Gadgetry is a Girl's Best Friend? (Evarista)

Glass items are a rare spectacle.

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A city floating in the center of a lake, Ravok is a place of dark beauty, romance and culture. Behind it all though is the presence of Rhysol, God of Evil and Betrayal. The city is controlled by The Black Sun, a religious organization devoted to Rhysol. [Lore]

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Gadgetry is a Girl's Best Friend? (Evarista)

Postby Crow on September 22nd, 2016, 2:29 am

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13th of Fall 516 AV
(Please view This before posting. Self Moderated Event. )

Deep within the Merchant’s Ring a caravan worked on setting up stalls to sell new goods to the people of Ravok. It wasn’t a usual occurrence for travelers to be granted passage to sell their wares within the city, but this particular group of merchants was persistent. Perhaps a good bit more persistent than what they should be. When gaining entrance to the city like every other traveler they were questioned. Using some of their exotic goods as gifts, their bribery is what bought their way into the city. Though, they had no intention of staying within the confines of the lake.

Across from Café Fleurs were their stalls. They attracted the few curious sorts to look at their goods. Among them were strange artifacts that many of the city had never seen before. Armors which clearly weren’t meant for humans, strange glass items and gadgets, instruments of all sorts, paintings, and various miscellaneous goods. They were mostly welcomed by the non-citizens which were quick to try and find various items which weren’t easily found in Ravok.

The citizens, however, shared both interest and speculations in the usefulness of such items. The merchants were a shady group. They always seemed to conspire amongst each other and talk to one another until a possible customer would come to view their wares. They would occasionally be seen arguing with one another and seemed to fester a great deal of anxiety. It was clear that they had been through quite a bit with their journey to Ravok. As such they were very eager to get rid of their wares.

Most of the merchants wore long robes or coats and had crystal shades of frost blue and green eyes. Mostly polite in their approach to others, these strange merchants would be very vague over the knowledge of their wares. Only stating various facts of the wares that would aid in the sale of such items.

Their shops would open fairly early in the morning and remain open until very late into the night. However, these merchants were the traveling sort and would not remain in the city but for one day. Their vibrant and determined attitude kept their stalls lively.

They were fairly well organized with wares assorted in such a manner that one could walk through the stalls as if it were an aisle. On either side one could see the various wares out in the open, and they allowed passing people to touch the items on display, save for the more exotic ones. All it would take is the slight interest before a merchant would approach and attempt to sale the item to the interested party.

~Thanks to Aladari Coolwater for the template
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Gadgetry is a Girl's Best Friend? (Evarista)

Postby Evarista on September 22nd, 2016, 8:52 am

That morning, Evarista was heading to Café Fleurs to wet her whistle. The wine was terrible, but getting out of her stuffy room was nice once in a while, especially now that the weather was just perfect. As it turned out, the nice weather didn't benefit just her.

Arriving at the café, the girl was greeted with a very unusual sight. A group of very suspicious-looking foreign merchants were setting up their stalls in front of the terrace. Whoever let them into the city, even? Moreover, whoever let them set up their shop outside of the marketplace? Very strange. Evarsita's interest was roused immediately, and she changed her course, never reaching the café terrace. She could buy wine any day, but whatever these fellows were selling was probably not as common.

She was right. On the shelves unfurled a mesmerizing display of relics and oddities, some of which reminded of mundane objects, but had uncanny designs, and exuded an uncanny atmosphere; while some of them were completely unfamiliar. So deliciously mysterious and creepy!

Rubbing her palms in anticipation, the girl walked up to the stalls, sweeping a wide-eyed gaze back and forth across them. She was like a little child in a toy store. The merchant who noticed her first didn't let this fact go unnoticed. Greeting her with a wide gesture of his arms and an equally wide smile, he addressed her in impeccable Common, with just the right hint of exoticism in his accent.

"Welcome, my fair lady! This beautiful morning brings fortune to you." His hand passed over the stalls behind him as he said the last part, while his eyes quickly scanned the potential customer to gauge her. Lean build, expensive clothes, hunched posture, cloudy eyes. Just from that, he could almost instantly tell that she was a rich kid of the not-so-sharp variety. The absolute best type of customer! That is, the easiest to fool into buying overpriced junk.

