Gretchen's Indulgent Inscribed-Gold Jespeth

Illuminated Manuscript Egg
Bands of green, blue and red seem to jump out from this large egg's
smooth shell, twisting into intricate patterns that braid and twine
around each easy curve. One twist of green could be grasses, and the wisp
of brown that follows them could be the slope of a runner's tail. Similar
scenes of avians, animals, and even forms that might be human play
themselves out, seemingly inked across the parchment surface in bright
colors. Here and there, sprinkles and accents of brilliant gold bring
those scenes to life with light.

Illuminated Manuscript Egg colors itself with crack after crack, so
evenly spaced, so beautifully executed, a nod to the mightiness of the
scribe's pen. In the end, the shell falls apart like parchment torn
carefully from end to end into dozens of tiny, precise, shard strips.

Indulgent Inscribed-Gold Dragonet
Some indulgent scribe might have traced this pale, dark-eyed dragonet
from the crescent moon, requiring but a flick of gilded brush to
delineate sharp angles of spine and tail from the fluid, curvilinear
strokes of muzzle, of neck, of wings. Seeming all effortless gentility,
still she's branded with sailor's warning: sunrise illuminates her
paper-thin sails with fey red-gold, a complex pattern etched ever thinner
and finer from blood-tipped ailerons to prosaic, dark-smudged spars.

Amidst the sands' dry heat, a current of sudden energy swims up your
veins as you fully gain the scribed gold's attention: light but low —
and just the slightest bit gurgly — her (her? her!) laugh reverberates
from capillaries in. In. /In/, 'til you lose all air. And take another
breath, and drink /her/ in. ….So that's what it's like. So now you
know. And that's just the beginning.—

  • Why this name? You've said you like it. What more is needed? Jespeth

herself may think so, too. (But, if you insist, it clicks somehow with
thoughts for the character and the player; the 'Jesp' gives it a more
flavorful accent than the similar, softer Elspeth. And more than
anything, Gretchen has flavor.)

  • Why this egg? Wahll, it's the gold one. But to give it a little more

explanation, Fiona's player is fascinated by medieval art and illuminated
manuscripts in general, specifically the Book of Kells, as you'll see in
a minute. During the middle ages, before there were printing presses,
books were copied out by hand in parts of monastaries called scriptoriums
by monks, many of whom spent several years copying and illustrating this
or that book. Books were painstakingly hand-lettered in decorative
calligraphy, and embellished with bright, intricate initial capital
letters. The monks broke paragraphs up by drawing mini-illustrations,
some of which were illustrative of the book itself, some of which were
just meant to portray things that were "Godly" or right. Pastoral scenes,
prayer scenes, and pictures of saints were among the more popular topics.
And around the edges of each page, the monks wove intricate borders that
were embellished with figures of saints, animals and other subjects
(plants and leaves were frequently included). The "Illumination" came in
because once everything else was done, the monks added metallic gold
paint to the pictures and the initial capitals, to "illuminate" the
manuscript. And that's what an illuminated manuscript is.

  • Why this art? The illuminated manuscript is the Book of Kells; the Book

of Kells is the illuminated manuscript. It's a real document, of course,
a religious book whose original is housed in the Trinity College
Library, Dublin. Of all the medieval manuscripts we could think of, this
one seemed to be the most compelling, with its knotwork to draw the
viewer in, its sheer bulk and beauty. There are plenty of web pages that
deal with the Book of Kells in specific; one good source is

Physical Description:

Jespeth, a combination of all that is the rogue in Kolyath and all that
is the pirate in Gyrfath, is a pale sight, a contrast to you, Gretchen.
Her physical form echoes both sire and dam in her sire's spiky points and
red traces— and hints of that deep etching that defines her dam. The
blood-imagery on those ailerons is not ichor, but red, red, blood.
Every movement is fluid, every stretch is easy, and most of all, she's
endowed of an effortless, inborn gentility that, no matter which of her
colors she's showing, colors her above all else.


Oh, she's wickedly classy, your Jespeth, for all that she's indulgent of
you and your doings: indeed, indulgent of things that are /hers/, …at
least beyond the level where she thinks absolutely everything is hers!

Yes, Jespeth's indulgent; she likes to be indulged, and she likes
indulging — you scratch her back and she'll scratch yours, and relative
age and size difference just isn't a factor (although she's especially
easygoing with the littler dragons). It's not that she wishes for an easy
lifestyle, exactly, but she certainly does like being comfortable. She'd
work, and not really complain about it, but it wouldn't be what she'd
choose to do if she had other options!

