Characters Alasse, E'stel, Ligeia, Lunasidhe, Oddisa, Padjma, Talisyn
Synopsis Candidates get their second round of egg-touching in.
Out-of-Character Date October 20, 2021

Igen Weyr - Hatching Sands
As if temperatures in the rest of the Weyr weren't uncomfortable enough, the sands are positively blistering. The air shimmers from the onslaught of heat, leaving the area with a hallucinatory feel. Black sands stand currently empty but for the occasional egg-shard or 'print not swept clear. A raised platform of smooth stone provides a lounging-spot for queens or their mates, or a retreat for the lifemates that accompany them from whence they can cool their feet somewhat.

It's EARLY Y'all, like, dawn is only beginning situation. Everyone was awoken by several assistant weyrlingmasters with gentle voices and kind back pats. How sweet. Anyone not up after that was awoken with a metal spoon hitting a frying pan by a loud mouthed junior weyrwoman, announcing firmly. "UP, eggs waitin', queen waitin'. I got plenty of lake water for the person whose not dressed in 5." The joys of having her in the Weyr pending the rising of her own queen are immeasurable and plentiful. Unless there's someone foolish enough to test her resolve, Odi is now on the sands hands in pockets and fingers tapping impatiently. "Good mornin', anyone who doesn't remember the same rules apply. No runnin', jumpin', pushin', nothin' that will end with me filling out paperwork. One person per egg, leave the blue one be as Toruth's apparently got a favorite. Both clutch parents are still half asleep, though that could be a rouse as eyelids slide up to peak at the guests whenever it feels like no one is looking. Sneaky dragonses. "Bow to both parents, if yur one who passes out without fodder I've got jerky." A pat to her pocket, which probably holds the sustenance in question.

Ligeia is fortunate, perhaps, that she's prone to waking early anyway. Chalk it up to genetics and a tendency to end up working in the kitchens with the bakers; early hours? That's normal. She dresses quickly, pulls her hair back into a runnertail, and scampers along after Oddisa as she leads the way to the cavern. Wide eyes take in the entirety of the space from eggs to clutchparents to- well, eggs again. Her bow is a little delayed, but it does come - maybe a little too deep, but better safe than sorry, eh? "Thank you," is murmured to Oddisa but then? She's marching off to lay hands fearlessly on the Obviously in Charge Egg.

-< Ligeia touches egg 1 - Obviously in Charge Egg >-

Damn it. Fortunately, Talisyn keeps the words behind his teeth as Oddisa declares that that blue, blue egg that so caught his eye is off-limits. He casts one wistful glance at it, sliding a hand in his pocket briefly before shrugging and turning away. A proper bow is accorded both parents - and very deliberately angled so as not to suggest that the junior is offered the same respectful greeting - before he wanders towards the eggs, boots slip-sliding over the dark sands. Either he's naturally surly in the morning or he was one of those who found himself awoken by the application of spoon to pot. Either way, it's with a grumpy grunt that he reaches out to rest calloused fingertips against the curving shell of the Mountain Guardian Egg.

-< Talisyn touches egg 4 - Mountain Guardian Egg >-

Lunasidhe: not a morning person. The candidate - seasonably - rose much like a vampire, her upper half springboarding up in alarm as it takes that frying-pan-bonging to finally waken her. By the time the candidates have breached the sands, she fares little better, black curls still frazzled every which-way, eyes heavy, losing a battle against a wide yawn. Arms stretch up and out as she finally surrenders to it, sleepy noises ending just as Oddisa rereads them their rights - or lack thereof. "Mmf," is all the assent she has in her to give, thumb rising over fist to indicate she's heard it and will do her best. The only good thing about all this is she's not nearly awake enough to carry over her feelings from last time - though she certainly gives that sandy egg a wide-wide berth, there's little balk in her as she aims a bow to clutchparents and moves almost as far away from the Desert Grace egg as she can, hands settling on the Sleepless Sentry's shell as she drops into a graceless crouch.

-< Lunasidhe touches egg 7 - Sleepless Sentry Egg >-

It's too early yet to be roused for a dawn hatching, but Padjma still awakens with a look of alarm that fades into a semi-somnolent confusion as she (moderately) hurries through morning ablutions and joins the queue of young people being led toward the sands. Taking advantage of the person in front of her pausing to re-tie a loose set of shoelaces, she neatly slips past them and manages to hopefully end up near enough to Luna to murmur a hello on the way into the cavern. Gray-green eyes warily track to Toruth and Haijiventh; there's a respectful dip of her head to them before she quietly makes to wend her way closer to the sand-cradled eggs. Ending up near one that resembles a not-so-faraway vista, she inhales as if to steady herself before gently reaching out to brush fingertips against the grain-like shell.

