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First fall refers to the first incident of Threadfall marking the start of each Pass. Sometimes the first fall of a Pass occurred over mountains or water, and sometimes the first fall occurred as black dust instead of Thread.
The First Fall occurred eight years after the colonists landed on Pern. The settlement had spread out over the Southern Continent. The First Fall occurred over Landing and surrounding areas. Caught completely by surprise, many colonists were killed, and there was a great loss of livestock. Fire lizards were instrumental in saving many lives, including those of Sean Connell and Sorka Hanrahan.
Near the end of the First Interval, the leaders of Pern began preparing for Threadfall. The Weyrleaders discussed the idea of all the Weyrs attending the first fall together but dismissed it. After a few dud falls, the first real fall occurred in the Southern Continent. Several Weyrleaders sneaked out of their Weyrs to observe this fall, but they were unprepared for their dragons' desire to fight Thread. When the first fall took place in the north, each Weyr sent representatives to fight.
Prior to the Ninth Pass, a Long Interval had occurred, causing many to think Thread was gone forever. F'lar, the only Weyrleader, prepared his Weyr for Threadfall, including sending out riders to watch for signs of Thread. The first few Threadfalls were Black Dust, catching F'lar unprepared. When the first Thread fell, F'lar sent a wing back in time to the beginning of the fall.