And there! At last, the golden beauty was off, taking to the skies in a magnificent display of glory. It didn't take the males long to start taking off after her, and Rhovanioth was certainly no exception to that rule. He sprang to action, bunching his hind legs underneath him and leaping almost straight upwards, his wings opening wide and pushing them back downwards in that all-important first downstroke, catching the air under him. He used this to gain his first bit of altitude before flapping more. He had to keep up with her, he simply had
to! But at the same time, he knew better than to be fool enough to try for an early catch. Young though she was, the queen understood that it was her duty to her Weyr and to all of Pern to have a strong, healthy clutch. And all dragons knew that the best way to achieve that was through a long, strong Flight. And above all, Rhovanioth was going to be the one to do that. Or at least, that was the way that he
personally saw it. All of the other chasing males, brown and bronze alike, were fine and strong beasts, but every male wanted to be the one to catch the radiant beauty that they came to chase.
He crooned back to Andromedath as she spoke to him, his voice mirroring hers in his distinct silvery tones, different in a pleasant way to her own brassy ones. Such was the way with the golden females and her suitors, her size lending to that deeper timbre in her croons and roars than his would likely ever reach. Not that he minded, of course, but it gave the bronze more reason to be infatuated with the beautiful queen. As her words drifted through his mind, the bronze crooned again, his hopes raised with each word. Of course, that didn’t mean that she would chose him, not based on that, and he would have called her nothing short of a silly hatchling to do such a thing. No, her comment that it wouldn’t be enough to just flatter her bolstered his affections for her all the more. I shall try my best, radiant one. I only hope that I can come even close to your glory, and hope that I can help you to outshine the very sun in the sky.
And with that, the bronze fell silent, knowing that the time for words was long since over. Actions would speak for him now, and he was determined to prove himself the best to her.
For all that he was not as quick or nimble as the smaller of the other chasers, Rhovanioth found that he was managing to keep up with her movements rather well, following her through every twist and turn. She addressed the other males, two browns and three other bronzes that had arrived after he and Wojoth had, and while he allowed himself to feel a pang of jealousy once or twice, he refused to let it affect his flying. He would not falter, not now! He was the best, and he had
to prove that to her! As she led them through the sky, the bronze found himself deciding that yes, though he lacked the distinct egotism of some other bronzes, he would most certainly be the best choice. So he rocketed through the sky after her, utilizing any chance breeze to his advantage as he followed her. He saved his energy, knowing that she would choose at her own leisure and thus not in any sort of hurry to rush her decision. There would be time enough for witty words and playful teases once she made him her mate, after all, he thought with an amused rumble as she doubled back, giving him the chance to use a cross breeze to his advantage. He turned into the wind, letting it turn him around far quicker than he could have done so himself, pushing as much air behind him as he could to catch up to her, crooning playfully to her as he slid into a glide beside her.
From where he wandered almost aimlessly on the ground, D’aen could feel himself getting more and more lost in the emotions of his dragon. Rhovanioth wanted-- no, needed
-- this, and who was he to deny his great bronze anything? So he allowed himself to stop moving, shaking his head to clear his thoughts even for a moment as he thought of how strange this sensation was. It was otherworldly to him, feeling his bronze’s desires so deeply without any sort of relief from the tension that was building deep in the pit of his stomach. He firmly reminded himself that soon, soon it would all be over, and whether or not Andromedath chose his dragon or not. Though he knew that Rhovanioth was the best dragon that Pern could ever have, and whether that was rider bias or not had yet to be determined. But his confidence in the large bronze drifted through the bond, bolstering the dragon’s resolve and pushing him onward. The rider could feel every movement of the wind, feel it battering against his face, the tensing and relaxing of muscles he didn’t even have as Rhovanioth flapped his wings to keep altitude and pace with the golden queen whose affections he sought. Yes, soon it would all be over.