• Closed • Nowhere to Go But Up. Eventually.

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Elijah Lamoreaux
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Nowhere to Go But Up. Eventually.

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Ashan 13: 720


Eli was seated on the rug in the middle of the floor, inside the small room that he and Perdita had rented together. It was still cold out, in spite of the mild warming trends of Ashan; and most of the work that needed to be done, at least for now, could be done indoors. For the past three trials, ever since he and Perdie had sat on the shore while he'd told her what he was planning, Eli had been gathering the necessary supplies, tools and materials that they'd need.

The materials were scattered all around him on the floor. On the bed, leaned up against walls or propped in corner. Some of the things were new, like a tool or two in addition to what he'd owned already. Other things were gently or well worn, and yet some others looked like he might have raided a trash bin or two for them. The young man was determined that one trial, he'd been known and respected enough for his work that he wouldn't have to worry about gold nels to fund his work, and never have to scavenge for materials. Some trial though wasn't now.

In front of him on the floor was what at first might look like a stack of papers or an oddly designed book. But it was one of the first things Eli had shown and explained when he'd brought a roll of clean brown paper back from the butcher. Sketch and design books were good, he'd explained while carefully unrolling the paper to all of it's length, and beginning to fold it accordion style. But a proper engineers ought to have a set of plans that contained all of an idea together, and could be spread out in front of them, step by step.

He'd started at the beginning, drawing what might be a finished concept of a land glider. The Land Glider, Eli told Perdie, just as she'd named it herself. And then each page, whether looked at alone or stretched out, broke the project down into phases, bits and pieces that should all come together. He'd gotten an old, stained triangular sail, he'd told her, from an old man down at the docks whose small boat had gotten scuttled up on the rocks by a rogue wave and was itself beyond repair. The boom had been broken but he'd figured a broom stick in this case would do the trick just fine.

Looking up from his plans and meeting Perdie in the eye, he said, "You know, Domnall back in Rharne told me more than once I was mad for thinking I could build a machine that would fly with me in it. I told him that I considered it a compliment because there's never been a visionary who wasn't accused of being just a little off his rocker. When this one's finished, it won't be ready to fly just yet. But thank you for not thinking I'm mad for trying. Or at least," he added and grinned just to tease her. "For not saying it out loud. Seeing how you worried before about me putting carriage horses out of work."

So he'd gotten extra sail cloth, Eli continued, ticking through a number of the things they had at their disposal now. A couple of brooms...More broom sticks. Spools of good sturdy twine. Some good cut pieces of lightweight but strong wood, and lots of other useful bits and pieces. He'd even found what would serve as a wheeled frame for the body that Perdie had suggested. An old, three wheeled gardening cart. A good sized one, but he'd removed the carrying and dumping bit from the frame so that there was only that and the wheels. The first one was mounted so that it would turn this way and that, the back two rolled but were mounted on a fixed axle.

"So we've got the sail. And from the sail cloth and narrow strips of wood, that's what will make the stabilizing sails, or wings, on the sides, and the rudder in the back. All of them could be folded in on themselves if fashioned like a lady's fan?" he wondered aloud. The tail, shaped much like the tail of a bird or a fishtail. And the side sails more like a bird's wing, or maybe a bat since they wouldn't have feathers. Of course Perdita would have a better idea than him of how to create the basket so it would be as light as possible, but also strong enough to carry him, or him plus another.

Flipping back to his drawing of the wheeled frame, he looked down at it for a few trills with a contemplative frown before glancing up again. "I've been thinking about these wheels. They're smaller, but made like wagon wheels, so they're good and strong. But they're also fairly narrow. It would be fine on a smooth cobbled road or hard level ground, but they're also narrow enough that they'd bounce in and out of ruts. And if it was sandy ground, they might bog down."

"It would be better if we could make them wider, or even surround them with something to build on their width. Something that could hold up to the weight and strain. But rather not go with metal, since that would add more weight to the frame."

Which narrowed the options some, Eli realized. "The only other thing that comes immediately to mind, is to replace the wheels completely with new wooden ones that are much wider and sort of...I dunno. Curled up some at the edges so that they don't dig into sandy or muddy ground and collect it. You have any ideas about that?" he asked. And why not ask her? It was Perdie who suggested the body of the thing could be fashioned much like a basket. And it was a very good idea indeed.
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Re: Nowhere to Go But Up. Eventually.

