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 Winter Has Come, Riverside Market, Tag - Open
Ranniah Perhiasan
 Posted: Dec 10 2014, 12:18 PM
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The Fish and Farmer's Market, near the Red River. It was the perfect place to shop for holiday presents and the best ingredients for a luxurious meal. The most exclusive items were for sale here. No one questioned where the merchants found their goods, because in Bordertown, it was occasionally better not to know everything of everybody. You bartered, you paid and you asked no questions. Unwritten rule.

There was a little shop on Riverside of which the door was nearly always open. A small stall stood in front of it too. Not a lot of goods were offered there, but they were interesting enough for some. Little glass lanterns in bright colors. Pieces of exclusive, handmade jewelry. Teas that could probably be smelled about a block away. Fresh cookies, warm from the oven.

By the stall sat an old lady. She was looking down at her hands as she seemed to be in the middle of embroidery, but every time someone passed by her, she would look up and smile in their direction. Not many would show her kindness in return, but she didn't mind that. She was used to that.

She knew what was being said about her in this town, after all.

If she could sell a single thing today, she'd be happy. Or if she would meet another person interested in bartering with her, who would be able to look beyond the rumors that went down in town around her. If there was only one person to show interest in her handmade items, she would feel warmth all through her body again. And warmth was needed, because it was a cold day. Very cold. And sitting out in the cold wasn't a very wise thing to do for someone who was so old, was it?

She let go of the craftwork in her lap and reached for the cup of tea on the table to her right. Bordertown was full of surprises. She hadn't lost all hope just yet.
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Clack
 Posted: Dec 11 2014, 09:53 PM
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So far, he hadn't had any luck finding the pieces to repair his rig. Running a telegraph/modem outpost for BINGO was no easy feat. Every handler for the network had to manage and maintain their own rig. In other words when it broke down, which always happened eventually, you spent half the damn day getting the science-y bits and the rest was spent hunting down a fortune teller who could give you a half-accurate reading on what those last crucial pieces could be.

Something silver and hinge-like, something blue and pointy, something red to tie it all together.

Vaguest. Goddamn. Instructions. EVER.

Most stalls only got half a glancing over, Clack wanted to get what he could, possibly buy dinner and go back to his apartment to make rent. No, wait, he was alright for rent, because of BINGO. Pausing by a stall with an old woman seated out front, he peered inside for a glance at her wares with the wind whipping through the holes in his jeans.

Bonzai. There, silver-hingey thingy, in the homemade jewelery. "Hey, ma'am? How much for that piece right there."
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Ranniah Perhiasan
 Posted: Dec 11 2014, 11:03 PM
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And then it actually happened. So quickly that Ranniah hadn't even fully lifted her eyes yet to look and smile at the person in front of her stall before they addressed her with a question. There was a moment of checking whether they were genuine and not just playing a trick on her, but then some of then tension in her face left and she reached into her pocket to find a piece of paper. People always asked her about prices. It was important to always have some paper on her.

Her other hand took a pen from the other pocket of the skirt she was wearing and slowly, she scribbled down a price and put the little note on the stall, in front of the potential customer. And she smiled. It was a good price. Or actually, it may have been a little too good. Too cheap for what she was offering. Sometimes, you simply had no choice, though. It wasn't every day her bartering partner came up with exclusive NeverNever skulls. Those things had sold as if they'd been warm biscuits.

Ranniah was going to have to manage with this.
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Cern
 Posted: Dec 18 2014, 03:25 PM
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The offerings on his portable stall were a bit slim, but then it was the middle of winter and his standard fair was fruit and vegetables. Not much grew when the ground was frozen. There were a couple of buckets of nuts and one of dried mixed berries, and a box of shiny red and green apples from the Autumn’s harvest. Thank goodness those kept well.

He’d been a bit late getting there this morning and had ended up next to the funny old lady who sold the skulls and geegaws, random bits of jewellery and decorations, when she sold anything. People seemed to like the skulls but that was Bordertown for you. Cern had glanced over a couple of times but nothing had immediately caught his eye, least of all the old woman who seemed focused on her sewing or whatever she was doing.

Now however she had a customer. Since he had none of his own Cern leaned back on his chair and watched the exchange with that air of disinterested interest the young somehow managed to carry off. An occaisional snowflake settled on his dark hair.

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Clack
 Posted: Dec 18 2014, 03:40 PM
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Great, it was cheap, but he certainly didn't have the means to break a babyfood jar half-full of coffee beans into the price listed. A corner of his mouth tucked down into a frown at the thought of seriously over-paying the lady for the silver jewelery. Then, a novel idea came to him as the pair of antlers next door turned towards him.

