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Old September 11, 2018, 07:02 PM   #1 (permalink)
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[Countryside] Taking apart, putting together (indefinite and Talindra please)

Autumn, Era XXV Post Fractum

The Bald Hen was a tiny inn some small distance from the gates of Ziel Aerca. All in all it seemed destined to fail as a business, unless it somehow generated enough custom from local highwaymen to eek out a small existence. Too close to the city for travelers to need it to pass the night on their journey, and too far for access to city custom, the location seemed strategically picked for poor patronage.

The Inn was built in the restored shell of an abandoned farm house, and seemed huddled in upon itself despite the expansive open spaces around it. The common room held only two tables, large round affairs with seating for 8 persons apiece. Malicia sat at one of these, having made her somewhat groggy way down the creaking ancient staircase some few candlemarks before midday. She was not a morning person.

An old man puttered about behind the bar, wiping things with a rag that seemed unlikely to accumulate more dirt than it deposited. He seemed disinclined to notice his customer, so Malicia cleared her throat and then spoke up:

"Inn person. Bring me...whatever horrible stuff you serve for breakfast. I have business to attend to so your tip depends on your alacrity."

The man made a peevish face, pausing to consider if he knew what the word "alacrity" meant, then without a word disappeared through a door into the kitchen.

Today Malicia’s business would take her out into the wooded areas, so she wore her ankle length overcoat and tophat against the chill. Sitting beside her on the table were a pair of goggles and a basket of moderate size.

Last edited by Malicia Waxwode; September 11, 2018 at 07:16 PM.
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Old September 12, 2018, 10:36 AM   #2 (permalink)
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As the days grew colder, the elfess found it increasingly difficult to seek shelter along the border of cities. Up until the beginning of the season, she didn't trust inns or taverns to keep her safe from those which sought to take her down. However, it seemed as though the option was dwindling away so she would have to make a choice. Risk the chance of getting sick or having her small creature freeze, or try and dart between taverns in the hopes that would be enough?

With Niko in the picture, the decision was simple.

For the past few darkenings, she had taken shelter within the apartment gifted to her by the Governor in Ziel. However, the idea was to dance between locations so she decided to try something new and stay at the 'Bald Hen.' Judging by the lack of customers, it wasn't a very popular establishment.

Perfect.

Other than the usual nightmares, her stay wasn't too terrible. The beds were decent as was the room itself in size and accommodations. Little Niko had spent the first few candlemarks investigating the room so he must have enjoyed it too. Once she was up and dressed, the two of them made their way down for a morning meal. The nimrban was still quite sleepy so he settled for curling up on her shoulder, watching with a half-lit gaze at all of the interesting people and things in the main tavern itself.

She set her backpack down on the stool beside her before taking a seat, trying to give a bit of distance between she and the other woman who shared the space. Despite this, she couldn't help but let her gaze wander as she waited patiently for the bartender to return so that she could order a small meal for the road. It was an unusual outfit, by her understanding, but one that she quite enjoyed. The woman looked as if she were an alchemist or a professor, quite fancy and elegant.

Best not to openly say that, however, for she was terrible with conversation. Not to mention she had sort of crawled out of bed thinking that she was the only guest so her auburn hair still had floating strands and her form-fitting black pants had a hole or two in the knee area. Her tawny blouse was decent! But that truly didn't make up for everything else.

Off to a great start this brightening.
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Old September 12, 2018, 03:38 PM   #3 (permalink)
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As the red haired elf took her seat, Malicia opened her basket and removed a thin booklet, which she set before her on the table. The booklet was quite crude in manufacture, and in fact Malicia had made it herself by stacking a slim pile of her notes interspersed with botanical sketches she had purchased, bordering them fore and aft with rectangles of sturdy leather, and binding them all together by creating nail holes along the spine and lacing through these holes with twine. On the front she had written “Notes on Biologically Active Fungi” in her careful flowing hand, the words having become somewhat fuzzy as the ink absorbed outward into the leather.

She opened the book and stared at the first page, which was a carefully drawn image of a mushroom, apparently lost in thought. A moment passed, and then she looked up suddenly, as if feeling Talindra’s gaze upon her. A small wooden bowl sat in the middle of the table, which had at one time contained a coarse salt which some diners pleased to sprinkle on their food, but which had not been refilled in some time. She picked this bowl up, and threw it so that it hit the kitchen door solidly and then fell to the floor with a clatter.

“Innsperson!” She called. “You have another customer!”

Turning to Talindra, she added “I am having a philosophical dispute with this Innskeep on the topic of ‘Manners’ and how failure to adhere to their simple principles can lead to a cascade of growing unpleasantness in one’s life. It started when I objected to his overuse of the term “outlandish” and things have not improved since. Still, I persevere. That is an interesting creature you have with you, and I confess I’ve never seen the like. What sort of animal is it, provided that I may ask.”

The kitchen door swung open and the old man’s face scowled out of it. “Knock that off you scoundrel!” Frowning at Talindra, he continued in an only slightly less grouchy tone. “Yes? What do you want?”
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Old September 15, 2018, 09:45 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Tali blinked. That was unexpected.

One moment, she was in the midst of gaining an idea about the book that had been set on the table. The next? Bowl against a door as the woman in question shouted.

It took a moment for the elfess to recover, but she managed a soft chuckle after noticing that the lovely lady was speaking to her about the innkeeper’s lack of manners. “That can be a challenge, at times. Though I’ve never seen someone handle it with such an elegant tongue. Usually it’s riddled with swears and slurs.” Another giggle toward her own attempt at a joke before continuing. “Oh, Niko? He’s a Nimrban, sort of like a cat monkey. Curious little beast, but I love him anyway.”

The ball of shadow fur, being of the nature that Tali described, finished off his meal before inching closer to the woman. Hmm. They were talking so...friend? Pets?

Tali glanced up at the grumpy bartender, unappreciative of his rude demeanor. However, she wasn’t one to start anything so she kept her irritation to herself. “Just some water and bread, please.” A beat. “If that’s not too much trouble. I can see that you’re very busy.” Well! So much for keeping out a sarcastic tongue!
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Old September 17, 2018, 11:25 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Fascinated by the Nimrban, Malicia fished around in her pockets for something to interest him. Using her fingers she selected something without any sharp bits to it, and came out with a short length of bright red ribbon. This she shook for the Nimrban, it’s bright color flashing in the dim lighting of the Inn.

“Niko? Would you like to try a ribbon dance for us? Sometimes I have nuts with me, but alas not this brightening.”

Malicia looked up from the Nimrban and gave Tali an appraising look over. Nodding towards the backpack propped up next to the table she said “So, are you a resident of this place of just passing through? I’ve come up here in search of certain fungi, and if you know the area perhaps you could advise me. The name is Malicia, by the way.”

Before long, the door to the kitchen opened and a pot boy emerged, carrying with him a tray that contained Tali’s bread and water, and a plate eggs and fried potatoes for Malicia.
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