Birthing Date: 13.13
H’lok is exceedingly tall – about 6’4” – whipcord thin and about as lanky as a man could ever be said to be. That being said, he’s got none of the clumsiness sometimes associated with such a build and usually has his body arranged in one cocky pose or another.
His looks have a roughish quality to them, as men of his type often are. His hair is jet black and long enough so that it often sticks up in a wild just-rolled-out-of-bed sort of way. His eyes are a murky gray-brown and slightly hooded so as to often appear half-lidded in a look of supreme apathy for whatever is happening at the moment. Otherwise there’s really nothing too special about H’lok’s appearance – it’s a gritty, but plain, sort of masculinity.
Bad boy, bad boy.
H’lok was born the black sheep of his family, and to this day has felt no desire to assimilate to the lifestyle he now leads. He’s a pretty sorry excuse for a dragonman and has a reputation for being lazy, needlessly adversarial to authority, inappropriate, and just a pain in the ass in general. If it wasn’t that he and Ragnaroth (mostly Ragnaroth, but these things tend to be a package deal) were so good at flying ‘Fall, they’d have been grounded or demoted back to the Weyrling wing long ago. It’s only *because* of his dragon that H’lokis able to hold it together in ‘Fall, and it’s one of the only times you’ll ever encounter him behaving like a proper Rider and a functioning member of his Wing. In the heat of battle he’ll do what he’s told and work to get the job done without any of the sass and belligerence he otherwise makes a habit of doling out. But as soon as he touches ground again, well, all bets are off.
You see, H’lok thrives on negative attention, does nearly everything he can to get it, and merely laughs in the face of the consequences. He’s an arrogant thrill seeker and a hedonist to his core and for all he knows he could die a terrible and bloody death tomorrow – so why waste time conforming yourself to someone else’s rules today? If he’s going to take part in this whole riding business, he’s going to do it his way for the most part and spend the rest of the time complaining and being difficult.
H’lok is as much a lecher as he is a charmer, and the combination of the two have yielded him a significant number of notches in his proverbial bedpost (why would you do that to perfectly good furniture? He keeps a running list of names in a small book, thank you very much). Though he’d hardly turn away a willing woman, he enjoys the thrill of the chase more than the resulting act and he will carefully, methodically, and almost obsessively whittle away his target’s resolve until she gives in to him. “No” almost never just means “no” to H’lok, and it’s made him wildly unpopular with more than a few women in the past. While he has enough of a moral compass to keep himself from forcing himself on someone without their consent, they usually have to send a *very* strong and definitive message before he’ll give up for good. Worse still is the fact that H’lok’s particular taste in women tends towards them being a bit young or else young-looking, and he’s been known to poke around the Candidate Barracks or Lower Caverns for fresh arrivals to the Weyr.
H’lok likes to live as a bit of mystery. He’s clever, foxy, and plays fast and loose with the truth. After all, a few white lies never hurt anyone and such alterations only make things more interesting, right? Indeed, he views spreading gossip and watching the ensuing confusion and chaos as something of a preferred pastime, the way someone else might favor whittling or needlepoint. The truth – how boring is that? He never lies about anything important, but hardly anyone knows a single thing about him and that’s exactly how he wants it. Why? Because in reality H’lok isn’t that impressive. He’s good in ‘Fall because Ragnaroth forces him to be and because he doesn’t consider himself worth the effort to save – so he throws himself into the fight without any regard for what could happen. He doesn’t think he’s worth any sort of accolades, so he makes sure his behavior only garners the opposite. There isn’t an honorable or chivalrous bone in his body (so he thinks), and he’s highly aware that he isn’t cut out for the Rider’s life of a hero (and to this day thinks he Impressed by accident) so he laughs at the world before it can laugh back at him – he may die a coward in his heart of hearts, but he’ll make damn sure he’s laughing last.
Hallerok was born the fourth child of seven and succumbed easily to the so-called middle child’s syndrome of being generally wild and insubordinate. His parents were a pair of hard-working Crafters for Telgar Weyr, but try as they might were unsuccessful in instilling a similar value into their son. By the time he was twelve he was a proper hellion committed to doing nothing but wreaking havoc on the Lower Caverns. He was careful in his schemes, always quick to lie or place the blame on some hapless friend, so he continued on without consequence until he was finally caught trying to haul an entire case of good Telgar wine from the storerooms. Needless to say, the Headwoman and her staff weren’t pleased and Hallerok’s ears were soundly boxed for the offense and he was sentenced to work in the kitchens (besides, he was at the right age to apprentice and it was thought that he might shape up if he had something productive to do with his time). But Hallerok *hated* the kitchens and he *hated* being told what to do and how to do it, and so he did everything possible to shirk his responsibilities and cut corners on his work – which, as you might imagine didn’t go unnoticed and was highly unappreciated. By that summer the staff were seriously considering washing their hands of the good-for-nothing boy, and they might have done so – had Hallerok not found a way (though unwittingly) to weasel out of it.
The senior Queen had a sizable clutch hardening on the Sands – complete with a much-needed gold egg - and the staff were intent on getting through what was going to be particularly large and boisterous celebration after the Hatching. Amidst all the chaos of setting up for the Feast, Hallerok found a moment to slip away and head towards the Hatching Cavern. Now, Hallerok never meant for what happened next to happen – he’d only wanted to *watch* after all – but not a moment after finding himself a seat a particularly large and foreboding looking brown dragon veered away from a boy he’d been considering for some time and began to approach the mass of spectators. There was much confusion and apprehension as the Telgar collective tried to deduce exactly *who* the brown was attempting to find while attempting to clear a path up the packed Stands…until he stopped and laid his head upon Hallerok’s knee.
((Do not be afraid of your Ragnaroth, Hallerok. We will go now, together, as one.))
The boy was stunned and spent a solid moment trying to convince the brown that there was no way on Pern that *he* was the choice he’d meant to make. (On a side note, the boy that Ragnaroth passed over eventually aged out of the program without Impressing and H’lok has always secretly felt that he had stolen the boy’s dragon). But Ragnaroth was firm in his decision and when the pair left the Sands, Hallerok had resigned himself to be H’lok, newest brownrider of Telgar.
Not that H’lok was *happy* about it; in fact he was absolutely petrified of his new life. He’d grown up the Weyr, sure, but that also meant he had grown up sharply aware of the coming of Thread, the loathsome enemy that knew nothing but its own hunger and the desire to consume. But with Ragnaroth, H’lok was not allowed to be afraid. The brown seemingly knew nothing of fear – he was a warrior who *lived* for the battle. If you died, you died, but hopefully you’d take some of the enemy with you. So H’lok swallowed his fear.
Weyrlinghood wasn’t easy. It was even worse than slaving away in the kitchens and the Masters *really* didn’t like taking H’lok’s lip. They almost definitely would have been held back from graduating if not for Ragnaroth’s personal brand of discipline (he really was a model student) and the fact that the brown quickly figured out that *he* could control his rider, to some extent. So they graduated and joined the Wings and when Thread finally fell the pair proved to be an asset to the ranks.
An asset, yes, but after Turns of H’lok testing the limits the Telgar rankers finally decided that he was no longer worth the trouble he caused everyone and they sent him packing. So to Eastern he comes, with a devil-may-care attitude, a penchant for mayhem, and a copy of his records so that the youngest Weyr knows exactly what it’s getting itself into.
Just remember, Telgar has a strict “do not return” policy on this one.