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Koruma is selling gathered edible plants during the food shortage

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A lawless town of anarchists, built on the ruins of an ancient mining city. [Lore]

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Postby Koruma on September 24th, 2014, 12:52 am


OOC: Season of Fall, Day 29, 514 AV. Koruma is selling edible plants.

The shops had closed days ago and the promised caravan had yet to arrive. The city had been three days without any source of food from the merchants. Mist had settled into the Dust Bed and would not rise while the hunt for the Dhani continued. After the magic scare during the summer, it was hard to see how the city was still standing.

If Koruma had to be thankful for anything, it was his one strange skill. He knew the edible plants in an around Sunberth. From the moment he found out about the closed, Koruma had been off into the woods and fields to gather what he could. Berries, roots, seeds, and nuts were plentiful this time of year. The trees were ripe with their edible goods, if only one knew where to look. Certain plants had edible roots or leaves that could be boiled to make soups and teas. With the starving city, Koruma began to hatch a plan.

He had bought two medium sized baskets and carved a small bowl out of wood. Armed with his dagger and supplies, Koruma awoke as soon as the sun was overhead. Throwing on his clothes, the teen dashed out of the orphanage and headed straight for the forests. For once, his spirits were high.

The boy's heart pounded with excitement in his chest as he navigated through the familiar landscape. A grove of trees became his first destination. The high branches were littered with thick nuts that dropped to the ground when they were ripe enough. Koruma practically skipped to the harvest, dropping his baskets without much ceremony before dropping to his knees in search of the nuts. He worked methodically as he searched through the fallen leaves, picking up the large nuts and cradling them in the lower half of his shirt. As he moved, the muffle thunks marked where the seeds fell.

It didn't take him long to fill up his makeshift pouch and Koruma stood to deposit them in the nearest basket. Another nut fell, cracking the teen over the head. He pitched over, groaning as his hands shot up to rub the new bump on his skull. A shout escaped his lips as all of his seeds spilled to the forest floor. "Really!" Koruma stamped his foot like a temperamental child and glared up into the tree's canopy. Sitting directly above him was a squirrel, chewing away at a nut before tossing it down onto his head. Koruma groaned again, rubbing his aching cranium before gingerly stepping away from the spot. Several more thunks sounded as the nuts hit the forest floor. Squinting, Koruma was able to spot several more squirrels all tossing down nuts in what he could only think of as his general direction.

Frowning, Koruma stopped and hastily began to gather the nuts again so he could leave as quickly as possible. Several more headaches later and a half full basket of nuts, Koruma left the squirrel ridden trees. His other gathering attempts were both more, and less successful. The roots didn't have squirrels throwing things at him, but finding the right plants was a difficult chore. It took time for him to locate and then dig up the appropriate roots with his knife. By the time he had gathered a quarter basket of roots, Koruma's pants, hands, and blade were coated with dirt. He wiped the blade off as best he could and gave his hands a quick rinse in a stream, but his pants were a lost cause. As he turned his attention to the berries and leaves Koruma couldn't help but thank the gods and goddesses that birds didn't fight back. They flew off every time he approached a berry filled bush and the worst to begrudge him of leaves were a couple of slugs.

It was an hour to sunset by the time Koruma returned to Sunberth. His was covered in sweat and mud. Streaks of dirt clung to his cheeks and he had a piece of a leaf stuck in his long hair. But both of his baskets were nearly filled with edible plants. A sizable portion of what he had found went to his own stomach, but the leftover haul was good enough for Koruma's purpose.

Smiling, Koruma sat down on the side of the road with his back against a half broken building. He was close to the edge of the city and the forest wasn't far off. If things got ugly, Koruma had every intention of running. His basket filled with roots and leaves sat on his left. The basket containing his nuts and berries rested to his right. In between his crossed legs was his empty and hastily carved wooded "bowl." His left hand cupped the hilt of his dagger, free from it's sheath and ready to defend himself. Hopefully it wouldn't come to that. Inhaling deeply, Koruma began to chant. "Edible plants for sale. Seeds, roots, and leaves for a copper Miza. A bunch of berries for two."