-< Padjma touches egg 2 - Desert Grace Egg >-

Oh, oh, oh. Ligeia's eyes unfocus a teeny bit while she 'listens', her eyes widening, then narrowing, then widening again at something going on over there. She bounces a little on the balls of her feet, energized and energetic and not merely because she's one of those terrible, awful, no good morning people. It's a struggle not to put her face on the egg, though she would; instead, her fingers splay and she continues to touch the Obviously in Charge Egg, leaning in a bit as if to 'hear' it.

Talisyn's eyes are half-lidded as he feels the shell beneath his fingertips, warm and smooth. For a moment, he feels silly, standing out here communing with a hunk of inert eggshell - but that moment quickly passes. Mossy eyes widen, rounding, and his arm jerks, barely keeping from breaking the connection. "I - what?" He'd heard the stories, of course. Riders love little more than to bedevil Candidates with all sorts of improbable tales. Some, it seems, weren't quite so fanciful after all. "Uhm." His IFF is on the fritz; sorry not sorry. Finally, though, he clears his throat and splays his fingers until his wide palm rests flush against the curve of the egg as he tries to drag his muddled, befuddled thoughts into some semblence of calm. At least he's less grumpy - and thus probably less likely to be identified as hostile.

As the candidates file out onto the sands, a figure half-pops in from the entryway, leaning casually against the carved stone to peer in. His gaze moves across the sands scanning for someone but he can't much contain the amusement at the many sleepy eyed individuals approaching the eggs. Spotting finally that whom he'd come to see, E'stel slips in and casually walks over to the small blond weyrwoman, looking plenty awake which is not unusual for runner trainers… even if they are also bronzeriders. "Babysitting I see." He muses quietly. "Thought this was mostly Weyrlingmaster stuff?" Well, and clutch parents. "You joining their ranks? I was surprised when Roh said you were in here." Which may be why he wasn't all too committed to entering at first.

Listen, egg, the feeling is mutual. Lunasidhe looks like she's like to be just about anywhere else, too - this darkness, for instance, but with a little more pillow and a little bit less Igenish Inquisition. Talisyn might be feeling a little foolish there at the start, but Luna is tart from the get-go, "Because your sibling was rude, and so, it seems, are you." Or at least, it would be tart if she wasn't so dang tired, typical eyebags even worse as she aims a quick glance around and spies a familiar face. Padjma gets a wiggle-waggling of fingers and a nervous smile (or, her best attempt at a smile) for her egg of choice, but then it's back to this cinching loomer she goes. "Not particularly," is self-deprecating, wry, but if she has a response to anything else the egg might be thinking at her, she doesn't say it - she simply frowns and pushes hands slightly harder against the egg's shell.

Padjma's jaw tightens; she leans forward a little, hand not-quite trembling against the tan surface as she automatically shifts into the posture of one who's braced for … something. Despite holding herself so stiffly, something in her expression softens — and then shadows as some minutes go by. Another breath, and she leans her palm into the shell, gaze glued to the rippling patterns on the tall egg.

Her breath catches and holds- until something catches at her senses. Ligeia sniffsniffsniffs at the air suddenly, her features scrunching up thoughtfully. There's a quick look from one side to another; she's aiming for furtive, but it's the exact opposite of that. Whoopsies. But, with no sign of whatever it is that's got her interest, she turns back to the egg with a suspicious look. Fingers shift over the egg again and she bites her lower lip to pin her thoughts and words in place. So it is that she persists at the Obviously in Charge Egg, leaning in just a bit more. If this egg were a motivational speaker? She'd be making it rain marks on it right now.

Talisyn's brow wrinkles, eyes narrowing as he hones his focus in on the shell, fingers curling inward until he's resting a loose fist against the belly of the egg. Pale eyes dart too and fro, following something only his mind can see, and he bites down on his lip before it can curl in frustration. He mumbles something - fortunately, whatever words escape him barely carry beyond the space between he and his current obsession. He swallows any other commentary on the goings on in his mind and instead closes his eyes, drawing in a deep breath - the kind that fills the lungs and expands belly and chest while leaving broad shoulders steady and unmoving; a singer's breath, but there is no sound as he releases it, only a lessening of tension down his spine. He'll leave the outward arguing to Lunasidhe; apparently any conversation he's having with his audience is all internal. Or something is, anyway. Indigestion, perhaps?

