Quzanth

Q'van's Anise-Pepper Liqueur Bronze Quzanth
Egg Name: Stand-Out Star Anise Egg

Egg Desc: Mahogany explodes from the egg's tip, radiating down over the surface in a great eight pointed star. Each of the star's rusty boat-shaped arms is edged in gold, rippling the appearance of the egg. The star's heart houses delicate aureate seeds that cluster as if seeking shelter from prying eyes or prodding fingers.
Hatching Message: Stand-Out Star Anise ripples, rips: so abrupt, so quick that the eight points of this warped, rusty star have no time to unfold with any great fanfare. Now, only fragments lie scattered, and a liquid-liqueur bronze dragon slides away from the wreckage left behind him.

Hatchling Name: Anise-Pepper Liqueur Bronze Dragonet

Hatchling Description: The mellow warmth of fine brandy enfolds the slight dragon's aristocratic head. The deep charcoal of cracked pepper highlights the refined lines of his sculptured headknobs and muzzle. Glorious burnished copper cascades over his neckridges and across his wide, near-translucent wingsails. The hues twine with deep rum to color his compact, muscular haunches and dark underbelly. Strong steel and smoky mahogany shades stamp his talons, the colors matched in the lithe musculature of his tail.

Impression Message: The sounds of the sands die away, the shouting dimming to soft silence, the heat fading to comfortable warmth. As all sound disappears, so too does sight. The hectic scenes before you are replaced by blackness. A rush of mahogany and gold rolls into your mind. Like a wave upon a beach, it breaks and sinks slowly into your consciousness until it permeates all that you are. A gruff, bass voice sounds thoughtfully, »Aaaaaah. Perfect.« Hints of coriander and lemongrass weave about you like scents on a breeze, and as sight and sound return, you become aware of a small, burnished bronze form standing before you. And that gruff, satisfied voice sounds once more. »I'm Quzanth!«


Intro:

Our clutch this time was based around herbs and spices, and Quzanth's hatching name came from star anise, which decorated his egg. Star anise is the fruit of a small evergreen tree native to Southwest China, now found throughout Japan and Southeast Asia. The plant produces a small, star-shaped fruit which usually has eight points, a seed being found in each of these points. In flavour, star anise is more bitter than regular anise, and it's widely used as a spice and tea flavouring, as well as in liqueurs. You can find more information on star anise at:

http://web.archive.org/web/20040103114002/http://www.ochef.com/14.htm

http://web.archive.org/web/20040103114002/http://www.internationalrecipesonline.com/recipies/dictionary.pl?6600

The inspiration for Quzanth's description was drawn from several sources - star anise itself, the star anise-pepper liqueur that gave him his hatching name, as well as the Asian countries in which star anise is found.

His personality, however, is not based upon an alcoholic beverage… (although that might have been interesting!) Instead, we looked to China, Japan and Vietnam, where star anise is found. These are countries of contrast, where bustling, frantic cities meet with rural areas where time has stood still. Quzanth himself is a dragon of contrasts, of sharp edges, of gruff superiority, and of hidden depths to be discovered only through exploration.

Quzanth. When searching for the perfect name, we trawled through endless city and province names in the areas he's based off, eventually drawing inspiration from them to create our own name. The name Quzanth has wonderfully rough, gruff edges about it - it's very different from some of the softer names his clutchmates bear. Say it out loud! You can bark it, so can gruffly announce it, or you can draw it out slowly.

Personality:

Quzanth… aahhh, Quzanth. He's really something. He might seem easy to define from afar, but the closer one moves to him, the more the complications emerge. He can come across as superior, gruff and a bit of a perfectionist, but underneath (very, very privately) he's the sort who'd quietly help out the weyrling that's lagging behind. As long as nobody was looking, mind you. He's full of sharp edges, and angles - he'll wait until a clutchmate has a real disaster on his or hers hands, before weighing in with an opinion. " I would have tried pulling its legs off first. Didn't you see what happened last time Imanjeth tried it the way you're doing? " But offering that opinion when he can see the trouble approaching? Forget it. For Quzanth, mighty Quzanth, does have a bit of a superiority complex. He's inherited from his sire, Sparneth, the belief that he's a real gift to the Weyr, but he's also inherited something more important. Underneath, he cares. Quietly, when he thinks he's unobserved, he'll offer gruff, kind words, or quiet help. He's a dragon of complications and contradictions, despite the face he offers to the world.

One of the problems with being a Superior Dragon, of course, is that constant reminders of this fact can cause a bit of friction. Quzanth's sharp comments or corrections can alienate himself now and again, and he does sometimes forget to consider how his observations might affect others. His tendency to believe that he's always right means that he rarely hesitates to offer his opinion, even when it's possibly not such a good idea. In addition, his endless hours of flying practice, aimed at extracting every ounce of speed and power from his body can make him rather impatient with sloppy fliers, or those who don't take formations seriously.