Speaking of other options, Jespeth is somewhat ingenuously deceptive
where Gretchen is more of a schemer: while Jespeth isn't an active
machinator, she's also not a child, not a parent, and not /just/ an
audience (although she's the one to whom Gretchen can open up, to whom
she can show off what she's done) — it's more that she overlooks
consequences when others might not, and if Gretchen deep down inside
thinks it's the right thing to do, that's much more persuasive than any
outer morality. Most shenanigans are a ready 'Go!'; she's a full partner
to Gretchen that wouldn't battle Gretchen over a righteous reason, just a
practical one. (» No, I don't want to sneak lunch from Telgar's
herdbeasts. They're stringy. …What, Tillek's are tasty? Let's get
/them/! «)
However, Jespeth's (being a dragon) not herself a planner; she doesn't
live off-the-cuff, either, but on instinct. (» This needs doing, that
does not. Why are we even discussing it? In fact, we aren't. I'm going.
« ) This may be difficult for Gretchen, since she herself is a planner
(even if it's planning how to avoid something rather than to /do/
something): can she truly plan for a while? Jespeth may be skeptical of
Gretchen's plans while at the same time having no lack of faith in her.
That said, Jespeth will try anything, make that /everything/, once…
and dragons and their (lack of) memory gives 'once' a new feel indeed.
She'll usually be willingly involved with your schemes, as long as you
think it's the right thing to do (even if the world doesn't; it's not as
if everyone else matters), and might intuitively come up with some new
plays all on her own. But then again, to take another example, she might
just decide no, she doesn't like wherry and she doesn't care if she
hasn't tasted it in three turns and has completely forgotten what it's
really like — she doesn't like wherry. Game over! She's adventurous to a
point, though; for all that she'll try anything, you're the only one
she'd obsess over, and even that's just instinct. One of the wonderful
things about Jespeth is that she'll not just go along with but /dive
into/ an idea, wild or boring… well, to a point.
And then she's stubborn as heck! Stubborn stubborn stubborn.
(/Especially/ where you're concerned; nobody else is so delightful a
challenge.) Not necessarily because she feels something is right or
wrong, although it could well be that it's part of her innate sense of
how things 'should' be, but she's made up her mind for some reason or
other that she does or doesn't want this. And no argument is going to
change her mind on it, even if deep down she might know she's being
flaming herself in the foot, as it were. It's one of those things where
you thought you were in agreement with someone but then it turned out no,
you really weren't and it comes up at the oddest times — sometimes in
the thick of some plan, sometimes just talking together late at night,
sometimes an idle comment that brings it all to the fore. You may have
agreed to something, but that doesn't mean she'll follow through… to
your detriment /and/ to your benefit. It's possible (if not always easy)
to distract her — she's not going to yell and scream and beat a point to
death — and drop the subject (while more quietly continuing right on the
path) but then ten steps down the road it comes up again… and again.
It's not going to go away by ignoring it, but it could sure be

Imagine Jespeth eyeing Gretchen with amusement; she has a wicked sense of
humor, she does. Someone you can banter with. Neither would necessarily
be 'better' or 'deeper' than the other; they understand each other —
usually ;) — and play off each other. That said, Jespeth, being a
dragon, learns faster and is more teachable to boot; she may gain a more
developed sense of humor/intelligence/experience than Gretchen does. She
may be childlike, especially when inexperienced, but she's not childish.
Between the two, they /know/, and can burst out into spontaneous laughter
with one another without any provocation at all. It's not mean-spirited,
though; it's not making fun of others; it's about finding life
(especially them) funny in general. …Although, if Theronth /does/
happen to choke on his tail, or Klimth get surrounded by giggling,
oogling children… how could one resist?

That sense of humor carries over to interactions with you, too. Jespeth
may be apt to dismiss all of Gretchen's hangups with a long, gurgling,
reverberating laugh — croon — laugh: not laughing at Gretchen so much
as at all her airs and worries. (Which may be more frustrating than
helpful…) Doing /something/ is better than doing nothing at all; so if
you want to influence what she's going to do, better think fast! Even if
it's a choice between doing nothing at all, and doing whatever it is that
everyone else is doing, she'll want to do it because (a) she doesn't want
to be left out, and (b) she wants — again — to do Something. Anything.
Everything. She likes to belong. She likes being busy. She likes being a
part of what is going on with her clutchmates and the Weyr. She belongs,
and she knows it. That confidence, that effortless gentility, it's all
about knowing her place in the world. (And there is a difference between,
say, Fort and Telgar, or Fort and Southern, thank you very much.)

Speaking of the world, Jespeth shares with Gyrfath, and indeed most of
her maternal line, an adventurous spirit. She wants to travel, both to
see and to be seen — /lives/ for flight and freedom, the power and
thrill that soaring through the skies gives her — and will swoop and
wobble her way to get there. (» We go — this way! «) Sometimes the
haggling is friendly (Imagine the two brownies from _Willow_ here:
Gretchen as one, Jespeth as the other, the best of friends but always
arguing over who actually is the leader, and where they are going. » You
are proddy, Gretch. And when you are proddy, you forget, that I AM IN
CHARGE! « ) …and, well, sometimes it's, ah, less so. 'Strong clash of
wills' is just the beginning, and boy, it can be loud! Destructive of
breakables nearby, quite possibly, too. She's shameless, and may well
intuit that your wanting her to be quiet about something may just mean
that she should make it known… unless you get her that oiling.

Breakables likely will be nearby, too, and oilings will certainly be in
the cards. She's not particularly tidy, your Jespeth. Especially if she
forgets about things, and there's nothing like hiding contraband in plain
sight. 'Not particularly tidy'? Maybe that's 'cluttered'; or even
'messy'. Not dirty-sloppy-messy, but… you can step around things. It
doesn't matter if you step on clothes, and they're easy to shove into a
pile out of the way—not to mention they make great hiding places for
thing you really don't want visitors to notice. Even your old, smelly
workboots are better than Real Dirt. Things like dishes, though, that can
grow mold if left… ewww. Get them back to the kitchen!


Oh, does Jespeth have a low, gurgling, reverberant laugh! That's mental,
sure, but it's echoed in her deep, physical croon — warble — gurgle, as
well. Her mind-touch's signature is effortlessly liquid: not an open
ocean or a quiet lake, not even a waterfall, but a warm bath about you,
the heart's blood in your veins. When she's displeased, that water goes
away, leaving you dessicated and in a rush to drink, drink, drink and
smear lotion all over… as if that could do any good! When things are
going swimmingly, by comparison, whether it's swimming with or especially
against the current, or even just floating… she's always there. And
guess what? Under /this/ water, you can breathe.

"I'm going to rule the Weyr one day, and they'll see! They'll see!" »
That's nice, dear. We'll do that in a bit. Now scratch the other side,
would you? «

Egg: Fiona
Dragonet: K'lora, Kh'rys, Gr'ym, Fiona, Arien

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