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Postby Sh'Ky Naes on September 24th, 2014, 1:33 am

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Hunger


When Sh'Ky heard the young man, not much more than a boy, he had a sinking feeling. This boy, obviously confident in his own abilities, had put food on display in the middle of the damn street. He hadn't attracted much attention, but he would, soon. No food meant... unpleasant things, in the 'Berth. Sh'Ky suspected that before long, people would be at each other's throats, all for a bite to eat. Standing directly in front of the boy, he bent over, sitting on the balls of his feet, and examined the bowls.

Squinting, he looked at one of the berries, and without ceremony, picked it out of the bowl, staring at it intently. Tossing it back, he said, "Do you know what kind of berry that is?" Winking, he tossed four coppers into the bowl in front of the boy, watching it slide under the berries. "It's not lethal, but it will give you diarrhea. Might not make some of your customers too happy. Don't worry, I don't care, as long as I eat, but watch out." The man held his hand out, in front of the boy. "I'd like a bunch of berries, and two handfuls of seeds 'n roots." Looking thoughtfully at him, he said, "You seem to be an industrious lad. Let's make a deal." Smiling amiably at the young man, he said, "How's about this: I pay you the price you're askin' for, every five days, for a clump 'a berries and two handfuls of seeds and the like, until we be gettin' the food back around here, eh? You'll make steady coin, and you'll find I'm not as picky as some about what I get. Some people around here are gon' to starve, jus' because they will only eat meat, or whatever."
College is picking up, sorry if I'm not on for long periods of time.

How did you know that what you sought was redemption and not righteous vengeance?
Redemptio et quomodo iusti non quod petitur intelligis quia quod vindicta?

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Postby Elyra on September 24th, 2014, 11:57 pm

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Food scraps had been almost impossible to find over the past three days. Though Elyra could hunt on her own by all means, she was hungry and desperate to eat something to fill her belly. She had a week of emergency travel rations stashed outside the city, but she could only get to them in her human form and, as it was daylight, she was hesitant to change forms in public for fear of being accused of practicing magic. At the moment, she would have settled for eating plants.

A loud call caught her attention-with a swift movement, she flicked her ears back to listen to the noise more closely. It was a male voice, probably a young boy by the pitch of his words. The words that came out of his mouth were music to her ears-"Edible plants for sale. Seeds, roots, and leaves for a copper Miza. A bunch of berries for two."

Food!

Turning around and padding back towards the boy, her tail swishing as she walked, Elyra put on her best hungry kitty face. She would approach the boy and mew frantically in the hopes that he'd take pity on her and give her a bite to eat. If he didn't, she had a backup plan-take a mouthful of his gathered goods and run off. It would be hard to catch a small cat running at full speed through the city, and if luck was on her side today then she'd soon have the energy to obtain a proper meal.
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Postby Koruma on September 25th, 2014, 6:45 pm


OOC: Season of Fall, Day 29, 514 AV. Koruma is selling edible plants.
It was still early on in the food shortage, just long enough for people to become hungry but not entirely desperate. Or at least, that was what Koruma hoped. He knew how small and unassuming he was. Yet the childish part of his mind prayed that his numerous scars in combination with his bared dagger would make him appear more competent than he actually was. After all, no one knew that the vast majority of his scars resulted from accidents and failed training attempts.

The first to approach Koruma was an impressive looking man draped in dark clothes with a scar marring his chiseled face. His piercing blue eyes came to Koruma's level as the man bent over to examine the two baskets. Koruma shifted his weight as his hands flexed over the dagger, reminding him that it was there. Inside his pocket he could feel the pieces of cut up burlap move against his hip, resisting the change in position. Ashen eyes watched the man carefully as Koruma tried to offer a friendly smile that ended up as a strained wince.

