This is Sanyo news! The warmth of summer has just arrived, the odd chill that was spring is now gone! We got some strange news for you rumor mongers though. It seems that there is a cherry blossom tree atop the Bubble. All attempts to have it taken down seem to have failed. For now it still seems to be under investigation.
This is a world where AIVAS was never discovered. Perhaps it was destroyed long ago; or perhaps, its still buried in the jungles of Southern. But that is of little consequence, as thread still rains from the skies. Benden, Fort, High Reaches, and all the other Weyrs of Pern continue to battle their parasitic enemy, but the war was one of attrition, and they were losing. All across Pern, crafts, halls, and Weyrs lost people - the thread was simply too much for them with their numbers being what they were. Southern, for its part, struggled to get adequate numbers, and eventually falls silent and abandoned. The world seems very dire.
But then, a miracle - in the solar system, an errant asteroid strikes the Red Star, throwing its rotation into a tizzy and damaging it. Suddenly threadfall is much less frequent, and the world can focus on trying to recoup its losses. But the world is far from safe - due to the lack of resources, autumn and winter months are very harsh, and illness becomes a huge problem during these seasons. In addition, the Weyrs and the Holds begin to fight; each side says the other could have done more to prevent losses of life. The Weyrs largely withdraw from the world to form 'The Between Network', keeping a council of shared resources, crafters, and candidates among themselves. In turn, the Craft Halls and Holds combine into Craft-Holds, allowing better protection of citizens. The wher handler demographic, seeing a need, decide to become the mediators, militia, and go-betweens from Weyr to Craft-Hall, forming their own city in the process.
In the change to the Between Network, Golds begin to decline in clutch number, their biological programming detecting the lessening of Thread. In a desperate bid to raise numbers, Weyrs allow greens to begin to clutch, ushering in an age of mutations and new color ranks, something only greens and other mutation ranks can produce. The Weyrs take to this in different manner, but all are desperate for numbers and allow this to continue. Here our story starts, in a tale of two Weyrs and the city of Sanctum, the wher stronghold. Fort, with its traditionalist views; Benden, the supporter of world peoples; and Sanctum, playing as mediators to the two vastly different cultures. What will Pern become in the wake of all this change?