The appearance of the Fortian bronzerrider has Odi fighting a smile, keeping her face as neutral as possible as she side gazes up at E'stel. Not amused at all, somewhere north of disgruntled despite having been up for several hours, a piece of jerky appears, and she eats with a pinched up chomping motion that's purposefully obnoxious. "Apparently I have nothin' better to do, an' the old Weyrlingmasters are busy or dead. They were old an' I don't pay attention to such things." Oriapeth will confirm with Roheith that despite surviving Oddisa, the old men who usually deal with candidates are not dead at least yet. "Yu want some jerky?" Pulling some out, she waggles it around in front of his face and eyes Lunasidhe and Talisyn with a freckled nose wrinkle. Then, loudly she says to E'stel, "Usually eggs are nicer when the people are." Hint, hint yu meanies. "Why you out here? This punishment is for me."

Welp. So much for being groggy af. "Yipe!" Sorry, everyone! This is a test of the emergency eardrum system. This is only a test. One Lunasidhe doesn't seem intent on repeating as color floods her cheeks, embarrassed to find herself on her butt in the hot sand. Nobody saw anything. (Yeah, right.) "Ow, shards, for the love've—," accompanies other, quieter but more colorful mutters as she rights herself and dusts heat and black sand from her palms, the egg glared at - hard - as though this were all its fault. Defiantly she jams her hands back against it's shell, clearly intending to give it a darned good talking to, based on the steep notch in her brows, and yet… "Oh, now you calm yerself. Who says I gots somethin' for you," Luna growls with an old accent. The petulant temptation to keep her answers to her dang self comes and goes, the egg's own questions considered as she allows it to lead her along. She snorts hard, unladylike, for some thought the egg gives her (or maybe that comment from Oddisa - KETTLE), eyes flicking up to squint at the goldrider in question with a super mature flicking out of her tongue before she settles back in. Let's go, big boy - round three, dingding.

Conflict is writ easily over Padjma's features on the heels of a sharp inhale. She doesn't exactly sway, but her weight leans into first one foot, then the other as if somewhere, they're attempting to find purchase, a foothold against whatever impressions the mind she's presently contacting is sharing. "I — " she breathes, but whatever phrase instinctively rises to her tongue is promptly swallowed, eyes squeezing shut. She doesn't retreat (yet).

One foot wiggles a bit, as if to shake something off- but Ligeia catches herself and plants her foot on the sand again. And then it happens again, with a singular inability to stay still marking her presence at this particular egg. Until? Until it's gone. Gone. "What does you mean." Soft-spoken that, with a pout to her lower lip that betrays her youthful impetuousness. But it's gone, gone, gone and she pulls her hands away, shaking them out a little before she veers in the direction of another. To Chic Chateau Egg it is! Both hands; no fear.

-< Ligeia leaves egg 1 - Obviously in Charge Egg >-
-< Ligeia touches egg 3 - Chic Chateau Egg >-

E'stel smirks at little at Oddisa's grumping, taking the jerk from her hand mid-waggle. It's given a glance for any odd bits of hay or lint and then when satisfied, he bites off a piece. He is not even sort of as obnoxious a chewer. "Well, could be worse things." His gaze follows her to the two candidates and then to a couple others. They all seem to have fairly affronted looks… and when Lunasidhe ends up on her backside in the sand his unkempt brows shoot up in contained surprise. "Sure seems like a handful, these ones." Hard to tell whether he's referring to the eggs or the candidates. Perhaps both is applicable. Another piece is chewed off and it takes a moment of working through the tough meat before he can respond to her question. "I needed more heat in my life." A grin passed to her, "But seriously, can't I just want to see you?" There are other reasons he's here at Igen specifically, but in this cavern? One hundred percent her… whether she likes it or not.

"Oh for the love of little red fruits," Talisyn snarls softly, although the sound itself carries less heat and more amusement than previous mutters. He raps his knuckles gently against the shell, a faint knock that carries more farewell than frustration before he drops his hand away, shoving it in his pocket, fingers shifting slightly as though clasping something hidden within. He studies the egg a moment longer before shaking his head and backing away. Oddisa's comment is heard, digested, and receives a bland, non-committal look in response. What? He's nice. He's the sweetest guy around. Turning away from her with an audible sniff, the harper-turned-Candidate pauses to consider the other eggs, the other Candidates - and maybe to clear his mind of any residual bleedover from the egg he'd just left behind. Then, with a shake that shivers from shoulders to hips, he strides purposefully across the Sands to reach out, placing a hand firmly upon the Ruler of the Roost Egg.

