Solo Is it good enough?

Telling a fortune for business advice. [Job thread]

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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]

Is it good enough?

Postby Rohka on August 1st, 2019, 6:34 am

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5th Day of Summer, 519 AV

“It’s a problem. You’re going to become replaceable if you don’t pick up on things quickly, child. Do you realize what I’ve been through to maintain this business? The countless hours and networking I’ve done to bring in my clients? You’ve spent two years here and you’ve barely gone past cards and dice, and you’ve been poor at maintaining incoming business. In Mura, in that same amount of time, I was already onto five different types of fortune telling skills, all on my own. You don’t seem to want to learn, do you? You sit, you wait, you talk, you do a few easy fortunes for the ones who want to play with you before they come to me for their serious concerns, and that’s enough for you. Well fine, at least you’re freeing me of the time spent on people who just want to be entertained. That’s the best reason for keeping you, really. You’re useful for entertaining my clients - I could be keeping a slave for that, not having to pay them, child. Why did I take you on, hm? Where’s that potential you showed me at the Temple that day? I can’t waste another precious five chimes on you to find out. Rohka, I’m getting tired of you. I need to provide much more to The Black Sun this year and if you can’t increase your ability to do so, you’re useless to me, do you hear me?”

The Divinist’s voice had risen high and sharp. Her frustration was palpable. Being alone together made it easier for the Konti to be so outspoken about her feelings on the matter at hand. Lelia was usually a soft-spoken woman, and had tended to express her concerns with a measured consideration. This time was different. This time, Rohka approached the Divinist first. She wanted to know how Lelia felt about her apprenticeship lately. About how her methods have been improving. The question brought on the opportunity for the Konti woman to spill her gripes.

This was a speech that Rohka had been dreading for a long time, ever since a young client had left The Mystic Eye in tears over her problematic reading and never returned. Roh had been honest when she told Lelia that the girl’s fortune had gone both poorly and correctly. Lelia, however, was furious that Rohka had nothing more to say about it.

The pair understood that they had differing beliefs when it came to sharing client information. Lelia used to have no problem with Rohka’s insistence on keeping her own readings confidential, unless the young sybil ran into issues with telling the fortune correctly. Lelia respected Roh’s attempt to build trust with her clients, assuming that the consistency and care would allow for repeat business. She was even fine with the sybil’s style in pseudo-leading The Mystic Eye on the days the Divinist was away; in fact, Rohka’s presence allowed Lelia to have more time to carry out her business externally. But it wasn’t enough. There had been news of significant changes occurring this season, and Lelia’s services were needed in order to make sense of the present times using her gift from Avalis. Divination provided her with some clues but the real meat of predictions came from full readings—those readings needed to be from people with influence.

“Rohka, listen closely,” she spat out, eyes narrowed. Her tone had now shifted and she began to glide across the floor towards to door, like a spider towards the edges of her web. “I swear to you by the power of Rhysol, if you don’t bring me high quality clients with substance to their fortunes this season...” and she paused. The Divinist unlocked the door and it swung free, hinges creaking.

“You will suffer.”

And then she left without another word.

The exit was planned. Lelia had forewarned the young sybil that she was going out and leaving Rohka in charge of The Mystic Eye that day. The Divinist had to pick up a few supplies and meet with external clients, and then she had a meeting with members from the Black Sun later that afternoon. In the meantime, it was Rohka’s task to stand in as the shopkeeper, letting clients know that Lelia would be back the next day, and being open to tell fortunes in her absence.

The young Calico’s mind had been preoccupied with thoughts outside of her job recently. Her father had come in a few days ago to tell her that she was needed, that there was work to be done, and that he would be leaving for Zeltiva to find her grandfather. Slowly but surely, Rohka was piecing together her reasoning for either staying or leaving, and she knew that she would need to decide soon. In the silence of the empty shop, amongst the lit incense sticks, the melting candles, and the various colourful baubles and trinkets, Rohka sat at her deep green silk-covered table, waiting for someone to walk through the door.

She closed her eyes during her wait. Both hands were brought together into prayer. Although she never really learned how to meditate, she figured she would try something new…

Fortune telling required attention. Rohka knew how exhausted she gets after paying such zeroed-in focus to her cards, and it was always difficult to be accurate when she felt herself becoming fatigued. She realized she needed to increase her ability to be attentive. It would be easier if she could notice minutia of details, even within the most bland and boring moments.

Why not do that right now?

