May 13. Wyn is a hot topic of conversation at the docks.
(Arkold) (Envoy) (Fenter) (Rephidim) (Tirro)
---
Rephidim Docks
The near edge of the sky island is all but invisible, blocked by the confusion of piers, masts, cranes, gantries and gas-bags that all crowd impossibly close together along the docks. Townside, huge warehouses and office buildings form a buffer between the docks and Rephidim proper. The noise of the crowds is a constant background, with only the high-pitched voices of Eeee sailors and merchants occasionally piercing the susurrus.

Tarin walks along the narrow streets of the wharf, singing to himself a song of ale as he enjoys the view from the side of the rock … now that he's away from the edge.

Two Rephidim traders dicker back and forth about the cost of certain foodstuffs, across the docks. The shorter and more plump one seems to want to dicker down the cost of pumpkins from the taller one.

A shadow seems to flicker. Or was that a trick of the eyes?

Tarin smiles as he enjoys the sunlight on his fur. "I need to go find me a reed store." He thinks as he spins his staff about, "I could use a new flute."

"Look – " said one, wearing clothes that are a bit too well-tailored for the area. "They cost twenty shekels a bushel last week. What'cha trying to do, jacking them up to twenty-five?"

A bit further down the boardwalk, an odd looking creature sets a garish purple sombrero out near some disembarking passenger. She plays a hammer dulcimer and sings in an alien voice.

Arkold has been wandering around the docks for some time now, gathering papers from various airship captains. He has decided to take a break from the running around and enjoy the view of airships – Someday, he'll own one himself, he hopes.

The shadow shifts. A flash of gold hides itself behind black. It waits patiently.

Tarin smiles and stops by a stand to purchase some funnel bread, finally happy to be getting the hang of the monetary system here.

The shorter trader shakes his head, and threatens to walk off, breaking the trade.

Fenter sits on a shaded bench between two of the food stands. He blissfully munches on a large sandwich; a blue tinted bottle sits at his side.

Arkold looks over his papers of slave and spice trader routes – not very exciting but it's something that needs to be done. He hopes Wyn will appreciate these… Maybe he can take her to dinner again sometime.

Envoy continues her busking, but her stereo voice doesn't seem to be overcoming the passengers' lingering airsickness.

The trader, half a head shorter than Arkold, looks over the wolf noble. "I say, good chap – " he begins.

The obese wolf-morph asks, "Could you tell me if any of these other vessels might be carrying foodstuffs, and would you know who to contact among them?"

The shadow checks out a card. The fellow for the spice papers… looks like a possible match. Talking with the trader, though. Must wait.

Tarin settles with his back to a wall and watches the goings on as he works on the funnel bread, occasionally taking a pull from his water bottle.

Fenter makes a face in mid bite. He fishes around in his mouth for a moment and pulls out what looks like the leg of a very large insect. He flicks the appendage to the street, takes a swig from the bottle sitting at his side, and then tucks back into his sandwich.

Arkold looks up from his papers, slightly startled, as he was not expecting company. He replies, "I'm afraid, sir, I do not, for I am merely here on a paper run… "

The shadow's ear flicks. One shadow melts away from another. Or maybe not.

The wolf-morph nods. "Tut tut," he says, as he walks toward the market.

From the darkness of an overhang, a single word echoes. "S'Lezan."

Envoy picks up her scarce earnings as the last of the passengers disappear into the building behind her. Looking around after putting the ridiculous hat back on, she spots Fenter … since his own attire tends to stand out.

Tarin sees Arkold and whistles.

Arkold tilts his head and replies softly, "I have his papers." He hears the whistle and perks an ear, "Who… ?"

Envoy smiles down at Fenter as she comes over. "Hello, Fenter."

Fenter jumps at the shrill noise! He angrily wipes spilled sandwich bits from his front and casts a glare at Tarin.

Tarin waves from his position on the sidewalk.

The shadow speaks again. "In here." Someone stands forward, and the outline of a small Kavi can be seen.

Envoy follows Fenter's glare … and hmms. She knows that fox.

The raccoon turns to the aeolun. "Oh, Envoy! Nice to see you again, my lady." It's amazing how quickly his face melts back into a pleasant smile from a sour glare. "What brings you to the edge of the island? Much call for barding here?"

Arkold whispers over his shoulder back to the figure, "Hold on… It seems someone is waving to me… " He looks over to Tarin and nods to him.

