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Bloom in the Bright [Floracle Re-Opening Celebration]

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Floracle Flower Shop and Apothecary - Grand Re-Opening

OOC thread

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Though it was barely 7:00am, Valentine Marie had been awake for hours. Her morning had consisted of coffee, sweeping, floral arrangements, coffee, dusting, re-arranging the flowers, coffee- and though the Floracle Flower Shop and Apothecary was spotless, sparkling, and splendid, Val just knew she was forgetting something. The young woman's tawny red hair burned in the sunlight streaming through the floor-to-ceiling windows as she stood in the center of the shop, staring around her with uncertainty. 

The counters. Of course! The counters needed to be polished. Again. 

Valentine swiped a polishing cloth from the supply cupboard and began to knead the old gnarled counter with furious circular motions. She had been at it for at least ten minutes when the sound of the courtyard door creaking open drew a wild look from those sky blue eyes. Her polishing grew in intensity as she called out, "I'm so sorry, but we open at 9:00am! Come back lat-"

"-Haven't you heard of the 'early bird' special?" Valentine's ears perked up, her lips cracking into a wide grin. In an instant she had leaped into her twin's arms, holding his head in something akin to an affectionate vice grip.

"Caspian!" she shouted, her voice carrying the shrill excitement of a person who has been reunited with their best friend. To his credit, Caspian did not immediately drop his sister after receiving a scream directly to the eardrum. He wouldn't have succeeded even if he'd tried; Valentine's arms were still locked around his neck with surprising fierceness for someone of her size. The scholar tried to choke out a 'hello,' but only managed a strangled gurgling sound. Blissfully aloof to her brother's suffering, Valentine held on for a moment longer before loosening her grip to hold her twin at arm's length. "My, you've grown so much taller since I last saw you!" Her bright blue eyes twinkled as she beheld his stylish scholar's uniform. "The academy has turned my baby brother into a handsome young thing!" By now, the botanist's hands were squishing her twin's cheeks together in a comical, fish-lipped expression -much to his chagrin. He batted weakly at her hands, though was eventually able to force them down and away. 

"It's been two weeks," the mage said, hefting an exasperated sigh. "Two weeks. And you're only older by, what, 20 minutes?" Valentine barked out a laugh, watching as her brother took a look around the colorful, splendorous shop. "You've really cleaned up the place. He left way more stock behind than I remembered." The main shop area was bursting with floral blooms, most of them native to Terrenus, but a few hailed from lands as far as Aelindra and other temperate regions of Genesaris. A spell of longevity would keep the beautiful blooms intact for weeks longer than ordinary flowers; indeed, though imperceptibly different to the untrained eye, older cuts were mixed into the fresh blooms spread throughout the shop. Part of the purpose behind this grand re-opening was to purge the store of older stock to make way for newer, more exotic flowers.  

It pained Valentine to think that the last flowers her grandfather had cut before his death would be gone after today. His death hadn't been unexpected, but the weight of his old silver secateurs still felt heavy in her pocket.

She offered her brother a slight smile. "I actually grew most of this in the past week or two." His head swung sharply in her direction. 

"You did what? All of this?" The woman nodded, sticking her hands in the pockets of her light blue skirts. "Have you slept, Valentine?"

The botanist shrugged, swiping her polishing rag off of the counter to continue the fretful chore. Caspian noted the slight bags under his sister's eyes, watched her hands tremble a little as she worked the soft cloth in methodical circles. He ran a hand through his mop of red hair. "You know, one of the most important things they teach at the Academy is not to overexert yourself," he said, his voice careful but not without the note of haughtiness typical for a recent graduate. "Casting too many spells in so short a time can be especially taxing for someone without formal trainin-" 

"The shop looks beautiful, doesn't it?" Valentine stared up at her brother, though her hands continued to polish the old, gnarled countertop. "After today, we can slow down. But you were the one who told me we needed to make an impression." Caspian stared at her for a second, his mind whirring behind those leaf-green eyes. After a moment, he removed the round-rimmed glasses from his face, polished the lenses with a corner of his tunic, and replaced them on his head. 