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Nowhere to go but up....
Eventually
W
hile Eli had been planning and drafting this land-glider of his, Perdita had been doing her own work. They had agreed what they were going to do, and so Perdita too had been collecting what she needed. Typically, for the two of them, Perdita had carefully stored the materials she had sourced and done so in a very meticulous and organised manner. Everything was labelled and dated, each label had a number which translated into her own notebook. When she finished with one thing, she put it away before starting something else; in short, Perdita's way of working was pretty much the exact opposite of Eli's.

She had been working on a small model, woven tightly with small strands of reed. Perdita had drawn sketches of what she thought would be helpful - each one of them carefully labelled, with lists of resources used, time taken - and after each section was done (for those she had completed) she wrote out what to change next time - and what went well. On her bed - which she'd made carefully, folding down the blanket and ensuring that it looked neat - sat her "resources" notebook, where she kept detailed notes on different resources. How they were to use, things they might be good for, things which they wouldn't be suitable for. There was also a price for each resource, in case it was different in different places.

Eli, meanwhile, was spread out all over the place; sitting on the floor, he had tools and equipment all around him and it seemed like he was simply in chaos to the controlled and precise young woman. However, Perdita also recognised that Eli's mind was filled with imagination and innovation and she respected the way that he functioned. He saw solutions and every problem was an opportunity to do things better, to innovate, to think outside the box and come up with something even better. She was beyond impressed with him and the way he worked, the way he thought and Perdita had to admit that she was glad that they had come here to Desnind. It had happened by accident, but the two of them had, somehow, become friends.

As he sat there, focusing on his part of the work, Perdita found herself watching him. Eli had a slight frown-line on his forehead which he got when he was thinking about something; Perdita didn't really realise that she was watching him, wondering what it was that he was thinking, until Eli lifted his gaze to meet hers. Her response, of course, was to blush. He spoke of Domnall in Rharne, of what he had said to Eli and then Eli thanked her for not thinking he was mad for trying this. Perdita shook her head, lowering her gaze to the small model in her hands. It helped, she thought, to be able to hide behind her hair now and then as she formulated her response.

"You'll build it," she said quietly. "You're not mad." Perdita spoke quietly, then lapsed into silence for a few moments. However, when he might be forgiven for thinking that she would say no more, she lifted her head and looked at him with a slightly crooked smile. "You're an innovator." She believed that there was nothing Eli couldn't do, wasn't capable of. As for carriage horses? Well, Perdita said nothing about that other than to point out, "I like horses," she said. The world would be a very different place without horses. Looking at the diagram, Eli wanted to think about the wheels and Perdita listened to his questions and concerns.

On the wheels, she thought about it carefully. Then, she glanced at the fabrics he had there, and she frowned slightly. "What about fabric between the wheels?" She did a quick sketch of a piece of fabric across the axels, maybe on the inside of each wheel so that it usually sat, and was not used. "In snow, or sand," she said, they could put a fabric 'sleeve' which was taut between the two front wheel and wrapped around the back wheels - it would be moving with the wheels and providing a more even surface, maybe even distributing the weight. "Would that work?" Rather than the wooden wheels like that, she said, fabric would be lighter - although it would have to be thick fabric. It was the same idea that he had, but fabric would work. Although.

"Or woven reeds," Perdita said, thinking about it. "Flexible, but strong." The plus points would be strength while maintaining light weight. Probably, she thought, it would be better. Then, she handed him a small woven model of the sort of shape she had in mind for the craft itself. "I made this," she explained, blushing furiously, "just an idea." It would give him a thought of what sort of shape it might be, and would allow him to make changes. It was far from perfect, she still wasn't great at basketweaving, but she had learned a lot in the making of this. Still, the basic idea was there and she would get better.

There were questions that she had. "Flat bottom?" It didn't occur to her that she was just asking questions, and then she pointed to the inside of the canoe-like structure. "Laying down or sitting?" If he wanted to be sitting, she'd make seats in the final piece, but if he wanted to be laying down, then the interior would be built differently; visibility would be different, after all. Also, the other question, "One person or two?" Would he let her come in there, she wondered? It sounded like a lot of fun, but she didn't wish to detract from him and his achievements. So, she asked what he wanted in the design and, as she felt the familiar blush heating her cheeks, she waited for his answer.
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Elijah Lamoreaux
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Re: Nowhere to Go But Up. Eventually.