Envoy lifts her purple sombrero (with pink dingle-balls) high and waves it back and forth at the fox, calling, "Tarin!"

The shadow disappears again. Was it ever there?

Envoy smiles back to Fenter, "I was hoping to make more, but that group of passengers didn't seem in the mood for music."

Fenter says, "Oh … you're tearing things. Interesting."

Tarin's ears perk and he tilts his head. Then he smiles and stands, "Saints!" He gasps, "Hello there!"

Envoy pauses in her waving to check her clothes. Nothing SEEMS to be torn…

Envoy says to Fenter, "I know that fox over there; he's another Exile."

Fenter twiddles his fingers nervously. "He doesn't look like an exile. Where's his horn?"

Arkold ponders Tarin for a moment… Has he met this fox before? He hmms and calls over to him, "Hello there."

Envoy says, "He doesn't have a horn. He plays a flute."

Fenter glances at the fox. "Ah. So he's a fellow bard, I guess that exiles must have an affinity for music."

Envoy says, "He's a carpenter."

Tarin wags as he approaches Envoy, then wags at Arkold, "Hello there, sir. Is Arwyn about?"

Two smallish lynxes carry bushels filled with pumpkins from a just-arriving airship.

Tarin smiles at Envoy and looks her over. "Asints what on earth d' they have ya dressed up as?"

Fenter looks at Envoy's hat. "A mushroom, I think."

Arkold asks the fox questioningly, "Arwyn? Sir, I do not know an Arwyn… " He tries to remember the fox's name.

Envoy says, "Yes, I've seen Wyn, Tarin! Ben was looking for you; he said you came here together. I'm a bard now."

Envoy says, "Bards are supposed to have big hats."

Fenter scratches the back of his head. "It must be an acoustical thing."

"What will we do with all these blasted pumpkins?" a shipboard captain calls out in the distance.

Envoy says, "This is my friend, Fenter; he's a student mage. Sphere of Hedonism I think. Fenter, this is Tarin, a carpenter and fellow Exile I know."

Tarin smiles, "You know where Ben is? Is he all right? I mean, he remembers who he is, doesn't he?"

Tarin nods and bows to Fenter, "Tarin Firepelt of th' clan Firepelt at yur service."

Envoy says, "He seems to remember who he is, Tarin. He's joined up with a trading vessel."

Fenter frowns. "I am a student of the chaos sphere; one would think that to be obvious. At least… that's what I hear most of the time."

Tarin looks at Arkold, "Oh Saints you know Wyn, ya crazy wuf?" He bops Arkold on the back as he wags happily.

Envoy smiles, "Hello, Arkold. Do you know Fenter?"

Fenter extends a hand to Tarin – the hand holding the half eaten sandwich. "Pleased to meat you, Mister Tarin. I am Fenter. So you're one of those exile thingies?"

A canid sniffs as she hears Fenter's comment. She would never be associating with one of them.

Arkold looks annoyed at the bop and looks quickly into the shadows to make sure his 'friend' has gone. He turns back to the fox… Tarin, yes, that's his name. He says, "Ahh, you mean the Lady Wyn? I have not seen her for some time now."

Envoy says, "She's a guest of the Temple."

Nothing appears in the shadows. Then again, he was hard to make out, before.

Tarin noddles, "I suppose I am." He shakes the wrist. "Although I am apparently payin off pennance t be graced by th presence of this world."

Envoy says, "Zephyr and Jarik are here too, Tarin. But nobody knows what's become of Jarik… "

Fenter suddenly coughs. "G-guest? T-T-temple? *ahem*… oh… how very nice." He quickly straightens himself out.

Tarin nods, "Aye. I've hers Zeph was aboot but I kenna find wher he is a hidin."

Arkold eyes the others – seems he's come across a reuninon… or rather, it came across him.

Tarin looks at Envoy, "So you are a bard?"

Envoy says, "Most of the time."

Fenter looks up at Arkold. "Are you an exile thingy too?"

A voice whispers from across the docks, "S'Lezan still wants you… " Only the ones with the better hearing can make it out.

Envoy says, "Zephyr is also a guest of the Temple, until his trial for supposedly assassinating the Captain-Astromancer. By the way, Fenter, is it true that you are related the Keeper of the Inner Mysteries?"

Arkold can't help but wonder why it is he meets so many Exiles, though he must admit meeting Wyn was far from a bad thing. His ears perk; he makes a single nod to show he understood.

Tarin's ears droop a bit. "Saints… "

Tarin's ears swivel but he takes no more notice.