"Alright," he spoke, shrugging the jacket from his shoulders. "How can I help?" 


One would find it difficult to pass by the Floracle Flower Shop and Apothecary on this particularly sunny, breezy morning without at least admiring the rainbow of flowers bursting from dark wooden stands lining the sidewalk. The storefront itself was characterized by elegant, floor-to-ceiling windows, letting the golden light flood into the shop and accentuate vibrant blue floor tiles. Upon entering, one was immediately accosted by a heavy floral scent, though pollen was kept at bay by a clever containment spell crafted to accommodate customers with allergies. The shop itself was simply adorned, with a few ribbons and banners marking the re-opening celebration; the flowers themselves were the main attraction, with blooms lining the walls in layers and layers of color and texture. Display stands were strategically arranged throughout the shop, with different categories of flowers featured in each spiraling column. Every stand had been handcrafted in a dark, heavy wood by the previous shopkeeper, mimicking the bark of a tree. The shop was clearly a valued, well-loved heirloom, with hand-carved floral designs embedded into every visible wooden surface. The only thing not hand-crafted was a small bulletin board to the immediate right of the main entrance, displaying various flyers and advertisements for other shops around Casper. One bold sign spelled out the words 'ROOM AVAILABLE FOR RENT: CONTACT VALENTINE MARIE' in a sensible green font. 

Further back into the shop, one faced the option of either ascending a grand staircase up to a balcony overlooking the main area, or entering through a set of glass sliding doors to another room. The upper level balcony featured a forest of ferns and other tropical plants, with lush vines and leaves spilling over the railing. This curtain of green partially obscured the windows of the room below.

If one chose to pass through the glass sliding doors, they would enter a room with dried herbs and ingredients in neat glass containers lining shelves along the wall. Other ingredients were strung from the ceiling, necessitating particularly tall patrons to mind their step. An island in the center of the room allowed the resident apothecary to advise customers on the best spells and ingredients to suit their needs; if the customer so chose, the apothecary would mix the ingredients before their very eyes to create charms and tinctures, then package the goods in a brown paper parcel tied shut with a string. 

On the righthand side of the apothecary's room was another glass sliding door, this one leading to a greenhouse made of shimmering, green-tinted glass. Though normally inaccessible to the public, today the greenhouse doors were unlocked and awaiting visitors. Upon entering, one would find rows and rows of pots of every shape and size growing all manner of plants. Aided by a spell cast with love, it was possible to watch the sprouts lengthen, produce leaves, and bloom before one's very eyes. Hanging plants dripped leaves from the ceiling, and the bright sunlight glittered against an artificial creek trickling across the greenhouse floor. Another swinging door allowed visitors to exit the greenhouse and enjoy the quaint courtyard beyond. 

The courtyard featured several tall, proud trees that were already bursting with apples, oranges, lemons, peaches, and every other fruit imaginable- often several different types of fruit could be spotted growing on the same tree. The thick branches provided some shade for visitors who rested at modest tables set up throughout the yard, or for those content to meander the space, admiring the well-manicured garden. A picket fence nearly hidden by twisting, nimble vines separated the courtyard from the sidewalk, though all were welcome to stop and enjoy the garden- even if they did not seek the Floracle's business within. Another swinging door connected the courtyard to the shop; the entire lot was arranged in a roughly square 2x2 grid so that the courtyard was directly adjacent to the main shop. 

Valentine busied herself in offering pastries and coffee to incoming guests (the food had been catered from a local bakery, though Val wanted to incorporate a full-on coffee shop at some point in the future). Patrons were often surprised at her habit of suggesting just the right flower for their situation, and the shop soon swelled in warm emotions and wonderful smiles. Caspian stood at the apothecary's counter, offering his advice (even when unwarranted) to customers who sought something stronger than flowers. His advice was good, and his manner was friendly, though the young scholar had a habit of excitedly spouting information at even the slightest prompting. A simple spell handled the packaging of ingredients and charms, leaving Caspian free to peruse the shelves at his leisure. 