With her eyes closed, she tried to watch where her mind went. At once she noticed her breathing: an inhale, an exhale. Quickly the silence around her filled in with noises that she failed to notice before: footsteps walking past the closed door, the sloshing of lake water, creaking wood panels on the boardwalk outside. Her mind then flitted to sensations on her body: a strand of hair against her neck that hadn’t been pulled back by her headscarf, a bubbling in her stomach, the warmth between her palms that were pressed together. An overwhelming feeling of dread washed over her when she finally managed to process what Lelia had said to her.

Suffer?

There was no telling what the Divinist meant. A sudden pang in her chest reminded her that she was afraid of losing this job, of being kicked back out after what felt like her longest period of stability. The timing would be perfect, though. All the more reason to go back home.

The thought of home brought yet another pang to her chest. No, there would be no going back just yet. She had the season to make her choice, or at least until her father showed up at the Malt House again. It was then that she realized she’d strayed away from her mental task of noticing details around her. Resuming her meditation (or perhaps her distraction), Rohka took in a deep breath and noted the feeling that had gotten her so worked up. Could she push it down far enough until it no longer existed?

Suddenly, there was a knock at the door.

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Last edited by Rohka on August 29th, 2019, 8:36 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Is it good enough?

Postby Rohka on August 4th, 2019, 1:54 am

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“Can I come in? I saw Lelia walking away but I heard from my girls that there’s someone else here as well?”

Rohka perked up at the question and responded right away.

“Yes, we’re open! Come on in, welcome to The Mystic Eye.” The sybil got up from her seat, having heard a voice that sounded like a croaking frog, yet also quite cheerful. The kind of cheer that was forced for introductions.

“Oh wonderful! Yes, Sofia said you weren’t as detailed or knowledgable as the pretty Konti woman, but I’m hoping you can just answer some simple questions for me. I haven’t been here for ages and I just think…” the woman paused, letting the door close behind her. She wore silks, in red and orange, draped around her, covering her body and arms. A large pack crossed her body and rested at her side, and a belt cinched her waist, with a dangling pouch and a small dagger sheathed in a scabbard. Her greyed hair and warm skin reminded Rohka a bit of her grandmother, but this woman seemed far skinnier. Her cheeks seemed almost hollowed out, but her bright green eyes looked like they would pop out of her skull at any moment.

“Dear, this won’t take long. If you can’t answer my questions, I’ll just be back when Lelia is here.”

“Yes of course, please come sit, we can start whenever you’re ready. I’m Rohka by the way, apprenticing with Lelia. It’s true that I don’t have her level of experience, but I can do my best to answer whatever questions you may have.”

Rohka guided the old woman over to the seat meant for clients. It was a cushioned wooden chair in front of her table, upon which were her dice and cards splayed out, and a candle aflame in the corner.

“Well good, it’s good to meet you Rohka,” she said, providing a slight bow of respect. “I don’t expect you to give me much, but you’re all I have access to right now. Lelia will remember me as Josephine, from the Nitrozian family, so if I’m gone before she’s back, let her know I was here.” The woman eyed the table as she walked towards it. “Your set-up is so simple compared to hers, dear.”

“Yes, I’m still learning to use other methods.” Rohka tried to suppress any feeling of inferiority and put her focus onto what she knew she could deliver. “What would you prefer today?”

“Well you only have cards or dice, and the dice are far too simplistic. The cards are extraodinarily difficult from what I hear, and tend to give the most obscure answers for my questions, but,” The woman sat down, heaving a sigh. “I need specific answers dear. I’ll leave if I don’t get one. Please use the cards.”

“Okay.”

Rohka went behind the table and sat down. She shuffled her cards in silence and wondered if she should ask again. After another few ticks, before the sybil could open her mouth, the woman continued.

“Dear, are you ready?”

“Yes. Josephine, would you like me to write your answers down?”

“I only have one question and I’ll remember the answer. What do I need to know about my business?”

Rohka froze her movements. She then resumed her shuffling with a silent nod and what she hoped would be an assuring smile, trying to keep her face composed.

“What’s the matter, dear? Are business questions difficult for you,” the woman asked, her brows kitting together. Rohka closed her eyes for a tick, frustrated with herself for not being able to hide her emotions better.

“No, Josephine, don’t worry,” Roh took in a breath and kept note of her guest’s tone, understanding that there was perhaps an impatience coming through due to the immediate concerns that brought her here today. The sybil continued to explain herself to her guest. “Lelia actually just left after telling me that I need to get better at keeping and maintaining incoming business. The question struck a familiar chord, is all,” Rohka offered yet another smile and began to fan her cards out face down on the table. She resolved to let let the Konti’s words bring herself down. Building her skills and bringing in more clients just takes a bit more effort, doesn’t it? The sybil brought hands hands together, clasping then neatly on the table and addressed her guest with as much respect as she could muster. “I don’t remember Sophia, but she’s not wrong. I haven’t yet built my skills beyond what you see here, and that’s been causing Lelia to worry. But Josephine, I can assure you that my cards will bring you insight. And if you have any lingering questions or worries, I will be sure to forward them over to the Divinist.”