Fenter's eyes bug out in mid-bite; he starts coughing madly.

Tarin erps and pats the raccoon on the back, "Ya OK Sir?"

Envoy blinks at Fenter. "Oh dear … Verdigris has fits like that too … Is it hereditary Fenter?"

Fenter sputters a bit more, "#HACK# Urgh… " He just sits and blinks at Envoy for a few moments.

Fenter says, "No! I mean… *cough*… er… oh scrud."

Arkold looks somewhat confused, though that is much the norm when Exiles are around.

Tarin tilts his head. "Who is Verdigri?"

Fenter pulls his hat over his head and moans. "If Grampy finds out his secret's out I'll be stuck in the grease pit again!"

Within different shadows than before, something moves. Is it the twitch of a tail – or the wind blowing a piece of black paper?

Envoy says, "Oh, he's the head of the Inner Mysteries, the technical caste of the Temple. He wants to kill me."

Tarin blinks and ohs, scratching his head confuzzledly. ( Aye, is th same Envoy. )

Arkold wonders if there is a reward for this person, while listening closely.

Fenter peeks out from under his hat. "Kill? Oh, that's silly. He's as harmless as a fly."

Envoy says, "He may have an allergy to me instead, then. He sputters and chokes a lot when I'm around."

Tarin grins and looks at Fenter, trying to stop a grin.

Envoy turns to Tarin, changing topics by asking, "What have you been up to?"

Fenter draws his knees up to his chest. "Oh that… he does that all the time. even around family. What on earth makes you think that a withered old 'coon would want to kill you?"

Fenter flashes Arkold a "she-probably-hasn't-taken-her-medication-today" type of smile.

Tarin points to the docks, "Doin repirs in the yard until I ken work off m debt."

Envoy says, "Oh, he ordered me thrown into a scrap pit."

Arkold stands up and looks to the group, deciding this idle chatter is of no importance. He nods, "I'm afraid I must be going, sirs and madam."

Arkold can't help but grin at Fenter's look.

Envoy smiles to Tarin, "You always did like boats."

A twitching tail guides Arkold toward one shadow – a different one than before.

Envoy says, "Say hello to Wyn if you see her first, Arkold."

Fenter says, "Oh… *THAT*! I've been there a few times. It's far from lethal, my dear. Just a pile of junk … most of it paperwork actually."

Tarin nods, "Aye." He looks at the wharf, "Lucky me." He says with an air that has little conviction.

Arkold nods again and walks off into the shadows where the tail beckons him.

Envoy says, "You are unhappy, Tarin?"

Tirro shakes his head, as Arkold would lead anyone watching toward him. Can't be helped.

Tirro says, "The Savanite talks at midnight," and seems to await a response.

Fenter drums his fingers against his knees. "I've heard of exiles being thrown into slavery… It could have been much worse, Mister Tarin."

Envoy says, "I arrived on Rephidim in a cage."

Fenter keeps his mouth shut. He vaguely remembers seeing a creature like Envoy at a carnie show once…

Tarin nods, "Aye . But I am fur all intents a slave anaway." He shakes his head. "I never thought I'd find a worse place than Chembria back home … but this is it."

Arkold whispers, "The Kavi walks at dusk."

Envoy looks around the busy port. "What's bad about it? It is an interesting city, on a world full of mysteries."

Tirro whispers, "Okay – you're the contact. S'Lezan gave me three silver to get the papers about… " he wracks his brain. "… the spice route. D'you have 'em?"

Tirro appears very small, even for a Kavi. His voice is high, as well. Might he just be a young ruffian?

Tarin nods and smiles, "Aye it is I suppose. Were it fur me t explore as I wish."

Fenter looks at his sandwich … which doesn't seem as appetizing anymore. He tosses it into the street for the vermites and Creens.

Fenter says, "Bah … Rephidim gets dull after you've lived on it for twenty years or so. The most exciting place I know of is my bed."

Envoy says, "I've been to the Savan Jungle and a ways to the north so far. It's been very interesting."

Arkold peers into the shadows, "Yes, I'm the contact, and no need to hide yourself … The other are mostly Exiles, though the one called Fenter could be a problem."

Tarin grins, "Well as ya said. At least I'm not a full slave."

Fenter says, "Savan? Euuuuch… bugs and more bugs."

Tirro emerges from the shadows. Clad all in black, the Kavi is young. His eyes glint for a second; he's trying to act older than he is. And S'Lezan wouldn't have sent a mere pup with so much money, would he?

