Location The General Store

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Center of scholarly knowledge and shipwrighting, Zeltiva is a port city unlike any other in Mizahar. [Lore]

The General Store

Postby Neologism on June 14th, 2019, 11:02 pm

The General Store
ImageConstructed from durable limestone concrete and weathered to a soft tan, this general store forms the image of solid respectability. It seems to be the oldest building on West Street, but it is crowned with a sloping shingled roof and adorned with a large wooden sign proclaiming the building to be Zeltiva's general store. The front of the shop boasts a large window draped with curtains made from old sails, a nod to the city's seafaring nature that also betrays the shopkeeper Halabin Clarke's thrifty and unwasteful nature. A cloth awning of deep blue shades the double doors leading into the store, which inevitably creak and protest with every opening and closing despite the shopkeeper's best efforts to tend and oil their hinges.

Much like its exterior, the general store's interior is well-maintained but plain and unpretentious. Illuminated by hanging lanterns that cast a warm amber glow, the shop's low ceiling and tightly packed rows of glass display cases and finely crafted wooden shelves make for a cozy, almost intimate atmosphere. A broad selection of merchandise and dry goods for household use is on sale, from staple foods like smoked fish and gallons of kelp beer to everyday necessities and tools. Along one side of the store are shelves full of bolts of sturdy fabric like cotton, canvas, and calico in a variety of colors, as well as simple, utilitarian items of clothing in a small range of sizes and styles. Cheaply made fisherman's boots, all-terrain boots, riding boots, and ordinary shoes are also on sale, though perfect fit and comfort are far from guaranteed. Plank counters run along the back of the store, and laid out on the floor beside the counters are kegs full of nails, sacks full of salt and sugar, and barrels full of lampoil, nails, and animal feed, when available. On top of the counters are large glass jars brimming with nuts, dried fruits, salted fish, molasses, and something pickled and fleshy that very few customers dare examine for too long.

On the other side of the store, large display cases showcase common everyday items like hammers, saws, shovels, fishing nets, and several different kinds of knives, like hunting knives, skinning knives, knives for eating, and butcher knives. Coils of rope lie beside arrays of pots, pitchers, and waterskins; vials of ink keep company with boxes of sealing wax, sheets of parchment and paper, and leather scroll-cases. These and many more items are all offered at the general store, none in huge quantities or of particularly high quality, but all intended to be convenient and useful. The general store is, after all, a store intended for ordinary people to obtain ordinary things, not luxuries or curiosities, so that they can continue on with their ordinary lives even in the face of extraordinary dangers and hardships.

Behind the plank counters, a narrow stairway leads to the second floor, which functions as the stockroom for the general store. No less than two heavy padlocks guard the door to this room, and the inventory is meticulously tallied every day by the shopkeeper and his assistant. Every few days, depending on demand, old stock is taken off the store shelves and replaced with new merchandise from the stockroom with great ceremony, as though the replenishing of supplies is considered a mystical ritual for Halabin Clarke and his ever-changing succession of clerks.

Halabin Clarke
ImageRace: Human
Date of Birth: Spring, 462AV
Place of Birth: Zeltiva
Title: Owner of the General Store
Skills: Tactics: Business (65), Negotiation (60), Organization (50), Mathematics (45), Food Preservation (40), Salvaging (30)
Language: Common (Fluent)
Concept: Born and bred in Zeltiva, Halabin Clarke is a genial, quick-witted man in his late fifties with once-dark hair gone grey and sharp brown eyes clouded by time and partial blindness. Born in a family of intellectuals and scholars, he received an excellent education and attended the University of Zeltiva as a matter of course, pursuing the study of economics and finance. Everyone expected Halabin to excel effortlessly at his studies and become a scholar like the rest of his family. However, after three years of study and in the midst of slogging through his thesis, Halabin came to a sudden realization. What he wanted most in life wasn't to become an ivory-tower intellectual or to study the great abstract forces of economics. Instead, Halabin's passion was for the exchanges, negotiations, and bargaining in everyday commerce, the selling, buying, and bartering of goods, the smiles or frowns of buyers, and the clatter of mizas in his hand. Halabin wasn't even interested in profits; he thought of bargaining and negotiating as a means of exchanging ideas with customers and making friends.

Though he knew too well how disappointed and upset his family would be, Halabin quit his studies right then and there and embarked on a solitary journey as a peddler of general merchandise and dry goods. His knowledge of supply and demand as well as his ability to wield erudite, incomprehensible jargon like the finest University scholar impressed many sailors and traders from Syliras, Mura, Nyka, and other cities to which Zeltiva had trade routes. With his contacts and inheritance, Halabin was able to set up a modest shop in Zeltiva. Since then, he's expanded his shop several times into a thriving business selling a wide variety of household tools and items. To this day, he retains his quick wit, love of bargaining, and acumen with numbers and money, making him a well-known figure on West Street, and a friendly, amiable manager of his store.

Consult the Price List. Most common items can be acquired here with the exclusion of mage-related items or region-specific items. If you are uncertain about the availability of an item, PM an ST.

⥼ Clerk: Halabin is known for cycling through clerks quickly, but although stability is uncertain, the job is good. The clerk assists Halabin in greeting and helping customers, organizing the store and storage, and accounting for the stock used so that he may secure more. Base pay is 3 gm/day, must possess the Organization skill.

Original location credit goes to Avari.

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