The woman scoffed, shaking her head. “Oh, that Konti was probably just stressed over the coming of winter. She’s been the advisor to so many of us lately, with the changes going on. It’s getting to her head, I’d say. Did you know that she was granted Rhysol’s gift through betraying her own kind? It’s no wonder that woman is still single, she has no idea how to keep the trust of the people who love her, but she’ll go above and beyond to keep the trust of people who pay her. Besides, I don’t blame the woman. Us Nitrozians know exactly what it takes to thrive here in this city, after all. Although dear, never forget your gratitude to our saviour. The great God has done so much for us and our business. It’s wonderful that Rhysol has been keeping all of us relatively comfortable, yes, but I think its easy to control the weather for him… it seems its far more difficult to stop animals from behaving like animals. Thank goodness for the Voice’s rationality, trying to keep the people safe and sound with that curfew of hers. Although I admit, it restricts our flow of business a bit. What’s good for the city should be good for us too, right dear?”

Rohka wasn’t sure what she saw in the woman’s eyes but she chuckled along with her anyways. It sounded almost like Josephine was looking to her for confirmation, like she was checking her view on the matter. The sybil shrugged a bit before giving an answer.

“Rhysol knows best,” she began. This elicited something of a smirk from the old woman. “But Josephine, I’ll admit, I’ve been weirded out a bit too. My folks have gone past the point of worry into fear about their business, so I’d say you’re not alone. Let me help ease your troubles a bit with the aid of these,” and she gestured to the cards. “Pick any two that call to you. It’s best if you are the one to pick them because you will be guided by the strength of Rhysol towards what you intimately know about yourself and those around you. I will pick the third one. The first card you pick will tell you where the issue begins with your business. The second card you pick will tell you where you want your business to go. The third card, the one I’ll pick out for you, will give you guidance on what you may be able to do to help your business. So please, go ahead whenever you’re ready.”

Josephine reached forward and picked up two cards that were side-by-side, right in the middle of the spread. She flipped them over and immediately began studying them on her own.

“This doesn’t look good, dear,” she croaked aloud, visibly upset with what she’d picked. “I don’t want to be a fool, nor do I want my business to be fooled. What’s going on here?”

Rohka watched the woman pour over the cards, lifting them up and scrutinizing the images. Quickly, the sybil raised her attention to Rhysol’s blessings and picked up a card near the end of the spread, placing it face up as well, beside the other two.

“Oh dearie, I like that one much better. A king, is it? What does that mean?”

“Well,” began Rohka, taking in a breath of air. “Will you allow me a few ticks to concentrate? I’ll be able to gather more information if I meditate on these a bit.”

“Alright, go ahead. Don’t take too much time though dear, it never takes Lelia more than a couple chimes for a simple question like this.”

Rohka nodded and closed her eyes. She brought her palms together once more and focused her inner mind on the images she saw earlier before her. All three of them contained mountains, which was what she picked up on first. The Fool looking up to the sky, and the knight with his coins, standing there, dependable. In a moment she became distracted by the breathing of the woman sitting in front of her, but she listened to it too, becoming suddenly enamoured with the way that both of their breathing seemed to be in sync. She waited and watched, while the fear of running out of time started to creep into her mind. Time for what? She wondered. Simply, it would be the patience of her guest—the woman who had yet to trust her competence. The crux of the sybil’s limited time came from staying here, at the Mystic Eye, in Ravok… and it hit her when she remembered the last card: The Emperor. She remembered her father. Meer had qualities that were less of that of a king and more of a man who led through his ability to do his duties well. She thought of her uncle. And then her grandfather. All of them, men who were supposed to be in charge, but none of them feeling anything like what she thought a king would be like. Slowly, the thought of Rhysol surfaced to her mind.

Rhysol was more delicately aligned with her idea of a King, an Emperor. Protective, a leader, visionary, keeping the city safe and flourishing. Was there more to it? What was she missing? What were kings and emperors really like? Rohka found herself lost, then, among thoughts that only served to confuse her more. She snapped out of the process and opened her eyes.

“Done, dear?”

Rohka nodded. She wasn’t sure how useful the moments of meditation had been. Hopefully, she thought, the cards would tell her more than she would have initially been able to read.

“Josephine, there is nothing to fear,” she began, as usual. Roh focused on the first card and continued.

