Continuities » Silmaril » shard » magic elf prince from paradise
Jul 27, 2017 8:47 AM
things are ugly but at least people can read
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Cape fight in Baltimore, spring of ninety-four. The Pugilists versus the Grey Gang, and visiting Tinker Intricate using the entire battlefield as a testing ground for some of her weird things that she'll never otherwise have an excuse to deploy.

Intricate's spider robot hits a Shaker field and a Striker fist at the same time and everything goes white and red.



When the dust clears, only a Pugilist Brute and a Grey Gang Changer are alive, let alone standing, and also six square meters of another world have been switched in for some of the storefront of a Dunkin' Donuts and a bit of parking lot.
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Also he was idly watching the lesson for the older apprentices through one of their eyes and now he can't see it, and there was singing and now there isn't, and the light in the sky has changed entirely, and this place is really really ugly except for the surprisingly intricate detailing on the placards everywhere - maybe they're communicative - 

 

- yep, after another few seconds of staring he is pretty sure they are, there are recurring characters and they're not a fraction as elegant or beautiful as his, they don't tell you anything about how to speak the language, but that doesn't matter because this is a place where literacy is so widespread you can just put up signs with words on them and he is wholly enamored. He walks up to one and starts clearing the dust off it, reverently. 

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It says "32nd St".

There are people around, too, lots of them. None very nearby except the two unconscious ones in the weird outfits, because something scary was going on around here till just now, but a ways off.
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He listens to them!

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There is one overwhelmingly popular language and smaller amounts of a bunch of others, more and less similar!
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Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee he bounces and traces the letters of '32nd street' and quietly repeats the things people are saying - they all keep enough thoughts public it's easy to tell what they mean -

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Actually it doesn't seem like anybody is keeping private thoughts at all!
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If they think it's rude for him not to then that'll be a little bit weird.

 

Though if they think it's rude to keep thoughts private and also rude to confront people on things they're thinking but not saying, that might be all right. 

 

Or maybe they're keeping some thoughts private and it's just not very noticeable because they leave a lot in public, he's not sure he'd be able to tell the difference. 

 

He makes everything public just in case that's the local custom - it's not as if he objects to people observing his process of figuring out the language - and continues repeating phrases. Singing them, because this place really is ugly.

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Some people approach in a van. They intend to pick up the unconscious people and lock them up for being dangerous.
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They what.

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The unconscious people are dangerous, or will be when they wake up. So, van, locking up. Out come uniformed locals to collect them.
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But they have writing! How could you have writing and -

 

He does not know enough to do anything about this yet and he does not want to be locked up and die horribly. 

 

He runs away.

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The locals think he is very fast. They did not know he was going to be here. They are calling their bosses to ask if he is a known cape.
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The concept for 'cape' is close enough to the one for 'dangerous person we will lock up' to be nervewracking. He continues running. 

 

- he looks around. Most of the locals have darker skin than he's seen among Elves, but not all of them, there are ones who could be Noldor. If they didn't cut their hair very short, or wear it loose, which they do. And if they weren't wearing skintight clothing in good fabrics but dreadful designs, which they are. 

 

Cutting off all his hair is better than being locked up but still pretty horrible, he's not sure he could make himself go through with it. 

 

There is a bridge. There are people sleeping under the bridge. He ducks down under it and leans against the ugly slimy wall and trembles.

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Someone who lives under the bridge comes by with a cart full of things. "Hey," she says.
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"Hey," he repeats, relaxing a little.

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"Whatchoo doin' here?" Her hair is kind of long but it is distinctly unkempt. She thinks he looks way too fancy to be hanging out under a bridge.
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He is super not looking at her hair. He stares off at the water instead. Even the water is ugly. "I'm running," he says. "Running - away? Fast. I speak Quenya, I not-speak this, yet, not-read this either but reading is good."

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Oh, rich kid teenage runaway, that makes more sense. Maybe his parents hit him or something. He doesn't look like he's from Kenya though. "You shoulda stolen some of their money, got a car to live in. Help you get a job."
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'stolen' doesn't translate at all. The rest is reasonably accurate, though, how'd she guess - "My mother's dead. My father - means well. His new wife is terrible. I get a job but then suddenly here."

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"Wicked stepmother!" she cackles. "Gotcha. Gotcha. You gotta get a new job while you still look fancy though. Way harder after you've been under a bridge fer a few days."
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He beams at her. Or at the water he's staring at instead of her. "I don't think I talk not-Quenya enough for a job here. What jobs are there."

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"You got any Spanish? The spics don't have any trouble gardening and washing dishes and shit. Dunno how hard that is if you're from Kenya. You're pretty enough to be a rentboy if that's more your speed. Won't mess up your manicure."
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"I don't know those words. I don't mind gardening. I don't got any Spanish, can you teach me -"

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"I don't speak Spanish, I'm not some Mexican."
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"Mexicans speak Spanish, here speak -"

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