Lord Holder / Rider Engell

Male, age 54 (at impression, and holding at that age indefinitely due to Nexus immortality)

Lord Holder, Master Spycrafter

Alabaster Weyrhold

Keren, wife, deceased; K'yle, son/heir

Physical Description: 6'0";, 155, very fair skin that is smooth and often seen as perfect, white silver hair fluffy around face and often styled (also "perfectly"), pale sky blue eyes with glasses, heart shaped face, not particularly muscular but not out of shape. Nails are always manicured, usually wears white or grey clothing that mirrors Earthly business suits but sometimes slips into a relaxing satin robe or playful tunic and leggings. (very rarely) He has an incredibly soft, smooth voice, which belies the professionalism that he uses to sway people. Entrancing, and authoritative at the same time, his voice is distinct and a pleasure to listen to no matter what the subject matter is.

Emotional/Mental Description: keenly intelligent and with a strong business mind. Always looking for the best in people and is always apt to get the best when he asks for it. He is not above using underhanded techniques to get what he wants, but it is unclear whether he suffers attacks of conscience often. He is very guarded to even his closest associates, has very few true friends. He is a schemer like his ancestress Viridia, and like his extended cousin Darkhanis he is often a dual edged blade willing to take a bit of a setback in order to set up something longer term. He has no personal interest in riding a dragon nor in fire lizards (which he considers something like pests with a purpose), but he is encouraged at the thought of his son becoming a dragon rider -- he will continue to be the sole heir to the Hold.

Skills: All of Engell's skills are mental ones. He is highly literate and knows a lot about laws, could in fact become a Harper if he so wished but he has little interest in going through the motions. He is an incredible judge of character, and is a supremely good manipulator, speech maker and leader. He rarely touches physical labor if he can help it, and he is never seen without a bodyguard of some sort if he is outside of his Hold. He arranges things the way a bookie does, looking at all the angles first, and then placing his money on the best options. He has been known to take a long shot, and very rarely does he miss the mark on such gambles.

History: Grandson of Tresis, great-grand-nephew of Viridia, Engell has always been around the Hold. He was raised to respect authority but to always put himself in relation to it, and to seek it as a goal. Trained at an early age for reading and writing, math and such. Very little of his childhood was spent with other children, even those of Alabaster. He met his wife Keren at another Hold, and their interests were very similar indeed. It was she who suggested that they acquire a Starcrafter for the Hold, and from there the history of Hold and Weyr are one. Karyle was born barely before the start of Threadfall. They have no other children. Keren was poisoned by a rival Holder (who is now of course, very dead) about 10 years ago. Since then, Engell became even less likely to open up to new people, but he is finding interest in some of the new Riders and Crafters in the Hold.

Notes and Special Information: Engell has a very strong psionic ability, which aids him in his bids for control over people. It does not work on dragons, flits or dragonriders -- their connection to the dragon in their mind is too strong and cancels out any influence he might have. ** Also note: This 'old world' Engell is hardly the only Engell around. Just as Kalkin has a variety of himself in numerous dimensions, Engell is represented strongly in all of those as well.

Pets/Hobbies/Posessions: He is the Lord Holder. What else needs to be said? Everything here is his. (yes, he has a boatload of pets now.)

Engell dragged his fingers over his eyes, rubbing them though the feeling of grit did not abate. It had been several years since the shift to Alskyr.

Yet something nagged at Engell's mind. A tugging that he couldn't deny eminated from the old world. It angered him. He had watched as the dragons went from world to world and settled in, with pleasure.

Also he watched as the Aerie got its start. The beautiful gryphons had power that the dragons did not, and Engell could certainly appreciate that.

His son appeared at his door, silently. Well, as silent as the brown rider had ever been. To his father, K'yl eminated a graceful haze of confusion. K'yl's mind was never quite what his sire's was.

"Yes?" Engell said, eyes still closed and fingers still pushed down onto his eyelids.

"Dad, there's something I ... I don't know, did you need to go somewhere? Back to the old world?"

With a slight jolt, Engell took his head off his hands and tried to focus on K'yl. The young man's eyebrows were pushed together, and his hair flopped down over his face as usual. But there was a concern that showed through that Engell could not deny.

"Yes, actually. I would. Did you want to fly me there?"

"It's what you want?" K'yl asked, "I'm there! It's been a while since I visited..."

"... Ryslen." Engell said.

"Ryslen. Yeah, Ryslen. That's a good place to visit."

They left the room together, Engell had such a strange buzzing in his head that just wouldn't go away.

***

It was snowing when they arrived to East Rock. The snow had covered everything, but K'yl's memory (or perhaps his dragon's, since K'yl wasn't known for his ability to navigate around in time and space) served well enough. They soared over the white plains and snow covered areas until K'yl turned to his father. The blizzard condition almost made it hard for the older man to see even this close.

"It's too cold to land right now," he yelled over the wind.

Save your breath, son, I can read your mind remember? Engell thought to his son, but even now the world's odd pull began to dim his power. Let us go somewhere else and come back tomorrow.