The man grabbed one of the berries and examined to closely. Koruma sat in silence, his mantra stopped as he watched the stranger with a careful and curious eye. The question came as a bit of a surprise to Koruma and he answered hesitantly, "Yes?" Four coins were tossed into the bowl and Koruma instantly began to beam at the purchase. His expression dropped as the man continued to speak. Anger flashed in Koruma's eyes and his jaw clenched as his body tensed. His shoulders rose as he inhaled slowly and his hands clenched. If you think it's poisonous, why bother eating it! Koruma's mind screamed with fury but his face only showed cold contempt as he watched listened to the man order. Without breaking eye contact, Koruma dug his free hand into his pocket and pulled out one of the burlap pieces. He offered the cloth to the man so that he could serve himself the requested berries. He couldn't keep quiet. "That's six coppers, not four. Two copper for the berries. And I do know what the berries are and they won't make you sick. I don't sell bad berries." Koruma couldn't keep his injured pride out of his voice as he challenged the older and larger man. His voice cracked as he spoke, but Koruma couldn't have cared less.

The man continued and went so far as to offer Koruma a job during the food shortage. He half considered saying no, but it was a safer bet than trying to sell the food on the street. As dangerous as it was three days in, things would only get worse. Koruma chewed on his lip as he considered the offer, part of his pride still prickly from the previous slight. Finally, the child nodded and replied in a flat voice. "Okay. It's a deal. What's your name?" Movement out of the corner of his eye caught Koruma's attention. His head twisted and his grey gaze fell on a cream and brown cat. Her tail flicked as she approached him, mewling pathetically. Koruma smiled slightly and extended his free hand towards the cat, clicking his tongue softly. "Hey there," he whispered, "I don't have anything for you kitty, but you can sit next to me if you want."
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Postby Sh'Ky Naes on September 26th, 2014, 12:44 am

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The boy was furious, but tried to contain it, keeping naught but a cold, hard disgust. Smiling brightly at the lad's anger, Sh'Ky thought, Well, I didn't know that he thought that highly off his abilities... "That's six coppers, not four. Two copper for the berries. And I do know what the berries are and they won't make you sick. I don't sell bad berries." Raising his hands in mock defeat, Sh'Ky conceded, tossing two more coppers into the bowl. "Hey, now, lad, I didn't mean to offend, I just was wondering." Winking, he continued, "And the name's 'Ky Ness." Pointing over towards the part of the Sunset Quarters closest to the Tent City, he said, "Just go walkin' about there, and ask around for me. Not really many people know me, but those that do know me as either 'Ky Ness or the Crimson Man." The Crimson Man, huh? He had made it up on the spot, but it sounded pretty good, as an alias, if a bit grandiose.

Noticing the cat for the first time, he nodded towards it, saying, "This your cat?" Not really waiting for a response, he held out his hand in a fist, only his index slightly uncurled. To his eyes, this was a normal cat. Not some magical half-human, half-animal.
College is picking up, sorry if I'm not on for long periods of time.

How did you know that what you sought was redemption and not righteous vengeance?
Redemptio et quomodo iusti non quod petitur intelligis quia quod vindicta?

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Postby Elyra on September 26th, 2014, 7:25 am

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The boy peddling roots, berries, nuts and plants appeared even younger up close than the Kelvic thought he would be. As she reached him, she headbutted him-hopefully this would seem cute to him. She sprawled out on the ground next to him, purring loudly while she stared longingly at the food. Elyra understood what his words meant, though she had no intention of communicating that. For all intents and purposes, she was a cat.

It was then she turned her cool stare on the man standing above this boy. The exact details of their agreement held no interest to the young Kelvic. She made a mental note of his name and location-if she one day needed aid from someone in Sunberth, perhaps this Crimson Man could be convinced to help her.

