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Tear Jerker / Dragonriders of Pern

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  • "Don't leave me alone!" / A cry in the night / Of anguish heart-striking / Of soul-killing fright…"
  • Most of Moreta and Nerilka's Story is this, from the deaths of Nerilka's mother and four sisters to Moreta's tragic ride and Leri and Orlith's suicide. What makes Moreta's death especially sad is that it was so sudden and unexpected to all and could have been prevented if the Telgar riders hadn't defected or if Moreta had been riding her own queen dragon, Orlith (who was watching her clutch of eggs at the time). The reactions to her death are especially tear-jerking. Alessan for a long while is determined to kill himself so that he can join Moreta in death, and only Nerilka's steady love for him brings him out of it. Sh'Gall, though having not been so close to Moreta, falls to his knees grieving before Orlith on the Hatching Grounds after hearing the news, which brings tears to your eyes since it shows that though he was fussy and argumentative toward Moreta, he did love her and respect her in his own way.
  • Jaxom identifies with Ruth before he even realizes the little dragon is going to need help being born, as he himself did. When the two Impress and Jaxom cries out "He says his name is Ruth!", Lytol comes as close as he ever does to weeping, and probably so do many readers.
  • Path, confused and frightened on the hatching ground, Mirrim standing up in the witnesses' area, Ramoth starting to move toward her daughter, the little dragon's frantic attempts to climb up to her girl, Mirrim's sudden realization, "I can't!" and then their communion, are almost cinematic... damn onions.
  • In Dragonsdawn, the final scene between Sallah Telgar and Tarvi Andiyar, especially her final words.
    • And then the bonfire scene afterward (doubles as heartwarming)
  • The end of All the Weyrs of Pern: All of Pern is finally safe from Thread... and while everyone is celebrating, Masterharper Robinton dies after reading a message from a now-terminated AIVAS. And his little bronze fire lizard curls up on his chest and dies with him, like a dragon with his rider... all have fulfilled their duties to Hold, Hall and Weyr.
    • Even sadder is how Robinton likely accepted his inevitable death. He remarks that AIVAS probably doesn't have a cure for worn-out human parts, but since Admiral Paul Benden is known to have finger prosthetics, it is highly likely that within its databanks it has knowledge on how to either bio-engineer a donor heart or create a mechanical replacement. Robinton may have realized though that said technology would be more advanced than what the colonists intended for Pern, thus instead of forcing AIVAS to carry out an order that would break its prime directives, he instead allows AIVAS to keep his loyalty to the colonists by letting himself expire.
  • What the original Colonists had to endure is tragic. Having just lived through a devastating war against the Nathi, the original settlers wishing to eschew the high-tech societes of their federation embark on a fifteen-year voyage to establish a low-tech society on idyllic Pern. While colonization goes smoothly for nearly a decade, it goes south quickly, with the first Pass of Threadfall upending their efforts with its destruction. After that they are also forced to relocate to the Northern Continent, after dormant Mount Garben near their landing settlement begins erupting once again. And even on their new continent the settlers aren't seemingly safe from tragedy, as evidenced by a plague decimating the population of their newly established Fort Hold.