“You are not a fool, but your business has experienced a new beginning. At some point in time, in the near past, an innocent change had occurred, leaving room for possibilities. You must have seen growth, hoped for clarity, but the long staff in the card calls out to me, saying the your issues began when you realized you needed support, stability, and a clear, singular focus.

“Which brings me to the second card, the path that you wish your business to travel. Your knight on a horse is hard working, dependable, and very careful about everything he does. You want your business to be practical, reliable, and the horse calls out especially to inform me of your intention to harness the power of your business to direct movement and change. You ultimately want strength out of your business, the strength to provide security to your ambitions, as the coins here indicate to me. The knight himself speaks of loyalty, and how important loyalty is to your business.

“Such loyalty is exactly what leads me to the third card, that of the Emperor. Looking at this card, Josephine, what you really need to know is that your business needs structure in order to gain the loyalty you crave. There is something about the future of your business that will benefit from limits on certain behaviours, and some rules that will be central to your current situation. You may want to start thinking more rationally than you’ve been doing in the past, perhaps by focusing on responsibilities and actions, as the rams on the throne here are telling me. The throne itself, Josephine, tells me that your business would benefit from someone who gains mastery over their trade. You may also want to gain inspiration from the armour and anticipate challenges that will come your way, and to be willing to fight for whatever is most important for your business.

“Last but not least, Josephine, when I put these three cards together, seeing the mountains in every card, I can tell you that there are indeed big challenges that have yet to be overcome. Take a look at the steepness of the mountains behind the fool, even behind the Emperor… Behind the knight, however, these steep mountains seem to be far away yet are still there on the horizon. There are risks involved in your business, Josephine, I can see that. But it is clear to me that with the right structure and protection, as again, the armour in both of these cards indicate, you can and will succeed.”

The woman in silks had sat there silently, drinking in every word, nodding along and crossing her arms midway through, as if she was thinking long and hard about her troubles. When Rohka had finished, she sighed. A few ticks went by of nothing being said. This was normal for Roh, so she waited as patiently as she could while remembering Josephine’s initial impression, wondering if she had changed it all all. Judging by the woman’s face, it was hard to tell. The space between her brows crinkled and she twirled a strand of her long grey hair around her finger. Then, the woman frowned. It was at this moment that Roh knew she’d petched something up.

“That,” started the old woman, her voice softer than it had ever been since she entered. “That’s...” she repeated, like she was trying to find the right words. Dull green eyes looked up from the cards and caught the sybil’s gaze, and at once, Rohka braced herself for the worst.

“That’s not what I needed to know.”

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Is it good enough?

Postby Rohka on August 20th, 2019, 3:25 am

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It was as if her heart broke in that very instant. What more could she need? The question was vague and broad. Perhaps the woman needed help narrowing down her inquiry.

“Josephine, was there something specific you were looking for?”

“Well,” the old woman brought her hands below her chair and scooted forward. She then placed her arms on the table. It was at this moment that Rohka noticed the half of a black sun scarred on the top of her right hand.

A Nitrozian slave, she was.

“Yes, so you finally noticed. Not to worry, my mistress knows exactly where I am, alright? Now here,” and the woman quickly stuffed one hand into the punch belted to her side. “The coins for your trouble.” She dropped a few gold mizas onto the table. Rohka let the coins stay in their place and nodded to the woman, in a gesture of thanks. “What, cat got your tongue? Rohka dear, your reading told me everything I already knew. They were all reminders of things I was sure about, and things I wasn’t so sure about, but I figured they needed to be true in order for other things to make sense. Like when you talked about risks, yes, there are plenty with our latest means of collecting bills, but my mistress is happy with the current structure. It’s true that some of the other slaves don’t trust her enough yet. She’s so new, Rosanna, marrying into the family and all. But her husband is out of the city on business and she was left in charge of the household. The man has been gone for a whole season and the slaves are getting restless. They love him far more than they tolerate Rosy. It takes time for them to get used to this poor woman’s leadership - there’s times when she loses her temper on them so dramatically…” Her voice trailed off as she looked into the distance.

Rohka listened, intent on figuring out exactly what else this slave needed. She decided to ask a question of her own.

“Are you worried about your mistress, Josephine?”

“Oh yes,” the woman replied. At this, the sybil smiled. It was always lovely seeing slaves so devoted to their owner. “I raised her, I saw her grow up into the beautiful woman she is today. I just hate that her husband Rorik has been away for so long. It’s taking a toll on Rosy to handle some of the beasts, she’s even sent a few of them to the research institute to have them disciplined for her.”

Rohka scrunched her face at this, and the woman caught on.