Glancing back at the baskets of food, Elyra extended a soft brown paw towards the precious resource, splaying her claws out in the dirt. Maybe if she continued drawing the boy's attention to the food, he'd get the message.
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Postby Koruma on September 29th, 2014, 3:07 pm


Getting under Koruma's skin wasn't the easiest thing to do. Although he tended to take jokes and light jabs literally, it wasn't often that they made him upset or angry. Yet, this stranger had managed to make Koruma prickly in an instant. A cold blaze danced within Koruma's ashen eyes as he defended his pride. The smile that crossed the man's face only made the hair on the back of Koruma's neck stand taller as he told the man off.

Two more coppers were tossed into his bowl and Koruma deflated slightly. His free hand touched the coppers, swirling them around slowly in the hastily carved piece. He could feel the rough edges of the wood; the bumps and dents within the depression. Koruma looked down at the bowl briefly, before glancing up just in time to catch the wink. Exhaling quickly, Koruma inclined his head as the man introduced himself. 'Ky Ness was going to be his new employer for a bit and Koruma had already messed things up. A part of the boy swore to bring an extra batch of roots to make up for the mistake. "I'm Koruma," he muttered, chewing on the inside of his lip as he listened to the directions. Again, another false name was handed to him and Koruma's eyebrows raised. Red Wolf, Viper, and now the Crimson Man. Just how many people walked around with aliases?

both of their attention turned towards the creamy cat as it approached. A childish grin ghosted onto Koruma's face as the soft head pushed against his knuckles. The gentle fur caressed his skin and sent a shock of joy through the young teen. He gleefully watched as the cat rolled onto the ground and sprawled next to him, purring loudly as she lounged. Koruma spoke softly to her, although he didn't expect her to understand his words in the slightest. His hand stretched out slowly, moving to gently caress her back if she'd let him.

'Ky Ness questioned him, asking if he owned the feline. Koruma looked back to the man and shook his head before he looked back longingly at the cat. "I wish. Never seen her before, but I kind of want to keep her. I wonder if I'm allowed to have a pet at the orphanage..." His voice dropped as he mused to himself. Red Wolf had offered to teach him how to take care of an animal. If he could somehow convince the cat to return with him, he might just be able to pull it off... assuming Jillene would allow it.

"Ah! No, no, no, bad kitty." Koruma bent forward, his hand darting out in front of the cat's outstretched paw. Struggling not to lean too hard on his dagger, Koruma pushed the basket farther away from the cat. "You can't play with that," he whispered softly, mostly out of habit rather than belief that his words would do anything. "It's not a toy. And there is no food for you there. It's all yucky berries and plants."

Another sigh escaped his lips as he turned back towards 'Ky Ness. "So you want me to come by every five days correct? It might take me a bit to collect everything you want. Can I drop the food off in the afternoon?"
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Postby Sh'Ky Naes on September 29th, 2014, 4:36 pm

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Date


"I'm Koruma." The boy's muttered reply didn't go unnoticed, even though Sh'Ky was still speaking. The boy had a name, even though it was not exotic by any means, that wasn't all too common. Then again, neither did 'Ky. The lad kept looking around twitchily, mostly at his hands and feet, while Sh'Ky spoke to him. Realizing that he might be a bit overbearing towards the lad, he kept the smile on his face, but leaned backwards, getting out of the boy's personal space.

"I wish. Never seen her before, but I kind of want to keep her. I wonder if I'm allowed to have a pet at the orphanage..." In response to his question about the cat's ownership, the lad gave him more information about himself than he would know. Koruma was an orphan, who apparently didn't have many friends at the orphanage, otherwise he'd be out with them, trying to find food. Of course, Jillene was always a factor. He didn't know much about the woman, as he hadn't grown up in the orphanage. The only owner of the home for parentless children that he knew was Calyn. She had always allowed 'Ky to spend a night or two at the orphanage, even if he didn't stay for long. It was a sad day, when she died.

