy before mating?!
Kiahnya smirked. “Remember Dawnsisters? You didn’t want anything to do with them for a few hours – right before your flight.”
White tail lashing, the green didn’t bother to respond. Why was it that only she was affected by pre-flight snappishness? Most riders were even more irritable than their dragons right before a flight! Kia could at least give her a token argument...
Rolling her eyes, the girl – now more properly a woman – stood and began walking away.
Where do you think you’re going? Verrath asked in annoyance.
“Our weyr. Where else? You’re ready to rise, lovely.”
* * *
Convincing her dragon to blood two or three wherries took a bit of effort on Kia’s part, but it ended up going off without a hitch. Once she’d tossed away the last carcass, her spring-hued muzzle gleaming red, Verrath took her time preparing for launch, and it was only when her chasers began getting restless that she took to the skies.
The three pale bronzes took an early lead, with Light blue Keriteraith not far behind and small white Lancer bringing up the rear. Thinking to gain an effortless, early victory, silver-bronze Felenri made a lunge for her, wings pumping powerfully, confident that the Light green would soon be his. A quick mid-air wriggle on his quarry’s part, however, convinced him otherwise.
Deciding that propelling herself off of him would gain her the most advantage, Verrath gave a strong kick and sped away from the irritating males. That shove helped her in more ways than one, as Felenri slammed into Keriteraith, who was unfortunate enough to be following closely on his tail. Both of them more than a little stunned, they could be safely termed “out of the running.”
Smug with her quick elimination of two problems at once, Verrath glided away from the three remaining pursuers, trusting that they wouldn’t try for her in the same manner as the unfortunate silvery bronze.
Things stayed in stalemate for a good while, the Light green gliding along with the strong breeze, her pursuers leery of making a direct grab for her, and it probably would have been that way for a few minutes more if she hadn’t been hit by a stray gust and fumbled slightly.
Seeing the chance, both Light bronze Erynduth and white-white-bronze Jaluth put on bursts of speed and it was all that Verrath could do to avoid being hit by the two of them. Concentrating more on them than anything else, she didn’t notice little white Lancer gliding up below her. It was only when she felt the feather-light touch of his nose on her neck that she realized what had happened.
She turned to face him more fully, pink eyes gazing into gold. You...were the one that brought me flowers?
Back on the ground, Kiahnya came back to herself with a start and looked around for the white’s rider.
He doesn’t have one, her green thought from high above.
“Oh.” Looking around this time for any male, Kia finally spied the retreating form of Ep’son, the incredibly cute rider of Jaluth. With a smug little grin, she went to catch up with him.