Miritte

Character type: Dragonhealer
Rank: Journeyman
Age: 26
Gender: Female
Sexual Preference: Creamy bisexual nougat wrapped in a layer of malted desire for heteronormality, then dipped in a colorful candy shell of defensive porcupine-ality. Good luck with that.

Appearance

Miritte is a young woman of average height, with a fairly athletic build. There's just a little bit of extra curve and softness to her hips which, in her moments of self-doubt, makes her feel fat (she is absolutely not). Her face is “nice” but unremarkable – symmetrical, put together well enough, with smooth skin but no features that really stand out enough to catch the eye alone. She has brown eyes, and dark brown hair that falls just to the bottom of her shoulderblades when left down, but she almost always has it pulled back and pinned up (or held with hairsticks) into a haphazard bun at the back of her head. She has a jagged scar down the outside of her right thigh, a permanent memento of a Hatching during her apprenticeship when she was helping to steady a hatchling with an injured wing and got tagged deep by a claw when the little green thrashed unexpectedly.

Personality

Miritte is in a very precarious time in her life right now. Only recently promoted to journeyman, she feels like she's finally approaching where she wants to be — finally growing into a respected professional, growing in confidence and independence, learning to enjoy her life for what it is rather than what she thinks her father wants it to be – but there are still some remnants of the hurt little girl, and the rebellious teenager that she once was, clinging and trying to hold her back.

A confused jumble of feelings and reactions have all melded into her personality so seamlessly that sometimes it can be hard to tell what is actually motivating her at any given time. For example, she's very focused on her work, very serious about what she does, and she works a lot of extra candlemarks – her fellow apprentices used to call her a suck-up, or say that she had a stick up her ass (or, alternately, that she needed one to loosen her up a bit) – but there are a variety of reasons why she's so driven: because she still has a burning desire to please lurking just beneath the surface, yes, (at this point in her life, making anyone happy would do), but also because she honestly enjoys what she does, and because when she's working it's the only time she really feels completely useful and self-satisfied. That doesn't mean she doesn't ever relax or take the time to fool around, just that she spends a lot of time on the proverbial clock. She wants to be taken seriously as a dragonhealer, and thinks this means she has to be serious herself – be tough, be no-nonsense, be anything but a weak little girl. Don't let them see you sweat. Snark at them before they can snark at you.

It's easy to read her emotions, but she doesn't open up and share the whys and wherefores – she's a very private person, definitely afraid of opening up, and she drives her friends and family crazy sometimes with her refusal to share. The tired old stereotype of women just so happens to be true in her case – she might be angry, she might give you the cold shoulder, but she sure as hell isn't going to tell you why until you pry it out of her with a crowbar. It's a self-preservation instinct (if you don't tell people what pushes your buttons, they can't use them to hurt you), but it's also a good way to keep people at arm's length. And arm's length is generally where she prefers people. There's no doubt that she still seeks approval, though this is only occasionally obvious (most often when praise provokes a visible reaction in her) but she's also almost afraid to seek it sometimes – fear of rejection is high on her list of fears, and so a lot of her relationships turn into this bizarre, exasperating dance of wariness. Give a little, laugh a little, then abruptly take two steps back. Smile at someone, then ignore them for a sevenday when she realizes she likes them enough to hope they'll smile back. Someone reaches out to her, and she may reach back, tentatively – only to spook like a rabbit at the first sign of trouble. “Spooky” is probably a good way to describe her when it comes to potential romances. There's still enough holdbred in her that she'd like to settle down with one mate someday and have a child or two, but it's not likely to happen anytime soon, unless there's some man out there with the patience to do the Hokey Pokey for a turn or two in his pursuit of her. She can be a little cranky (she's definitely one of those people who has very obvious “right side of the bed” and “wrong side of the bed” days), quick to bristle at insults, and she has an unfortunate tendency to wallow in self-pity from time to time. Even her closest friends occasionally have the urge to just grab her by the shoulders and shake her out of it physically.

That's typically not necessary, though. She can keep these funks mostly suppressed by focusing on her work and taking pride in it, and always eventually works her way out of them herself. Once she does, more of her true personality shines through: a little more laid-back, a sly sense of humor with a touch of mischievousness, and a sincere desire to help other people. Even though she originally became a dragonhealer for the wrong reasons, it forced her to grow up in a lot of ways, and she's justifiably proud of growing past her childish resentment of the beasts for their rejection of her. Sometimes she still dreams of a life fighting hard aloft, fraught with danger – she's still a very physical person, full of drive and passion, and would likely be suited to that sort of lifestyle – but this way, at least, she's probably of more use. She keeps dragons in the air at a time when Ista desperately needs every one, and she's at least rational enough to realize that she's probably done more good for the world in the past six months of dragonhealing than she could have done in a lifetime of dragonriding.