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Perdie had her filing system, and Eli had his. From his side looking on, she appeared to have one project going at any given moment in time. As for him, he had a dozen or so different ideas, creations, and potentially future creations under way at once, but under distinctly different stages of completion. He tended to switch gears, from one to the other and back, as the spirit, or his imagination possessed him to. It worked.

She'd been weaving away on that miniature basket model of hers, and because it would eventually figure into the outcome, he'd stopped his own work now and then just to watch her fingers at work, along with the expression of concentration on her face. Scholarly interest, of course, or at least he'd have claimed as much if she'd caught him looking. As for the money that all of this project would cost, Eli rarely gave it a second thought. He spent when he had it, and on things that were necessarily bought new. On the rest, he scrounged through secondhand shops, old garden sheds where the owners would let him, and sometimes scrap heaps which could potentially yield the largest treasures of all.

"Well I'll build it," he agreed with her when she swore that he would. "And if we do it right, it'll sail along over the roads, prairies and beaches. Then if we do it better, it'll take to the skies." That was the plan. But he liked the word innovator. It had an upgraded feel to it as opposed to tinker or fix it man. That suited him fine. As for the horses, he considered that and grinned. "Then next, just for you, I'll come up with something to make the horses' jobs easier, more enjoyable for them, that won't displace them in the labor chain and render them obsolete." Just for her, mind. Just for her.

"Well there's only one on the front, two on the back," Eli said when she offered up a solution to too narrow wheels. "The fabric might work at least for the rear ones but I'd worry about drag. For all though? Maybe the woven reeds would be better," he agreed. Then he took the model from her hands; the one that he knew she'd been working on but hadn't wanted to interrupt her work with questions until she was ready to show him. He smiled and he turned it over in his hands. "It's great. The weave is nice and tight. You're really good at this. You ever consider making things like this for sale?" he asked.

Then considering Perdie's question further, he frowned thoughtfully. "Flat bottom would be just fine on land, so long as that's where its staying. But when it comes to going airborne, better if it's more rounded on the bottom I think." Canoe shaped was good though. Wider where the persons operating it might sit, more tapered at the front and the back so make it sleeker and better able to cut through the breeze. As for laying down or sitting up, he grinned again, just a little. "Six of one, half dozen of the other. Somewhere in between. It needs a place to sit with a hollow front so I can stretch out my legs down the nose under the front canopy."

But one or two? "Two, of course," he said, as if it ought to have been a foregone conclusion. He might have conceived of the idea but the project itself was theirs together. Who better to go along on the maiden run than her? "The thing though about the nose and front canopy shape though," he said suddenly, turning round on his seat on the floor in search of something. "It's here somewhere. I just had it," Eli muttered and finally found the book in question, peeking out from under the bed. It was an old book of physics that he'd picked up at a shop. Dogeared, stained pages, old notes in the margins and all.

"I was reading in here about wind resistance and drag. The way the air moves around a solid object, see?" he said, leaning closer so Perdie could see, and showing her the passage in question. The part of the front top canopy closest to the opening needs to be sort of curved up at an angle, so that the opposing wind is directed up and over, rather than being buffeted directly into the pilot's face or blowing into the inside cavity where the drag could create all kinds of havoc."[/b] Flipping through the pages of his own hand-drawn schemes, he arrived at the drawing in question where he'd worked out the numbers, calculating just the angle he thought would be best? "Can you work the basket weave that way?" he asked.
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Re: Nowhere to Go But Up. Eventually.

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Nowhere to go but up....
Eventually
E
li spoke of what the land glider would do - and where it would lead in terms of eventually being a flying machine. But then, he talked about what he'd do for horses, and said that it would be just for her. Just for her? "I like that," Perdita replied, rather quietly, thoughtfully. She lowered her head back to the small prototype in her hands and considered it carefully. As she did so, her mind was ticking in terms of what Eli had said. Just for her? Perdita knew that he was just being kind, even gently teasing her about her tendency to focus on the horses, and other strangeness. But what went through her mind, what she focused on was just how that made her feel. She did like the idea of it, of him doing something - anything - that was just for her.

Paying apparently close attention to the item in her hands, Perdita decided that she probably didn't want to think about this, right now, and so she put it from her mind. Or, she tried to.