“Ah, you’ve bought into the rumours of the ravosalamen. The Kelvics are fine, they come out better than when they go in, every time. We need certain types of animals for our business, and the institute has found ways to make our slaves breed the right ones.”

The sybil had heard of what she meant. Her own family had kept slaves as well, and continues to buy more of them to help with the Lumber Company. A Lark had once suggested the topic of breeding to her uncle, and he considered it. However, it wasn’t long until her mother, Vida, caught hold of the rumour and forced him to never bring up the possibility ever again. Vida was not a fan of such pairings. She preferred to let the slaves love whomever they pleased, so long as it didn’t cause trouble.

Rohka nodded and clasped her hands together. “Josephine, do you need to know something about Rosanna’s husband then, perhaps?”

“Well yes, but,” pausing, the old woman noticed Rohka’s apologetic face and interrupted her immediately. “I know what you’re going to say. You don’t do readings on people who are not in front of you, yes, Lelia has told me that before.”

Rohka offered a smile and bowed her head. “It’s because it’s both prone to inaccuracy and is frankly an invasion of privacy. But I can still help you, if your question is along those lines?”

“Yes dear, his absence is causing a mess of things. Some of the slaves are even talking of escaping the household.”

“No,” Rohka exclaimed. “That bad?”

“Yes! I think they just miss him, but I could be wrong. They might know more than I do. I’ve only been in Ravok for three years at most, dear. Same with Rosy. She’s gotten used to things here, but Ron’s slaves have been around for much longer, some of them for generations. Just,” and she took a breath, squeezing her eyes shut for a few ticks. Rohka allowed for the silence, respecting the woman’s space to contemplate.

“Rohka, I really don’t have much time left in this world. Just tell me what I need to know to help my mistress take over the business,” the old woman asked, her voice suddenly solemn. “If she has to.”

Hearing this made the sybil close her eyes in understanding. The slave wasn’t just worried about Rosy. She was worried about the husband, too. Rorik Nitrozian.

Perhaps this was the type of quality that Lelia was looking for.

The sybil nodded and looked at the pile of coins, unsure if she could provide exactly what the old slave wanted for such a price. Seeing her gaze, Josephine sighed and reached into her pack.

“Alright little missy, I see what’s going on here. Just take this,” the woman produced what looked like a wooden box with wires of sort, carrying a bit of a rotten odour.

“It’s worth at least ten coins, okay? A rat trap, it works well. I was going to sell it for another weapon, but I figure I’ll need this reading first, to help my mistress with her plans. Will this do? It doesn't even need baiting and has an incredible lure that mice and rats can't resist. It’s great, I promise. The three holes here fit the size of the rodent magically every time a rodent approaches. And when it sticks its head in the hole to see what smells so delicious, a snare slips around its neck and as it jerks back to escape, the little critter's life ends. This device can single handedly keep a building free of vermin. It’s been great in our household, we have five more, at least on every floor, makes our living space stay clean. It just needs to be cleaned out daily.”

This was a first for Rohka, being offered a trap of all things, as barter. It seemed convenient though.

The sybil smiled as reached her hands out to accept the offering.

“Thanks, Josephine. This will do. I’ll provide a four-part spread this time, giving you a way to look at the current situation, then whatever is most difficult for you in this situation, then the advice for overcoming the challenge of a take over, and the likely future outcome. Ready?”

The sybil shuffled the deck quickly and fanned it out.

“Choose your fate.”

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Last edited by Rohka on November 19th, 2019, 7:12 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Is it good enough?

Postby Rohka on August 24th, 2019, 5:01 am

Image
Josephine pondered over her choices for a few ticks, her bright green gaze flickering between both ends of the fanned deck. The air in the room seemed to shift, a draft from the outside managing to sneak its way inside, making the swirls of lit incense smoke dance around the sybil. A smile crept up on Josephine’s face, having seen such a shift before.

“The Gods, they’re watching,” she said, ominously. “We have no control here, dear. I fear my choice won’t entirely be my own.”

The slave’s face struck Rohka as being much more cheerful than her words seemed to suggest. Was she joking? A test of sorts, perhaps? Taking a deep breath, Rohka placed the cards back down on the table, face up now. If the old woman needed reassurance, she was happy to provide it.

“Josephine, the Gods are always watching. More importantly, Rhysol is always all-knowing, in every manner of our living, breathing, awakened, and even dreaming states. There’s nothing to fear,” said Rohka, as calmly and as full of grit as she could muster. “Your choice will be your own here. In my reading, I do not plan anything for you. If you have doubts, express them as you have just done, and I will show you with the best of my ability that I have no intention of making any of your choices. I have no stake in your life, Josephine.”