-< Talisyn leaves egg 4 - Mountain Guardian Egg >-
-< Talisyn touches egg 5 - Ruler of the Roost Egg >-

Tension leaves Lunasidhe's body on a slow, bleeding exhale. She's cautious about her enjoyment of this moment the egg's mind is offering her, wary after so much earlier negativity, but her blush slowly fades, head tilting slowly to one side as though considering vibe and vista before, "Oh!" Don't worry, it's a quiet utterance this time, subtle but sassy as hands drop to her hips. "You just had to leave it off on that kind of footing, didn't you," accusatory as she rises to her feet, sleep-mussed hair springing strangely as she promptly abandons this egg in favor of another - again, just about as far away as she can get. Padjma gets another sympathetic look, but Luna keeps her hands to herself, ignoring or missing E'stel's commentary as she settles her hands on the Obviously in Charge egg in Ligeia's wake.

-< Lunasidhe leaves egg 7 - Sleepless Sentry Egg >-
-< Lunasidhe touches egg 1 - Obviously in Charge Egg >-

There's something fierce in Padjma's distant stare for a moment, expression hard just before she withdraws her hand with a long, slow exhale. A measuring look lingers over the tawny egg before she takes a step back with a little shake of her head as if the motion would help to clear her thoughts. It takes her some moments to collect herself, and there's a brow-knitting look in return for Luna's as she skirts around another candidate to consider her next destination. Cautious steps soon bring her toward that burnished, warmly-hued egg; this time, she reaches out her opposite hand for first contact, teeth catching briefly at her lower lip.

-< Padjma leaves egg 2 - Desert Grace Egg >-
-< Padjma touches egg 6 - Queens Consort Egg >-

Sniffsniffsniff. Wait. Ligeia's experienced this before. While she darts a look to the other egg she was at, her focus is otherwise entirely on this one, even if she's actively sniffing it. Goosebumps rise at something or another, but that passes quickly and she huffs out a breath, doing her best to push those strange, strange feelings out of her- well, everything. But, it's not quite enough and she has to pull her hands away briefly to shake her hands out, only to put her fingers to it again. Whatever answers she has for the shell are whispered, but then? She's quiet again. Focused. Intent. What more do you have to offer, Chic Chateau Egg?

Talisyn tucks his tongue against his cheek as he stares suspiciously at the shell beneath his splayed hand, his fingers skimming lightly across the shell's multi-hued surface. Nostrils flare, catching the hint of scents beyond baked sands and broiled Candidate, and he exhales softly. Perhaps had this been the first of the eggs he'd touched, he'd be lulled by such serenity; not now, however, after the fireshow that had been his previous visitation. For all he hovers hesitantly, however, he remains in place, the string-callouses on his fingertips rasping softly against the shell as he traces line and color and waits to see what comes next.

Ah. Well. That's. That's quite a look on Lunasidhe's face, one part wince, one part mirth, with just a dash of pleasure and shame, as though whatever the egg is showing her, she's both abashed and amused by. Something elicits an outright laugh, sleepiness momentarily forgotten as real joy lingers on her features, notable in comparison to the expression that comes immediately thereafter. Luna's face - her entire body - falls out line, shoulders tilting at opposite angles, one knee going down into the sand, head dropping until loose curls are a shield against any further outwards displays. One, two, three, and she's back, head up, eyes snapping, a certain set to her jaw as energy turns to apology and Luna executes a slow nod. "It's alright. What else've you got."

There's something about having E'stel around that makes Oddisa bouncier, which could be good or bad depending on who you are. In his presence, she relaxes, smiling as the meat is enjoyed with a quiet, "It's furbeast, got it off a trapper in High Reaches. Kinda hard to find." As Lunasidhe falls there's a sigh, quietly cursing under her breath and staring at the carved ceiling, "She got up an' isn't lame, so I'm not writing it up." If a candidate falls in the caverns and there's no official report, did it even happen? Not in Odi's book. "Got a cold Harper?" Odi says to the sniffling Journeyman. "I'm guessin' if you stick 'round it'll heat up plenty." Nudging him with an elbow, she scoots over and begins to lean back, hands looping in the bronzeriders pockets. "If anyone's left standin', they might stick around for.. ours." Implying that Roh's already got the job, even if that's never a sure thing. "Wanna do somethin' later? Ori needs to get out or she'll start to melt. Plus if I'm harder to locate maybe I'll get out of." Waving at all the candidates in front of them.