As the activity began to pick up, Valentine took a moment to gather her thoughts and gaze around the shop, inhaling the scent of her home with a slight smile on her face. 

A new chapter in their lives had begun. 

Edited by roboblu

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The sun had risen on this day much like any other. The crisp morning air was rolling in off the fields and the cool night air was making its slow retreat back into the woods. It was one of the joys he had found living just on the edge of the forest. Nevermind one rarely had to worry about salesmen or lost wanderers. People rarely came to the forest for money or shelter, and that was precisely how he liked it. Quiet, serene, majestic, nature was all around and most of folk rather live in cities surrounded by technology and all manner of magical and electronic distraction.

Thorn grimaced as he collected himself so to take leave of his home. Part of taking his rites was living as a relative hermit, moving away from his kin and being self sufficient. Of course, this had only been part of the task. The great majority had involved study, exploration, and the helping and healing of others, of strangers. He enjoyed all of that just fine, but in his mind, the densely populated parts of Terrenus and greater Valucre could keep their cities.

“Well, I suppose I should be on my way then. There is much ground to cover and I do not envy the hustle and bustle of Casper once all have woken from their slumbers.” Thorn idly bit at his lip as he took the first few steps of his day’s journey. To Casper, by way of the fields full of blossoms, smelling sweet of the blooms and lush, green grasses. He smiled, savoring the sweetness and the warmth of the sun. It was not for several minutes that he realized his lodestone had begun to glow about his neck.

 

---------------------------------------------

 

What had begun as a leisurely trek into town turned into a full panic as Thorn scrambled through the streets of Casper, evadinging a barking voice and unearthly racket that seemed to follow him regardless of his movement. He was intent on trying to resolve his situation as simply as possible, but the man with the matching lodestone was often anything but possible. It was for that reason Thorn was tearing through the city.

“Now Flower Patch, it really won't be an inconvenience. You'll hardly notice me there!” The voice assured him as all manner of books were being thrown and dropped into stacks in trunks. Alchemy sets were banging and clanking as they, too, were marched into enchanted trunks. Thorn had to find an answer. There was no way on Gaia’s green earth that Leandros Kostikos was moving into his cozy, little piece of rest.

Nearly out of breath, Thorn had to rest. He needed at least a moment's respite and perhaps an hour without the wizard’s voice bellowing into his eardrums. His anxiety was becoming rather self-evident upon his tanned and weathered features. The brown hood he wore did little to hide it either. He was a doomed man, cursed. His existence would quickly come to an end with that certifiable maniac under his roof. As he took pause, he came to rest against a sturdy brick wall.

While he rested and thought to himself, he crammed the loadstone deep into a robe pocket, to disappear until he had formed a plan. “That damn wizard…” Thorn slowly shook his head, the look of frustration burned across his features.

However, after only a few seconds more of a boyish smirk pressed across his lips. A soft chuckle followed as the druid began to smile. His friend would be ‘coming home.’ The headache would be worth the return of his most valued comrade from the modern world. To that end, he must succeed on his new errand. But first, old business.

Thorn was either truly blind, or so truly distracted that he failed to realize he had already arrived at his destination. As he rested with his pack against the stone wall the fresh, spring scent of wild flowers tickled his nostrils. It took him a moment to realize only one place in Casper could possibly smell so sweet and free. With a triumphant grin, he pushed off the wall and saw the brilliant stands of flowers and the familiar sign that hung overhead, Floracle Flower Shop and Apothecary.

Thorn had been devastated to hear of the owner’s passing, but equally surprised to hear that two young relatives would be taking charge of the shop. For that reason, he was eager to stop by the shop and meet the new management. By no means was Thorn old, but a grizzly, wandering druid he was through and through. Among his folk, he was still a young man himself.

