Written for: grav_ity for a prompt meme over a year and a half ago, but I forgot to put it here before now. *g*
“Remarkable,” mused Lord Mycroft, his eyes skimming the group of brand-new weyrlings as they were escorted from the hatching grounds.
Wingleader Gr’gor, who’d been seated beside him, followed the line of the young Lord’s gaze to its object: Mycroft’s brother, now to be known as Sh’lock, and his new-hatched brown, Jonth. “How so?” he asked. “He’s Ruathan born and weyrbred, that boy. Surely you of all people know how many fine dragonmen and women your line has produced.”
“Intimately,” was the dry response. “Yet the fact remains, before his fosterage, the one complaint I heard most often regarding my brother was that he possessed the empathy of a tunnel snake, if not less. And none of the intelligence I have received since has given cause to believe otherwise. I’m not displeased, merely…surprised.”
Lestrath’s laughter rumbled through his rider’s mind, and Gr’gor couldn’t help smiling. Naturally his bronze had been listening in on the conversation; curiosity was one quality that man and dragon shared.
Not that the Lord’s concern was not genuine–Mycroft might seem as distant as his younger brother to those who did not know him, but Gr’gor had ample opportunity to observe them both, Sherlock in particular. That was the crux of the difference: in the years since young Sherlock had come to be fostered at Fort Weyr, Gr’gor and Lestrath had seen a great deal of the young man, far more than his Ruatha-bound brother. The lad’s incredibly quick mind demanded occupation far above what the standard fosterling’s duties offered, to a point where he often sought out danger for a break from the tedium. Hence why so many at the weyr thought him arrogant, reckless, even unfeeling. But–a secret known only to the three of them–Lestrath spoke to the lad, and Gr’gor knew his dragon too well to take such a thing lightly. Lestrath saw the same thing that Gr’gor did in Sh’lock–a boy with the potential to grow in to a great man. Possibly even a good one.
He’d come close to despairing that potential would ever be reached a time or two. Now that Sh’lock had Impressed, though, it gleamed brighter than all the jewels in Crom’s deepest mines. Even with “only” a brown, he could see Sh’lock becoming the sort of rider that ballads were written about for centuries to come. All he’d need was the right dragon, and only time would tell if Jonth’s potential was equal to that of his Rider.
If they were not equals, Jonth would not have chosen him, Lestrath pointed out, pretending to be insulted.
Gr’gor smiled as he answered Lord Mycroft. “Perhaps, but then, he’s never had a dragon before.”
Lord Mycroft appeared to consider this, lips pursed. “True. The matter does appear to require reevaluation.”