Fall was a thing of legend and the dragon riders, now down to a single decrepit weyr, reduced to begging.

Lord Fax had ambitions and they did not include the dragons or their riders. Over a period of several Turns Fax had taken out his ambitions on the unsuspecting holds surrounding his, cumulating in the devastation of Ruatha Hold.

As the years pass, a young Bronze Dragon Rider of lonely Benden Weyr grows up with the conviction that the Red Star, and Thread, WILL return - unlike virtually every other person on the planet including his fellow dragonriders.

As the years pass the number of dragons in the Weyr slowly dwindle and this is taken as proof that there can't be any more Thread. Our dragon rider remains sure he is right though.

Finally, there is only one single Golden Queen Egg lying on the Hatching Ground's sands. The Bronze Dragons are sent out to Search for the girl who will be the new Weyr Lady.

F'lar remembers that Ruatha Hold was once famous for the number and quality of it's Queen Riders and travels there in the company of Lord Fax in Search of those who might have survived the massacre.

Once there, it is clear that the Hold has fallen on more than hard times!

The lord and his wife, near her time, host the dragonriders to a feast that is a farce. Provoked beyond sense, Fax goaded F'lar into duelling him as his wife goes into labour. With no wish to back down, F'lar accepts the duel in the name of the unborn child. He realises that he has been manoeuvred into the duel and along with all the insults from Fax, fights to kill.

After Fax is killed and his lady is delivered of a male child, F'lar declares him the new Holder. but there was a survivor of Fax's massacre and she objects to the arrangement. Knowing that he's found the one who had manipulated him into fighting Fax, F'lar persuades the girl that her destiny lies in the Weyr.

Travelling with him to the Weyr, she is horrified by the conditions with which the Dragonriders put up with.

She impresses the new Queen to become the new Weyr Woman. From this position, she subtly encourages the younger Riders to go on foraging runs to provide the Weyr with the food it requires. F'lar is angry when he finds out about this, but understands her frustration at being shut in her Weyr even as her dragon matures. Finally she can stand it no longer and she takes her Queen on a trip Between back to her old Hold where she is startled and disturbed to find she has travelled in time as well as space. She also realises why she'd had that desire to hide herself as Fax's forces invade!

When her dragon rises for her first mating flight, F'lar's dragon is the one to catch her to make him the new Weyr Leader.

The Lord Holders overcome their last remaining fears of Dragon Riders and assault the Weyr but before their forces can do any harm, they are confronted by Riders who have been Between and 'stolen' their ladies.

The Red Star is now a red pin prick in the morning sky and it rises between the star stones to show that Threadfall is under way...

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