"There's Tiynarea," K'yl squealed, and they went between to that weyr.

While spending the afternoon at the other weyr, it was pleasant enough though still early winter. K'yl was surprised by his father when the older man brought an egg back to his son and dragon.

"Look what I found," Engell said, smiling as if it were the first time he'd ever seen a flitter egg. K'yl laughed and nodded as the egg began to crack.

"It'll be hungry, 's why I always keep something..."

K'yl dug around in his belt sack until he found some dried meat. He handed it to his father. While the egg gave way, Engell noticed that there was either nothing in the egg or...

"It's white," he whispered with a grin. The tiny presence of the hungry flitter's mind within his own was somehow welcome. Engell hadn't realized that it would never have interfered with his normal powers.

Or perhaps... Now it didn't matter. He hadn't had the time to relax and stop to smell the flowers so to speak, in more than fifty years on this world. Yet now with his people on Alskyr safe and fitting in just fine, he had an abundance mental energy and no one to blow it on.

K'yl encouraged him to feed the flitter who sat quietly, not even screeching, on his father's hand. Engell dangled a strip of meat and the white flitter snapped at it, chewing on it and finally going for more. She remained fastidiously clean, wiping her little paws and muzzle on Engell's tunic sleeve. Chuckling, he gave her a mental nod and she scampered up his arm onto his shoulder.

There, she blended in particularly well with his sparkling white hair. "Snowflake," Engell announced. "Her name is Snowflake." He turned to K'yl and added, "Time to head off to Ryslen, eh?"

"You're confusing me, dad..." K'yl said, but they went to Yenitoth and climbed back on. They went to Ryslen weyr with their new companion.

***

The watch dragon greeted the visitors with a bugle, and this day the snow had almost stopped. Along the higher mountain tops, clouds still danced with some flurries, but the covering of snow had settled down since the day before.

They soared into the weyr bowl, and Yenitoth found a place to rest among the other dragon roosts. Engell and K'yl went to the main entrance and were greeted by the Headwoman and Steward.

"We had no idea you'd be visiting us," the headwoman said, with her hands fluttering about her face. "Such a distinguished guest and no warning..."

"It was just a thought to come here," Engell said, as the Weyrwoman brushed past.

"Well well, the prodigal weyrleader..." Tiyanni smirked.

"I've never said I was a weyr leader, only a lord..." Engell lied. "I don't know what came over me, though. I just ... wanted to come here. You've made the place up for winter," he commented as they wandered through the corridors.

"I have, well, everyone has. It's the winter Flurry season, after all."

Engell tilted his head, and his new little white flitter did likewise. Tiyanni finally noticed that there was a fire lizard on his shoulder and laughed.

"The Flurry flight, I don't recall seeing any of your Alabaster folk there, but there were some Kshau Protectorate dragons in it." Tiyanni explained. "All lights and whites, you know. For winter."

"What, like those Frenzies?" Engell said, surprised. Snowflake cheeped with curoisity.

Tiyanni chuckled again, and scratched the little flitter's chin. "Indeed. There will be some very interesting dragons from this clutch, I think. Would you like to see the eggs?"

"I'd love to," Engell said, and allowed the weyrwoman to escort him to the hatching sands.

There, quite out of the blue, several of the dams raised their heads to watch as the fifty-eight year old man walked with their weyrwoman through the area. Something about them... No, him.

He would stand. He will. Isn't he old? You are old, older than me. I am not so old! I recognize a good candidate when I see one!

Tiyanni stood with her jaw slack. She'd been privy to the conversation because of her contact with queen Litayth. Engell seemed blissfully unaware. He was still half-entranced by his day-old flitter, who gleefully scampered along his shoulders and hid perfectly under his hair.

Don't say a thing, girls. Tiyanni bespoke to her dragon, who relayed the request to the queens on the sands. I don't know if he wants to be a candidate, and perhaps a surprise would drive him away.

He is not a frightened child, my rider. Litayth informed her. He is a grown man. Perhaps too grown for my tastes, but my children are not on the sands this day.

That is why I say, perhaps he'd do without the surprise. We will keep him here while he's distracted, and by the time the eggs hatch maybe... We'll see. He's ...

Almost as old as Kalkin was when he impressed Sixth, J'rin's dragon clearly piped up. I spoke to Sixth quite a lot while I was still at Alabaster, Amitath cheerfully thought. The general consensus was that Engell was to be kept busy long enough to get him back to the stands or the sands, when the time came.

Perhaps he'd over heard? But no... Even with his strong telepathy, he'd rarely been able to break into dragon-thought. The bonds between dragon and human were even harder to open, so their wherry-prattle and gossiping would go unnoticed.

Now if they could keep the riders from butting in...

They met up with Baeris, Shard and Rue, and E'tan later on... Then, the hatching...

The time passed nicely, in the morning when they had settled. The day brought the hatching, their timing had been perfect. How his son could have gotten lost so easily, Engell would never know. But in time, they were always where they needed to be.

