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The notable fauna of SWW

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Current Month
8.2591 A.R.
9th Interval

Southern Winds has plotted events roughly every OOC week. This means our story is ever evolving and Southern Winds is changing. Events for the current month are listed here, once you've registered for an account.

Our roleplay time is pretty fluid. We allow you to play anything that may have happened in the past, but not in the future, as events that may affect the entire weyr may ruin futuristic plots.

We list Flights, Clutches, and Hatchings for both Dragons and Whers here, though not for firelizards.  There are Candidate events, Weyrling classes, Holder plots, and Crafthall developments -- a little bit of something for everyone.

See previous events here!
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Southern Winds is Moving!!

http://southernwindsweyr.net/Images/news icon copy.png We've been on SMF for almost 5 years, and while it's been good to us, it's time to shuffle on over to Jcink. We're packing everything up and moving over:

Come along with us to : Southern Winds @ Jcink!

This guide is created for those people who are curious about Pern, new to the setting, or just need a refresher on the basics. There will be links to additional information, should you want expanded information on topics, and acts as a guide attached to the information we have stored on Southern Winds. If you want to just peruse the information threads, they’re all listed in the Basics.

     A fictional planet in the universe created by Anne McCaffery. It was discovered ( per Southern Winds time ) 2,589 turns ( or years ) ago but much of the information and technology they had at that time was lost during the first Thread Fall.

     At Southern Winds, Pern has been ravaged and is largely a dead world now. Only one island has survived, and that is the setting of the site.
Spoiler for History of Pern:

Pern was explored and cleared for colonization by an EEC team, two hundred years before colonization. Less than a decade after the first colony was established, the settlers discovered that their chosen planet was subject to periodic attack from space by the destructive Thread, a space borne spore that destroys organic substances on contact. This was responsible for the mysterious bare circles noted in the EEC report. Unable to retreat from the peril, the settlers developed methods of combating the Thread. A small indigenous life form, the Fire-Lizard, was discovered with remarkable adaptations against Thread: flight, teleportation, limited telepathy, and the ability to chew phosphine rock, or Firestone, and generate bursts of flame. These people genetically engineered the fire lizard into the Dragons that now roam Pern.

Overtime, the technology they settled with was lost and the Pernese people settled into their own ways of life. Pern is noted for its high incidence of cave systems, particularly in the Northern Continent. This feature heavily influenced the development of human society on the planet, as humans forced to take shelter in these caves eventually developed an intricate culture associated with cave-dwelling in a feudal society at a medieval to Renaissance level of technology.

The Weyrs are the home of the dragonriders of Pern. They are expansive structures, situated in a cave-riddled extinct volcanos, where there is enough space for both the dragons, their riders, and the people of the "lower caverns", the staff which maintain the Weyr. Due to the unsuitable terrain of Weyr locations (volcanoe, cliff faces), Weyrfolk are generally unable to grow food. They depend on tithes of goods from the holds in order to survive, and in exchange, the Dragonriders have pledged to protect those holds from Threadfall.

Additional Reading

Dragon Riders

     A Dragon and their Rider are bonded in a ceremony known as Impression. A dragon hatches and establishes a mental bond with the Rider, solidifying them in a closer than close relationship for the rest of their lives. The newly bonded, or Weyrlings, are then trained to work together, take care of one another, and eventually fly together. Dragonriders live at Southern Winds Weyr ( Weyr – the home of dragons and riders. )

     At Southern Winds, our Riders may be any gender or identity, from the age of 14+. Specific dragon colors generally impress to different requirements that will be listed later on.
Spoiler for Dragon Information:

Pernese dragons are similar to traditional Western dragons in the fact that they can breathe fire and resemble great lizards or dinosaurs with wings, but the resemblance ends there. Unlike most dragons in previous Western literature, Pernese dragons are entirely friendly to humanity. Furthermore, they are not magical at all. Instead, they are a heavily genetically modified species based on one of Pern's native life-forms, the fire-lizard.

Dragons are described as carnivorous, warm-blooded creatures. Like all of Pern's native large fauna, they have six limbs - four feet and two wings. Their blood, referred to as ichor, is copper-based and green in color, they have multifaceted eyes that change color depending on the dragon's mood. Their head and general body type is described by McCaffrey as being similar in shape to those of horses. On their heads they have small headknobs, similar to those of giraffes, and no visible ears. Unlike the dragons of Terran legend, they have a smooth hide rather than scales; the texture of their skin is described as being reminiscent of suede with a spicy, sweet scent when clean. They are described as having forked tail end. The dragons usually get from one place to another by going through a teleportation process known as 'going between'.

Upon hatching, each dragonet chooses one of the humans present and Impresses to that person; from that moment on, the pair are in a constant state of telepathic contact for as long as they both live. Dragons also use telepathy to communicate with each other. They are capable of speaking telepathically to humans besides their own riders, but not all of them will do so except under unusual circumstances.