Collecting himself amidst his brown, bark colored robes he made for the entrance, unsure of what to expect. As any fair druid, or herbalist for that matter, he had a good sized hide pack and a number of animal hides and trinkets adorning himself. In his seemingly bear size paws, he carried a great ironwood staff crowned with stones and feathers tethered by sinew.

As he entered he looked about the shop. Nothing was different. He exhaled a breath of calm. The flowers, the staircase, the counters, it was all the same. His eye was quickly drawn in by a sign on the bulletin board. ‘Room for Rent,’ the posting read. It was posted by some Valentine, he would be sure to ask. It was turning out to be a fortuitous day after all. But it was at that point his luck betrayed him.

He was quickly greeted by a charming and fair, young woman offering pastries and coffee. The man had already found the honey trap. “Uh..uh.. I… I mean. I am called Thorn Blackfeather, madame. I was fond of the shop under your elder relative. I am very sorry to hear of his passing, but pleased that you would continue his business… of course I would love a pastry and coffee.”

Hermit druid he may be, but the man was a glutton for the world of modern cuisine. Nettle tea and bark soup only could only go so far. He was gracious and content to be back in the familiar shop. Thorn was also very eager to hear the plans of the new managers. Perhaps they could benefit from his knowledge, as he had benefited from the former manager before them.

“Oh, and about this room!” Thorn motioned to the bulletin board already trying to not inhale the offered pastry. Thorn awkwardly pulled his hood back in haste; he had forgotten it was still over his head. As he moved the material away, it exposed his sun-kissed skin, and warm chestnut hair. His face appeared to still be wearing a few days worth of stubble. Yet his smile was warm, and his vibrant blue eyes, kind.

Edited by carrionjackal

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"Hello, and welcome to the Floracle! May I offer you some refresh-" A flurry of young couples uninterested in interacting with the shopkeeper blew past the poor woman, chatting among themselves with that irritating aloofness often associated with infatuation. "Well, feel free to ask any questions if you need help!" Valentine called after them, a slight frown crossing her lips. Though she enjoyed working with customers who came to shop with love in their hearts, careless customers were a threat to more delicate plants with their curious, grabbing hands. Perhaps she ought to adopt some sort of trainable shop animal, like a cat, to discourage inappropriate behavior from the clientele ... Hefting a light sigh, Valentine turned back to face the entrance only to find a tall, hooded figure standing before her. Despite the smile plastered on her face, the florist couldn't help but flinch a little at the newcomer's sudden appearance, her knuckles whitening on the clipboard she'd been using to record attendance. She had regained her composure by the time a masculine voice regaled her from within the depths of the hood- and realized, with a warming expression, that she was actually speaking to a very polite and well-mannered guest. 

"Thank you for the condolences," she answered, blue eyes downcast for the briefest of moments before returning to the stranger's shaded face. "Grandfather was well-loved in Casper. If my brother and I can manage to fill even one of his shoes, I will consider this endeavor a success!" Thorn pulled his hood back to reveal a very kind, weathered face; the sight of those warm blue eyes, so similar to her own, caused Val's smile to widen. "Oh- you're interested in the room for rent! Yes, yes," The shopkeeper paused as she scrambled to find another sheet of paper on her clipboard; once she'd found it, she tore it loose and pinned it to the top of the stack. "The room is upstairs -there's a spiral staircase up to the apartments out in the courtyard, if you remember- and it's about the size of a large office." Valentine showed the flyer to her new acquaintance, pointing at a floorplan of the space that Caspian had drawn up. "We think it used to be the manager's office back when the Floracle belonged to different owners. My grandfather mainly used it for storage. We've already cleaned it out-" The redhead glanced toward the apothecary's shop, trying to spot her brother, who had a much stronger business instinct than her own. "-and it'll be, let's see here ... around four one-ounce gold coins per month. We'll accept silver or copper as well, if it's more convenient for you!" 

