1.3 The First Offer (Graded)

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Llyr Llywelyn
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Posts: 1927
Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2019 12:24 am
Race: Mortal Born
Renown: 830
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1.3 The First Offer (Graded)

The Northside Orphange
2 Vhalar, Arc 719

By the time the barrels of water were full, mealtime had already begun.

Llyr held onto the last bucket, though it was empty. His shoulders ached terribly from carrying the full of water buckets from the cistern in the back to the orphanage hall. It was easily a ten bit journey there and back... and he had to endure about twenty trips. He had a stitch in his side. Quiet gasps escaped him. He panted like a dog run around in a chase for its own tail. Most of them had been fine, but the last three had really done him in.

Yet the barrels had been filled with fresh water, each and every one of them. Madam Miller ladled the water into wooden and stone cups. There only ten cups, laid out on a squat and narrow table. The orphans had to drink in front of her at the barrels - swapping the cups instead of having one for each of them. Of course, one for each of them would have been easily over a hundred cups. He understood why they might keep it less.

Llyr stared at just how many orphans there were. He glanced at a boy, coated in dirt, who stared up at him. He held his cup out to Llyr.

“You already got your fill,” said the matron before Llyr could even respond. She swatted the boy away with the ladle. She glanced at Llyr, then returned to fill a cup and hand it to another orphan.

“How many orphans do you have here?” asked Llyr.

“One hundred and thirty-two, at the moment,” she answered. “It can change by the trial though. Sometimes, we get five or ten brought in. Other times we lose three or so. The central orphanage has far more.”

“Lose? What about those who are adopted?”

The madam glanced at him. She didn’t answer that one. “Why don’t you take a seat on the bench? You’re sweating like a hog in heat.”

A silvery-blue blush rose on Llyr’s cheeks. He looked at the bench, but remained next to the barrels. He set down the bucket, then stretched and cracked his back. He was definitely going to feel the strain in his muscles tomorrow. Llyr said, “Back in the south, past the Orm’del Sea where I’m from, I helped at an orphanage on an island. There were only a handful of orphans and still they struggled to find enough for all those children. It must be difficult…”

“Yes, well, we make do. This city always has. Northside has been around for a long time, and we're not going anywhere. Most of our orphans make good enough lives for themselves by the time they reach age, and nearly all of them reach of age... Unlike in some places,” she answered, then shooed away some of the lingering children who had already gotten their allotted drink of fresh water.

“Have you worked here long?” asked Llyr.

“As long as I’ve been around Etzos,” she answered. “Not quite the same position, I'll admit. I started as a maid, cleaning out the chamberpots and beds, but you learn as time goes by.”

“Where else do you work?”

She looked at him again, then handed him the ladle and said, “If you can talk so much, you can serve. I need a rest.” Madam Miller gathered her blue wool shawl around her, then took a seat on the bench from before. She leaned back and exhaled lowly.

Llyr got up, took the ladle, and started to serve the water for the children. Almost all of them were remarkably behaved. It was mostly quiet in the hall, despite mealtime, as the children conversed with one another in murmurs rather than in brash loudness. They seemed mostly focused on eating though. The blond biqaj looked at Miller, and considered whether now was a good time... he supposed any time would be good enough, and he didn't want to risk the woman leaving or him being shooed out of Northside before he got the chance. The last thing he wanted was to share his proposition with the elderly woman while being shown the door.

So, he tried to sound as casual as possible when he mentioned, "I could do with someone like you.”

“Someone like me?” she repeated with a raise of her brow. One of the orphans had come over and given her a doll whose arm had gotten torn off. Miller lowered it from her examination and she asked, “What’re you saying, boy?”

“Someone who knows how to manage and take care of a lot of things at once,” he explained. Llyr nervously cleared his throat, then he forced himself to continue, “I’m starting a business, understand? And I want it to have a shop, but need someone to watch it for me while it’s open.”

“A business? At a time like this?” She shrugged. “You and every other sod that can scrape together two coins. You want one of our older orphans to take it on? We have a process for investors to reserve possible workers. That'd be under Housemother Deyne's shift, though, not mine.”

“No... I need someone with a bit more..." he looked over his shoulder, his eyes of ice blue as he pointedly said, "...experience. I can offer you payment, up front, and a place you can rest in, and not be on your feet so much. You could sit on nice furniture and never have to walk about again - as long as you stayed there.”

“Not a whole lot of jobs in Etzos I know that’s just staying in place… not the sort I’d want to get messed up in, that is. And I've never been one for scribe labor.” She took out a small box from a skirt pocket, then laid the doll on her lap. Madam Miller took to stringing a needle in preparation to mend the doll's arm.

“Not scribe work," he clarified. "It’d be more than that, but that’d be an important part. You'd be the shopkeep, and... would keep inventory and occasionally direct possible clients to who they should talk to or where they should go. All I ask is that you think on it. I’d like to have it open before the Founder's Day, and already have certain things in operation.”

“Is that right?” She drew the thread tight through the doll's arm. "And how did you come to think to ask an old woman at Northside about this?"

Llyr hesitated. He considered how to answer while he handed a cup of water to an orphan. "I... Okay, I'll admit, I might have heard your name from someone else. They suggested you for what I'm looking for."

"How conveniently vague," she barbed him, but by her tone it didn't sound like she cared all that much. Especially when she sighed next and then shrugged. “Come back early tomorrow morning, help with the wash and morning meal. It’s nit trial tomorrow so we need all the hands we can get to check for bugs. Fill the barrels also for morning and evening. If you have something written about what you're planning to do, give it to me and... I’ll think on it.”

Llyr paused, then he smiled. That wasn't a no! His smile turned to a grin while he poured another cup of water. The orphan that took it, raised an inquisitive eyebrow at the expression.

"What are you so happy about, Mister?" asked the urchin before he drank the water.

"Oh, nothing. Nothing..." he took the empty cup back, then waved him on. He looked over at Miller, wondering if he should explain more or tell more, but she seemed busy with the doll now as the arm was tightened back onto the cloth body. After a few more cups of water, he finally gave in and said, "It was Lochlann... Lochlann O' Ruanaidh."

"O'no," said Madam Miller in a groan.

"Oh no?" inquired Llyr.

Miller snorted. She hummed, handed the doll back to the girl, then waved her along. The old woman crossed her arms and settled her back against the wall while she rested. "O'no, that's what we call Lochlann, that feker. I shouldn't be surprised, but I thought he might've died with the plague. Can't put down the ones who always crawl their way back up, I guess."

Llyr wondered if it'd been a mistake to reference Lochlann by name. He lowered his gaze, and remained quiet.

"Lochlann is good though. Spent a couple arcs here in Northside, actually, when he was a kid," she informed him. "Hm, well if O'no is involved with whatever you're cooking..."

Whatever change that made to her thought about it, she didn't share but it clearly had done something. Llyr could only hope that it was the sort of change that was for the better.
word count: 1529
Please — consider me a dream.
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Re: 1.3 The First Offer

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As always you're characters (both PC & NPC) are well done. Each bit of dialogue feels like a different person, you tone and setting work put we right in the story, though I do think this was a bit of an abrupt end. Easily forgiven as there is a next part though. Good job and enjoy you're rewards.



Can be use for magic? Yes or No


Business Management: A planned, but casual employment offer.
Business Management: Considering what potential employees might be interested in.
Business Management: Can be used in tandem with Intelligence.
Intelligence: Sharing a mutual contact's name to build trust.
Logistics: Serving water to a great number of people with limited cups.
Logistics: Mealtime preparation for over a hundred people.







+5 for name dropping


word count: 140
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