Padjma's breathing evens out as one minute passes, then two; she almost sighs, expression that of one regarding something rendered rather beautiful. Another careful step forward lets her better press both hands to the smooth shell, fingers gently retracting and extending in tiny strokes. Undoubtedly, the being within indeed has her full attention.

The aggressive sniffsniffs finally simmer down to regular breathing once Ligeia realizes that, yes, that's just A Thing That's Happening Now. She focuses a bit harder on the Chic Chateau Egg, her lower lip caught in her teeth. Fingers traipse over the shell, stopping to rub here and there as if in search of a texture that eludes her physical senses. Eyes drop to half-lidded, then very nearly shut with a soft 'snrk' of a sound to betray the start of a drowsy snore. The sound pulls her back into the moment - but is that all? Is that everything? With a slight shake of her head, she persists.

Als has been around: lurking around the outskirts, taking her time in finding a target. Maybe she's a little on the wary side, her first experience having gone so…interestingly. She's approached multiple targets, but fallen short of touching any, fingers falling back to her sides every time. It doesn't help that she's shufflingly tired, sleep still lingering around the edges of her eyes. Even Odi doesn't retain her attention long, only occasionally wiggling fingers at the bouncy weyrwoman and her companion. Finally, finally the candidate manages to find an egg that seems innocuous enough; smoothly brown, like normal sands might be. Glancing around furtively, trying to make herself look very very small - not very effectively, she's, well, not - Alasse settles a hand fully on the apex of the rounded shell, huffing out a breath of air.

-< Alasse touches egg 2 - Desert Grace Egg >-

Moss-green eyes flicker momentarily, and the smile that curves Talisyn's lips is one part reminiscent, one part amused. And then there's the part that defies description - at least in polite company. "Indeed," he murmurs to it, intrigued by the hints flirting at the edges of his mind. Again, his fingers skim and slide, caressing gently across the shell. His expression falls well short of enraptured, but definitely hits high on the intrigued scale; the opposite of his irritation with his previous stop. Even as the egg briefly relenquishes its hold on him, Oddisa's call distracts him and he turns, blinking blearily at her. "Huh?" he responds absently, the reply only half-hearted at most in his preoccupation with the egg beneath his hand. Clearly, she's going to have to catch him at a better time if she's hoping for a battle of wits; his seem to be distracted.

Something that might just be eagerness hits Lunasidhe's features, breathing slow to pick up, but easy when it does, lacking the labor of anxiety. Her face tilts up as though catching a breeze against her cheeks, forearms tensing with potential rather than fear, practically vibrating with excitement by the time she releases a breath she didn't even realize she was holding. A cup of klah never did her so much good, eyes bright, smile almost amiable as she aims a, "I'm perfectly fine," back at Oddisa. "My ego's bruised, if anything, but I don't think you have a checkbox on your paperwork for that." Or maybe she does; Luna wouldn't know. She's distracted by Alasse passing by, anyways, the temptation to make big old 'IXNAY' hands at the handywoman flickering through blue-green eyes but— none of her business. She focuses back in on her own egg, hands smoothing over its shell.

This interaction makes Padjma give a quiet, little laugh, eyes more green than gray as she studies the egg before her with an expression that turns appreciative, then thoughtful by turns. And if she looks at least a tiny bit wistful, it's there and gone again with her next breath, hands sliding slightly this way and that as if attempting to hunt for a minutely cooler spot to touch. If she's offering anything in response to the still-gestating being, it's a silent exchange.

Inspecting the meat again, E'stel gives a nod. "Nice… it's got some good flavor." His gaze follows the candidate as she scurries off to the next egg with an agreeing nod. "Hardly anything notworthy." The fall that is… he's not -that- kind of guy anyway. "When did they all get so sassy?" Est muses, going back and forth between various candidates. Kids these days. Nevermind that he's still technically candidate-standing age if he'd not already impressed. As Odi leans back against him he rests his hands on her hips, jerky now finished off. The idea of Roh catching again gets a somewhat pompous smile… that probably wouldn't be there if she wasn't facing away from him. "Sure… I'm free til the afternoon." The pompous smile becomes slightly more apprehensive. "But you know… it'd be a lot easier to see you if… I just, you know, moved here…" He may as well capitalize on the distraction, right?

All in all? It's apparently a nice experience, gauging from the pleasant and placid expression that crosses Ligeia's face. She dares to reach and try to hug the egg oh-so-gently, touching her cheek to the shell before realizing what she's doing and where she's at and chancing a look away to check on her fellow candidates. It's at something else that she giggles and, just as quickly, clamps hands over her mouth lest that giggle expand into something louder and more protracted. Once she's sure of herself, she steps away, moving to Mountain Guardian Egg for what might be a change of pace- maybe?