As they discussed the wheels, she frowned thoughtfully. He was right, of course, fabric would cause drag. Perdita nodded, looking at the way he wanted it and she grabbed her notebook and started sketching. He wanted woven reeds and she began sketching ideas, making sure that she labelled and numbered them. She utilised shading to demonstrate where there would be overlap between reeds, in one way of doing it, or where there could be space if he wanted it in another. Each drawing was labelled, showing the sort of design possible. Then, she handed him her notebook, open to the correct page, and pointed to the drawing. "We could try these," she said, with a questioning expression on her face. "Experiment with both?"

That led to some thoughts on her part and Perdita was considering these as Eli considered the small prototype she had made and asked if she considered making things for sale. Perdita shook her head. "I'm not good enough," she said and then she added, with a slight smile, "yet." One trial, Perdita was determined. Holding the small model out to him, she pointed to the places where there were issues. "It's too uneven," some parts of it were thicker than other, there was some crossover of reeds which was too much, some which was not enough. It was made by a young woman with a close attention to detail but who, very very much, was still learning.

As they discussed the bottom of the vessel, Perdita considered. Flat bottom would, theoretically, be fine. It would be easier for her, very much so. But equally, there was no part of her which wanted to take the easy way; she wanted to do it right, or not do it at all. So, she nodded and made notes. "I'll make another," she said, gesturing to the small canoe-like test run. "It will be better."

While Eli spoke, Perdita listened but she also got some small canes from her neatly-organised system. When he had finished explaining how he wanted to be both laying down and sitting, she nodded and pointed to the canes in question. "These are osiers," she said. They were of varying thickness and Perdita showed him - demonstrating rather than explaining - how each was slightly different in terms of flexibility. When they had their own space, she would be able to experiment much more with osiers, and the treatment of them. For now, she had limited options and so there was not massive difference. Still. "They make the frame," Onto that frame, she weaves the reeds. There were choices to be made, here, and Perdita took one osier and handed it to him. "Heavier for the bottom," she said, and then another, finer and more flexible, "for the sides." These stakes would make the shape. Looking at Eli, she raised an eyebrow as he spoke about the shape. "I can make any shape you want," she said and then a sudden grin lit her expression, "Theoretically."

She could do it, though, and she glanced down at the drawing he was making, the angles and so on. Who knew, Perdita considered, that she'd be in Desnind talking about angles with a boy? What a strange thing life was. Opening up her notebook to a new page, she looked at Eli and considered what was the best thing to do from here. Then, she decided, she knew. "Can we make a diagram?" Perdita asked. "All details, all measurements." If they did that and made it full scale then she'd be able to scale it down proportionately in order to make the second prototype. With her pencil hovering over the blank page, she explained the most efficient way to do that, as far as she was concerned.

"You describe," she thought he'd like that. Eli tended to enjoy talking, she'd noticed. "I'll draw and question." Eventually, she was sure, they'd have a detailed drawing. Or, to be precise, a number of them. She paused for a moment to check if he had any questions, then she nodded. "Begin."
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Elijah Lamoreaux
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Eli didn't have the foggiest about what he might do, as an engineer at least, in order to make the life of a working horse better. Nonetheless when Perdie said that she'd like it if he did, without lifting his eyes from the drawing in his hands, he grinned just a little. A lopsided, pleased one at that. It seemed to him that the trick was to reduce or even eliminate the labors of horses altogether. Which was what horseless carriages and carts would be for. But the thought of pleasing Perdie and maybe seeing her eyes light up in wonder; that was enough for him.

The design of the wheels continued to be a bit of a sticking point. It wasn't that ordinary cart wheels wouldn't do in a pinch. They'd roll just fine across smooth, solid ground; as opposed to mud or deep sand, that wasn't pitted or littered with ruts. It was for those instances though, that it needed to be better. He left his own plans and drawings in his lap, and watched her draw instead. "These look good," he said when she finished and handed her drawing over. "I think that might work just fine. I suspect there'll be things that need adjusting and tweaking once the thing is built."

It was the way of things like this. What would work in theory might not always work in practice. Yet another reason he planned to experiment on land before ever taking to the skies. Better to stumble across a mistake or miscalculation while rolling across the ground, than up there. As for her weaving skills being not good enough? "You're good at it," he insisted. "Very good. But wanting to be better at something isn't a sign of not being good enough. It's one of wanting to be the best."

