Return to Atricis - Parker | Mal

Not the large stone caverns that Weyr people are used to, these are buildings built on the top of the cliff, sometimes referred to as the Weyr Cliff. These buildings are all the same size, with multiple apartments for dragonriders to live in in each building. Because of space constraints, dragons sleep in large pavilions built around the dragonrider apartments.
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Shaihulud
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Thu Aug 23, 2018 7:57 pm

Mid Autumn 2048

Envoy N'kili and Opal Dragon Omiimiith

When N'kili initially received the letter, she delayed noticeably in her response. It took her several days to consider the offer made by Ma'lek and Solange, one she weighed against her current circumstances in Walled. One might say she had not been exactly loyal to Walled since her return, especially over the last few turns; some might even call her treasonous, but N'kili would argue otherwise. A Walled patriot owed the disgraceful Mother nothing when she failed to fulfil her duty to the people. Patriots honoured the sanctity of the country, which was composed of the citizens of Walled, not the will of an individual. N'kili fought turns for equality, to free the slaves of Bottom and the Plantations. Now, she was being asked to abandon her patriotic duty to become the voice of New Atricis, the Speaker of the Weyr.

In Walled, N'kili had access to special knowledge valuable to individuals like Mul'rec. His operation depended on her efforts and her connections. In her new position, however, she could potentially begin to influence the leadership of Southern Seahold, Amaryllis, Ivory Tower, Evanoria, and, of course, New Atricis. If she could get them to to impose sanctions, or interfere with the trade to Walled, thus disrupting the income Walled now depended upon, perhaps they might finally be able to thwart the Mother.

When she responded to Ma'lek two days later, she did so on the condition she needed to speak with a colleague first. Some might assume she meant the Pedagogue or a fellow envoy of Walled. Instead, however, she departed to Southern Seahold, where she covertly met her accomplice. There, she spoke of the offer his brother had made, explaining the benefits and losses of such an arrangement. In Walled, she had done good work for Mul'rec, and always did he wield her efforts to their advantage and the advantage of the people. They had freed several slaves, and quietly dismantled several illegal operations, including one the Mother once profited from. Once N'kili left, however, they would no longer have the advantage.

"D'ran," Mul'rec spoke simply.

"What?" N'kili asked in disbelief. Despite all the turns that passed, and all the children he and Charmaine had bore, the bronzerider still seemed like a child to her eyes. "But... he's so young."

"Not much younger than yourself. And he has a good reputation with a strong moral compass. He's also worked with us previously."

Yes, he had, though N'kili had not been happy about it. D'ran had done enough, had suffered enough. Yet still he fought for everyone, thwarting the wicked with every chance he had. Adonis had taught the boy too well. "If something were to happen to him-"

"It would be his choice, the same choice we've all made."

Her fingers toyed with Duke's tail as she deliberated over his suggestion, weighing the benefits and the risks... "I'll speak with D'ran and the Pedagogue."

***

Naturally, D'ran agreed, and while the Pedagogue was loathe to lose her, he accepted the bronzerider with a heavy measure of enthusiasm. She wished the bronzerider good luck, and after a final look at Walled, she departed for Atricis. She had sent a letter to Ma'lek and Solange ahead of her departure, and upon her arrival, she was welcomed by the older woman who welcomed her into their home. Solange appeared older than she remembered, for the wire of white hairs now threaded through her illustrious locks. The lines about her eye also presented with more prominence, and her skin hung a bit more along her cheeks, giving her a gaunt appearance.

"Please, have a seat, N'kili," the woman offered.

N'kili gave a courteous nod of her head. "Thank you, Master Solange." She watched as the woman began to walk over to the couch, joining her husband. "Speaker Ma'lek" she nodded to the brownrider as well. She settled into the chair, and tapped her fingers on the arm of the chair in indication to Duke. The brown did not hesitate to slip from her shoulder and settle upon the armrest with a curious chirp. "I take it you received my letter?" she asked of Ma'lek. The letter she spoke of was the one that agreed to his offer, and warned of her arrival.

As she spoke to the brownrider, Solange began to pour them all a cup of tea.
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Parker
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Thu Sep 06, 2018 7:49 pm

It had been a good fight. A damn good fight, but in the end...time won. It always won as no man has of yet to discover the secret to banish time and remain a young man forever. Ma'lek had fought as long as he could to put off that one word that made him grumble and feel irritated...retirement, but it was time. He was most certainly not the young man he once use to be, even if he was in good shape for a man of his age. Still, ever sense contacting firehead his health had never been quite what it once was. Taking control of the diplomacy wing had done a lot to keep prolonging the inevitable of retiring, but now he was to even reliquish that control.

There were some upsides to this retirement. It wasn't as if there would be nothing for him to do in Evanoria. He was still able-bodied, so he wanted to do something productive. Focusing more on harper work than rider work was really a good decision...it was just so hard to let go. Still...silver linings. He and Solange would still be working together, he would get to use his harper skills more, and they would be living with their best friends. Ma'lek had been missing his dear friend, Ar'vis, and now they would be near each other again. Solange would get to be near to Eavan again. That was really what had won him over to making this change.