These weaknesses, however, are but the smallest part of Quzanth's personality - while he does simply /know/ that he's better than others, this usually translates more into a belief that he should lend a hand than into criticisms. Although he's unwilling to compromise his superior image publicly, he'll always be willing to offer quiet, private observations, more kind than his unthinking public comments. If he sees another struggling with something he'll be the very first to help out. Underneath that gruff, sometimes grumpy exterior beats a true heart of gold, and the heart of a gifted leader.

There are certain things which simply pull - not just pluck, oh no! — at the (often well-hidden!) heartstrings of Quzanth. Being a dragon of contrasts has certainly worked its way into every aspect of his life, including his passions. From early on, you should be quick to notice his unwavering delight with all things water: a contrast itself, if you look close enough.

Rain, rain, rain-the droplets can be gentle and soothing (much like Quzanth, behind-the-scenes), and for that Quzanth loves them. Something about a gentle patter of rain brings out an almost childlike quality in him. His fascination and joy in it will no doubt puzzle you, as it would him-if he were to stop and consider it. But he's too busy revelling in it, you see: the gentle, soft rain is so unthreatening, so calming. *Revelling* truly means being out in it, whether sprawled on his ledge or right out in the middle of the bowl, wingsails spread so it can touch nearly all of him.

But rain has another side, don't forget. Just add wind and little more oomph; it's not so gentle anymore - it's stinging. Prickling. — Just as Quzanth can be, with all his remarks.

Thunderstorms, too, strike a chord within him. After Quzanth's seen the world, don't be surprised if he drags you out to Keroon's plains to watch the thunderstorms from a distance. " How magnificent! What splendour! " The awesome might of a ferocious storm amazes and awes Quzanth; such magnificence is often displayed in Quzanth himself, in his leadership abilities and his natural talent. Yet just as Quzanth can come across as abrasive, so can a thunderstorm be menacing - unpredictable, even. Another contrast Quzanth is unconsciously drawn to.

Ah! And his last passion, his last delight is found in — what else? Does this surprise you? — the ocean. Just as he'll long to visit Keroon and its storms, he'll often desire to fly down the coast, to South Boll and then back again, if nothing else but to glide alongside the powerful, vast waters that seem to stretch on unendingly. Quzanth's quite a bit like the ocean: its great depth (will you ever get to the bottom of all that is Quzanth?), its power, and its complexities nearly mirror your Quzanth. The other side of the story, though: the ocean has the ability to turn from simply powerful to rough - sound familiar?

Contrasts can't quite seem to leave Quzanth alone. Just as he favours water and being wet, Quzanth just isn't quite comfortable with heat - excessive, overbearing heat. Pity him, Quivan, should he ever sire a queen's clutch; he'll try his best to escape Sands-duty. And, truly, Igen is not a top vacation spot.

His insecurities, on the other hand, run quite deep and affect him quite deeply. While no one has set 'perfection' as a standard he must meet except for himself, Quzanth feels a strong pressure to live up to such a lofty expectation. It simply cannot be done. Though he will try - and try, and try. And try. When disappointment causes those wingsails to droop (and they will, they will, time and time again), *you* will need to be his reassurance. You will need to be the exhorter. -He needs to know that while he's lost the battle, he can still win the war.

If anything can threaten to blow his calm, collected exterior, it's the stress Quzanth puts on himself. For himself - for *you* - for Fort - he needs to be the best, because he looks the best and was born the best (hearing that Superiority Complex rearing up?) and that's all he's ever known. And when he isn't recognized for the good he does, or when he's criticize for being too rough, too tough, too gruff - there's that little part inside of him that wonders, " Are they right? " Is he just not good enough?

Oh! But you know he is, Quivan! And, time and time again, you'll need to tell him. You'll need to remind him of his last victory, his last four-star achievement (for there will be many, you can bet!). Draconic memory just cannot store all his conquests, all his feats, and your strong belief in him will put the fire back in him. Those wingsails won't drag the ground anymore.

Concerning patriotism towards Fort Weyr: Was there ever a question? Quzanth will be loyal to Fort Weyr until the day he dies - perhaps it was partly your own, unquestioned loyalty to the Weyr that drew him to you in the first place. His superiority complex extends to his view of the Weyr, no question there. Fort Weyr was the /first/ Weyr. It's the best Weyr on Pern, with the finest dragons (including himself!), best climate, tastiest herdbeasts and best thermals around. Should you ever find yourself in a position of leadership, expect your lifemate to take that duty /very/ seriously indeed.