Tarin nods, "I've been into the Himar region – where they found me."

Envoy smiles, "What did you see there? Any cities or ruins or Gooshurms?"

Tirro holds out a bag. "Do you have the papers?"

Tarin makes a face at the latter, "Aye."

Fenter sniffs at Tarin. "He doesn't smell like he's had any encounters with a Gooshurm. Although he may have bathed since then."

Arkold ponders the youth for a moment, not knowing if S'Lezan is trying to test him. He asks, "Hmm, quite young for a contact, aren't we? How do I know you are indeed who I am supposed to meet?" He does not really doubt his boss would send a kid, but he must be sure.

Envoy says, "I remember that Tarin bathed often, although this climate might be a bit warm for him."

Tirro raises an eyebrow. "S'Lezan only sends the best. I'm it."

Arkold looks the youth over again. "Can you show me some proof S'Lezan sent you?" he asks quietly.

Tarin rolls his eyes, "Aye I bathed all right, Disgusting creatures."

Envoy says, "Do they really just slurp foxes?"

Tirro scratches his head. "The password isn't good enough?" He reaches into a pocket, and pulls out a sheet of paper. He holds it upside-down, showing it to Arkold. "My induction," he says.

Fenter smirks to Tarin. "They've become the latest eating craze out here right now… although I personally think it's because the price of rhugrhat's gone up so much. I usually eat at Eeee stands… bugs are fairly good once you get used to the crunchiness."

Envoy says, "I ate some Gooshurm recently. It was interesting."

Envoy looks at Fenter, "Speaking of bugs, do you know much about Zelaks? Like … where they come from?"

Arkold takes the paper and looks it over, and nods, "Looks like his writing … Yes, you are the one." He hands the paper back and removes some papers of his own from where they have been stored in his jacket. He looks the papers over until he finds the spice trade list. He hands it over, "This is what you need."

Fenter says, "Zelaks? They come from airships."

Fenter shivers at the thought of eating Gooshurm. "Some people would probably eat wood if it was half off… "

Tarin nods, "I had a bit of the Gooshurm." His tongue sticks out the side of his mouth. "Too gamey."

Envoy looks at the airships lined up along the docks. "Airships aren't alive. They can't produce Zelaks. Have you ever eaten any wood, Fenter?"

Fenter says, "The only Zelaks I see come out of the Temple and out of airships. And I've never eaten wood on purpose."

Tirro peers over the papers, holding them the correct way – but his eyes are scanning them left-to-right, incorrectly. He looks up. "Thanks." He pulls out a bag that feels very heavy, and hands it to Arkold.

Envoy blinks at Fenter. "How can you eat something accidentally?"

Tarin shakes is head, "So tell me … where are Zephyr and Ben staying now?

Arkold takes the bag and opens it. Removing some coins and testing them, he grins and puts the coins back and stashes the bag away. He tilts his head at the youth and asks quite plainly, "Cannot read, can you?"

Fenter says, "Quite easily. I ate half a pillow in my sleep once. And I recently drank a whole bottle of Naga oil, thinking it was cog-… err… nevermind."

Envoy says, "Ben lives on an airship, and Zephyr is in jail until his trial."

Envoy says, "What did you do with the other half of the pillow?"

Tirro looks offended. "COURSE I can read," he harumphs. "Can't everyone?" This statement is in a loud enough voice that it carries.

Tarin ahs… "Is Ben's ship in?"

Fenter peers about to look at the source of the voice. Oh… just a kavi. He goes back to focusing his attention on the two exiles.

Envoy says, "He lives on the Zhano-Paradhel, and I don't know if it's in port right now."

Arkold looks annoyed at the loud voice, he says, "Hush… they may be Exiles, but they are not deaf… " He looks back at the others, then to the boy, "Lie to me if you like… But if you want to learn to read, I can arrange it," he says, feeling somewhat sorry for him.

Envoy looks around Fenter's hat to smile at Arkold and his companion.

Tarin files that name away. Ah…

Envoy says, "Where do you live, Tarin? I have a room at the Bard's Guild."

Fenter rocks back and forth on his seat. "So… it seems as though there's quite a flood of you exile types to here. What happened? Did your home dimension explode or something?"

Envoy rubs her throat a little, "Oh, only part of it blew up. I think Wyn did it."