-< Ligeia leaves egg 3 - Chic Chateau Egg >-
-< Ligeia touches egg 4 - Mountain Guardian Egg >-

Alasse, Gloriously Oblivious. IXNAY or no, she's on a mission, and she can't turn back now. This is essential, part of her life now, and mama didn't raise no chicken. Wherry? Not one of those either. She does fix Luna with a raised-eyebrow look that might be a smile waiting to show, just on the edge of a teasing kind of look before- oop, there she goes. Eyes flicker back and forth, taking in something with curiosity. Shoulders twitch, trying to shake something, but she stands steady, a steadying breath slowly drawn in, hissed out between maybe slightly clenched teeth. She doesn't move, though, corners of her lips tilting up a little as her head shakes. Alright, alright. She's here.

Talisyn hasn't exactly qualified as a kid in a few turns, but he'll take it. Or rather, ignore it, as his focus is on the egg beneath his hand. As the sensations fade from his mind, he inhales, drawing in that singer's breath once more - but this time, as he releases it, it's on a single, low note, soon fading in the arid heat around them. Shaking his head, he pulls his hand back, lifting it before his face to study the callouses that cover pads and palm; from instruments, from styluses, from other, less Harper-related duties. He gazes back so briefly at the Ruler of the Roost Egg, his expression slightly troubled, then turns away, hunching his shoulders as he leaves it behind, instead slouching his way towards another egg, another mind, another brush with potential destiny. This one? The Painted Spotted and Playful Egg.

-< Talisyn leaves egg 5 - Ruler of the Roost Egg >-
-< Talisyn touches egg 8 - Painted Spotted and Playful Egg >-

Luna was born this way, E'stel - or at least that's what her nose-wrinkle implies, a hint of a girl that was all-trouble in her youth twinkling through as she turns her eyes and mind back to the egg and its utterly distracting visions. Mirth and zeal vie for dominance in the candidate's gaze, eyes roving, body shifting, as though suddenly she was suffused with more energy than she could handle. Now this is pod racing what appealed to her, her mind, maybe her soul. It's with a touch of disappointment and a fond brush of eggshell that the dragonhealer-candidate eventually withdraws from the Obviously in Charge egg, leaning to murmur something in Alasse's ear, eyeing that egg the candidate is touching before moving on. Why not continue follow the leader and occupy that egg Ligeia just vacated yet again?

-< Lunasidhe leaves egg 1 - Obviously in Charge Egg >-
-< Lunasidhe touches egg 3 - Chic Chateau Egg >-

"Soon, " breathes Padjma aloud before reluctantly pulling her hands away so that she can rub at her darkening cheeks. Perhaps the flush is more due to lingering in the near-overwhelming heat than this most recent experience (slightly dazed look notwithstanding), for her steps away carry her past the other eggs in search of first water - then permission to retreat to the antechamber without.

-< Padjma leaves egg 6 - Queens Consort Egg >-

All of the moving people takes a bit of concentration; it's similar to working with herdbeasts but a lot less enjoyable. "All afternoon is good." Oddisa approves of the plan, waving off Padjma without much thought as the next line from the man's mouth has her turning around and pushing him back ever so slightly. "Yu mean like here?" Swishing back to watch her subjects, there's a stillness, eyes glazed as hopefully, someone else is preventing egg or candidate scrambling. "Fine." A long, suffering sigh escapes partially pursed lips, "Jus', promise yu won' get all. Bronzerider-like. No, whatever it is they do when they get a weyrmate." She isn't entirely sure what she's talking about, but she doesn't like it. "Prolly need to talk to Iwa." A second groan, "Possibly the new fellar Z'ur, X'lo, X'-" eyes unfocus, "X'yr, yeah him. An' you get to do all the paperwork." Is he still sure he wants to live with her? There's time to back out. "An' I don' want any new furniture." Her bossy pants are firmly on and buckled this early morning.

Wide-eyed, Ligeia breathes a barely audible, "Oh. Oh, hi. Hello." There is an answer somewhere, but it's practically whispered into the shell of Mountain Guardian Egg. Is it trying to be shocking and bold? Well, it's found someone that's a little too well-grounded for such shenanigans. Or, maybe, she's endured worse? Somehow? Who can say. She's fearless in the face of whatever's being offered, a bit of bouncing on the balls of her feet following a fanning of fingers to make even more contact.