At least that was the case for him. Eli would never be satisfied with earning a creating wind up toys or fine tuning expensive compasses like Domnall Scott back in Rharne was doing. It wouldn't be good enough till he found a way into the skies. And then he'd likely not be satisfied till he went farther than that. "Sky isn't always the limit," he said, grinning again as he handed her back her little model. "I know it will," he said when she told him that the next version would be better.

"Sort of like flexible rods," he said when she talked about the narrow canes and what they were called. "They'll be a lot lighter than metal rods would be. Or even dowels made of oak or another hard would. Which wouldn't be all that flexible anyway," he considered, so far as harder wood went. "It's good. And strong enough too if you weave them into the design just right, I imagine?" They'd work well and make a fine frame, he figured. Sort of a skeleton to build on and make the thing strong, while also light as could be. "And yeah, it's got to be heavier on the bottom, lighter on the top. Both for traveling across land, and in the air once it gets there."

There was a level of physics there too. The distribution of weight. Both in regards to the craft itself, and where he'd be sitting in it himself, either alone or with a partner. "I've worked out the numbers for the balance, if it helps," he said, digging through a stack of paper scraps at his side till he found the one he was looking for. Like physics, Eli's knack for working numbers was gotten mostly from practice, and trial and error, as opposed to formal learning. He didn't have any degrees and figured there was nothing he could learn in a university that he couldn't learn from either pulling a book off a library shelf, or even better, simply doing.

As for making a diagram, taking into account all that they'd talked about so far, that they could do. Most of his work, both drawings and calculations, was still in bits and pieces after all. But there were the bits and pieces, which were scattered around them on the floor in the form of notes, equations and drawings, and then there was the vision itself. The diagram could be pieced together from all the paper around them. But it was the vision that inspired Eli most.

Getting up off the floor, Eli paced a little while bringing an image to mind; a picture of what the craft would look like once it was built. And more importantly, what it could do. "It's body will be sleek from stem to stern," he told Perdie with a faraway look in his eyes. "Whether on ground or later, in the skies, it'll slice through the air like a dolphin or shark through the water. A tapered nose, sloping up as it goes to direct a headwind up and over, rather than having it batter against the craft and pilot."

"The wheels will go smoothly, only the front one turning if need be while the back ones will follow in it's wake. Just far apart in the back to stop it toppling over sideways, but no so much that it makes things sluggish," he cautioned. "So long as it's on the ground, and not in the air, a single upright sail that can be swung side to side will keep it moving, just like a boat on the ocean. Retractable fins, or bat-like wings covered in light canvas, will help keep it stable on the ground. And later, maybe when made larger, they'll give the craft lift, keep her there and help her to soar and glide," he said, smiling and clearly getting ahead of himself.

"It'll have another fin or rather more birdlike tail on the back, but perpendicular to the ground. Collapsible, like a lady's fan," Eli figured. "That'll help keep things stable and upright on land, and both on land and in the skies, it'll help with steering the thing." And of course, he meant for all of those things to be controlled from a panel of levers and whatnot, on a panel just in front of his seat.
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Re: Nowhere to Go But Up. Eventually.

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Nowhere to go but up....
Eventually
A
djustments, amendments, edits and tweaks. All of these were things which she understood. No piece of work was finished until ... well, that was interesting, really. Because, in Perdita's mind, there was a moment at which she could add no more. That applied to the books she made, the art she did and, of course, to the baskets she wove. At that point, it was finished. But what Perdita had not, yet, been able to work out was whether this was because the items in question were actually done and no one could add anything to them - or whether it was because she wasn't good enough to do so, yet.

It was an important distinction.

Still, they were where they were and for right now, Perdita had to be content with the state of things. Even this prototype. Eli insisted that she was good and she felt the increasingly-familiar blush rise up her cheeks. It was tricky to look at him when he made her feel this way and, although she wouldn't admit it, he made her feel this way. Still, she lifted her eyes and met his. "I'm not good," she said softly. "Not yet." She would be, though. One trial. Then, however, she reached over and took hold of his hand in hers, bestowing a quick and gentle squeeze on it. "But, thank you."

It was important to say that, she knew. But that wasn't why she said it. They were beyond manners, or at least she was. Yet, the more she considered it, the more she knew that Eli felt responsible for her, he was protecting her. Perdita might have to admit to having something of a crush on him, perhaps. She certainly liked his company - and he was the first person other than her parents who she could say that for - yet, still. So, Perdita took the offered equations, showing his workings-out for balance and she lowered her head to study them. That her hair fell as she did and hid her face was - she would assert - pure coincidence.