Clever. He absently petted little Snowflake. This would be a magnificent hatching, with all these beautiful dragons. The buzzing in Engell's head did not go away, in fact it got louder as the day wore. He was glad that Kalkin wasn't here -- he'd be complaining bitterly that the dragons were so loud.

Engell had never really been truly privy to the thoughts of dragons, though now, it seemed that they were totally abuzz with greetings and ... They were even betting on the candidates?! That was new...

There were more eggs than met the eye, of course. Buried beneath the hot red-colored sands, many eggs were being uncovered and more were being guessed at. It was a good thing, too. Because when one set of nine more eggs were uncovered, one of the original group shook itself apart. There on the sand was a beautiful silver-point white.

I have waited so long! He stretched his slender wings. Engell stood up, balancing with his hand on his neighbor's shoulder.

"Did you hear that?" Snowflake chirped, and Engell didn't bother to notice that others around him were looking stunned. He was stunned, too, but in a different way.

The silver and white hatchling stepped a few feet across the sands, So long! And now you're so far away!

"We didn't hear anything, sir," Said one of the nearby onlookers.

Are you coming?

"Of course, of course," Engell shook his head and started moving down toward the sands, making people move their knees and feet so he could pass.

"Lord Engell?" Asked Tiyanni, whom he passed at the edge of the stands.

"He needs me," Engell said weakly, but sure.

"But --" Someone was about to say something rude and stupid about being too old, or being a Lord, or whatever, but Tiyanni silenced them with a sharp, "Just let him go."

At last, the little white and silver dragon watched as his bond came to his side. "Tehndarinth, where have you been all my life?" His heart sang, though his mind was surely muddled by all that was happening.

Where have YOU been? I've been waiting forever!

Forever is a strange concept for a dragon who's only just hatched, my dear Tehndar, Now, is that you that's so hungry? Even Snowflake here wasn't as ravenous as you are!

Laughing, smiling to himself -- now he knew, now he understood. Why Kalkin was so infuriated and so madly in love with that blue beast of his. How it would be, to have a companion who he could neither control nor refuse, always present -- always. There was no such thing as 'too old' for a hatchling.

***

"Heh, can you believe this?" Engell chuckled. He raised his hand to the small silvery-white muzzle and Tehndarinth gave off a purr of delight.

"I can," Kalkin smirked. He lifted his own hand, but it held a glass of wine. "Here's to your new life, Rider."

"Pfah!" Engell said, grasping the silvered head and hugged him to his face. Snowflake the white flitter squawked loudly, and tried to get away. "You'll be better at flying than I, Kalkin."

"Don't count on it," Kalkin said, still smirking. "You don't think that I'd be the one teaching you, do you?" He waved his long fingers and indicated the pair of riders who slunk into the lord-rider's quarters.

Groaning, Engell realized it was C'lark and Lo'pez.

He'd never get out of it.

I do not WANT to get out of it! I want to fly, my rider! Don't you want to fly in the air with me? I thought you loved me...

The half-forlorn, half-knowing tone of the dragon was almost too much for the lord.

"I... Well, let's get this show in the sky," Engell muttered. C'lark handed his superior a set of nicely oiled riding straps.

As the three of the others got Tehn into the sky for the first time, Kalkin remained in the den, laughing silently to himself and Sixth...

***

"It just amazes me that you've still got all these volunteers to help you clean the weyr..." Tiyanni gave Lord Rider Engell a wink. There were usually three or four young brats who had clung on to the lord's request that he not be forced to work overly hard. He was not a young man after all.

Nor was he one to be trifled with. The dragon had grown more than large enough, and more than talented, to keep the weyr or den cleaner than it had been before he'd learned to teleport. That tremendous load off of Engell's work schedule meant that the kids had to keep coming up with things to do with Tehndarinth.

"They keep him clean, but then again I do that too," Engell said with a grin. "They keep the furs and reeds on the couch nice and clean, always getting the best ones."

"And now you're off?" Tiyanni asked, quietly. The children had long since been shooed out of the den, but both adults knew they were just around the doorway, listening in. Engell moved to a more elegant, yet more unnerving, form of communication.

I think, he thought into Tiyanni's mind, rather unlike a dragon's mind would do, that I am off. We are. We've got things to do at our new home, anyway. I have people to see, and Houses to build.

Jolting back a bit, at the quiet, but intimate mental contact, Tiyanni nodded. "I see. Well, announce yourself when you want to visit, Lord Engell."

"I shall. Tehndarinth will doubtless do it for me." As if to prove it, the silvery-marked white dragon outside bugled loudly. The three children who had been murmuring outside rushed back into the room, squealing about leaving and taking them with, and why did they have to go really?

The silver-white dragon nudged the favorite of the three, a pudgy boy, and bespoke them carefully, as Engell would often do.

I will come back. You will get to scrub me. I have always liked it when you do that for me. Do not forget to do your own chores, and perhaps some day you will come visit us on your own dragons.

That said, the children scampered off, and left the rider, weyrwoman, and dragon, to mull over how to get Engell's stuff back in one piece... He'd done way too much gather-day shopping...

"Where've you been?" Engell asked Snowflake. The flitter gave off a little squik, and fluttered her wings.