Every dragon has its own quirks and habits, and Quzanth is no exception. Quzanth collects proverbs, and delights in producing them for every occasion, whether the recipient understands them or not. Everyone in the Weyr will become used to a superior tone of voice making inscrutable observations at them, right when they didn't really need to hear a word from anybody. " Too many cooks spoil the broth! " " Haste makes waste! " " A herdbeast under your paw is worth two in the pens! " " Curiosity caused the untimely demise of the feline! "

Quzanth's a clever dragon, and he won't hesitate to show that fact off.

Another problem you might have with Quzanth is that he insists on Quality for Quality. What he means by this, of course, is that he, a quality dragon, should only have to deal with quality possessions. In the tradition of emperors throughout the ages, he'll insist on the best of the best. The best rushes for his bed, the best tapestries for your weyr, the most expensively tailored clothes for you. He mightn't win every battle, but he'll certainly try, and you'd better be prepared to find some marks somewhere, since this dragon will demand you spend them.

And flights? What more are they than battles? They perhaps could be the best test of Quzanth's abilities in his own mind. The challenge of a gold flight - and green, too; it's not beneath him to give chase! - will stretch and strain him in so many ways. But this is why he enjoys them so greatly. It's about the self-discipline (can he resist the flirting, the temptations?) and the mental and physical push to fly harder, faster, more reckless-dare he outsmart, outmaneuver? Once he does, he's smug; you won't escape some grand, delicious replays of his performance, his skill. As for the lucky green or gold: Quzanth does not give his affections out readily; most of the time he'll treat either female with some amount of distant. That was then… and this is now. The fizzy, dizzy sort of females holds no interest for him. It's the ones with depth, feeling that he'll likely stick around for. But she had better be worth his precious time.

It's easy to predict Quzanth might be the best in his weyrling class, skill-wise. He's a complete natural. This shouldn't come as a surprise, as Quzanth's greatest desire is to fulfil his purpose as a true great dragon of Pern. From the beginning, Quzanth will do everything really, really well. Flying will come as no challenge; nor will hunting, betweening, or even leading the weyrling wing. Yet in his desire to do so great, his movements and appearance might come across as stiff, too formal, too - plastic, even. If he's not the leading man, he might need some coaxing into becoming part of the team-rather than running it. He just doesn't see himself as a follower.

Physical Info:

Quzanth will never be Fort's largest bronze - he's at the smaller end of the scale, slight and compact, combining the benefits of stamina with the advantages of slightly better manouvreability than many bronzes. He's an aristocratic dragon in build and bearing, seeming almost sculpted, rather than simply born. The colours of fine liqueur dominate his hide, rum and brandy washing over him, combining with copper polished to perfection. The ins and outs of his refined form are highlighted with dustings of dark pepper, adding depth just where it's needed. Quzanth, in other words, is a handsome dragon - and he knows it. He's built almost perfectly to scale, and he'll love pushing his body to its limits - trying to get that last bit of height, speed or turning angle out of himself through endless practice. All this, however, does not mean he'll be excused from the itchiness and sometimes awkwardness of weyrlinghood. His feet will be the first to grow, and he'll frequently trip over them, scrambling upright once more with a glare that just /dares/ anybody to have noticed. His tail will be another burden, too long for his body for quite a long time - only finally coming into line with the rest of his body when he reaches full growth. Another source of irritation to him will be those itchy spots that every growing dragonet suffers. With those fast-growing feet, Quzanth will suffer terrible itching around his talons - either presenting his feet for scratching as though he wants to 'shake', or running them along the ground as though he's a bull about to charge!

Mindvoice:

Quzanth's mindvoice is as many-layered as the dragon is himself. His mental speaking-voice is a gruff bass, with more depth than some larger bronzes. His texture, despite that gruffness, is luxurious, calling to mind the finest sisal on bare skin. When making a point, he'll wind ribbons of thought almost palpably through your own mind. When he reappears after sleep, or wishes to gain your particular attention, his thoughts will permeate yours like a wave that runs up a beach, then sinks slowly into the sand. For colours, he favours oriental mahogany and gold, occasionally slipping in a deep kingfisher blue for emphasis. His mental touch is also rich in scent, sharp chili touching it when he's making his sharper comments, softer coriander dominating when he's at ease, or in quiet conversation. A touch of lemongrass creeps in at other times, or cumin, perhaps.

Credits:

Egg: S'naid

Inspiration: R'sin, M'gael

Recipe!

Why not try this at home?

Star Anise-Pepper Liqueur
Ingredients:

1 quart (1 L) 80 or 100 proof vodka

2/3 cup sugar (or to taste)

6 whole star anise

8 whole black peppercorns, crushed

Combine all ingredients in a large bottle or glass jar. Let sit in a cool, dark location for 5 to 7 days, or longer. Taste daily, and when flavour has reached desired intensity, strain and bottle. Label: Quzanth Special!

This recipe from:

http://www.culinarycafe.com/Drinks/Anise-Pepper_Liqueur.html

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