Alasse has nerve to spare, sometimes — apparently, obstinately awake, now is one of those times. Chin tilts up, eyes squint into the nothingness. Challenge her, will you. Fingers scrabble a little, and she unfocuses long enough to fix Luna with a look that suggests maybe she's the one who's going to fight. A grin full of teeth, hand reaching to squeeze her compatriot's as she departs for another egg, and the candidate refocuses. Stay, go? Why not both. A huff of laughter heaves from somewhere around her toes, and she leans in to it, taking in the feelings with even more energy. Withdrawal takes a minute, a pause with fingers still splayed wide across the side of the shell. Hm. Several deep breaths pass before the large young woman moves on, shuffling sleepily away from the egg and peering around the shells for an unoccupied place to stand. Why not this one? Who needs order in chaos.

-< Alasse leaves egg 2 - Desert Grace Egg >-
-< Alasse touches egg 7 - Sleepless Sentry Egg >-

Really? Momentous things are occurring in Candidate minds and you two are gonna sit there and flirt and canoodle and plot out your future? Well, fine. Talisyn's just going to ignore you. Shame, though, because this would be prime needling fodder if he were paying attention. Oh well. Later. Right now, he's too busy slapping the back of the hand resting on the egg - then the back of his knee, giving a soft, startled 'yip'. There's nothing there, though, and although he raises his free hand, his gaze is blind as he stares through it, lost in the events unfolding within his thoughts. He inhales as if drawing in a scent beyond just the acrid, arid heat and rank sweat that has begun to perfume the air as the Candidates linger within the sweltering confines of the Sands. Then he stills, eyes sliding shut, and waits patiently - fine, semi-patiently - for the next touch.

What a gearshift. Lunasidhe almost doesn't know what to do, without being freshly traumatized from the start, allowed to share things that mean something to her without them being ripped from her psyche. It's enough to endear the egg to her almost immediately, tongue rolling through her mouth with the invasion of a foreign taste that she takes her time to process and enjoy before, "Well, there was this boy…" And though it pains her to talk about him, evidenced by the wince around her eyes, talk about him she does, voice pitched too low for words to carry despite their brevity. Longing matches longing, her gaze faraway by the time she finishes, hands soothing over the eggs shell in encouragement for them both to, "Keep going." There is a sideways glance spared for Alasse when the big woman moves away from that dreaded desert shell, that look having been caught and only-just-now acknowledged with a downwards jerk of her chin and a wink, but she's quick to settle her hands in gently and wait.

Laughter is muffled in the crook of an elbow, while Ligeia's other hand remains securely planted on Mountain Guardian Egg. Delight suffuses her expression and brightens her gaze and it's a struggle to keep her laughter to a dull roar. She quickly scoots to another side of the egg, her fingers skimming along the surface all the while. How about- here? Or here? Or what about here? Contact continues, though, and she's willing to play this game until someone taps out.

E'stel watches Padjma move off the sands before he's pushed back… He may have been expecting more than that really as he just rocks back on his heels in a vague sway. "Well yeah… here." But her sighing response causes a teasing grin to grow across his face. "So enthused." Bronzerider-like… There maybe be a vaguely perplexed brow to his expression but he's too pleased to give it much thought. "Yes… and my leadership… I -have- done this before." Well, not as a rider. That's probably several more forms. He takes her hand, gently tugging her back to himself. "Sounds good to me." Not like he has much of his own anyway. "…But Roh has more things anyway." Like all the fancy pillows…. and the gramophone. THAT could be problematic for all of them. It's certainly not Est's favorite object.

Alasse freezes the second her fingertips make contact with the shell, jaw clenching, eyes widening as she stares into nothing. "HEY." Uhhhh, nobody told Alasse not to yell, did they? Let's hope not, because there she goes, voice gruff and commanding. "Don't do that." Quieter, but serious, she scowls, shaking her head and glancing around maybe a little wildly. You saw nothing, got it? Absolutely nothing. Shoulders rounding, the candidate settles a second hand on the shell, like maybe that will help. She's not leaning, not quite putting weight on the shell, but her eyes unfocus as she returns to the task at hand, scowling.

There's a breathless huff of laughter as Talisyn sags against the shell before him, catching himself before he can put more than a fraction of his weight against it. "Slow down," he advises softly, his fingers gentle but firm against the curve of the egg's belly. "Take a breath. There's no hurry." For all he speaks those words, however, his tone is filled with affectionate amusment; he knows they ring hollow coming from one such as he. To wonder, to wander; if there is anything greater, it is this: to impart. And so he does, leaning close enough to rest is forehead against the warm shell, the soft murmur of his baratone indistinct as he murmurs softly; answering questions? Asking them? Or perhaps simply speaking to speak; no, to school; no, to share.

