Class Schedule
Class RL Date(s) Topic Class Log
1 2/14/15 Bonding and Mind Exercises -
2 2/21/15 Straps and Unmanned Flight -
3 2/28/15 Hunting and Manned Flight -
4 3/7/15 Flaming -
5 3/14/15 Betweening -
6 3/21/15 Mating Flights -
TBA Weyrlings begin getting tapped into wings

First Few Weeks
There are a lot of things to do during the first week/first few months of your dragon's life. ICly, you will be learning how to take care of your lifemate and the bond between dragon and human will strengthen as you get to know each other. It is during the first few weeks that your dragon's personality starts to form. Dragons have a pre-written personality that comes with them, designed by others at the weyr. This personality is only a guide, not a rule. Feel free to alter the personality or discard it completely. You can also add depth to it as time progresses.

Where You Can Go:
Initially, all new dragonpairs will be confined to the barracks and the training field, and meals for both rider and lifemate will be delivered there. Apart from quick trips to the bathing caverns when the hatchlings are asleep, new riders generally spend the first month or so almost exclusively in and near the barracks. Young dragons have a tendency to curl up and snooze wherever, if tired, so venturing too far from the couches during the first few weeks isn't recommended. As the dragons age and mature, they will be able to spend longer and longer intervals apart from their bonds without distress. The bowl and the beach are often good places to stretch one's legs after the first few months, and the human half of the pair are allowed anywhere within the weyr after this time, although leaving the weyr is prohibited until the between lesson, and then only under supervision.

The dragon will need to be fed quite often during the first few months/weeks. Just about any time the dragon feels hungry, s/he should be fed. Weyrlings will be instructed to make sure they feed the dragon responsibly. A dragon shouldn't be allowed to choke down food or overeat. If a dragon overeats, s/he can have serious medical problems. If you wish to have this happen, consult your weyrlingmasters OOCly first. Bowel obstruction or bloated stomach would occur, or something of that nature.

While adult dragons are generally bathed in the ocean shallows (rinsing off afterward in the waterfall on the beach, to prevent salt from irritating the skin), weyrlings require someplace much closer to home. Typically, the weyr has a bathing pool in the weyrling barracks where you will bathe your lifemate until they're big enough that they can be taken to the lake in the training grounds. Only once they are old enough and strong enough to make regular trips to the beach will they be able to be bathed there.

A dragon also needs to be oiled regularly and frequently, especially when they are growing. Dragons grow quickly the first few months, and their hide will constantly stretch with them, causing itching. If they are not oiled, it can crack or grow patchy. This can cause serious problems, especially later for going *between*. The intense cold could get into those cracks or patches and hurt terribly, or even kill the dragon.

Dragon Bonding
This first week or so, most importantly, will be a very confusing time for any new rider. There is a new being searching through the mind of his/her lifemate, broadcasting emotions and perhaps putting his/her rider into a position where the emotions of one cannot be distinguished from the other. A weyrling might find that their emotions are stronger, more uncontrollable, accented by empathy shared with the dragon. Role-playing the confusion of this situation might lead to trying to control the surges and feelings, and how to live with them. A newly hatched dragon will have a tendency to sleep a lot, which will give a weyrling time to make sure food is cut and ready, and time to tend to other chores. You will not be without things to do, nor will a weyrling be allowed to be a slacker.

Food Provision
All weyrlings will need to help replace the meat that the dragons consume. Small dragons cannot hunt for themselves until they begin to fly. Weyrlings will help the weyrlingmasters butcher the meat and chop it up into bite-size pieces every day, until the dragons are able to hunt for their own food.

Until the dragons are old enough and strong enough to fly and can *between*, they cannot dispose of their wastes like older dragons. It will be possible, after a while, to persuade the dragon to deposit these wastes in a more appropriate place, such as the infamous dump bucket, but until then, weyrlings get to shovel the muck. This includes cleaning the couches where the dragons rest.