History

Birthplace: Ista Hold, 428.07.02

Miritte always felt a little like the odd man out in her family. She was a surprise third baby for the newly-promoted Master Paskam and his wife, ten turns younger than her only brother and twelve turns younger than her only sister. Her mother died birthing her, her siblings were already close to each other and so much older than her, and her father… well, the only way she ever knew Paskam was as a detached sort of father who never really had time for her even if he always managed to find time for her siblings. Part of this was likely due to practical reasons – he had more responsibilities as a master than he'd had as a journeyman, and so didn't have as much time to spend bonding with her as a young child as he had when his first two children were young, and with his wife gone, young Miritte had to spend more time with caretakers than either her brother or sister ever had. Their family unit – or the one Miritte began to perceive had existed before her untimely, inconvenient arrival – no longer existed as it once had, and she didn't even feel welcome among the rubble of what once was. Her sister tried to step in as a sort of mother-figure, but she wasn't quite ready for that burden herself, and her efforts to overcompensate for Paskam's lack of affection for his youngest only made it that much clearer that it existed in the first place.

And so Miritte spent her childhood full of insecurity wrapped in a desperate coat of bravado, never quite sure what she did wrong but determined to figure out how to fix it anyway. Maybe if she just drew daddy a pretty enough picture, he'd notice and start liking her. But it couldn't be just any picture – she'd have to paint the whole wall! Maybe if she could just beat her brother at a game, he'd see that she was really the best. Maybe if she just got bigger, stronger, smarter, faster… maybe, maybe, maybe.

With the Pass drawing ever closer and the Weyrs looking to add staff to their human and dragon infirmaries, Paskam packed up his family and moved them to Ista Weyr when Miritte was seven. Within six months of their arrival, both her brother and sister were deemed suitable candidates for the eggs on the Sands. Both eventually went on to Impress. Miritte suddenly found herself abandoned, left behind by siblings who had gone and won the ultimate game of who-can-top-who before she even had a fair chance to play, and dumped unceremoniously in the creche by her father who, to be fair, didn't really have time to be watching out for her. Her new weyrbrat friends didn't understand what her problem was – to them, family was a more loose concept than what she was used to – and her father seemed more distant than ever even though she spent her nights and evenings with him in the small family quarters afforded him as a perk of his rank. Silence is even more pronounced when there are only two people in the room, after all. All she could do was redouble her efforts to make something special of herself, and resolve that, as soon as she was old enough, she'd Impress an even bigger, better, awesomer dragon than anyone else had ever had!

But the dragons never showed any interest in her. Not even a sniff. A kind dragonrider tried to console her once: “It's not that you're not special, lass. It's just that you might be special in some other way.” Her frustrated, heartbroken twelve-turn-old self wasn't interested in understanding at the time – she just wanted to be angry, and for a long time she resented the dragons their dismissive, disinterested silence, so like her father's. She apprenticed as a healer instead – a last-ditch attempt to gain daddy's favor by being the only child to follow in his footsteps.

As it turned out, it was the best thing for her. She proved to be good at it, once she set her mind to it. She learned quickly, stitched with sure, deft fingers, and studied hard. With each success and word of praise from her instructors (rarely her father – he always found a reason to be somewhere else), she grew in confidence, even as puberty was starting to fill her full of the usual teenaged moodiness and tendency to question her elders. Most of her anger, and her sass, was directed at the one person she could never seem to please: Paskam. As she began to very tentatively believe in herself, that naturally brought about the realization that maybe she wasn't the problem. Maybe she wasn't really a failure as a child. Maybe he was a failure as a father?

Most of the time he took her backtalk with his usual unresponsive disinterest, but then, as she grew bolder and angier and more frustrated, she was occasionally able to provoke him into noticing her. The words exchanged between them were never pretty. He said she was wild, destructive, unmanageable. She said he was cold, useless, pathetic. It all came to a head when she was sixteen, and they had one last argument that ended in Paskam finally admitting something that he'd never had any intention of saying out loud: she wasn't even his child. She'd taken the love of his life from him, and she wasn't even his.

That was pretty much that. Miritte sort of closed in on herself in self-defense for a while. The next day, she spoke to her instructors and to the dragonhealers, and changed her apprenticeship over to dragonhealing. She more or less shut Paskam out, and despite the fact that they occasionally work elbow to elbow on injured dragon/rider pairs, she hasn't said more than a few short sentences to him (other than work-related “hand me that bandage” talk) in the past six turns. Ironically, it's been Paskam who's tried a handful of times to bridge the gap, reaching out to her as he never did when she was young and needed it so desperately, but she's bound and determined to let her pain fester, apparently. Both infirmary staffs are well aware that the two are not exactly on speaking terms, and though none of them know exactly why (neither of them have shared the truth about that last argument), they generally try to contrive things so that the two don't have to work together. They can put their differences aside long enough to do their jobs, but that doesn't make it any less awkward for anyone who happens to be trapped in the same room with them. It's like the temperature drops ten degrees.

Miritte walked the tables just a few months before the Pass started. The first 'Fall was worse than she could have ever imagined, and she and all the infirmary staff have been kept insanely busy ever since just caring for the seriously wounded from that first 'Fall, let alone all the ones that have come since.

Relationships

Family

Father: Paskam, Master Healer
Mother: Noria, cold dead corpse

Sister: Bristan, rider of green Auberith
Brother: N'roy, rider of blue Jaffreeth

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