Joined: 5-March 14
High Reaches Weyr and its Hold's reaction to the appearance of Singers was one of near-total positivity. Singers meant that their crops would produce larger yields in the same soil, could cure their ill, and could help heat their homes. As such, they quickly began to be treated as only slightly below dragonriders in rank, regardless of strength, as even the weakest Singer could cast a simple warming spell. As such, when the first goldrider Singer in the High Reaches Impressed, she was treated with a great deal of respect and adoration (sometimes bordering on worship). When she became Weyrwoman a short while after, she developed a sort of cult of personality and a few years into her rule began to push through new laws.
Firstly, all Singers in the High Reaches area are expected to Stand until they are either too old to do so (and given Singer lifespans, this is much longer than a normal candidate would Stand) or Impress. Second, goldriding Singers (besides the acting Weyrwoman) are only higher-ranked than other Singers if they are stronger than them. Third, all Singers had a mandatory day of rest assigned to them, and anyone who broke that would be punished severely. And fourth... all non-Singer dragonriders were beneath Singers in rank.
The last created quite a stir, but it didn't last long; at this point, dragons (especially larger ones) were frequently viewed as nice to have and a good reminder of history, but far too much of a strain on the herds and flocks in the area for the things they actually did at best, and a pestilence at worst. While most people may not have hated dragonriders, there was an undercurrent of worry about how the then-current population would be sustained. Additionally, many riders (mostly bronze-, jasper-, and chalcedony-riders) who were unhappy with the ruling were given her blessing to leave to other Weyrs that had different laws and rulings.
These days, High Reaches has very few golds or jaspers compared to other Weyrs; most breeding females are blacks or yellows, which generally produce smaller clutches of smaller dragons that require less food. It seems to be working well for them, since the overall smaller population and exodus of many riders of traditionally higher-ranked (and larger) dragons meant their herds could be counted on to grow, or at least remain stable.
Of course, nothing is perfect. The senior Weyrwoman has an iron grip on the Singers of the Weyr, and those few who openly doubt her policies have a tendency to... disappear, if they aren't riders. If they are, their lives are made increasingly miserable until they transfer to a different Weyr. Dissenters speak almost entirely in secret, if they speak at all, for fear of what could happen to them. There are also terrible rumors, rumors that the Weyrwoman is trying to discover what the Wher Mother did to control those that wear her mark from a distance. The truth of those rumors isn't known, and no one's going to ask her themselves lest they attract her wrath.
Aleksand - Singer, Wher Lord, jerkface