R'fael of course knew the words and thoughts his dragon offered the girl, and couldn't help but smile when he saw her react. When her stinging eyes turned and sought him out, he grinned at her and offered an encouraging nod. He noted the glisten in her gaze, and felt his own bit of pride well up. She might not be one of his biological girls, but she was a special one, and had weaseled her cranky way into his scarred heart. Being able to sit here and watch her at this moment, her very first time Standing...He felt his own emotions well up a bit.
There wasn't long for her to wait for that first breaking shell either. A stunning blue broke out, even if he did so pointed the wrong direction. As the hatchling broke free and finally started moving among the Candidate's, the entire cavern seemed to hold it's breath. This first Impression held such tradition and belief to it. And for a moment it seemed like he was going to choose Aglaia. But no, a croon and a nuzzle, and R'fael assumed the blue offered the girl some words of encouragement and couldn't help but smile seeing her reaction. ”Don't worry, girlie, you'll be alright, you got this.”
The words were soft, half-whispered under his breath, more to himself than anyone else. Then the blue was moving on to find his, and Impression was made.
R'fael cheered along with the rest of the spectators as the new pair headed off the Sands, for food. But as with many of the rest, his focus swiftly returned to the rocking eggs. After all, the next was seeming ready to break free. And indeed, there was suddenly a two-headed egg rocking back and forth, the pair of twins within straining against their shell. Pyrite's and Opal's were always fascinating for R'fael. So special and unique. Not as unique as you.
He felt Pavoth's amused indignation. But the egg rolled then, the action breaking the pair free. Oh, the poor Opal though! R'fael smiled at the cute, gangly-ness of her lack of coordination, and the soft support of her brother. It seemed like it was common for one half of a pair to Impress, and the other waited around a bit.
But they didn't have too long to wait, as another egg split, nay, exploded. Bits of shell dropped all at once, revealing a silvery hide. It was almost akin to his own Pavoth's, but much lighter, with lines reminiscent of branches as opposed to the marbling of granite. With a grin, R'fael watched as the Pewter made his way for his Pyrite brother, having words before moving on himself. The dragonet trekked through the Candidate's, seeming to pause and think and nudge several times before finally settling on a young woman. Congratulations spilled out as the spectators clapped and hooted. It was always inspiring to see the new pairs. Something R'fael could appreciate greatly, considering he'd felt and done it twice now.
She continued staring at Haddy. Anything to distract her. But in her peripheral, she saw the vague shape of someone offering her a handkerchief, and quietly nodded towards them, ”Thank you, I'm so sorry...This is embarrassing...”
Her voice was soft as she dabbed at her betraying eyes with the cloth. She could still smell him! It filled her nostrils, her mind, and she sighed heavily into the cloth. His scent was overwhelming, and she bit back another sob. Why did her mind have to betray her so?! It was just her imagination. Even Haddy was being irritatingly quiet, some faint hint of amusement
drifting between them.
Then a familiar weight alighted on her shoulder, and she turned her face towards the spicy scent of the firelizard. She knew it wasn't Glory, it was the wrong weight, which left her second favorite flitter, Arthur. A smile bloomed on her cheeks, and she reached up to pet the tiny wedge-shaped head as she closed her eyes, Oh, Arthur, no, I'm alright, I promise, just being-”
Her eyes flew open, and she froze. She suddenly she felt a presence beside her she hadn't a moment ago. A familiar shape that she almost didn't dare to look at.
Slowly she turned, as if in a daze, and looked at Cataren's grinning visage. A heartbeat. Two. Three. The rider suddenly scowled and shoved him, flinging his handkerchief back at him uselessly, ”Fucking shards, Cat!”
She glared at her dragon as she felt the green's eruption of triumph, and reached up to lift the firelizard from her shoulder, cradling him, and looking down at him, ”Arthur, you're the only one I can trust.”
She glanced towards Cataren as she caressed his flitt, glaring and fighting grinning.
The sudden breathe of the audience though caught her glaring attention and she glanced towards the sands as the first egg split, revealing a lovely blue. Shifting her weight towards the man then, she sighed as she leaned on him, ”You could have said something, you know...Not let me make such a scene.”
Her eyes were on the Sands, her arms full of the bronze flitter, even if most of her attention and focus was on the man she was leaning into now, reveling in the feel of him beside her again.
She didn't know any of the current Candidate's personally, but she could empathize with their nervousness. She was on the Sands herself not that long ago. As sour as her dragon had turned out to be. The thought of the green caused her to send her glare briefly towards her too, before looking over at Cataren, ”I'm very cross with you, so you know...”
Her arm moved then and she lifted his to wriggle her way beneath it, wrapping it about her shoulders.
Another egg split, revealing a pair of twins, and she grinned watching the flash of colors, even if her mind was only half present now. He had come back, and surprised her, and she loved him, and was mad at him, but she'd be damned if she'd waste the opportunity to get hugs and kisses out of him before he had to leave again. As they watched, one half of the pair Impressed, the lovely little Opal, and swiftly after another egg broke open to spill out a handsome Pewter who also moved and wound his way to Impression.