• Graded • Rowing An Errand

Once an isolated and dying township, an influx of academics, adventurers and thrill seekers have made Scalvoris Town their home. From scholars' tea shops to a new satellite campus for Viden Academy, this is an exciting place to visit or make your home!

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Darius Baer Bottom
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Rowing An Errand

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Arc 720, 20th of Ashan
Erik Ki'Ufnaj did not often find time to relax. He worked long trials that consisted of long breaks, and the role of a harbour master was never quite finished, especially in a place as busy as Scalvoris Town.

But - the gods be blessed - he had somehow found himself with half a break to spare, and he used the rare opportunity to wander down one of the more narrow and less used piers. The main part of the docks were where the caravels and cogs would bring their wares from other parts of Idalos, but this was narrow and somewhat out of the way. It was mainly frequented by the occasional fishing boat, or, indeed, people used it in an attempt to catch fish without leaving the island.

The biqaj had always had a fondness for that particular jetty, for the relative peace and quite it gifted him enabled him to reflect on life and some of the hardships he had experienced. He would often stare out at the Hollow Sea and recall his sailing trials, but in his loneliest moments, he would stare back at the docks themselves, feel the wedding ring on his finger, and grieve the loss of his wife.

This was no such trial, however. He was feeling refreshed and unusually upbeat as he walked briskly down across the wooden planks, letting a contented smile form at his lips as a pair of gulls overhead argued about something trivial.

With nobody else standing on the jetty, the harbour master had initially thought he was alone. It was only as he neared the end that he heard the sound of something wooden bumping up against one of the piles that kept the structure from tumbling helplessly into the water. The man peered over the edge, and the sight he saw caused a guffaw of laughter to escape his lips.

"Darius Baer!" he called down from the pier, and he received a startled cry in response.

Darius, meanwhile, was in his rowboat. The Lady Jean had been gifted to him by his father, and he had only recently returned from his initiation as a sailor, so had decided a few breaks earlier to take it for a row around the bay. He had taken lunch with him and had found the gentle rocking of the boat lured him towards a morning nap. The next thing he knew, he was waking up to the familiar sight of Erik Ki'Ufnaj, though it took him several moments to regather himself and get his bearings. Rubbing his eyes, he realised he must have relaxed a little too much while enjoying his lunch, and the tides had pulled him to the docks.

"Harbour master," the bearded blond acknowledged, using the biqaj's title rather than his name.

"I do hope I haven't disrupted your siesta," Erik chuckled in his slightly accented voice. "How is your father?"
Last edited by Darius Baer Bottom on Sun Mar 13, 2022 10:09 pm, edited 4 times in total. word count: 490
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Darius Baer Bottom
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Re: Rowing An Errand

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"He's well," Darius acknowledged as he pulled himself up into a seated position, the rowing boat rocking gently as the weight shifted. "He tends to spend most of his time at home, these trials."

Erik nodded in understanding, and Darius felt the weight of the silent response. There was something unsaid that had been acknowledged. Both the harbour master and his father were widowers. Darius couldn't imagine enduring such a pain, and he was glad when the man who stood on the pier didn't verbalise it.

"I have something for your father," he said instead.

"Oh?" Darius responded, the back of one hand rubbing his still-bleary eyes awake.

"Wait there."

The bearded sailor could do little else, watching the man until he disappeared from sight as he made his way back along the wooden walkway and back towards the land. It was only a handful of bits before he returned, though, straining with the weight of a small chest that he was carrying.

"Return this to him with my gratitude," Erik nodded as he bent down, a glint in his eye that suggested he knew more than he was letting on, though Darius thought nothing of it.

The younger man cautiously stood, his legs struggling for balance and the boat threatening to abandon him as he reached up for the chest. It was certainly heavier than he expected, which explained the bead of sweat on the harbour master's face, but the bearded blond was able to safely lower it into his boat and place it securely beneath the thwart that he would be sitting on as he rowed back towards his father's home.
Last edited by Darius Baer Bottom on Sat May 02, 2020 1:45 am, edited 1 time in total. word count: 279
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Darius Baer Bottom
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Re: Rowing An Errand

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Darius’ shoulders and upper arms ached more than they normally would from rowing, and he knew why. Whatever was in the chest that sat nestled beneath his seated frame was heavy, and that caused the Lady Jean to sit lower in the water, which meant there was more resistance, which in turn resulted in him having to force more water to part each time he rowed.

In short, the more weight there was in his boat, the harder he had to work.

The jetty that had been a temporary resting place had long ago become a distant landmark by the time he caught sight of the stretch of beach that was closest to his home. He was still a fair distance away from shore when he dipped one oar into the water in an effort to turn the rowing boat, only for it to shudder and pull itself away in a jarring motion as the blade bit into something. He then heard the familiar scraping sound of sand against wood that usually only happened when he pulled the Lady Jean up onto the beach.

"King's piss," he groaned to himself as the boat slid to an ignominious halt. "A sand bar."

He pulled the oars in and stood up, before clambering over the side of the boat, which leaned over to one side under his weight. His movements were laboured as he stepped onto the sand which was barely an inch below the surface, and he attempted to push his small vessel back into deeper water. It barely moved, which he put down to the extra weight it was carrying, but he didn’t dare move the chest from its safe position, lest he drop it into the Hollow Sea. That didn’t seem worth the risk, regardless of how shallow it was. The chest, which had an ornate design carved across its lid, belonged to his father, and he wanted to deliver it in pristine condition - not dripping with salt water.