After the boy was distracted by the cat, joy lighting up his face, he turned back to Sh'Ky, saying, "So you want me to come by every five days correct? It might take me a bit to collect everything you want. Can I drop the food off in the afternoon?" Holding his hands up, revealing the twin scars on his palms, he said obligingly, "Listen, Koruma. I don't really give a shyke about when you get the food to me. My only care about this arrangement is that you get the food to me every five days, and don't get killed in the process." Grimacing at a painful memory, he continued, "Seein' as I don't want another child's blood on my hands." Flashing a bright smile, he said, "But that's not goin' to happen to you, eh? You're more careful than most. I can tell."
College is picking up, sorry if I'm not on for long periods of time.

How did you know that what you sought was redemption and not righteous vengeance?
Redemptio et quomodo iusti non quod petitur intelligis quia quod vindicta?

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Postby Elyra on September 29th, 2014, 5:35 pm

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Koruma. That was the boy's name. Koruma and Ky Ness, the Crimson Man. Elyra repeated their names over and over to herself, hoping to imprint them on her memory.

She was interrupted from her memorization by Koruma's next sentence-he was an orphan, huh? The young Kelvic could sympathize with him-she understood what it was like to be alone, abandoned by your parents and left in a facility with no one to love and care for you. With empathy, she nuzzled his hand and purred, showing sympathy in the only way she could. Though she wouldn't return to the orphanage, she saw no issue with keeping this Koruma company while he was out during the day. She remembered being alone and longing for company during her own time in the Sunset Quarters and figured that, even if he had close friends there, he wouldn't mind her tagging along occasionally.

Koruma didn't realize that his words were having the opposite effect on her-instead of being discouraged from the baskets of food, she was instead drawn to them more, sort of desperate to prove that berries were not in fact yucky to her. Instead of pawing at them again, she stood up on all fours and slinked towards the baskets of food, sniffing at them as if she was evaluating the contents. As she moved, Ky spoke, mentioning something about not wanting another child's blood on his hands. Instantly, her ears pricked up and swivelled towards the Crimson Man. Had he killed a child?

Her thoughts went immediately to Koruma's safety around the boy. She made a mental note to keep a close eye on Ky Ness-because there was Sunberth bad, and then there was child murder bad.
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Postby Koruma on October 2nd, 2014, 6:23 pm


Koruma hadn't meant to reveal so much about himself to the stranger. His comment was more of a muttered not to himself rather than for the ears of another. He wasn't looking for sympathy either. Koruma didn't know his parents and never knew a true family. He had always been alone and found that alone was how he preferred. Except, for the rare company of animals. Animals, unlike humans, were honest. They didn't hide what they thought and would always attack directly. Humans hid their intention behind their faces, sneaking up from the shadows with the guise of friendship.

Ashen eyes fell onto the feline and he smiled gently at her as she nuzzled against his hand. Twisting his wrist, the teen gently caressed the cat's cheeks for as long as she would let him. He could feel her breath against his hand as she purred and the way her body seemed to vibrate against his hand.
If only she really did belong to him. If only he could take care of her. Koruma had a store of money, but he didn't really want to use it if he didn't have to. There might be one rainy day that would require the use of a several gold mizas to solve his problem.

His wistful dreams ended as he returned to business, making sure that the terms of his new contract were completely laid out. Koruma knew selling food on the streets of Sunberth was a dangerous business and would only grow more so as the shortage dragged on. This contract would mean he wouldn't have to risk his neck for the chance to earn a couple copper mizas. Koruma's attention was almost completely on 'Ky Ness, although his hand was still extended to pet the cat if she was close enough.

Nodding, Koruma took the compliment without much of a reaction. Nor did he particularly react to the hint that 'Ky Ness had killed or at least, bewn the reason a child had died. "I won't die." Probably. "I'll deliver the first bunch in five days then- HEY!" The creamy cat stood and began to sniff at his food. "C'mon, don't do that." Koruma's hand moved forward, aiming to gently push the feline away from his food. He wasn't trying to hurt her, but he didn't want her to steal what he had worked so hard to gather. He could still make a few more coppers if he was lucky.
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