Eleven eggs quaked gently in their cradle of soft red sand, while the other thirteen hadn’t as much as shivered yet.
“Why are those eggs hatching now, when Shailekyth’s are ten days or so older?”
Jeyann looked to her youngest brother - odd as it was to have looked up to the same face - and smiled. “Eggs hatch when they will, J’kyan. Our best guess is in the breeding. Shai’s eggs were sired by a wing-armed Hathian, and Univoqueruseth is a Danachian dragon. These things take their own time...”
Her brother nodded, and poked his sister in the side. “Eggs aren’t the only things that come in due time.”
Jeyann poked him back. “Don’t give me that, Jeky! I’m a married woman!”
“Married or not, you’re still my little sister!” J’kyan teased, tickling her and being tickled back in return. Finally he retreated. “I’ll go and gather the candidates...” he said.
Jeyann smirked and let him go. Already some of the candidates were assembling - four dragons and three other non-humans had quietly taken their places. From her perch, Jeyann could not see if the tiny blue ‘rodent’ nicknamed Dym had put in an appearance yet.
By the time Jeyann made her way to a seat with her beloved Ke’l, 32 candidates looked upon the eggs of the two greens with eager eyes. No, only 26. The half dozen vampires were sleeping away this bright sunny day.
Although both Roczath and Verrath had watched the largest clutch, and their eggs seemed to be intermingled now, it would be quite obvious which hatchling was from which pairing.
A spherical egg wobbled, and began to crack open. The dragon within pushed its way out calmly, sliding out into the sand, white hindquarters first. Only then did her purple head and shoulders appear. Quickly she got to her feet and began to trot towards the ring of candidates. Unfortunately, the hatchling’s patience wore thin, and she let out a howl of frustration. “I hear you, Aelabeth. I hear you.” A werewolf known as Ghost murmured, stepping out gingerly to meet the light purple.
The second egg shattered, and the night dragon within snapped at her shell in irritation. “Isungoth.” A female voice snapped, sharing in the little cream beasts angst. “If you can’t be good, at least be good at it.” Someone laughed, but Onyco ignored them. She was a dragonrider now. Isungoth smirked, giving a kick to a nearby egg as she slunk over to her bond.
That egg split, dumping a rather disoriented dragon to the dsand. A second night cream. “Hey!” A young female yelped, leaping to the hatchlings side. “That wasn’t very nice!” Let them go, Etiaer... the dragon said, almost sleepy in her peace. My name is Verlaieth. she told her bond, and simultaneously the half-demon announced her name to the world. Astaus seemed happy for her even.
Another night dragon had kicked its shell apart, and without fanfare had slunk over to the ring of candidates. Everyone watched and wondered, but only one knew the night brown’s next move. Razor dropped to fours and shifted into the wolf form he was most comfortable in, and followed the hatchling out of the sands towards the fresh meat that was to be their first meal. Why are you following me, Razor? Because you didn’t wait for me to lead, Eliekith. Razor replied with a canine grin on his dark muzzle.
Curiosity got the better of the Sphinx as the egg near her right paw grew a network of cracks. Ankou sat down before it and tapped delicately at it with one claw. The dragon within tapped back, but farr less delicately, and punched through it with a darkly purple paw. Oops. Ankou laughed and began to pull at the dragon’s shell. “Come out, come out, my precious Nafuloth...” The night purple tumbled into the sphinx’s arms, eyes happily swirling rainbows.
A lull in the hatchings came then, and the murmurs of speculation and rustling of skirts filled the air. A mottled egg gave a compulsive shudder and broke, toppling a light green out into the soft sand. Her indignant squawk called everyone’s attention to her. Only one candidate moved - a blackish green offworld dragon. “Lany?” he said awkwardly, reaching his muzzle towards the upset hatchling. Lany? Lany? The spectators grew loud. What kind of name was Lany? Her name is Arlanyth! Ryoukith bellowed mentally at them, angered by their inconsiderate behavior. Rye... can we go? her voice was soft and soothing, as was her hide against his when she nuzzled against him. Of course, dearling...
As the spectators calmed down, a dark hatchling pushed out of his shell, showing off his fiery red and deep black hide. He moved towards the candidates, deliberating with each step. I call myself Adendarith. the night red said at last. I would know what you know, Iale... The Alskyrian lad stepped forward, accepting his bond with a smile.
Another egg cracked and fell open as quietly as the season’s change. A light brown stepped forth, his great paws making definite impressions in the soft sand. He had but one thing in mind - his chosen.
A light green slipped free from her ivory cradle, and went directly for the male candidates. She wove around their ankles, flirting coyly.
The young man did not move, nor assume the hatchling’s spectral gaze was upon him. Some thigns are as certain as spring following winter. I am Hanogth, and I choose you, Kedohav.
The light green took her clutch-sibling’s impression as a cue, and ran gracefully to her own choice, all but crashing into Zanese in her haste. “Careful Azilanyth...” the woman said, steadying her new bond.
The last two eggs broke almost simultaneously, revealing two purples - one light, one night. The light was first to her feet and moving towards the girls and away from the vile aura of the night. This displeased the dark one, and she ran after the light, toppling her over and snarling viciously. The light lay dazed as the night ran towards her chosen. I am...
No! the light roared, racing toward the night. A second and more vicious wrestling match would have ensued, had two sisters not separated the hatchlings.
I am Benevolenth! the light said to one sister.
I am Malevolenth. bespoke the night to the other. Both girls had heard the namings, but only one mind met theirs.
Draconia hugged the light close, laughter in her voice. “Someone knows the real you, Angelia.”
The night in Angelia’s arms hissed. “Hush Malevolenth!” the girl hissed back. “I suppose you and Benevolenth are going to keep us in line now?”
Draconia smirked. “Of course.”
They are stronger than they seem. Mezireth observed, causing her rider to grimace. They will likely need extra supervision.
“Just lovely...” Prima Jeyann said sarcastically.
“Wasn’t it?” Ke’l said with a smirk before kissing her cheek.
Fifteen candidates remained on the sands now, but there would be more eggs hatching, and soon. Purple-silver Fuetreeth would soon clutch, adding eggs for the hopefuls. Wagers were being made on the number of eggs already, much to Jeyann’s chagrin. Such was life.
Onyco and Night Cream Isungoth
Etiaer and Night Cream Verlaieth
Razor and Night Brown Eliekith
Ankou and Night Purple Nafuloth
Ryoukith and Light Green Arlanyth
Iale and Night Red Adendarith
Kedohav and Light Brown Hanogth
Zanese and Light Green Asilanyth
Draconia and Light Purple Benevolenth
Angelia and Night Purple Malevolenth