"Annnd," the lord of Alabaster furrowed his pale eyebrows together, "what have you got there?"

In fact, the tiny flitter had an even tiner egg in her forepaws. She rolled it around a little, and purred out a pleading little sound.

"You can keep it, I guess... I wonder what it is?" Engell asked. When the egg hatched, though, Snowflake disappeared and brought back a little bit of meat. Engell wondered what in the world was going on, when a tiny feline with little flitter wings hatched and yeowled its displeasure at the lack of food.

He fed it, assisted by Snowflake. "I guess this means you're ours... Mystere."

(Mystere came from Catena Island on Alskyr)

Not even two weeks had gone by when Engell heard a bit of a ruckus below the Tower at Alabaster Aerie. He sighed, but did not ask Tehndarinth about it. He'd find out soon enough. It was Sixth, chatty little thing, getting all worked up about something.

That something turned out to be much more major than Engell ever imagined. He wanted to go to another mating flight, which wasn't out of the ordinary for the blue. It was a frenzy-style flight, which was a bit odd, and it wasn't on either the old world OR Alskyr, it was at ...

"Where?" Engell asked aloud, though he was speaking to his dragon.

Lao Daemia. I think that Sixth's rider will have more to say. I will wait until you have heard about it...

So Engell patiently waited, and soon enough there was a distinct rap on his office door. It was Kalkin of course. With news.

Read on? (link not ready yet, to flight-alabaster)

***

After returning from Lao Daemia (with an odd assortment of looks from the peanut gallery at the Aerie, having grown rather attached to the girl latched on to his arm...) Engell was in the mood to find out more about the world they had arrived upon. While it was true that he studied it from afar, with Tehndarinth eager to fly about he was more likely to explore.

After so many years watching dragon riders and their flights, Engell was proud to be a part of their world. Alskyr was their new home, so he was going to look around. He'd heard of a northerly Caer having a clutch, not that he wanted to start playing diplomat again. He wanted to check out how other caers worked.

You can take the Lord out of the Hold, but you can't take the urge to Hold out of the lord...

The visit to Trandiok, Engell was pleased to see other new caerlets and young people scurrying about. He fondly remembered his years of assembling the right riders to defend Alabaster's investments.

He wandered down a random hallway, and Mystere and Snowflake both started chittering. Snowflake lept off his shoulder, while Mystere fluttered to the ground and walked around a bit. Snowflake urged her human on.

"Another egg..." He groaned. It was hatching, he couldn't refuse to hold it. And it was little surprise that when it hatched, it was a female silver caerlizard. A cute one, at that. Outside, the wind was kicking up and snow blew across Tehn's wings, causing the dragon to huddle down beside someone else's bond in the temporary shelters for visitors.

It is cold! Not like the nice cold of my hatching, this is really chilly!

I won't be more than a moment... Engell replied, as the flitter came from her egg. "Blizzard," he named her, as Snowflake looked extra pleased with herself. "Someday you'll have to find yourself a mate, little Snowflake, and that way you'll stop finding me new companions..."

  (Blizzard is from Trandiok Caer)

***

(( flurry 2002 happens ))

Engell was getting into the swing of things, both in terms of flying his small silvered-white, and being able to do so at his leisure.

Then, of course, there was another Flight...

***

Blizzard all grown up!

 

The man "formerly known as Lord Holder Engell" had been a rider for almost 6 years. In that time, and just slightly before, he had inadvertantly begun a collection of flitters that rivaled hatcheries everywhere.

Oddly, all his flitters and collected creatures seem to turn out white. No matter where he has gone, to represent Alabaster or the Kshau Protectorate at hatchings, weyr or dragonry openings or closings, or even just to visit a place where his dragon Tehndarinth wanted to see, Engell has attracted a new little friend.

Habitually, several of his flits will go out and find new friends. Engell tried to discourage this behavior, but that has never worked. While he has a stunning control over the emotions and memories of humans around him... Engell has never been able to exert anything more than a sad attempt at empathy toward his flits. They continue doing whatever they wish. (Below are the collected flitters he's been given or gathered over the years.)

This is Snowflake! She was the first flitter that bonded to Lord Rider Engell. She is from Tiynarea. She normally is seated on his shoulder (as seen above). She is a very curious, smart little flitter that often emulates her human's behaviors such as nodding her head or gesturing.
Little Mystere is a Caagon from Catena Isle on Alskyr. During a brief 'mission' there, Snowflake brought back an egg for her human. Mystere is the result. She has quite an attitude, as well as a rather loud voice.
On a diplomatic journey across Alskyr on Brynmor, yet another white flitter happened to drop into Engell's posession. Blizzard is a large aggressive female flitter, which Mystere and Snowflake seem quite happy to have provided.
And now... Taking a trip to check up on some mating flight possibilities for his Alabaster riders, Engell has finally found a male for his little white harem. This llithra is found only at Draco's Inferno. He literally latched on to Engell and tried to make off with his tie-tack in his little glider flaps. Engell calls him Barry. He's a complete thief, and responds well to Engell's verbal commands - unlike the girls.
This is Dandy, short for Dandylion, whose flower he resembles. He is tiny, and fights for space on Engell's shoulder with Snowflake. He is from Darkling Dawn and is a Rukel.
   
