Wordcount: 348 words
Summary: Please note, this is currently a very rough draft. There will be spelling and grammatical errors afoot as well as flat out bad writing, info dumps, plot holes, flat out contradictions, and uneven characterization and pacing. (Content is also subject to constant change as I take an editing chainsaw to the story.)
The Fledglings Arrive
The fledglings are past that awkward stage that is mid-baby fluff and proper feathering. They still have the predominately white markings that set them apart visually from the adults, well that and the fact that they are half the size. But when see without an adult to judge them against, they look almost full grown.
Although they start out with the handler the fledglings quickly spread out, searching the crowds for their riders. They are not used to the crowds, but they are old enough to behave themselves, even though most of them are so focused on finding their riders that they don’t notice much else.
The foxhawk hatchlings were old enough to bond and the handlers Sir Delvia and Sir Mirrim had taken them to the hatching to meet up with their riders. Foxhawks tended to be born where their riders were located.
Baron liked Flame well enough, the red foxhawk was well respected within the combat wings but had a quick tempted, but red Watchlight was more forgiving of the fledglings’ antics. Flame had been a last second replacement for red Minder who was the normal bachelor male for this group.
Baron wished Minder was there because the older red had a much more comforting attitude to Baron having to find a new rider. Watchlight was skeptical that one could be found and Flame seemed to think the fact that Baron’s rider had died was somehow a reflection on Baron’s suitability as a foxhawk.
The other fledglings were happy to be at the hatching having looked forward to this day for three years, or for as long as they understood what was going to happen. Baron wanted to stay home. The chances of finding someone at the Hatching that would be an acceptable rider, but was not meant to be a rider was slim to none.
If he could not find a rider, he would never earn his place in the warrens– although there were some exceptions for exceptional service. He has no desire to fly any of the basically suicide missions that that would require.