"Speaker Ma'lek"

Ma'lek stood when the Envoy joined them in their living room. His joints creaked and popped more than they use to, but for the most part the only thing that seemed older about him was the extra wrinkles and the graying of his hair. "Envoy N'kili, yes we did and we are so happy that you have come to visit us." Yes, it had taken her awhile to get back to them about this offer, but he wasn't going to hold that against her. It wasn't a small offer that they were making her. "Solange and I feel it is time for us to step down and take our talents elsewhere. Considering your abilities and knowledge, we couldn't think of a better person to become Speaker for Atricis."
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Tue Sep 25, 2018 6:11 pm

Ma'lek had aged since N'kili had last seen the man. Though she knew he had reached a ripe age of sixty turns, the crease along the corner of his eyes, the sink of his cheeks, the folds at his neck and the silvering of his hair still managed to surprise her. Ma'lek once seemed like a god to N'kili, a former Weyrleader with a formidable reputation and a lasting legacy over new Atricis, yet even gods like Ma'lek grew gaunt with age. Time was inescapable.

"Envoy N'kili, yes we did and we are so happy that you have come to visit us. Solange and I feel it is time for us to step down and take our talents elsewhere. Considering your abilities and knowledge, we couldn't think of a better person to become Speaker for Atricis."

It seemed the old Weyrleader wanted to get straight to the point, though to be fair, N'kili had never known Ma'lek as a man of subtlety. Games were never his sort. Due Ma'lek had provided the opportunity to discuss the matter without any show of resentment, N'kili took the man on his offer, as courtesy would permit. Ma'lek did not at all seemed bothered by the relinquishment of his current position. "I thank you for your considerations, Speaker. Despite circumstances-" the mother to be more precise, though she spoke not the name, for they both knew whom she spoke "-you have done marvellously in your position. I can only hope to sustain your legacy. Suffice to say, I am honoured at the opportunity you have given me. What sort of timeframe have you set out for the transition? And does the Wing know of my arrival and your intentions of retirement?"
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Tue Oct 02, 2018 12:13 am

Ma'lek took a sip of his tea and gently put the fragile cup down on its fragile plate. He had been smoking his pipe before N'kili had come to their abode. He was too polite to pick it back up again when he wasn't sure if she minded or not. Nianee was curled up asleep on his lap. Like himself, she was getting older too and tended to sleep more than she use to.

"I thank you for your considerations, Speaker. Despite circumstances you have done marvellously in your position. I can only hope to sustain your legacy. Suffice to say, I am honoured at the opportunity you have given me. What sort of timeframe have you set out for the transition? And does the Wing know of my arrival and your intentions of retirement?"

"Thank you, Envoy. I will admit, those certain circumstances has not made the position easy in any sense of the word, but I do hope that...not only my actions, but Solange's and those that work with us has made things better for Atricis." Ma'lek would always be loyal to Atricis. Even when they were living at Evanoria, there would be a part of his heart and soul that would always belong to this weyr. A warm and wide smile spread on his face. "I've no doubt that you will be able to do just that, N'kili." He gave Solange a look before he continued on. "As for a time frame, we didn't have any set plans as we wanted to remain flexible for your own personal schedule. The wing is aware of our impending retirement, but we thought it best if we didn't name our successor until after we spoke with you."

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Tue Oct 02, 2018 3:55 pm

"Thank you, Envoy. I will admit, those certain circumstances has not made the position easy in any sense of the word, but I do hope that...not only my actions, but Solange's and those that work with us has made things better for Atricis."

"Absolutely," N'kili acknowledged Solange's efforts and those of the Wing. Initially, N'kili had spoken in a more general sense, though she understood where the brownrider came from. The man functioned with a Wing mentality that focused on the corperate rather than the individual. As the pending Wingleader of Ivory Feather, N'kili would make sure sure to do the same. Everything in the Weyr always involved the function of the body.

"I've no doubt that you will be able to do just that, N'kili."

She answered the brownrider's kind smile with one of her own. Ma'lek had always been a good man for as long as N'kili had known him. "Thank you both, Ma'lek, Solange." It was a rare moment for her to drop such formalities between them, but she did so out of fondness for the two old Weyrleaders.

"As for a time frame, we didn't have any set plans as we wanted to remain flexible for your own personal schedule. The wing is aware of our impending retirement, but we thought it best if we didn't name our successor until after we spoke with you."

So the Wing knew nothing about her arrival. Though she liked to think that Ivory Feather would be open to her arrival, she also understood how some riders could be towards whom they regarded as outsiders. Rather than give herself away with how she flinched within, she gave Duke a calm stroke of his delicate head. "Well, perhaps we should begin with speaking with the Wing. I would like to familiarise myself with them before assuming any sort of authority." Though N'kili could never say she had been a Wingleader, she still understood the value of trust between wingmen and their wingleaders. "Would it be possible to shadow with you over the next sevenday? It would give me the opportunity to best understand the flow of Ivory Feather, as well as give the wingriders the opportunity to acquaint themselves with me. After a sevenday, we can decide from there whether we will need more time for the transition. Would this be suitable for you?"

