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Main Beach - Monaco Weyr

This long black sand beach extends as far as the eye can see in the west, but is broken to the east by the mouth of Monaco River. The sand sprawls in different formations; flat here near the Weyr buildings, with a slight foredune and then a broken basalt flat leading back up to the buildings. Wavy, rolling dunes rise across the river farther east. Occasional gusts of wind laden with sharp salt and mustier river scents riffle lighter sand over the flat beach, and from the quay at the western bank of the rivermouth comes the faint ring of clapper against bell.

Ripples of water lap against the shore, pushed with the dying west wind of evening. The light is golden and pure, shimmering in air still active from the heat of the day. Overhead, a single gull cries.

Off in the distance, shipfish leap from the sea, playing in the waning light as it caresses the water.

At the edge of the beach leaf covered trees sway in the gentle breeze, while closer to the water a sandcastle built earlier that day is threatened to be washed over by the incoming tide.

Over at the quay, the last of the fishing fleet ties up for the night. Sounds of fisherfolk voices, the slap of lines and nets, and the creak of the wagons used to haul the fish come faintly over the water, the end of the day making movement slow and tired.

The light grows more pink and misty orange as the sun continues its path towards the sea, as sleepy birdsong fills the air. A single green fire lizard zips low over the water, diving and bringing up her dinner.

Farther out, weary dragons use the last of their strength in playing out in the salty waters to be often joined by their riders. While high above the seas, aerial displays are made by fairs of wild firelizards, celebrating the coming of a days end.

Down along the water, a little boy leads his mum by the hand, splashing in and out of the wavelets. Behind them a pair of footprints trails off down the shore, slowly being washed away by the incoming tide.

Sounds of the weyrfolk gathering for their evening meal comes from the hall further from the shore, while from the sea, the soothing sound of waves crashing against the beach, fills the air.

The sun finally touches the horizon and spreads, heavy and lambent, across the horizon. The shimmer of the air seems to melt into pure gold, and the sounds of evening fade for a moment in the blaze.

Off, in the distance it seems, a dragon flies, delighting in the sheer beauty of the moment. A trick of the light give it the hue of a gold, before it fades again.

In the closer-by, there is a murmur from some who are sitting and watching. It has an amused tone -- none here before ever mistook old Ghanath's blue hide for gold. He'll get a ribbing at dinner tonight, one that he'll return good-naturedly. Or his rider will, anyway.

The sounds of nighttime slowly start to meld into the music of life. There is a soft, distance splashing from further out to sea, perhaps the shipfish still frolicking in the waves.

As the sun sinks ever lower, spreading from gold to orange to a deep, deep red, the dusk gathers over the Weyr. Now the far distances fade, though they are still visible in shades of blue-grey. The boy and his mum turn and make their way along the path, food and companionship of evening soon to be theirs.

Behind the weyrhall, the sky is already a dark blue, the faintest sparkling of the earliest stars coming out, even as the gold fades to red. The sandcastle tumbles the last of its walls into the encroaching sea.

Pair by pair, two by two, the last of the dragons and their riders come out of the water. Dripping and laughing or dripping and quiet, tired, they all come, heading too for warmth and light and friendship. Soon the waters are empty of all but the shipfish and the other creatures whose home is the sea.

The dim purple of the horizen slowly deepen in hue, more and more stars brightening the night sky. The sounds of the water seems louder, with the ending of the day.

Finally, Timor peaks over one of the bluffs, marking the turn from deep evening to night. In the forest above the cliffs, a night flyer screes deeply, and sleepy firelizards rouse briefly. Soon, though, the deep silence of night returns.

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