   

(( Story about Dandy!))

Engell was sure that the flock of flitters around him were getting restless. Even with the addition of their big male llithra they seemed like every small, round egg-shaped thing attracted their attention. Engell didn't quite dread going on diplomatic missions, they were far more important than anything else he was doing these days, but still. When the flitters would tug at him he had to try turning away before they handed him yet another egg.

But one time, it just didn't work. He was out at Darkling Dawn, checking out their flight list and jotting down genetic specs for Kalkin and Baeris (imagine, the former lord holder of Alabaster running genetic-errands for those two?). When he'd mostly finished, he took his typical tour of the weyr. It was a nice, intimate place. Not too big, and not so small that he'd worry about it closing any time soon.

He walked slowly past a darkened room, and then into another larger one. It was warm, gently familiar. Snowflake and Barry chittered to one another excitedly, and Mystere and Blizzard joined in a moment later. From two sides, then, Engell was shown two different large speckled eggs.

"Oh, not again..." He sighed. One of the eggs was clearly ready to open. But the other seemed a bit warm, and he couldn't refuse them once the flitters had handed them off to him.

The first of the eggs would be the one that he kept in his hands, the other went into a warm pocket. It was still small enough to do so, and Engell had done this how many times in the past now? He unconsciously sent Snowflake out for meat, because he assumed that this new egg-shaking creature would want some. Not a moment too soon, Snowflake arrived with a few shreds of wet looking meat. She'd probably snagged it right out of the cook's hands, by the looks of it.

"Good girl," he muttered with a smile. "Now, I wonder what this is..." The egg broke up, shaking slowly and finally releasing another white creature. It was still shimmery and wet for a moment, but then it's head raised up and Engell thought that there had to be some mistake. This was hardly a flitter - this was some kind of mammal, wasn't it? It had feathery wings, and what appeared to be fur on it!

"What is this?" He said, "I've never seen anything like it!" When he said that, of course, Barry made a little coughing noise and Engell laughed. "You too, you're unique."

The little white creature gave off a crooning warble, such a voice! Barry snuggled up against it, and propped it up on Engell's arm. It had a fluffy tail, and all. It looked like the puff of a dandylion flower. It also had the look of sure confidence that Engell recognized from some of his Zekiran counterparts.

"Dandy," he announced, "this is Dandy, everyone. Now... I think if this one is for me, that other one needs to go to Baeris. She'll appreciate this little creature too."

"They're not all alike," said someone from behind Engell, startling him. How could they have snuck up on him? These flitters weren't just distracting, they were a menace to his telepathic abilities! "They're called Rukels, and they are all different."

"Oh - that's ... that's great, Baeris will like them that much more, then." He smiled. "I don't owe you anything for this one do I?" He held Dandy out, and Dandy puffed himself up. He looked actually more like he was wearing Engell's hair than anything else, fluffed up and half-grinning. He had tiny bits of red on his muzzle, from the meat. His eyes were also red - an albino.

"No, no, just come back and visit. Has your tour gone well sir?"

"Yes, it has indeed. Now, I've got to get this one back to Baeris. And their notes..." He patted himself down and found the notes, and Tehndarinth outside bugled that he'd be ready anytime.

***

The weather had gotten warmer and warmer as Summer drew near. Engell stood with Tehndarinth at the edge of his Alskyran domain, overlooking the ocean. The waves rippled below the cliff side, and the silvery white dragon draped his paws over the edge - while his rider looked on from the parapet of his Alabaster tower.

It is a beautiful day, my rider, Tehn said. Perhaps we should fly. I feel like flying.

"You always feel like flying, my friend," Engell responded. "The question is, how much trouble are you going to get me into this time?"

The Ryslen-born dragon puffed himself up to his full (very small) height. I am not going to get you into trouble! How could I ever do that?

Engell began to list off the weyrs, caers, nooks and nexus sites they'd been to recently - each with a little bit more sarcasm than the last. As he did, one flitter or white friend that had attached herself (or himself) to Engell perked up when they heard the name of the locale they'd come from. They each seemed to know their place, that was sure.

Well, maybe I have helped the girls find some interesting new... friends. Tehn admitted.

"Ah hah!" Engell said, dislodging two of the white flits and scattering the others into the air as he stood up with his finger pointed in the air at the dragon. "So you DO admit it!"

But it is only because I think you are -- Tehn stopped himself, looking away. The silvered-white Flurry dragon could not quite bring himself to speak.

"Lonely," Engell said, "the word you are looking for is lonely. Isn't it?" His tone was flat, but not angry. How could he be angry at his dragon? The one who shared every private thought and whim? Who knew how hard it had been all these years watching Kyl grow up and bond his own dragon, after his mother Karen had died? Even though there were women - young and mature - with whom Engell had shared his thoughts and his body over the years, none of them would remain by his side. None of them really knew the ache.