Tirro stashes the papers in a long sleeve. They roll nicely against his arm. "Even if I needed it," he whispers, "a man can get by real well without reading. Thanks! I'll pass 'em to S'Lezan!"

Envoy says, "May have some of your drink, Fenter?"

Arkold sees Envoy look at him and smiles to her, then turns to the boy, "There's your paper; see that the dock captain gets them." He winks to Tirro to play along.

Fenter hands the bottle to Envoy. The contents are thick and oilish… in fact… it IS oil.

Arkold perks his ears at the mention of Wyn.

Envoy takes a long swig from the bottle before handing it back to the raccoon.

Envoy says, "Thank you, Fenter."

Tirro turns and listens to the conversation, himself. He doesn't know the people being referred to, mostly.

Fenter re-corks it. "It's Naga oil… I've developed a taste for it for some reason. At least it's cheap."

Envoy says, "How do you get it out of the Nagas?"

Fenter says, "I gave him three shekels."

Envoy says, "Anyway, Wyn's magic would sometimes do things she didn't expect. I think it tore a hole in reality that leads to this world."

Fenter pales a bit. "And… now… she's… here, in Rephidim? Lovely … no wonder she's a guest of the Temple… "

Tarin nods solemnly.

Envoy says, "She's lost her memory, though. I hope it's only temporary."

Arkold listens to the mention of Wyn's magic, and mutters, "Wyn? She's that powerful… ?"

Tarin looks at Fenter, "Judge Arwyn not until you've met her. She is the kindest soul I've met." His ears droop at the mention of her lost memories.

Envoy smiles, "Once, I heard she accidentally blew the top off of a mountain. That would have been something to see, I bet!"

Tarin says, "It was."

Fenter plays with the rim of the bottle of Naga oil. "Well, I guess Rephidim is the proper place for her then. Magic doesn't work very well up here."

Tirro blinks. "Wyn? Never met her."

Tirro listens carefully to what they have to say about her power.

Fenter says, "Of course. People that make mountains blow up and rip holes in reality can be nice people, I'm sure."

Arkold looks back to Tirro and nods, "She … she is an Exile and a most amazing person… Oh… and if you ever want to learn to read, come see me," he says, quite serious.

Envoy nods. "I'm nice, and I used to want to eat peoples' brains."

Tarin's hackles involuntarily rise before he settles them back down.

Tirro whispers, "Yah, yah… I'd rather learn how to blow the tops off mountains!"

Fenter blinks at Envoy and scoots a bit closer to Tarin.

Arkold nods with a hint of sadness and whispers, "As you wish… I believe I will return to the others; they seem to know Wyn fairly well."

Envoy says, "I was only a few days old then, though. I've learned it's not right to do such things. Or to ask people about it."

Fenter starts humming something rather loudly.

Tirro disappears into the shadows once more. He seems to turn into mist itself, and to float away.

Arkold turns and walks out of the shadows and back to the others, nodding hello, "Sorry about that, I needed to clear up some things."

Tarin shakes his head and starts to stand up.

Envoy says, "Are you okay, Fenter?"

Fenter swirls the contents of his bottle. "What happened? The kavi snitch your purse?"

Fenter says, "I'm fine, Envoy… finefinefinefine. My brain tastes horrible, by the way. My teachers at the college assure me that it's been poisoned, in fact."

Envoy blinks. "Is that also hereditary?"

Envoy says, "How do you know what your brain tastes like? I've never tasted one."

Envoy peers closely at Fenter's mouth. Maybe his tongue can somehow snake up through his sinuses to taste his own brain.

Arkold shakes his head, "No, I needed to pass on some dock orders to an airship captain… It's the business, you know," he says, smiling.

Fenter coughs. "Um… Milady, you'll probably find that I am nothing like the rest of my family. That is one of the reasons why I've been distanced from them."

Arkold tilts his head, looking at Envoy… Even for an Exile, she's odd.

Envoy blinks. "Oh … I was hoping you could help me come to an understanding with your grandfather. It's inconvenient that he hates me."

Tarin chuckles and shakes his head.

Tarin says, "Well folks, I have t' be headin back t' work." He sighs and looks back to the wharfs and shakes his head.

Fenter says, "Understand Verdigris? NOBODY understands him… least of all me."

Arkold hmms. "What do you do, Tarin?" he asks.

Fenter waves a floppy sleeved hand at Tarin as he departs.

Envoy hugs Tarin. "Maybe we can all get together for dinner when Ben is in port?"