Replenishing The Oil Vats
The weyr has a large supply of oil, barreled for use by dragonriders and Holds to keep the dragons' hide supple and free from blemish. When the oil set out in the barracks vats is used up, which it will be, due to the numbers of weyrlings and the growth of dragons, these vats will need to be refilled.

Helping Around The Weyr
After the first few months, during which the weyrlings will be doing mostly chores associated with their dragon's care and comfort, they will start helping with other things. There are numerous duties that can be assigned to weyrlings, some of which will come during the course of the training period. These jobs include running errands around the weyr, helping with barracks chores, maintaining the weyrling side of the training grounds, setting up for lessons, taxi and messenger service after the young dragons can fly, and bagging firestone.

Please remember to be respectful to those higher in rank. Weyrlings' immediate superiors are the weyrlingmaster and his assistants. The Weyrlingmaster is like a wingleader. Assistant weyrlingmasters are like wingseconds. The only leadership above the weyrlingmaster are the weyrleaders and the weyrsecond. Weyrlings are not required to salute every time they see a rider, but it is appropriate to do so when you are called to attention, or summoned to meet formally. Just seeing a rider around the weyr, such as in the living caverns, or if a rider walks by, does not mean you have to salute.

Depending on where you came from, and what you have done in your life thus far, you are all likely to have different views on what are good manners, etiquette, and protocol. Now that you are Ista riders, you need to be very aware that whatever you do is going to reflect on the weyr. Therefore, we are going to cover the basics of etiquette and what is expected of all new riders:

1 - Act Appropriately
At all times, you must be polite and courteous, especially to those of higher rank than yourself.

2 - Address Appropriately
If at all possible, address people by their correct titles where known, and check their knot. If you don't know what it is, play it safe.

3 - Represent The Weyr
As a rider, you represent Ista. While the weyr itself may seem laid-back and casual, actions which reflect badly on it will have consequences, some more severe than others. Remember, if you act disrespectfully, the weyr is acting disrespectful, and complaints will likely be lodged with the weyrleadership. They will have absolutely no qualms about tracking you down and chewing you out (and other unpleasant disciplinary measures). It will likely result in groundings and extended lessons on proper behavior/diplomacy, and will not be a pleasant experience.

4 - Diplomatic Knowledge
One of the important lessons you'll be working on is to learn the hierarchy of the weyr, as well as those of Ista's beholden areas. You'll be learning what position handles what task and where they place in the rankings of responsibility. Rank hierarchy, diplomacy, tact, and etiquette are important to all Istan riders. Weyrlings come from many places, and from many backgrounds. Time will be spent learning weyr positions, what each do, and how to correctly address each person in the proper way, depending on specific circumstances. As well as how to act as representatives of Ista Weyr when dealing with holds, crafthalls, and other weyrs.

5 - Formal Training
All weyrlings, during the course of their training, will be taught not only skills of diplomacy and etiquette, but the more refined social graces, as expected of a dragonrider from such a traditional weyr. *cough* While you may not actually be called upon to use these skills often, if at all once graduated, at least the basics are covered during weyrlinghood. These include: group co-operation exercises for future work in the wings, leadership training (especially for bronzeriders), formal dance classes, and eventually shadowing wingriders on a limited basis once graduation nears.

While all riders must be physically fit in order to properly care for their lifemates, few are ever required to brandish a blade, for any reason other than cutting up food. However, it is important, both for the new rider's well-being and that of their dragon, that they know how to defend themselves should a situation abroad get out of hand. Occasional tavern brawls aside, a Threadfree Pern does not mean a lack of danger when away from home. Toward the end of weyrling training, all new riders will learn at least the basics of self-defense, with emphasis on short blades such as daggers and knives, as well as the use of crossbows and hand-to-hand techniques. Obviously, for safety, wooden weapons and carefully monitored training sessions are a must. Weyrlings will often train in small groups with the weyr guard or S&R riders, under the careful supervision of the weyrlingmasters. In addition, basic first-aide and dragonhealing will be covered by weyr healers, with emphasis made on being calm until help arrives, and what to do if a rider or dragon is injured away from the weyr.

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