There is another who knows, Tehn gently reminded his rider. He felt the exhasperation and slight resignation at the thought of Kalkin. Tehn added, he was with you then, and he would rather be with you now.

Engell groaned, "he'd rather have been 'with' me all along, Karen kept him at bay." He sighed, "but I know you're right. We're just two sad, lonely," eyebrow lifted high, "extremely attractive riders."

Sixth says he is bored and wants to do something interesting that involves 'a lot of alcohol'. Tehn tilted his knobless head, his tall crest making him look comically young again, what is 'alcohol'?

Engell's pale blue eyes broke wide and then squinched shut in laughter. "Remember when you went to fly at Lao Daemia?"

When you were all fuzzy around the edges and laughed a lot?

"That would be it..." Engell said, picking up Dandy and rubbing the Rukel's fur the wrong way. That would keep the little critter busy for another twenty minutes at least. Vain boy. Just like his owner. Just like someone else Engell knew.

***

Read Kalkin's current page to see what has been going on while they were just talking! (kalkin-a)

***

Kalkin tilted his head in a greeting to his pale friend, as he worked on a grimy machine in the Alabaster workshop. "Just let me get clean," the dark-haired rider-doctor-inventor grunted, "and we can go."

"Wait one moment," Engell said, as his flock of flitters landed in the rafters among Kalkin's three. "I didn't agree to go anywhere just yet."

Kalkin's muscular shoulders rolled forward, as he remained unmoving below the big mechanical object that he'd been fixing. "Of course you did. Sixth said so. Tehndarinth said you did, that's what Sixth is chirping at me right now."

It was true that the tiny blue dragon waiting under the shade of a nearby tree was chirping his little head off, but to Engell it sounded more like he was trying to learn to sing, than to communicate something as ridiculous as him agreeing to-

"Why would your dragon bring you here if you weren't ready to come along and get good and drunk?" Kalkin said, standing and wiping his hands off on an already dirty rag. He looked at himself suddenly with a measure of disgust, and then at Engell in his nice grey-scale clothing. And because they had known one another for the greater half of Kalkin's eighty years, Engell began to back away.

"Is it the grin? I swear," Kalkin said, as that selfsame grin spread itself across his thin lips and long face, "I have to work on my poker face. You know I would not get you all dirty - not while you're wearing silk."

Engell still held his hands up a bit, defense against the moment he knew that Kalkin was half-apt to throw his grimy long arms around him and make him all embarrassed. However there was no one else in the area: and that was what probably saved the slightly younger Lord Rider from a greasy fate. No one would be laughing, so why waste the effort?

"I'll get cleaned up, and you should look into where we're going." Kalkin said, striding into a corridor near the work shop. It led into the Alabaster buildings, which were more than halfway underground.

"... I don't know where we're going, I thought you had a place planned already!" Engell said after him, "We're not just going to fly around like we did last time, Kalkin. I can't follow Sixth through time and space like you want me to - he moves like a... like a drunken butterfly," Engell muttered. He knew that Kalkin had heard him - he'd always picked up the faintest whisper before. But this time, Engell lowered his voice because Sixth had approached him.

With curiosity, the tiny blue squeeked and whistled, and then his emerald eyes whirled sapphire-shiny.

I am sorry - I remember I can talk to you in your mind. We can go to Lantessama. They have pretty dragons there. I like the girls.

"You like everyone, Sixth," Engell said, scratching the blue's nose a bit. "And everyone always loves you two, you and Tehn. It's because you're small and cute."

Do the women at weyrs like you two because you are tall and cute? For humans, I mean?

Engell grinned, laughed out loud, and waited for Kalkin to get back out from the building.

***

Visit with Kalkin again, then you'll be off to Daverin and Brianna's page!

***

And then - DRINKS!

***

"I can't believe you're doing this to me again," Engell sighed. But the whole batch of Drinks dragons along with his existing faire of flying companions deposited themselves on his desk, pushing paperwork onto the floor in plumes, and generally making a gigantic mess of things.

Not that Engell felt the need to do any paperwork any longer. He'd left that in the hands of the Caerlord and Kyle, his own son, long ago. Now he was just trying to figure out how to feed something like nine hungry dragonets and Tehn, without bankrupting Alabaster.

Yet here they were again, having visited Seiryuu weyr. And, of course, having come back with another egg. Now, to be fair, this egg was quite pretty. Mottled as it was with a kind of marbled look to it.

Engell held it carefully, it was warm and moving slightly so he knew the drill. "Snowflake, Mystere, just ... go get something for it to eat when it hatches."

About the same time the pair of white creatures darted out of his office, Kalkin strolled in. "You know we've been finding more of us," he commented, trying to sit on the desk too but the flitters, rukel, and other animals just wouldn't give him enough room. His own trio of flits were somewhat cowed by this batch - they rarely made trouble around Engell and his whites.

"Well could you maybe have some of them take these off my hands?" Engell said, trying to shoo Barry off his ink well.

"Not a chance, my friend, but if you would, we need to make some room for another of me." Kalkin gave off a grin, and Engell sighed.