Valentine squinted down at the paper, then back up toward Thorn. "... we can always bargain with the price, you know," she said in a loud whisper. "Just don't tell my brother." With a wink, Valentine offered the informational flyer to the customer, and took a long, refreshing breath of sweet air. She smiled up at him, considering his appearance before opening her mouth again. "Thorn, am I mistaken in pegging you for a druid?" She glanced around the shop, then back toward his grizzled face. "Are you skilled in herbology? We are looking for a few extra hands around here, you know."

Spoiler
  • 1 oz of Tin = .25 USD
  • 1 oz of Copper = 2 USD
  • 1 oz of Silver = 10 USD
  • 1 oz of Gold = 50 USD
  • 1 oz of Platinum = 100 USD
  • 1 oz of Rhodium = 500 USD.

... taken from the Terrenus Landing Page. Rent is around 200 USD per month.

 

Edited by roboblu

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Thorn could not help but continue to have a warm smile plastered to his lips. He was somewhat surprised to meet Valentine, then again he was not sure what he had been expecting in the first place. It had always been her grandfather at The Floracle prior, and now to be face to face with such a fine, young thing.

Clearing his throat softly, Thorn interjected. "Would it be safe to assume that I am already speaking to the Valentine Marie that was foretold ln the flyer?" He seemed somewhat confident of the answer, but as he only knew the former shop owner as an acquaintance he was unsure of who and how many relatives the old man had.

"The price sounds reasonable, though I'd be amenable to modest negotiation. The room itself sounds perfect. I hope you wouldn't mind me taking a look at it? I have an old friend and business partner who is looking to move to Casper. He is hoping to set up his old detectice business anew, and such an office would be ideal."

Thorn still smiled as he stood by the 'florist,' it was already turning out to be a pleasant day despite the momentary upset. He was curious to see around the building and perhaps linger to discuss the new ownership knowledge of plants, though it quickly came to be a talking point before he could even hint at it.

"You are quite right, madam. I am a druid, your friendly neighborhood druid. I would be happy to share some of my knowledge and skill. The Floracle has always been a resource in my own eyes. A place to come and share knowledge of the local flora and fauna, a place for inquiring minds. It would be a privilege to help you."

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It took Valentine a few seconds to process what the druid had asked, her bright blue eyes narrowing in confusion. Finally, a telling redness crept into her cheeks, and immediately she slapped a hand over her mouth. "Oh my gods! Have I not introduced myself?" The young woman fumbled the clipboard until it was clenched in her left hand, her right hand extending in anticipation of a handshake. Realizing that Thorn was occupied with coffee and sweets, the hand was hastily retracted. "Yes, I'm Valentine Marie!" Sunlight beamed out of her face despite the somewhat awkward introduction; Valentine, while honest and sweet and gifted with charisma, was not always self-aware.

She was also particularly oblivious to the concept of a 'personal bubble.' When Thorn expressed interest in seeing the office, Val gave a delighted smile and slipped her hand around the crook of his elbow, gently pulling him out the side door and into the courtyard. "Caspian!" She called, right before pulling her head through the doorway. The scholar, hearing his name, poked his head out of the apothecary shop with furrowed brows. "Mind the pastries, won't you?" With that, the florist was out the door and into the sunny courtyard, where a few people were sitting at the tables with books and friends and coffee. Sunlight streamed through the trees, creating a dappled walkway for Val and her honored guest as they strolled toward the spiral staircase in the corner of the yard. 

"I'm honored that someone such as yourself considers our little shop a resource!" she exclaimed, keeping one hand clamped firmly around the druid's elbow. "Grandfather had such big plans when he first opened the Floracle. I wish he'd get to see what we've been planning, but ..." Her eyes wandered over to one of the rosebushes in the yard, spying an old, dried bud in need of pruning. "... Well, they say spring showers bring mayflowers." The pair had reached the staircase now, and it was here that Valentine finally released her captive in order to climb the narrow, winding steps. She chattered as she progressed up the stairs, glancing over shoulder every once in a while to ensure her guest was still following. "Please," she said, running a hand along the black, iron railing. "-the privilege is mine. I never attended school, so I've been teaching myself herbology as I go." She spoke these last few words with some embarrassment, not daring to catch Thorn's eye. "I could definitely use some guidance. Anyways, here we are!" 