“That’s where you’re wrong,” said the old woman, her eyes wide and her grin now much larger. “Are you blind to your influence? You are fortune telling, are you not? This trade of yours is so that I can get the most out of my life, and you do, you certainly do have a stake in it, for as long as I give you insight into my world, do you get that dear?” Josephine shook her head, her fingers pinching the bridge of her nose now, eyes, shut, still smiling in what looked like disbelief. “And I thought Lelia was young. You’re much less experienced, aren’t you? I see her troubles now, you haven’t begun to use the potential of this trade to the fullest, dear. I had to teach Rosy too, she was like you once. She thought she could carry out her husband’s business on the straight and narrow. Oh no, oh gods no, that would’ve gotten us into debt quicker than you could send your prayers to Rhysol! No dear, you’re kind. You need to get a firmer grip on your ability to be a great influence in the lives of those you’re seeing. You want me to choose my fate? You think if I could choose my fate, I would be here right now? As a slave at an apprentice’s desk asking for clues into how to take over this stupid Nitrozian’s business?”

Her voice boomed against the walls. Rohka looked at the slave, frowning, confused yet nodding. Josephine seemed to erupt in emotions like a ball of fire, revealing pieces that she wasn’t sure she should’ve heard.

“Is that a ‘yes’, dear? You think I chose to be here?” That was definitely anger in her voice.

“Well, Josephine, I don’t know, really,” and that was the sybil’s honesty. As far as she knew, all of her choices had to be her own, in order for life to have worked out in the way that it did. Sure, sometimes perhaps she was pressured into making certain choices over others. Sometimes, there wouldn’t seem to be any other choice. Rohka began to feel a chill over her entire body, suddenly unable to express what it was that this slave had pointed to within her very being.

“It’s Rosy’s fault that I’m here. She was born, I was bought. She was married, I was sold. She hates me, I love her. My life has not been kind to me, my choices have never been good enough. But at least I have her. At least I love her. It’s my love for her that makes my choices, dear. And her hate for me keeps me alive enough to have choices. So tell me, Miss Rohka,” asked Josephine, leaning forward. “What control do you think you could give me over the fate of our business?”

The sybil had never thought of asking her cards to give control. It was a peculiar flavour, with a hint of what felt more like manipulation than it did a straight, unfiltered reading of symbols and signs.

Lelia wanted her to improve, didn’t she? This could be her chance.

“Alright, Josephine, I hear you. I’ll choose the cards with you and your questions in mind. Are you comfortable with this?”

“More than you know, dear. I’ve lost faith in the Gods long ago because I know that they’ve never helped me. You though, I’ve payed you. I want your help. I want you to give me what I know I’ve never had,” she leaned back, crossing her arms. “Give me better choices, Miss Rohka, please. For my mizas worth, at least.”

The sybil nodded and began to shuffle the deck once more. She closed her eyes and allowed herself to feel into her cards more intently, focusing on the words she’d heard and the help that she could apparently provide through her personal choices. Rohka let her mind hone in on her breathing once more, taking in a long, slow, and steady inhalation of the smoke-filled room, then letting out air through pursed lips, gently, smoothly, all while laying out her cards on the silk, letting her fingers glide over the tops. As she exhaled, she watched her mind meditate over Josephine’s concerns, her love, her desire to serve her hateful mistress to the point where the slave’s sense of self worth was tied to the success of the Nitrozian business. It was here that she realized that her analysis might be wrong. Perhaps Josephine didn’t tie her worth to her ability to make choices. Perhaps her history was such that she was in fact proud of her ability to live her life amongst a shyke hand of choices. Losing faith in the Gods is something Rohka wasn’t able to understand, but if the slave had enough faith to trust a reading, there was certainly some form of belief still left. But in what?

In an apprentice’s ability to choose a hand that was good enough?

Gods. No pressure.

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Is it good enough?

Postby Rohka on August 28th, 2019, 5:59 am

Image
Rohka flipped out four cards and all she could pick up at first were leaves.

Green leaves of growth. The leaves were simple, small, covering the branched wands and the heads of figures. The first thought that crossed her mind became the notion that growth can only be controlled by nourishment and the lack thereof. The sybil quickly stood up and hushed Josephine to stay quiet while she walked around the table and towards the open shutters where Lelia had placed a few pots of flowers and simple herbs. Rohka pinched off a few leaves and brought them back over to the table.