"That does not mean you both get to hit on me, is that understood?" He said with a failed glare.

"No, it means that you'll get to take your pick. Your egg is hatching."

"It's not my egg!" Engell said, "it's theirs! They just keep coming!"

"Oh - that," Kalkin said.

"You know something about this egg?" Engell asked, tapping his finger on the desk and hoping that the meat would come soon for this critter. He wasn't even sure where they'd gotten to, but at last they flew in holding a batch of discarded rinds and fatty meat. "Mmm, delicious," Engell muttered.

"The weyrwoman said she'd developed something new, and, well, perhaps one of my flits told one of yours, and..." Kalkin said.

"Well. Fine. Look at this. She knows me, eh?" Engell said, as the tiny marbled white flitter came from his shell. "Alabaster, in name," he added, "and hopefully in personality." He lovingly scratched the flit's chin, watching him eat.

"You're a total sucker for flits," Kalkin laughed as he left. "Maybe I should find one for you."

"Maybe you should try keeping this many and get back to me."

"Sixth and I are running close to it," Kalkin laughed on his way out of the office.

***

2021 - Tehn and Ancheoth have a clutch that has had to move from its original Moon Forest location, back to Alabaster. It was fitting, because the black-marbled dragoness certainly made a good match for the white silvery shine of their quarry sands! This nest has waited for many many years, outside the Nexus...

Kalkin has moved mostly full time to the Healing Den, when he does visit it is never for official reasons, it's more to make sure that everything is still safe and sound, or gather information.

The - DRINKS dragons!

Though small, the drinks dragons aren't flitters. But, they are pretty good for helping bring joy and drunkenness to every event! Tehndarinth's Snowberry female named Hagelle and Engell's rum male named Bacun. Engell's moody coconut female named Frika and Male Pinapple Plage.
They make a Pina Colada!
   

"The problem is," Kalkin said with that same broad grin not more than three weeks after Engell realized that Alabaster wasn't getting any larger, "that you never tell them to stop."

"I do so tell them to stop, Kalkin, they just don't listen to me."

"Not like I do," the dark-skinned man smirked.

"Not like you do. Yeah," the sarcasm was heavy in Engell's voice, "Sure. Whatever."

"Where did they get this one from?" Kalkin asked, of the oddly furry creature that had wrapped itself around Engell's neck, much to the distress of Snowflake.

"It's," Engell cleared his throat and tried to say with a straight face, "a bird-weasel," he snickered, "from Dou Pas. It's new, I gather." He craned his head around a little and the white weasel nosed him with a cute chirp. He was adorable, that was certain. "Tundra," he announced his name.

Even for his complaining that there were now far too many flitters in his life, Engell still absent mindedly scratched the neck of the feathery-winged weasel thing. Snowflake demanded attention. Then Mystere. Then Blizzard, Barry and Dandy. Then the foursome of drinks dragons. At that point, Engell was entirely covered with white winged creatures all squaking and chirping for attention.

"Oh yeah," Engell said loudly over the noise, "they brought you one too. Sixth has it." Then Engell managed a mad, cackling laugh. Kalkin left his boss wondering if maybe they ought to try sedating the flits some time... See how they fly...

***

Tehndarinth came home from ... somewhere, and Engell realized that he had "that look" about him. One that said not only that he'd gotten a flight in, but that he'd remained on for a while too, and traveled back in time to arrive just a few hours after he'd gone. Engell was glad that at least the silvered Ryslen flurrier could do that much orienting himself. He had work to do, he couldn't afford to keep moving around the multiverse at random.

Of course you can, Tehndarinth bespoke with a chuckle. And what work? Your sons take care of your many many worlds. No worries.

"Well," Engell said getting up and walking toward the dragon's roosting ledge, "I guess. So where did you go this time?"

To Starburst, a special call went out. I answered it proudly.

"As you should," Engell laughed. But then he froze in his tracks. There standing before him was his dragon all right, and an egg large enough to hold... "Is that... yours?"

One of mine, yes, with Tainidann , Tehndarinth proudly proclaimed. There were eight!

"And you just had to bring one home? Are you insane?"

Tehndarinth's wings shot up, defensively. No I am not, you will see. This will be good for us.

Engell sighed. His dragon was getting so... inventive... with his reasoning for going places. But he wouldn't take an egg away from anyone, that would be stupid. After all the years and all the hatchings he'd seen, one thing he knew was not to get in the way of fate.

***

As fate would have it, the egg broke open not more than two days later. With Kalkin, Daverin and Brinna in attendance as well, Engell watched with them eagerly. His dragon's attentions to the egg were almost motherly, he was so very proud.

"Wait," Brinna said, "we're all bonded, what about if it wants someone new?"

No worries there, the hatchling proclaimed to them all, I will not need to. I have duties already!

"And what would that be?" Asked Engell. Then his flock of flitters came roiling around, joined by those of the women and Kalkin. They surrounded the purple and silver dragoness, removed her egg shell nicely, and like a highly trained unit they flocked back to her sides.

Cleaning the place up! I can't have visitors with a messy egg shell on the ground now can I?