But, she told him to begin and that was exactly what he did. He jumped up and began to pace, filled with passionate energy which she frankly envied. He was so very in the moment, so completely existing here and now and Perdita wished, sometimes, that she could do the same. He paced and he spoke and she? Well, she listened. She made notes and she didn't interrupt. As he spoke she jotted down key words, but Perdita would be the first to admit that she was taken away on the fantasy of what he saw. That was the thing about Eli, Perdita knew - he was a dreamer. He dreamed things, then made them real. As she began to sketch what he described, she focused on the details - like a ladies fan, for instance - and yet, even while her hand moved, her mind wandered.

That was the difference, she considered most seriously, between him and her. He dreamed and transformed his dreams into reality. Whereas she recorded things happening in the past. One person was part of history, the other was not. Perdita was under no illusions about what she did - she recorded other people's achievements, wrote stories and committed events to paper. But as she watched Eli pace, Perdita began to understand the differences between the two of them. He was so focused, so intense - so forward-facing. She scribbled things down and then, finally, a few moments later she lifted her gaze to regard him. "You see it?" Perdita asked, softly. It was astonishing to her that he did, because she needed the physical. The artefact, the relic, the words. Something. Yet Eli could allow his imagination to soar without question. She envied him that ability.

As she continued to draw - to outline and sketch, she didn't care about the quality, she focused on getting the information down. Then, she chewed her inside cheek and finally asked. "I think we can start," she said. Where it took them? Well, Perdita wasn't really sure. Was he? Was he happy, and did he want to be here, doing this? She had brought him here, she knew and so, as they continued to work away, Perdita asked - in a doomed attempt to seem casual - "Do you miss Rhane, Eli?"

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Re: Nowhere to Go But Up. Eventually.

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In Eli's mind, nothing was ever finished or done. It was just the way that his mind worked. There weren't any end stops when it came to building on one big idea or another. Only leveling off places. Rests between temporary success and then making it bigger and better. If he ever reached the skies, and he would, even then he might just set his eye on going further than that. He'd never be like old Domnall back in Rharne; contentedly repairing broken compasses or putting new faces on old clockwork toys.

"Well I won't argue with you if you're going to keep insisting," he teased Perdie when she insisted again that she wasn't as good as he'd told her she was, and gave her hand a squeeze. "Mind though that I'm not saying I'm wrong. Only that I won't argue the point. For now." In any case, he'd discovered that he liked watching her at work. The way her hair fell down over her face when she concentrated, and the way the curtain parted now and again, here and there, so he caught a glimpse of the tip of her nose, or her lips set in that particular way that they did when she was thinking hard.

After that, Eli had gotten lost in the process of describing to Perdie, the vision taking shape both in his mind and on paper. It was an arc's worth of inspiration or more now, though what he saw and imagined now was much different than when he first started. "I see it, yeah," he said, sounding almost surprised that anyone would ask, as he sat back down on the floor beside her. "Always have, but this time it's different than the last. And last time, different than the one before that. The one's before wouldn't have worked like this one. The one we're going to build," he explained.

"What I see changes, and what I see now means that before you know it we'll be racing down the beaches and roads, pushed along by the wind before you know it. And after that we'll be lifting right up off the ground. That's because of your ideas. That's what's changed what I see now." As for Rharne? Eli wondered. Was she asking because maybe she missed Rharne but was too polite to say it? It wasn't the first time he'd paused to wonder. She'd left behind more than him. Family, friends. Maybe even a sweetheart or two? It was that last bit, that bothered him more than he was willing to admit.

As for him, he shook his head while folding up his plans in a relatively organized way, all the better to follow them through the building process. "Nah, I don't. I don't have any family left there. The only person who might've wondered where I've gone off to is Domnall and he probably waited all of two trials before getting himself a new apprentice. Besides," he added and smiled. "You're here. Which makes Desnind much better than Rharne."

Still, "What about you? You've got family there. They must miss you a lot. And you must have left behind friends and..." The thing that bothered him threatened to wrap itself up in a question and come spilling out before he could stop himself. But awkwardly, in a way he'd kick himself for later, took it's place. "and your cat right? You had a cat?"
word count: 604
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Perdita Westcott
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Re: Nowhere to Go But Up. Eventually.