When the slave tried to question her again, Rohka hissed and gestured for silence in the room. With a flick of her wrist and a sudden spark of inspiration, she grabbed a sheet of parchment and began to write words all over the blank page: Loss. Hurt. Break. Stand. Know. Keep. Kill. Truth. Take. Key. Sound. Trust. Earn. Feed. Pain. Learn. Die. Air. Eat. Breathe. Stab. Run. Burn. Rise. Turn.

She then paused for a tick and figured there were more she could add: The. Will. Not. A. Is. Are. Now. Soon. Us. Him. She. Them. It. Can. Should.

In her palm were 8 tiny leaves when she counted them out and realized what it was that she wanted to do.

“Josephine, take these and pray. Pray long and hard for the ability to gain control over this Nitrozian business. Think about your past, your present, and your future. Think about all the choices available to you now and focus, long and hard, upon our saviour’s immense potential. If it’s impossible Josephine, if you have absolutely no faith in the great and powerful Rhysol, I beg of you…” and here, Rohka could only squeeze her eyes shut as she held out her hands. “I implore you to believe in the many avenues your life has the ability to take. Believe in possibilities, ones that are grander than anything you have ever imagined before. As you pray, Josephine, for your choices ahead, I want you to feel the life still in these leaves. Their softness, their flexibility. Then, when you’re ready, let them fall from your fingers onto this page. Let the leaves bring you that which Rhysol believes.”

Entranced, the slave received the pieces of greenery and did as she was told. Rohka felt a flutter in her chest and goosebumps all over her arms while she circled the words closest to the dropped leaves.

Stand. Take. Rise. Turn. Use. Soon. Can. Should.

The sybil took more than five chimes to write and re-write the words in multiple orders. Most of the time, the order didn’t make sense to her. Sometimes, there was meaning to the order, but the order didn’t speak to her. One time, the order of the words felt so close to being perfect, but a whisper of smoke flew past her shoulder and she instantly disliked the message and scratched it out. Finally, after what seemed like far too much time for something so spontaneous, Rohka decided upon the structure of her improvised reading:

Take stand. Can rise use soon. Should turn.

It felt the most balanced. Rohka turned the parchment around so Josephine could see. The slave scratched her chin, wondering, looking back up at the sybil with her green eyes full of doubt. Rohka swiftly reached for the cards and began to speak in order to dissuade the old woman from questioning her methods.

“Josephine, you’ve begun to lay out your choices. More accurately, I’ve use the cards and the leaves to provide you with better choices than before you walked in here. You will always have more available to you, if needed, for a price. Now, let’s take a look at the cards first so that we can better understand the statement in the leaves within the context of your business.”

Rohka pushed the four cards forward and pointed to the first.

“We’ve spoken on this front, we both know that your current situation involves long-term planning, and you’ve taken your first steps towards your growth. The next card,” the sybil pushed the second forward slightly, to emphasize its importance. “We see here that your most difficult challenge is both conflict and competition, with a clashing of personalities being what comes through strongly here, along with a need for remembering what team you’re truly on.”

At this, the slave scoffed. But when Rohka looked closely, she could see the concern beginning to write itself across her weathered features.

The sybil continued, feeling reassured.

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Is it good enough?

Postby Rohka on August 29th, 2019, 8:45 pm

Image
The third card would be the first inkling of advice that she would offer Josephine, after the statement through the leaves. It was interesting to see that the card spelled out the breadth of burden ahead. Rohka didn’t hesitate to continue forward in her telling of the symbology before her.

“As you might have guessed, Josephine, taking over a business isn’t a simple matter. There is a lot of stress involved, as well as responsibilities to take control of while pieces of your plans develop and take shape. Do you see how much he’s carrying in his hands? Notice that the divine advice you see here is actually warning you of exactly how much you have decided to do, and is questioning whether you will be effective. The attempt here is to show you how you will feel while overcoming this challenge, and so the best way to mitigate this feeling is to delegate responsibility. You might think that if you don’t do it on your own, it won’t get done right. But you might be surprised by what happens if you take a step back, because if you see the next card, your future outcome is going to depend on how you handle this challenge.

“Here, what will likely happen is that your new investment will be practical, and things will be cautious yet dependable. There’s not much else to report here because as far as I can tell, your choices will lead to a brand new sense of success, if you do it while taking stock of your priorities and paying attention to the physical world around you. Which brings me to your three statements, at last.

“The leaves you used are symbols of growth. You used your spirit to direct growth towards your goals, and you are advised to take stand. Unfortunately Josephine, I can’t interpret these statements too much, but I can provide suggestions. You will know best. Perhaps you are being told to be firm in your opinions and your stance on business matters. Voice them, be heard by your mistresses and potential masters. Or perhaps you are able to take a stand where someone else has left their post. Stand-in for someone who you know will need your help.