Valentine rummaged in her pocket for a set of keys, and, when she couldn't find them, heaved an exasperated sigh and waved a hand over the door's handle. There was a subtle click before she jiggled the handle again, this time pushing the door open. Waving for Thorn to follow, the redhead stepped inside. 

They were in a short, narrow hallway with one door on the left, one door on the wall facing them, and one door on the right. Valentine opened the door on the right, and entered a modestly-sized office cleared of any clutter. One wall looked over the courtyard, with a large window letting light into the room. Windows on the other wall produced a lovely view of the ocean. A sturdy walnut desk was tucked into the corner, though there was little other furniture. While she would not admit it to Thorn, Valentine and her brother had tried everything to move the damned desk out of the study - obviously, to no avail. Even now, Val stared at the desk with narrowed eyes. Pulling herself from her reverie, she turned to Thorn with a smile. 

"So, this is it! What do you think?"

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REYNARD SVEN GRAYWACKE

'Click.' 'Tap.' Pain. 'Click.' 'Tap.' Pain.

Laughter, at least when the children ran by, smiles plastered on their stupid faces — as they ran, yes, ran. Reynard's eyes narrowed at the sight of them; he would have killed to be sprinting as fast as those vagabonds, hell, he would kill just to walk normally like everyone else on two legs. Every step, every stride was a reminder of that wretched day, his hand now glued to a cane which he could not afford leaving the house without. It was a gnarled branch at that, and in his opinion, was somewhat tacky with its elvish looks. Looking down at the branch, the former mercenary relented — he looked like an old man walking around with the damned thing. Three times that day, people had asked if he needed assistance with the huge bag he was rolling around.

He told them they could 'piss off.'

Months of endless pain had made him somewhat bitter, nights ending with drinks of alcohol which no longer numbed the pain. God, it was all infuriating.

Then, a large, intimidating gray hound cut in front of him from behind — a fearsome beast at that, standing higher than his waist —, and yet, with that, Reynard smiled. It was Seb, his loyal companion. Gripping the knob of the cane tightly, he bent down on his other knee as combed his hand through her long, shaggy fur. "Who's a good girl," he murmured, until she had the gall to lick his face. "Gah, get off," he said with a chuckle, nudging the pup off before getting back up onto his good leg. She was the only thing in his life that didn't leave him, and being with her numbed his pain, at least, for a bit.

Suddenly, there was a crippling pain which shot straight up through his thigh as someone bumped him from behind. "Oh, sorry!" the person yelled, as they ran by.

"Aghh... Watch yourself!!!" Reynard hissed, grabbing his right thigh in sheer agony. Every time when something touched it, there was always a throbbing, shattered fragments of his femur jostling at the slightest disturbance. His eyes threw daggers at the offender. Kids didn't care about anyone but themselves now, did they?

It was people like these who made him hate going to the market.

Granted, he had just arrived in Casper but a few days ago, and it was a change of pace for the mercenary — the idyllic life of living in the city. He had thought that this would be an ideal place for getting back on his feet being a port and all. The man needed some form of income, and he thought that his trade would make it easy living out here — adventurers and whatnot passing through every so often. No one told him that the godforsaken city was built on a slope.

Regardless, he would never make it living in the new area without first proving his skill in his craft, so he needed materials. He had already stopped by the curio shop earlier, procuring pickled organs and other such trinkets for brewing. Now, all he needed were plants... and not just for his customers, but for himself. Word around town was that the local apothecary had just reopened with a gamut of plants, flowers, and other herbs, and he was going to take advantage of the opportunity. The opening of a shop usually means sales... at least from his experiences back in Shrine City.