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Wed Oct 03, 2018 4:36 pm

"Well, perhaps we should begin with speaking with the Wing. I would like to familiarise myself with them before assuming any sort of authority."

Ma'lek gave a nod of his head. He had a feeling that she would want to know the wing first before diving headfirst into the roll of their leader. "Aye, that is most certainly something we can do for you. I will let you know that most in the wing are hard workers and easy to get along with. I believe you are familiar with some of them already. Justicar Adonis, for one. He has been nothing but a great asset to the weyr since coming here. Chimerarider Locke, on the other hand..." He paused for a moment. "I cannot say that he performs inadequately or even poorly at the tasks assigned to him. But I would not depend on him to be one to go above and beyond the menial tasks he performs now. I don't think the man is lazy, but it would seem that he'd prefer to use his time and talents for personal matters." What those personal matters were, Mal could only hazard to guess, but so far Locke kept himself in line and thus he had no reason to suspect him of any sort of wrong doing.

"Would it be possible to shadow with you over the next sevenday? It would give me the opportunity to best understand the flow of Ivory Feather, as well as give the wingriders the opportunity to acquaint themselves with me. After a sevenday, we can decide from there whether we will need more time for the transition. Would this be suitable for you?"

A look was given to Solange before he answered her. "Yes, I believe that is more than possible. There isn't a rush for us to be moved into our new place at Evanoria and it is more important to make sure that both you and the wing are fully acclimated to each other before we leave." Plus, that meant he would get to spend more time actually working. Which he was sure his lovely wife would realize that as well. "As far as living arrangements go. I have checked with the Head Woman and have acquired you a wingleader's apartment, but if it should prove unsatisfactory to you there are others available."

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Fri Oct 05, 2018 6:02 pm

With the names given to her, N'kili made a mental note of each. Later, when she had a moment, she would be sure to write the valuable information done. In regards to the mention of Adonis, N'kili remained neutral, though she would be a liar if she did not admit to the fact that the merest mention of D'ran's old master did not provide N'kili with a measure of guilt. But of course N'kili would have to work with the man, a man whom she actively betrayed on a daily bases. Perhaps her actions were not entirely direct, but she did ask D'ran of all people to replace her position as spy. At her request, D'ran committed treason against the mother, and all the while N'kili needed to smile at Adonis.

But N'kili had one worse than fake smiles.

As for the matter of Locke, she would speak with him personally. Though the man was not entirely to be trusted, she already had a good use for him if he was willing. As a former slave, she suspected he would be eager for the opportunity to take down the matriarchy. She just needed to direct his energy to a more meaningful cause.

"Yes, I believe that is more than possible. There isn't a rush for us to be moved into our new place at Evanoria and it is more important to make sure that both you and the wing are fully acclimated to each other before we leave."

"Thank you both," she nodded, acknowledging not only Ma'lek, but Solange. She genuinely appreciated their efforts to ease her transition into the Wing. Though it was the most courteous of actions, not all felt the need to offer such courtesies.

"As far as living arrangements go. I have checked with the Head Woman and have acquired you a wingleader's apartment, but if it should prove unsatisfactory to you there are others available."

"I can assure you, I am not the sort to take up much space." By nature, N'kili preferred more modest living arrangements. Clean, tasteful, but always modest.

We don't require much to be happy, Omiimiith assured the brown and goldrider.

Solange offered the woman a kind smile. "That is good to know."

"I do thank you for your concern, but I assure you it is unnecessary. I doubt anything Atricis would provide for me would be considered unsatisfactory." She spared a glance to Duke, and offered the brown a rub at his shoulders. "Was there anything else I should know about? Or shall we leave the rest of it to the morrow?" In all honesty, the time difference between Atricis and Walled was finally beginning to catch up to her. Later, she would go over the notes Ma'lek and Solange provided her with, but for now she yearned for a hot bath, and a glass of wine with some cheese. It had been a long day. It was not to say she did not appreciate Solange's tea, which she would most certainly finish, but the opalrider needed some time to herself to recover.

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Wed Oct 10, 2018 3:37 pm

Ma'lek gave the young woman a warm smile. "Wonderful. We certainly want you both to be happy here. If there does arise anything that you should need or want, don't hesitate to ask. Even after Solange and I have moved to Evanoria. You are doing us a grand favor and we want you to feel appreciated for it."

"Was there anything else I should know about? Or shall we leave the rest of it to the morrow?"

He spared a look at Solange as he thought. "I think anything else can wait. I am sure you're tired and would like to settle in a bit more. There is nothing so pressing that can't wait until later and as I stated, we are in no rush to simply leave the weyr yet." Ma'lek assured her. This was a big undertaking she was agreeing to. To think that everything would be settled in only a day or two would be madness. Plus, it would be rude to rush such a thing.

Ma'lek stood then and extended a hand to the Envoy. "N'kili, this is truly an honor. I feel confident that we have made the right choice in who should become Speaker of the Weyr. I know you'll do a fantastic job and look forward to working closer with you as we get things settled." He said sincerely. "Please, relax and enjoy the rest of the evening and I shall be in touch with you tomorrow."

{fin}

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