“As for the next statement, you could see it as a choice to increase your current usage of your talents. Or maybe its a choice to develop the use of someone or something that it important to you. The most curious statement is the last one, since it starts with a very strong instruction. Again, you will be able to see more into this than I do, but I can help you by saying a few things that come to mind. You could perhaps turn back to where you started, when you initialized this process of taking over the Nitrozian business. Or, you could turn a page of forgiveness on someone or something, in order to help you move forward. Was there an offer you were given recently? It could be telling you that you should turn down the deal. It could even just be saying that there’s another direction you have available to you, that you should turn to.

“Does this help, Josephine? Was this enough to know what you needed?”

Rohka hoped that her questions would allow the slave to speak openly about her own interpretations on the reading. If there was anything that her partner was concerned about, Roh was sure she could handle it appropriately. That was the job, after all. Even if the sybil turned out to be dead wrong to her partner, it helped to be told and to learn from their stories of truth.

Green eyes now filled with a palpable look of frustration stared back into the sybil’s dark, dutiful gaze.

“My dear,” began Josephine, tightening the red silks around her shoulders as she moved her chair back. “I think you lack some basic understanding of the complexity within the Nitrozian family. A slave is still a slave, no matter how luxuriously you treat them and dress them. But I thank you, for trying to give this ancient skin bag more to think about.”

Josephine stood and bowed in gratitude. Rohka was disappointed that the slave didn’t say much else. There was no attempt to hide that feeling on the sybil’s face, and it was instantly caught by the slave trained to see such emotions. A slight chuckle escaped from the old woman’s lips before she spoke up. “Rohka, it was a pleasure to meet you. Get better at this and you’ll be as good as Lelia someday, I’m sure of it. In fact,” the pause was met with a shuffle forward and a finger pointed to Rohka’s quill. She passed it forward along with the parchment covered in writing. Josephine took a chime to scribble as she chatted away.

“I’ll take your advice and shift some responsibility. I’m writing a description of how to get to where I reside, dear. Come to me at your earliest convenience, preferably closer to the evening before the curfew sets in, and I will pay you for a task. Don’t worry, it will still be a fortune telling, but I have something else you will be interested in. A talent of mine. Sofia will answer the door and she will recognize you immediately, just ask for me and she will direct you to my quarters.”

Rohka nodded, a smile on her face.

“Now, before I go,” said the slave, dropping the quill and pushing the sheet back to Roh. “You don’t use Auristics, do you?” The sybil shook her head. “I thought so. That’s such a shame. Lelia should be teaching you that. What a hag, she probably wants to keep you as an apprentice and nothing more. I would’ve liked you to know me better, dear, using that magic the Konti seems to conjure out of thin air. Are you defective at it?”

Rohka wasn’t sure what to say so she simply offered a worried shrug. The slave smirked.

“Get that blondie to teach you. I liked what you’ve given but I’m wary because you don’t say things and see things like she does. You should come see me. That way, Lelia will get more of what she wants as well, and then she’ll teach you more. Got it?”

The sybil nodded again, a hopeful smile returning to her face. Standing, Rohka bowed as well, and returned her thanks, wishing Josephine a good day and walking her towards the door.

As it shut behind the slave, the Calico breathed in a deep sigh of relief. Practice makes perfect, she thought to herself. The piece of parchment with Josephine’s writing lay on her desk. She went over and picked it up, reading the words, then carefully folded the sheet and placed it in her pack.

WC = 1145

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Is it good enough?

Postby Rohka on August 30th, 2019, 1:14 am

GRADES
rohka

Experience
    Meditation +3
    Observation +1
    Business +3
    Philosophy +2
    Fortune Telling +3
Lores:
    Lelia: Provides info to Black Sun
    Lelia: A Chaon through betraying Konti
    Meditation: Bring back focus by noticing feelings
    Meditation: Slow breathing brings extra focus
    Josephine: A Nitrozian slave to Rorik and Rosanna
    Rhysol: Controls the weather
    Business: Risky when Nitrozians collect bills
    Business: KRI Kelvics forced to breed and produce specific animal
    Business: Delegate responsibility to be effective
    Location: Kelvic Research Institute (KRI)
    Philosophy: The Paradox of Choice and Control
    Philosophy: Growth is Controlled by Nourishment
    Fortune Telling: How to use Leaves to form choices of growth
Additional Notes:

+1 Rodent Trap

+1 Nitrozian Address written on parchment



If you have any concerns over this grade, don't hesitate to send me a message on either Discord or Miz.
-Rohka ❤
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Rohka
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Joined roleplay: May 24th, 2013, 5:28 pm
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