Walking up to the nearby intersection of roads, he stopped briefly as the bustling crowds crossed. Rummaging through his side pocket, he pulled out a thin strip of paper which he had written the name of the shop on earlier. On it, in messy inky handwriting was the name: 'Floracle.' Eyes shooting back up, he turned his head side to side, searching for the shop's sign, until he spotted an assortment of multicolored bouquets adorning the front of one shop, fresh herbs lining wooden baskets in the distance. On the front of it, he could barely make out the big, stylized letters: '~ F L O R A C L E   F L O W E R   S H O P   &   A P O T H E C A R Y ~.'

He was there....

Now he just needed to cross the street....

Where the hell was Seb?

 

◆             ◆             ◆

SEB

With a puff of smoke and a few sparks and embers, the somewhat huge mastiff had suddenly appeared between a few aisles in the strange shop full of flowers and herbs. Wouldn't her master be surprised to find that she had beat him to the place? She couldn't wait to see the look on his face. Seb was a smart cookie.

With a confident, excited gait, the dark gray mastiff bounded out, tongue lolling out from her mouth as she panted with elation. The building smelled wonderful! So much different then the dingy, old house of the two's previous abode! Then again, she missed the other master, but regardless, it was a scene to behold. Running around, knocking over a few small saplings, tripping over vines, and even breaking a pot of two, the dog ran around in the new exciting jungle. There were blossoms, fruit even! It was so amazing!

On 7/20/2018 at 8:10 PM, roboblu said:

"Caspian! Mind the pastries, won't you?"

Talking? People! Talking people! Seb loved people.

Quickly dashing out into the main divide, the mastiff nearly slipped as she turned with great haste, toppling some perennials. Eyes locked on a man who looked somewhat glum behind a counter. His eyes were pretty, bright blue like the sky. Was he bored? Perhaps he wanted to play? Was that the human who just talked!? Caspian!? No way! Was that his name? No matter! She cared not — whoever the man was, the two were going to be best friends... right? She would cheer him up!

Breaking into a full sprint, the massive dog bounded across at great speeds with tongue in the wind, flecks of saliva flying from her face. Then, with her two powerful legs, she leaped at the man behind the counter with front paws extended, ready to give the man a hug of a lifetime! Yes, she would land on him and make him submit with a torrent of kisses!

She was smiling as much as a dog could, air forcing her cheeks into an even wider happy-face.

This was going to be great!

♥             υ´• ﻌ •`υ             ♥

 

@carrionjackal @roboblu

Edited by Artificer

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Reaching up for one of the ripe and fresh apples, a man had grabbed an apple and would start taking large bites out, core and all. The cloak that he wore was a deep umber color lightly studded with black buttons. Erick hadn't ever seen so much fresh fruit that he was allowed to eat from! He had finished his first Apple, and he quickly reached for more. People passing around him would be slightly freaked out by the cloaked man quickly eating apples. 

" If you eat like that, you are bound to get a very bad stomach ache, sir." One of the passerbys had said to him, but was quickly silenced and scared away with one look of Erick's face. He wasn't going to stop eating this fresh fruit until he was done, and it might take a while to do that by the looks of things. An arm came up from the thick wool cloak, and grabbed yet another Apple and ate and ate and ate in large, gnashing bites. So sloppy, he was that soon bits of Apple and juice was dripping off of his face. These apples were so very good.

It seemed to every one who awkwardly eyed him seemed very uncomfortable. They were sure that this man in the shaggy cloak was utterly mad, and they were probably right to think that.

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While the hustle and bustle of an opening celebration might have suited his sister, Caspian Marie was not amused. He spent a few minutes ushering customers toward the refreshments, but soon grew tired of the constant smiling and waving, not to mention the many condolences that flooded from the mouths of long-time patrons. The young man was a scholar, after all, not a shop keep like his sister. He was responsible for the Floracle's apothecary, as well as the day-to-day finances and paperwork, and she had assured him many times that he would have limited face-to-face time with the customers. Why, then, had Valentine suddenly abandoned him at the first whiff of something interesting? It was so very like her to write him off as a mere resource when he was an academic- someone well-educated, very powerful, and certainly above greeting ever tramp and truant to walk through the Floracle's doors! 