And there it is. One game is done but the other one? That one seems to leave Ligeia a bit dizzy in the aftermath. Her hand peels away from the shell, only to lift and knead at her head. Something is murmured to the egg, something playfully chastising? It's hard to tell, really. And, ultimately, it's unimportant to anyone beyond her and the egg. She adds a little bit of distance and, disconnected, she flashes Oddisa a smile and tosses a wave her way before she scarpers off to get something for her headache - and maybe a bite (or three) to eat.

-< Ligeia leaves egg 4 - Mountain Guardian Egg >-

Luna doesn't seem to mind one bit. If anything, she delights in this sudden change in perspective, basks in her own inconsequence. Hands lift from the egg's shell, pausing midair as though keeping herself from touching something unseen, wonder and enjoyment turning to soft laughter as the egg's mind persists in getting up close and personal with her thoughts. Lunasidhe doesn't mind. If anything, she settles, too, whatever was left of her earlier tension leeching from her skin as she simply exists, merely is, if only for this moment. Her, the sands, and the egg whose shell she holds just a little tighter.

Both hands soften, eventually, Alasse taking in a slow breath and letting it out even slower. She's focused on something, intent, eyes not moving even an inch as she settles. The anger bleeds out of her stance, the bullheaded seriousness eases, and eventually a smile settles. "I see you." The large candidate tells the egg, and — steadies herself, standing back to her full height. She seems to think for a moment, glancing between her fellow candidates, but. Something's there, she needs…time. "Goodnight," Alasse tells the egg, tells Odi and E'stel, wiggling fingers at the others as she heads off of the sands. She needs to think.

-< Alasse leaves egg 7 - Sleepless Sentry Egg >-

Abruptly, Talisyn yanks his hand from the egg. "No," he says, softly yet firmly. "Not there. Not those." For all his sudden discomfort, however, he lingers briefly before the egg, his gaze tracing over its surface before he offers it a slight bow. He turns away, his gaze drifting towards the Ruler of the Roost Egg - but he's been there, done that; now? His brain is full to overflowing with thoughts and sensations, and now his spine and scalp itch with sweat and sand, and his stomach impatiently reminds him that he's yet to have even smelled breakfast much less partaken of it. As other Candidates trickle in, trickle out, he follows with the latter, glancing briefly towards Oddisa with an absent smirk before following in Ligeia's wake, his stride far more slow and deliberate than her scamper, and yet no less determined.

The wave is noticed from Ligeia, an approving flip of the hand to dismiss the woman. All remaining are counted twice, a long look at Toruth and Haijiventh to affirm it's ok to continue. Back to the important business, though everyone is given a glance over as limbs are counted. Only the four main limbs count anyways, and so far, so good. "Roh's stuff don' count." A whisper now as the fact that they're standing in a group of people hits. "Hope yu like sand." The lanky dark-haired harper leaning his face on the egg gets a hard look as well. "Iwa's nice enough." So says the person who continuously avoids the entire leadership like they have the plague. Having made the decision, there's kind of a content smile pulling at one side of her face. Suddenly they lose two candidates, and the others are left to fend for themselves as Odi turns around entirely. "We'd prolly do best to find our respective leaders and see if this will even happen." There's a drop to the last word as if some secret part of her might be looking forward to it. "Maybe her hands are so full with this lot it won't be a long discussion?" One can hope.

"Oof!" At least this time, Lunasidhe's fall is mental - no more cause for alarm, or sassy comments to come from Oddisa. She might sway to the end of where her fingers press against shell, but she keeps her feet, so to speak, a bright and wholly uncharacteristic giggle rising in her throat for whatever she's experiencing. "Oh, alright you, that's quite enough of that," comes with a scrunching of catlike nose, head twisting subtly this way and that as though trying to avoid some kind of assault on her person. "I can't do what you ask if you keep…" Finally, she's given chance to breath, laughter dying away as she focuses, frowns the gentle frown of one sorting through thoughts and memories to find the just right, perfect thing before offering it up. "There. Hold onto that for me. It's probably the best I've got." Declaring that makes her a little sad, but she's up and moving before she can let herself dwell, intent on drowning her disappointment over having to leave that egg with a good, solid nap before choretime comes around. "Thanks!," is given towards the adultier adults in the room with a wave over her shoulder as Luna slouches out after her fellow candidates, eyes distant as she works through everything she's seen and learned, sorting through it all for future reporting.

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