***

As Nitadann grew up, everyone noticed how nice the flitters acted in her presense. Even those belonging to other folks, she seemed able to command them easily. Perhaps it was a mental thing, Engell decided. After all, her sire and dam were quite special. So it was that Nitadann was given the task of rounding up spare flitters when guests were arriving to the Tower, and keep them occupied until the dignitaries left. She seemed to relish this duty, as it brought her into contact with riders and bondless dragons frequently.

Nitadann grew quickly of course, and just as quickly Engell - and the others - noticed that she was quite flirtatious. Perhaps of the wrong dragons. Engell had to warn Kalkin's Sixth and Brinna's Byrnth away from her a couple times.

What he hadn't expected was that dragons like Avery's Zujirth and Sami's Shiseith would be courting her. Both males had female riders... Both of whom Engell was quite - not in the sexual sense - intimate with.

... Not yet anyway... But if they kept up, who knew what might happen? Two attractive young women, two strong and sturdy fliers, and one extremely horny dragoness...

Name: Nitadann
Gender: Female
Colour: Purple-winged Silvered Purple
Breed: Flurrier Mutt
Abilities: Psionics, Assisted Firebreath, Icebreath
Personality: Male dragons seem attracted to both her appearance and flirtatious personality.
Parents: Iced Purple Tainidann (ice pink Aluinnth+winter Abejidath) + Silvered White Tehndarinth (green-gold-white Tabinath [white-gold Creesath+white-bronze Sploth]+ White Scyth)

***

Engell's voice was unsually raised, when Kalkin, Brinna and Daverin came walking through Alabaster. The tower was usually pretty tame, serene even. Plus it was truly odd that one could hear Engell's voice at all from here, because normally he was a stately sort of 'quiet'. Today however, all that was out the window.

As were a half dozen flitters and another bunch of drinks dragons, the miniscule yet fully draconic creatures that remained on to serve drinks (and he did seem to drink a bit much). This torrent of mostly white creatures zipped down the hall, fluttering and making haste to remove themselves from Engell's office.

"Not one more! Do you hear me!?" He yelled, and the trio paused as one, wondering if they ought to enter the office or just what. It might be scary.

"It is far from my place to ask it of you sir, but we have come a long way, and we were invited," said a foreign voice. Kalkin looked from Brinna to Daverin and back, and they hazarded a tiny look into the large office where Engell sat.

He couldn't be seen. Because there was a black reindeer in the way. Who apparently spoke with a quaint accent.

"I can't even believe they asked you to come here," said Engell, frustrated and clearly at wits end. "It isn't their place to ask you to come."

"I understand," said the deer, solemnly. "I ... do wish you would consider us to be part of your family now," he said. Something weird happened, or more accurately almost happened.

Engell snapped his hand onto the table, and growled, "you do not have to use magic here, to get your way."

"It is not for me," said the deer. "But for the others."

"What in the living hell is going on here?" Asked Daverin, walking in boldly as was her way. She saw the other two creatures, one all white, and the other an adorable fudge point winged thing. "They're really pretty, oh - did your flitters bring them here? More of them?"

"And Tehn, and Nitadann," he sighed, and sat heavily back down in his chair.

The others made their way past the larger deer, how in the world had it gotten here anyway? Without being seen? He had graceful feathered wings, hardly seen against the darkness of his coat. Kalkin appraised this with a grunt, and then spied the slinky cat-like Zalor mix in the corner, wondered why Engell wouldn't want this one on his side.

"The deer dragon, here, calls himself Kaspar," Engell said, "was going to cast a miracle at me to allow them to stay."

"Well you don't have to waste a miracle on this," Brinna said hugging the snowball-fudge flying feline. "She's adorable!"

"Ah," Engell said. "Well then you handle it, shall you?" He stood, but Kalkin wouldn't let him out. Finally the white-haired man deflated and rolled his head around. "I swear. If they bring in one more, I'm going to take them all to Pern and have Baeris' sister take care of them."

Kalkin and Daverin laughed at that, Brinna on the other hand said with a worried look, "she has a sister?"

 

Visit Fudge Snowball's creator

Vanilladip, Fudge Snowball! Official Colouration: Feline Patt. Chocolate Colourpointed White
Code: XXL2L1SsFCbrFw P22E24Q6
Strength: high
Stamina: high
Speed: low

 

Visit Kaspar's creator

Kaspar - Male holiday dragon-deer. Powers: Frost Breath (nonlethal), Speech (all languages), Warmth (spherical, radius 10 feet), Plant Growth, Miracle (one unselfish wish granted every 7 years). About the size of normal reindeer. Imagine that, a reindeer walking around Alabaster?

Visit Tzat-tziki's creator

1F4955, also known as Tzat-tziki, Female Zalor mix - Parents Taki-Jizi (Niji-taki/Zebeyth ((starry-silver-white pastel Shekaiolia x white-blue Garretth)) x Random. Powers: Illusion images, frosty sliding (slick paws leaving a trail of ice), verbal speech, telepathy. Around 10 feet long nose to tail, standing just over 4.5 feet at the shoulder.