Following her indecisive gaze, he could also quickly tell that she had no idea what she was looking for, or even what she was looking at. No harm in helping her along the way, then. Reaching for something behind him, he brought out something that looked like a slender wooden club, and presented it to her in a dramatic offering. It only so happened to be the most expensive item on display, but that was a mere coincidence as far as he was concerned. Ahem.

"See, and be awed! An artifact hailing from beyond the Suvan Sea, or perhaps from beyond the very oceans! This looking glass has served captains far and wide, through time and space unknown. Oh, the horrors and mysteries that have been witnessed through it! I can berely imagine the secrets it holds. Can you?"

His sweet and alluring voice was almost exaggerated, but he knew it was the right approach. Different types of customers needed to be handled with different tactics. Frankly, his hopes of selling the spyglass at a decent price were rather slim. This was a type of oddity that only interested jaded collectors, which would scrutinize every nook and cranny of it and haggle for every copper on its price tag. The rare and ever-coveted 'bored rich kids' on the other hand, were a lot less formidable. No, they were nothing short of a blessing sent by the divines, a neatly wrapped bag of mizas that just needed a tug to be emptied. So early in the morning and barely after the stalls opened, even.

The other merchants did not let Evarista's emergence slip by them and two more approached with agreeable smiles on their lips. This was a better start to the day than anyone in the merchant group could have hoped for, and the robed men were determined to make the very best of it.
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Gadgetry is a Girl's Best Friend? (Evarista)

Postby Evarista on September 23rd, 2016, 2:14 pm

Evarista was now surrounded by several of the merchants as they sang dithyrambs to the mysterious club-like object. One side of her was skeptical, but the other was impressed, making her listen to their story while being more and more curious about whatever they were selling. Eventually satisfied with their explanations, one of them offered a demonstration of its effects to her. Pointing the glass towards the Bell Tower in the distance, he prompted the girl to look through it, and got the desired reaction.

"Whoa. What kind of sorcery is this?"

Evarista's skepticism was blown away at once. The strange device showed her even minute details of the large clock as if it was an arm's length away. What sort of magic was involved in the making of this? Was this the product of Magecraft that she has heard so much about at the Institute? Why would random foreigners sell something like this outside of a café? All questions that a clever person would ask themselves, but Evarista was not one, so she skipped all that nonsense and went straight to the heart of the matter.

"How much are you asking for it?"

Holding the spyglass to her eye, she turned it at everything around her, close and far, never ceasing to be amazed with the optical wonder.

"Ninety golden mizas, my dear lady, and it is yours this instant," one of the merchant sang in a sweet voice, his companions nodding in tune.

Evarista was a little surprised; she was expecting a four-figure number. Maybe this wasn't magic, then, but that made the object even more interesting.

The merchant misunderstood her confounded expression as a sign that the price was too high. However, acquiescing a discount so quickly would be a foolish move. Instead, he went to the wiser effort of making his product seem more appealing. Fluidly snatching the spyglass from the girl's hands, he dexterously turned a segment in its socket. Something clicked repeatedly. Evarista received the spyglass again, wondering what that was about.

Taking a peek inside made her dizzy. Everything was upside down?!

Almost giggling with amusement, she twirled around with the item again, watching an overturned world pass by her vision. This alone was more than worth ninety mizas, but she wasn't dense enough to ask for some clarifications.

"So, how do I tune it? Teach me, and I'll buy it."

Pleased by the progress of her attitude, the merchant explained the workings of the spyglass in terms as simple as he could manage. He then showed her how to turn the three segments to achieve various magnifications, and noted one secret, elusive arrangement of lenses that would turn the picture upside down. Evarista did not quite understand everything, and her awkward attempts to repeat his machinations didn't prove very successful. Noticing this, the merchant simply extended it for maximum magnification and advised her to seek out the local gadgeteer if she wanted to change it. Content with that, the girl was about to seal the deal, but one of the other merchants suddenly called for her attention.