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Nowhere to go but up....
Eventually
S
omething which consistently surprised Perdita about Eli was the fact that he sounded surprised when she was interested in him. He seemed to be, anyhow, and it made her wonder what had happened in his past which meant that he felt people would not be interested. To her mind, he was intriguing, the way he thought, how he approached each problem with an innovator's viewpoint. How it was that he was not surrounded by people who were asking him about his process, his inventions, his thoughts? Well, Perdita didn't know. But then, she considered to herself as she recognised her thoughts, she was just a touch biased when it came to Elijah. Just a touch. As he described what he saw, and how it changed, he was simply fascinating and Perdita watched and listened intently.

He didn't miss Rharne? That was good, Perdita thought to herself. After all, she'd dragged him half way across the world and he'd left behind his life; he'd had a job, a career - probably friends and .... well, other people. Female other people. Pretty, female other people who giggled and had petticoats which they flashed when he was looking. Come to that, she thought to herself as she tried to maintain an air of casual and non-concerned. It was a mammoth effort and entirely futile, but she gave it her very best. Come to that, he might have even had a girlfriend. Maybe he'd been happy to leave because of a break-up, she thought as her imagination constructed an almost-complete scenario from the outset.

Desnind was better than Rharne because she was here?

That pulled her short in her construction of his life in her mind. Perdita blushed deeply at that, but she smiled a little too. She'd say something to him, but in fairness she was almost completely unable to form words, so she just kept quiet. But then - of course, he asked her what about her. She'd left behind family, friends and - he pointed out - her cat. Perdita thought about it for a while, trying to make sense of her response, and then she spoke. "My parents are wonderful," she said, earnestly and truthfully. "I miss them." The blush which she wished so hard to stop, deepened as she added the truthful answer. "But," she said, quietly. "They are very protective," she smiled slightly at him. "They had given up on having children. I was very unexpected," and very wanted. Perdita did not doubt that she was incredibly loved, but equally, she knew the simple truth. "I have no friends there," she smiled, shrugging slightly. "My parents did not allow it." She wouldn't utter the words 'over-protective' or 'cloying' but that was very much what she had experienced.

Her blush did not abate throughout possibly the most she had ever spoken to him and Perdita fell silent. Then, she looked up again, peering out from behind her hair and she said, quite genuinely. "I worry that they'll come here," she explained. "And try to make me go back." They wouldn't approve of Eli, she was quite sure. They didn't like her having friends and they most certainly didn't like her having friends which were male. Add in to that the idea that she and he were living together, albeit entirely in a platonic manner, and her parents would be going up and down the wall. They were old-fashioned and very controlling, but Perdita understood entirely that they were absolutely adoring of her.

As she thought it, Perdita's jaw set in a suddenly stubborn manner. "If they do," she said, firmly. "I won't go." And that, it seemed was that. She had never - in anything, in any way at all - defied her parents but in this she would. "You're my friend," she said and nodded her head. "And I'm yours." It was as simple - and as complicated - as that. She was happy and settled here, and she was here with her friend. If her parents arrived - and Perdita had to admit that she thought they might - then she would simply have to be firm. She wasn't good at firm, but for him she'd give it a go.


word count: 723
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Doran
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Re: Nowhere to Go But Up. Eventually.

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Perdita:

Knowledge:
Basketweaving x8
Drawing x1

Loot: -
Wealth: -
Injuries: -
Renown: -
Magic XP: -
Skill Review: Appropriate to level.
Points: 15

Eli:

Knowledge:
Design x3
Drawing x3
Engineering x3

Loot: -
Wealth: -
Injuries: -
Renown: -
Magic XP: -
Skill Review: Appropriate to level.
Points: 15

- - -
Comments: In my opinion Eli is not mad, even though Domnall thought so. He is, as Perdita told him, an innovator! I think that a flying machine is an excellent idea, and I hope to see it in action one day. I like how you set the scene in your first post, with Eli sitting on the floor, surrounded by his materials. He seems like a very intelligent and creative young man!

I never thought that Basketweaving could be so useful. Perdita made me change my mind in regard to that particular skill. I like how she supports Eli and how they exchange ideas. That’s a lot of fun to read in my opinion (I love threads that have something to do with inventions and science!).

I also found the bit of background information on their families very interesting. I wonder if Perdita will ever see her parents again and if things will indeed go the way she thinks …

Enjoy your rewards!

word count: 203

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