It certainly helped that the deer horns were attached to someone selling fruit, nuts and a few winter veggies. Clack flicked shaggy brown hair out of his eyes and just decided to fuck it, go with this. Time for some haggling. "Lady, how does three apples and this thread sound?"

He offered out a few bobbin cards wound up with some varigated cotton floss, and pointed at the apples next door. Groceries AND he could buy breakfast. Win, win, win.
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Ranniah Perhiasan
 Posted: Dec 19 2014, 11:28 AM
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Ranniah was used to getting funny looks from people all around. It therefore wasn’t a surprise that the person with the antlers on their head gave her one too. It was ironic, wasn’t it? The person with the antlers on their head looked at her as if she was something out of the ordinary. But irony was what made the world go round. This, too, came as no surprise. She would glance at the stand next to her once, and she smiled. Because that was what Ranniah did, no matter how people looked or what they said.

She turned her attention back to her own stall then and received an offer from her customer. Perhaps it wasn’t a bad one. The thread she could use in one of her products and she could possibly sell it again. The apples she could potentially eat. There was just a single problem.

Apples didn’t buy her the medicine she needed for the person in her care.

Unfortunately, she had no choice but to decline the offer made, in the most subtle way she knew how to. And so, she pointed again at the note, but with a very warm smile this time. Either she would make him believe she hadn’t understood his offer, or she was playing the ‘nice old lady’-trick. Wasn’t it terribly difficult to deny a nice old lady anything?
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Clack
 Posted: Jan 4 2015, 07:44 PM
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...Aww balls. She wasn't going for his original offer. Clack made a face before looking at the item again and thinking about it. More, he was thinking about the likelyhood of finding something that would work.

Those weren't good odds, so he pulled a face before tucking back the thread cards and holding out the item more precious than myrrh, frankincense or gold in Bordertown. Roasted coffee beans, enough in the jar to brew a pot of coffee. Or enough to buy a good week of groceries, more if you didn't like the kids too much. "Will this do?"
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Ranniah Perhiasan
 Posted: Jan 5 2015, 12:23 PM
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Not taking the offer was quite a risky thing to do. This customer could easily huff and walk off and she would have no income whatsoever. No wonder that she could feel her heart thump in her chest as she tried to study the stranger’s face. She kept the soft, warm smile on her lips, not because she thought that would help to persuade him, but rather because that felt so natural to her.

But her patience paid off. The stranger came with a different offer. Ranniah followed his movements as he dug out a jar of.. something. The old woman’s eyes widened instantly when she recognized exactly what it was, because no matter if you had seen it before or not, everyone knew what rare goods looked like.

Coffee.

How did someone like this young man acquire this? And, more importantly, why would he want to trade it with just a random old lady for a simple piece of jewelry? Ranniah tried to hide her surprise as she reached forward and took the jar. She turned it around in her hands and gave it a good look to check if she was dealing with the real thing here. There was no doubt about it.

Ranniah looked up at the stranger and held his gaze for just a short moment. Then, she carefully unscrewed the lid and emptied about half of the content of the jar into her lap, onto her apron. She closed the jar again and held it back out with that same smile as before. Ranniah may not have had many customers, but that didn’t mean she took more than what her goods were worth. Most of all, she was an honest person, and she wished for this to remain so.
^
Clack
 Posted: Jan 6 2015, 12:10 AM
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Great, just great. "Pleasure doing business with you," Clack replied, smoothly, pointing to the piece of hinged silver jewelery with a defeated expression. At least he had one of the parts the fortune teller had vaguely mentioned for repairing his rig. "I'll get to repair my gear, the hinged silvery one please."

Maybe the lady had patience. Clack didn't, every hour the rig was down was a mug of coffee he wasn't earning. That might as well have been the same as throwing it all into the Mad River.
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Ranniah Perhiasan
 Posted: Jan 14 2015, 01:08 AM
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As quick as she could, Ranniah tried to roll the beans into the pocket in her apron. It would be a waste if any of them would fall on the floor. Goods that were as rare as these needed to be treated with absolute care. Who knew. It might well be that these beans could get Ranniah about a week of food, maybe even more. When business was tight, such a thing was a happy coincidence she took with both hands.

When all of the beans had vanished from out of her lap, she stood and reached for the piece of jewelry. It was nicely crafted, indeed, but still, Ranniah wondered if it was truly worth coffee. She decided not to question – mainly because she didn’t speak at all – and handed the item to its new owner.

And then she gestured towards her stall once more, because if there was anything else that interested him, he was free to take it. Ranniah didn’t have much, but it seemed the silver jewelry was somehow useful. Perhaps her customer would find another thing to help him, free of charge.

That was what you got when you paid with coffee.
^
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