Tarin looks at Arkold, "I-ERf!" He hugs Envoy back and slurps. "I repair airships in the wharves."

Arkold nods and smiles. "Perhaps sometime I will visit you; I hope to acquire an airship myself," he says.

Tarin nods, "I like that." He smirks, "Will at least break the monotony."

Arkold says, "I certainly will, then… You'd best be off, would not want to see you in trouble."

Fenter dips his finger in his bottle and rubs a dab of it on his nose. "Naga oil makes great sun-screen, from what I understand… "

Envoy says, "Sun-screen?"

Fenter says, "Well, that's what the Naga said… "

Envoy says, "What does it mean though?"

Tarin waves as he heads out to the docks, ears held at a half a notch lower.

Fenter says, "Oh … it keeps one's nose from burning in the sun."

Envoy looks up at the sun. She doesn't blink. "Really?"

Arkold looks to Envoy, then Fenter, then Envoy again. He asks her, "I heard you mention Wyn?"

Fenter shrugs. "That's what the Naga said. Since I've yet to burn my nose with Naga oil on it I'm prone to believe it… although I've never burned my nose without it either. But one might as well take precautions, eh?"

Envoy smiles to Arkold. "Yes, we did. She's a mutual friend, after all."

Arkold smiles back. "Yes, I heard you say something about where… maybe how she got here?" he asks her … hough he can't help but ponder this Exile and the mention of brain eating.

Fenter says, "Ah, the wolf who blows up mountains."

Arkold nods, still shocked by hearing of Wyn blowing up mountains, "Yes, her."

Envoy nods, "I think her Dreams tore a hole that she and Zephyr fell through … and a few others. I fell through it, too."

Fenter says, "Ah … does she travel to a new place every night then? Or do you give her lots of tea to drink at bedtime?"

Envoy blinks? "Oh … no. She doesn't do this often, I'm sure."

Arkold looks at Fenter and nods, then turns back to Envoy. "You say her … dreams … got her here?" he asks skeptically.

Fenter makes a mental note to button-hole a dream sphere teacher at the college sometime. Hmm… is there a dream sphere?

Envoy says, "Her Dreams are very powerful … not at all like regular dreams. They seem to have a mind of their own sometimes, but usually act to protect Wyn."

Arkold umms, "So you say her dreams protect her … in what way?"

Fenter rocks back and forth nervously again.

Envoy tilts her head, "They eliminate threats, usually. Or else move her some place safer."

Fenter says, "How … nice."

Envoy says, "There isn't a lot known about Wyn's past."

Arkold hmms and hopes her dreams do not remove courting young Jupani like certain parents he has met. He nods. "How… odd," he says, as Fenter speaks.

Fenter pockets his bottle somewhere inside of his robe. "Lovely weather we're having today, isn't it?"

Envoy looks from Fenter to Arkold, puzzled by their odd expressions. "She likes tea though," she says.

Arkold smiles and notes that in his mind … so she likes tea. He tilts his head at Envoy. "So… What brings you here miss?" he asks.

Envoy says, "I usually earn some good money here while airship passengers wait for their luggage."

Fenter says, "I just come here because the food is cheap. There's lots of Eeees around here."

Arkold ahhs and nods to Fenter, trying to be polite, "Ahh. How … frugal of you." He turns to Envoy, "Money making, always the noble activity."

Envoy blinks, "I thought nobles inherited their money?"

Arkold says, "Hmm? Oh! Nono dear, you misunderstand me … It is a figure of speech."

A new load of passengers begins disembarking from an airship, which catches Envoy's attention. "Like hand-signing figures? I think I should go and see if this new crowd is more receptive to music. Will you excuse me?"

Fenter furrows his brow a bit and continues to rock back and forth.

Fenter stops abruptly. "Ah… Leaving so soon, milady? Well, good luck with your barding."

Envoy says, "Thank you, Fenter."

Arkold nods. "Certainly, miss… I believe I shall go wander the docks, do a bit of window shopping, if you will," he says, smiling.

Envoy leans over to give the raccoon a peck on the cheek, then smiles to Arkold, before bounding off towards the crowd … ugly hat in hand.

Fenter blinks at the kiss and pulls his hat down over his ears nervously. He quietly leans back and smiles to himself.

Arkold walks off amidst the docks, looking at each ship in turn, and he can't help but smile – Some day he'll own one of these … someday.

---

GMed by BoingDragon

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Today is 9 days before New Year's Day, Year 26 of the Reign of Archelaus the First (6125)