The tall, scrawny redhead glanced toward his beloved apothecary, wishing he could simply abandon his post next to the bloody pastries and return to the comforting, rich smells behind those glass doors. He had spent the past 48 hours gutting and reorganizing his grandfather's old apothecary, purging it of expired or crumbling herbs and adding fresh stock from the midlands. Everything was exactly where he wanted it to be, and simply walking inside and casting his gaze over the organization was soothing to his scholarly mind. He hefted a light sigh and glanced back toward the door, hoping that his sour gaze would deter any more patrons from entering. Valentine would kill him if she saw the look on his face right now, but Caspian didn't care- he needed a break. 

crash sounded behind him, drawing the graduate's attention to the few aisles present on the main floor. A gray blur of movement caught his eye, and, with a start, he realized that a large dog was sprinting through the shop! "HEY!" the mage yelled, shoving the round-rimmed spectacles higher up on his nose. "WHA- NO! NO, BAD DOG!" The mutt was knocking over a few of his grandfather's vases, scattering loose blooms across the blue tiled floor. Caspian gasped, and hurried to pick up as many of the rare flowers as possible. It was a moment before he realized that he probably ought to be trying to catch the dog as opposed to picking up the blooms, cutting the chaos off at its source. With his robes all askew and his hair sticking up in the back, Caspian marched over to the counter to retrieve one of his old spellbooks from underneath. He knew he had a containment spell that would do the trick, but he'd need to find it fast ...

Silence drew Caspian's attention up from his tome, and he realized that the mutt was looking him in the eye- a hungry look on its slobbering face. He winced in anticipation, and, sure enough, the massive thing began bounding toward him with unbridled energy. Suddenly, it leaped-

The natural solution was to duck away from the dog's plate-sized paws, therefore avoiding a collision. But Caspian was the only thing standing between this ... this beast and the thin glass walls of his beloved apothecary. So he made a decision to stand perfectly still, and didn't even flinch that much when at last he and the dog collided. His green eyes ended up staring at the ceiling, having been knocked flat on his back with the wind knocked out of him. 


Valentine finished showing her new customer the room, then, after answering his questions, guided Thorn back down the spiral staircase and into the courtyard. Upon reaching the bottom, she spied a very hungry looking man with a small pile of apple cores next to him. He was voraciously chowing down on the low-hanging fruit, and, by the looks of it, would be out of apples in a few minutes. Valentine wasn't sure what possessed the man to eat with such gluttony. Perhaps he was some sort of wood sprite, or perhaps he just really loved apples. In any case, she would need to restock to fill his massive appetite! Waving Thorn to follow, the shopkeep walked over to where the cloaked man sat, and, with visible effort and a wave of her hand, caused the apple tree to sprout a few more fruits. "Welcome to the Floracle, sir! We're glad to have your patronage here."

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Close enough to see through the shadow of his hood in the morning light, Sweet Valentine saw the scruff of the man's jawline coated in the mush of apples. Some of it dropped to the ground as he finally paused to watch as the tree grew more apples. At the sound of the woman's voice, the man slid the cloak off his face, revealing pitch black pits where his eyes must have been at one point. A gnarled smile with deep yellow teeth showed to her as he ate a whole apple in two bites. " I thank ya miss, your fruits are lovely." His voice while gruff and terrible, had genuine tones of thanks. While he ate another apple in two bites, the man reached into his pocket and flung a gold coin generally at yhe woman as he had already turned his attention into continually eating the apples. It seemed that there was a reason that he had his cloak on, his jaw unhinged wider and wider as he started eating apples whole with explosive gushes of fruit pulp as he just kept eating. He would eat all the fruit on the tree, the apples were only the start of his conquest.

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