Beckoning Evarista to come around the stall with a conspiratory gesture, he showed her a cloth-wrapped package. Carefully removing the cloth, he revealed a lacquered wooden box, which he began opening with a small key. The girl gave him a puzzled look, but he only nodded towards the box, compelling her to be patient. She glanced at his companion, the one who had explained the spyglass was standing beside her. He only gave her a mischievous wink. The girl got the feeling that something decidedly strange was about to happen.
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Gadgetry is a Girl's Best Friend? (Evarista)

Postby Evarista on September 24th, 2016, 12:10 pm

As the little key turned in the lock, Evarista was filled with anticipation. Whatever they were offering, if it was hidden in a locked box behind the counter, it had to be special.

The lid finally popped open, revealing a strange object resting on a pillow. A transparent, circular stone was held tightly in a frame of golden vines. The same golden vines extended on one side, wrapping around a slender sapphire and forming a handle. The merchant reached down into the box and took out the object gingerly, as if it was extremely fragile. He commented his actions in a harsh whisper.

"This! This is the moment we've been waiting for." He presented the item to Evarista, who was starting to sweat from the tension in the air. The merchant continued, building up intensity. "We've been waiting for someone like you. Someone who knows the value of the mysteries hidden behind the glass."

Receiving the item, the girl looked through the transparent stone as prompted by the man. The distortion of space struck her even more vividly than it did when she looked through the spyglass. Using the latter was like peering into a different world, while using this things seemed to warp reality itself. Wherever she directed the magnifier, space twisted itself to show her a different image. This sort of experience she only got when severely drunk, and she hasn't had a drop today. There had to be magic involved; she just had no idea what sort. Oh! She had her auristics, didn't she? Perhaps that would shed some light on the matter.

Just a moment before she could bring her magic to bear, the merchant fluidly snatched the item from her hands, startling her slightly. Evarista frowned. These fellows were really quick with their hands, almost as if they practiced some sleight of hand on the side. She wouldn't be surprised. The man didn't let her wait, however. Beckoning her to the side, he took out a crumpled piece of parchment from the pocket of his robe and placed it on the ground, crouching next to it, and gesturing to Evarista to do the same.

"Watch."

Dexterously angling the glass in alignment with the morning sun, he let the rays of light gather on the dry parchment. Evarista looked on with nothing but slight confusion, but her eyes widened when the parchment began to smoke. At first it not very noticeable, but soon a large blob of black smoke erupted, followed by a small tongue of flame. The parchment has caught fire. Evarista hardly believed her eyes anymore. The merchant snuck a glance at her, satisfied with the reaction. He had no doubts that this deal was in the bag now, but he had to confirm it formally.

"So, my fair lady. You've seen the enigmatic powers of these relics with your own eyes, and no, your eyes have not deceived you. We are glad to offer you an opportunity to claim these for yourself."

Evarista nodded eagerly. She fell for the sales pitch completely, though there didn't need to be a lot of exaggeration involved. As far as the young aristocrat was concerned, the near-mystical nature of the objects spoke for itself. Turning the magnifying glass in her hand, she watched the golden decorations glimmer in the sunlight as she threw her reply to the merchant, without even looking at him.

"I'll take both."
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Gadgetry is a Girl's Best Friend? (Evarista)

Postby Evarista on September 24th, 2016, 4:02 pm

Returning to the stalls with the merchant, the content customer was ready to discuss payment. The merchants nearly skipped in circles around her in excitement, overjoyed from the prospect of getting rid of their two most expensive items first thing in the morning. Even more worth celebrating was the fact that they would get an excellent price for each the objects, something none of them had dared to hope for.

Of course, Evarista wasn't carrying this much money on her person, but she had a way of making that unnecessary. It was time to flash some 'rich kid' mannerisms. Asking for a pen and a parchment, the girl offered to write a promissory note. When doing any sort of non-trivial business, these were bread and butter, as they allowed the parties to complete large transactions without having to lug around crates of mizas in the open. Avoiding the dangers and inconveniences of the latter was indispensable, especially when larger sums of money were involved.

Evarista had only ever used a promissory note once, when paying for her last clothing commission at Azure Reflections, and was by no means an expert on the subject. She only knew that a note issued by a Nitrozian could be cashed in at any of the Nitrozian businesses, after which word would be sent to the estate, where a clerk would deduct the stated sum from the signatory's allowance or other income. It was a system that relied on trust, reputation and good will, something that the Nitrozian family proudly cultivated with more success than any other business organization in the city. Might as well take advantage of that.