Dragons can also teleport. They do this by briefly entering a hyperspace dimension known as between. Both humans and dragons experience between as an extremely cold, sensory-deprived, black void. After spending no more than eight seconds in between, the dragon can re-emerge anywhere on Pern, along with any passengers or cargo they carried. If a dragon attempts to teleport without a clear mental image of the place where they intend to reappear, they may simply fail to emerge from between and thus, be gone forever.

Dragons are fully sapient. They communicate fluently in human language (although only telepathically), and have personalities and opinions distinct from those of their riders. However, their intelligence does seem to be somewhat lower than that of the average human. In particular, their long-term memory is severely limited.

As a safeguard against the possible damage that could be caused by such powerful creatures, humans engineered dragons to be profoundly psychologically dependent on their riders. Any dragonet that fails to Impress to a human shortly after hatching will die. If a dragon's rider dies, the dragon immediately suicides by going between without a destination. The only exception in the books is a queen dragon whose rider dies while the queen is gravid; the dragon waits just long enough to lay her eggs and see them hatch before disappearing between. (Humans who lose their dragons typically commit suicide as well. However, some do survive, although the experience leaves profound psychological trauma.)

When a dragon hatches, they announce their names to their new riders upon Impression. Pernese dragons' names always end in -th.

Additional Reading


     These are the men and women of Pern who have not Impressed to a dragon and instead dedicate their lives to various Crafthalls, which are like specialized schools.

     At Southern Winds, there are 6 important crafthalls which will be described here.
--Healer Hall: Where healers are trained to stitch, mix medicine, and take care of wounded humans and dragons.
--Harper Hall: Where Histories, records, math, and reading are taught.  They write stories, sing songs, play music; all in keeping tradition and history alive.
--Mine Hall: Where raw materials such as rock, coal, and other metals are mined from the mountains. The workers belong to this hall.
--Smith Hall: Where the raw materials are worked into usable items. The Smith's belong here.
--Fisher Hall: Where people are taught the tricks and trade of fishing, caring for a boat, and navigating the seas.
--Beast Hall: Herdbeasts (cows) and Runnerbeasts (horses) are taken care of and bred by these people, who are taught care and maintenance as well.

Additional Reading


     This is the term used to describe those that lived in Fort-like establishments, called Holds, all over Pern and did not live in the Weyrs with Riders. Holds are ruled by a Lord and Lady Holder, who are supported by a Steward and Headwoman.  Drudges are the 'lower class' of pern. Kitchen work, farming, cleaning, and a myriad of other chores are assigned to the workers to keep the Hold (or Weyr or Hall) in working order. The Holds support the Weyr (the home of the Dragons), and in turn receive protection.

     At Southern Winds, there are no active Holds, as they were all destroyed during the Pass ( which will be explained below ).


    This is the main, and canonical, threat to Pern. Thread is the name of a deadly parasitic phenomenon that Pern faces. They are thin silver filaments of a space-borne spore that devours all organic matter that it touches. Pern periodically experiences Threadfalls where this deadly organism rains down from the sky when a planet known as the Red Star passes close by in orbit.
    Dragonriders and their fire breathing dragons are the only ones able to defend the Holds from this threat. Thread has no brain and is not sentient. It falls from the sky, and if left to touch the earth, it begins its feed cycle on the organic component of soil. The result is a burrow that multiplies extremely rapidly, devastating multiple square miles of land. One can imagine the damage that may result of everything organic dying in miles upon miles of land.

     At Southern Winds, the 9th Pass ( I.E. the 9th time the Red Star has passed on Pern ) was disastrous. After rediscovering some of the lost technology from the landing at the very beginning of Pern, they hoped to use the computer and three orbiting spacecraft to crash on the Red Star and alter it’s orbit. The attempt, while carried out successfully, did not have the intended result. The orbit of the Red Star was pushed off course, but closer to Pern resulting in near constant Threadfall and a longer than normal Pass. Over the course of the 60 turn Pass, all of the Holds, Halls, and Weyrs fell except Fort Hold and Weyr.

Hunters & Snakes

     Unique to Southern Winds are Hunters and Snakes. Hunters are much like the Pernese Dragon, but they do not impress to humans. They are pack hunters, smaller than some of the dragons, faster, and feral. They are stocky with powerful muscles and razor sharp fangs, able to digest anything they can swallow. Their skin is more often then not a dark green or brown, earth tones, so they can hunt and hide in the jungle that covers most of Fort Island ( the location of Southern Winds Weyr ).

     Beach and River Snakes are the natural beasts found during the initial exploration of Pern. The water 'snakes' as they are called, named so for their comparative body structure to that of a tunnel snake, are far larger than the vermin they're named after.

     At Southern Winds, these beasts have protected Fort Island from the Thread of the 9th Pass and are now the main conflict of Southern Winds Weyr.

Additional Reading

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