After initially making little progress beyond further tiring his arms, Darius pulled at one of his oars by its blade, drawing the shaft out of the rowlock. He pushed the boat so that it was leaning on its opposite side, then wedged the oar beneath the keel and pulled down. The Lady Jean budged ever so slightly, so Darius repeated the process. It wasn't until the fourth time of pulling down on the oar that the small vessel seemed to shift off the sand bar, and he quickly found himself scrambling to get back onto his seat before it floated away and out of reach.

Sitting back down upon the thwart, he was then able to use the blade of oar to push himself away from the sand bar and back into deeper waters, before turning back to shore, headed towards his father's house.
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Darius Baer Bottom
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Re: Rowing An Errand

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"This isn't for me, lad."

Darius was standing in his father's living room, staring at the chest, confusion etched across his face. He was still dressed as he had been when he'd been rowing, except that he was in bare feet. His leggings were damp from the calf down, while his boots, still wet, had been abandoned by the front door.

Josef and Darius stood either side of a small bench, upon which the chest had been placed. It was completely dry - something that the younger Baer had taken pride in when he'd delivered it - and the ornate carving across the lid was a mark of fine craftsmanship.

"What?" Darius asked.

"I said, this isn't for me," Josef replied, an air of mischievousness in his glance.

"But why did the harbour mas—"

"It isn't for me, because it's for you, lad."

Darius' brow furrowed further, and his confusion only melted away when he saw the smile that was creeping across his father's face.

"...you bought this for me?"

Josef chuckled lightly, then, and he nodded.

"Aye, lad. I've been scrimping and saving for a few cycles."

"But why?"

Josef reached into a drawer and pulled out a piece of parchment, and placed it on the table. Darius recognised his own penmanship immediately.

"Because of this," Josef said. "The dunking ritual is no small achievement. I thought you deserved something to mark the occasion."

"But...the harbour master..."

"Erik owed me a favour," Josef grinned with a wink. "I asked him to import this from the Glass Quarter in Rharne."

"From Rharne? But I only just wrote that letter!"

"Aye, but I knew you'd be dunking soon enough," Josef chuckled, "so I requested it last season. You're all questions, aren't you, lad. Hurry up and open it!"

Darius nodded, allowing a grin to tease at the edges of his mouth for the first time as he ran his fingertips over the exquisite workmanship of the chest. He knew that the Glass Quarter in Rharne was renowned for having the finest items available, so anything that had been purchased from there had to have been made with a great deal of effort and care. As he lifted the lid open, he was greeted by the sight of tools. The various saws caught his eye first, and then a hammer, and then a set of chisels...each one made with fine metal that had been fused to its own wooden handle. Sets of drawers revealed other tools, each as finely crafted as the last.

Darius marvelled at the workmanship, but the chest did not contain seafaring equipment, and yet they were being gifted to him for a seafaring achievement. The thought process must have been clear to see, for his father took one look at him and chuckled.

"Remember, lad, that not every sea journey is full of adventure. You need a way to pass the time."

Darius nodded. He had taken to woodworking after seeing his own father do the same thing between some of his longer sea voyages. He smiled at the thought - not only had he become a sailor like his father, but he was to share the man's other pastime.

"Thanks, Da," he said quietly.

"I'm proud of you, lad," the older Baer replied, and he moved around the small table to pull his son into a strong embrace. "And your mother would be, too."
Last edited by Darius Baer Bottom on Wed Aug 12, 2020 1:23 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 580
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Re: Rowing An Errand


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Thread Review

Darius

Darius Baer
Skill Points: +10 (cannot be used for magic)
Magic XP: None.

Renown: +5 (for getting the attention of the harbour master for a special gift and getting caught napping while rowing).

Injuries/Overstepping: None.
Wealth Points: None
Loot: +A Tier 10 Woodworking kit (claimed from Scalv-enger Hunt rewards).

Skill Knowledge:
  • Logistics: Small packages can fit into small spaces.
  • Navigation: Work your way around hazards.
  • Seafaring: Sand bars can appear during low tide.
  • Seafaring: The tides can take you wherever they wish, if you let them.
  • Seafaring: Sand bars can cause a boat to run aground.
  • Strength: Using a tool as a lever can make it easier to shift heavy objects.
Non-Skill Knowledge:
  • none requested.
Notes: I liked the use of the Navigation (or lack thereof) in this thread, lol.
Skills Used: Novice Logistics (0XP, 0 knowledges), Novice Navigation (4XP, 3 knowledges), Novice Seafaring (25XP, 6 knowledges), Novice Strength (6XP, 4 knowledges).
Skill Review: Appropriate to level.

Appreciated the reference link to the NPC from the get-go, thank you!

The transition from the NPC's point of view to Darius' felt very seamless, and flowed well. Splitting up the posts helped with that, as it gave the space between each snippet to give a sort of mental barrier between which character was closer to the reader in perspective.

It was very sweet that Darius' father got him the gift, and it was a clever application of a reward that could have just been added onto his inventory through a simple marketplace purchase - but instead, had a family story created behind it that could be referenced later. And it would be quite something to get gifted a Masterwork Tier 10 Kit when not expecting it!

Good job and enjoy your rewards!

PM me if you have any questions, issues or concerns.

Total Word Count: 1867 words.
Review Request Link: viewtopic.php?p=148658#p148658
stampcodehere

word count: 321
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