The merchants, while not at all unfamiliar with promissories and their conveniences, were still quite skeptical about getting this kind of payment in a city they weren't too familiar with. After a brief discussion among each other in hushed tones, they decided it was worth it the risk. Starting a fuss over money could upset the customer, and they knew they couldn't convince her to carry a sack of gold across the city for them. Besides, being the skilled people-readers they were, they agreed that Evarista didn't ring any warning bells they looked for in potential con artists. If they didn't take this opportunity, they risked not getting rid of these niche-interest items at all. The deal would be sealed.

With that, Evarista would unhand all the gold she was carrying, which was about forty mizas, and sign a promissory for the rest. She'd receive the spyglass on the spot, and the magnifying glass would be delivered to her house once the promissory note was cashed in. One of the merchants wrote all of this down on a parchment, handing the goose pen to Evarista, who merely planted her signature below. A contract. It was generally something the girl only saw her relatives mess around with, so doing it herself appealed to her snob sense somewhat.

Bidding the happy merchants farewell, she headed home, twirling the spyglass in her hands to examine it from different angles, like a curious four year old. The café visit would be cancelled, partly because she just gave away her drinking money, and partly because she couldn't wait to sit down with her newly bought gubbins and examine them properly. Actually, she couldn't wait to start right now.

Passing by a canal that offered a good view of the Bell Tower again, she looked through the spyglass. The maximum zoom gave a very close view, and she was curious about adjusting it. Trying to remember the way the merchant had done it, the twisted the tubes. Something clicked. A look through the tunnel only showed an indiscernible blur. Damn it, did she ruin it now? The complex mechanism inside was not something she could come to grips with by simply twisting the tubes back and forth. Fortunately, now she had the leisure to use her magic. Auristics was her way of understanding things she wasn't supposed to understand, and if it worked on complex biological systems, it should work on a mechanical system as well.

Concentrating her attention on the length of the spyglass, she sought the aura and found it soon enough. The aura of inanimate objects was largely static, which made it easy to examine for details on structure. The aura of this thing, while indeed static, turned out to be no less complex than the mechanism inside. Simply staring at it gave her no useful information. However, by turning the tubes slightly and examining the aura again, she could tell differences that were not visible just by looking at the physical form. It was like examining the spyglass from the inside without having to open it.

After fiddling with the mechanism for about twenty chimes, and not without some sweating and frustration, she finally restored the maximum zoom that the merchant had originally set. The Bell Tower was clear in the scope again. Phew. This thing was no joke, and whoever built it must have been very smart... something Evarista admitted she couldn't compete with, at least not without auristic cheating.

It was all worth it, though. To think how useful this spyglass would be! Her nighttime roof-climbing endeavors would be vastly enriched, now that this gadget increased her field of vision manyfold. For example, she could look through people's windows and get a crisp view of everything that went on inside, all from a safe distance. The potential was truly limitless! And that's not even starting on the magnifying glass she'd also receive later today.

Letting out a mischievous cackle, the young aristocrat hurried home, holding the looking glass close. This purchase was the beginning of many funs.

And, as she'd later find out, many woes.
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Gadgetry is a Girl's Best Friend? (Evarista)

Postby Sayana on December 29th, 2016, 12:22 pm

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Don't forget to edit/delete your grade request. If there's anything I may have missed, please PM me and I'll be happy to look into it.


 
Evarista
Skills
  • Observation: 4
  • Gadgeteering: 2
  • Negotiation: 2
  • Auristics: 1
Lores
  • Fall 516 Ravok Event: Merchants of obscure items
  • Gadgeteering: Focusing a spyglass lens
  • Spyglass: Makes things appear closer
  • Spyglass: Can make the world look upside down
  • Magnifier: Distorts space when looking through
  • Magnifier: With focused sun rays, can set fire to paper
  • Negotiation: Writing a promissory note
  • Gadgeteering: Changing the magnification of a spyglass
Miscellaneous
  • Spyglass (- 90 gm)
  • Magnifying Glass (cursed) (- 90 gm) - Approved by Prophet

Please deduct the 180 gm for the two items.

Comments: Great thread. I loved how naïve and aristrocratic you depicted Evarista. After all, anything that is scientifically exceptional can easily be perceived as magical.

Your Grader,

Sayana
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