====October 20, 2013
====Chalelle, Jovie
====The two share a sunny patch for a while, then Jovie takes Chalelle for a mental trip.

Who Chalelle, Jovie
What The two share a sunny patch for a while, then Jovie takes Chalelle for a mental trip.
When Winter, 11 months and 6 days until the 12th Pass
Where Central Bazaar, Igen Weyr

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Central Bazaar

All roads in the weyr ultimately lead here, to this center of commerce. Canvas awnings jut out over time worn, sandy cobblestone, sheltering customers and wares alike from the majority of Igen's elements, and funnel scents both mouthwatering and vomit inducing through the thin streets. Almost all store fronts are open air, delineated by sandstone arches with intricately carved facades. The insides of these stone-shingled buildings act as an amplifier for the salesmens' bawled enticements, and are held up by the chipped swirls of marble pillars.


The desert air is crisp and chilled, creating a stark difference in temperature between the sun and shade. And so it's in patch of direct light against the wall of some shop that Jovie sits, a ratty shawl around her shoulders, her blonde hair in brittle, dusty tangles. She looks half-dressed in a homeless sort of way, skirt far too short and stockings sunk down her skinny legs, boots crossed out in front of her in the dirt. A collection of filthy bags are her backrest and a smaller one is pulled into her lap, through which she's currently rummaging.

Chalelle has her own brand of grubby going on, though it's more from working in the fields than sitting in a corner of the bazaar. She has a roll of what looks like herdbeast hides thrown over one shoulder, carried in from the direction of the central bowl. She's not that big, though, and the roll might be a few hides too heavy, so when she reaches the open area near Jovie, she lets the whole lot of them slide off her shoulder to flump against the wall. While working the shoulder the hides had been on, Chal glances down at the skinny trader, peering at the bag in her lap without being too too obvious about it.

There's just a toss of a glance up at Chalelle when she takes her own bit of wall, Jovie's eyes shaded by sloppy, smudge rings of kohl. It's just enough to take note of her company and then she's back to her bag. There might not be too much to see in there, really, just a sense of odd and ends, bits of questionable jewelry and random stuff made dingy by the wear of life. But it's a well-used deck of cards that comes out, and not the usual poker sort, either. The bag is moved aside so she can shuffle the deck against the top of her thigh. "Read your fortune?" she says without looking to Chalelle again. But there's no one else to hear her, so it must be the herder she's talking to.

Chalelle takes a moment to rest against the wall, arms crossed over the upper end of hide roll. She rubs her face against her shoulder briefly, though it mostly just smears mud and cold sweat rather than clearing up anything. "Fortune?" she asks curiously, straightening from the wall before she gives her shoulder another pull, emitting a dull crack. "I hope it's better than being knee-deep in beast dung." She gives the roll of hides a shove so it slumps to the ground, away from the Trader. It makes a handy seat for the herder to collapse onto. "I don't have any marks or anything much else. But…" It's clear the girl is intrigued, but warily so.

It's probably that Jovie can smell her company already, but the mention of dung-wading does have a certain something deeper about the inhale that follows, sucked carefully through her nose. The cards in her hands flutter again, smooth and practiced beneath the work of her dirty fingers, even as the hides go tumbling beside her. But no marks? The tramp of a girl cuts her glance to Chalelle, sizing her up. Does she really not have any money on her? Is this one of those times that it's worth handing out a fortune for free? "What do you have?"

There is a wilted air of mild dejection about the girl when the trader asks her question. Chalelle surreptitiously wipes her hands on the undersides of her trousers and shrugs uncomfortably. "Not much. It's why I'm doing crap jobs no one else will, right?" While muttered, her words lack a sense of true darkness. After all, she did choose that life. She stretches out her legs one after the other so she can check her trouser pockets, finally coming up with a broken pocket knife and an eighth-mark piece. The pocket knife goes back into the pocket. Can't part with that. She shows Jovie the mark piece, though, and smiles slightly. "Got this."

Jovie's mouth twitches to a smile at the sight of that mark, the steady ruffle of cards through her fingers finally falling silent as she reaches a hand out for it. "Do you have a question? Something you want to know?" Maybe 'what is the going price on a fortune reading?' But Jovie will hardly suggest that one herself. And meanwhile, she folds her boots in, crossed-legged so that there's a patch of nice, flat earth in front of her, ready for the spread of cards when the time is right.

Chalelle is uninitiated in the art of fortune telling, so she is quite clueless to just how pitiful her mark piece is. She is also clueless about the whole question thing. The herder shifts on the roll of hides and gives Jovie a look somewhere between concerned and self-conscious. She bites her lower lip briefly, gaze falling to the cards, taking all of this rather seriously. Finally, she gets some more words out, with a little bit of mental wringing. "Am I wasting my time?" She runs her hands over her shins a couple times, cheeks going a little red. "With the herding, I mean. With these," as one hand falls to the roll underneat her.

Or that mark piece could be a bit generous if one believes she's handing over for a bit of useless mumbo jumbo. As it is, Jovie is shaking her scraggly head at the question. "Cards don't judge," she tells her, tucking the mark into her bag, safe and sound, and letting her hands get back to the effortless work of shuffling. "So they can't tell you if something is better or best. But we can ask about the herding." And with that, a touch of flair to her hand begins the process, the ruffling cards parting and falling together again, and then suddenly finished. She turns the first one over to show a well-dressed Lady-holder-looking person between columns, strange symbols all about. "This is the past. It says you were led astray, you were overzealous and you didn't listen to your inner voice. You may have learned things, but you didn't understand. There was something else going on that you didn't see." She lifts her shadowy glance from the cards to check with her client.

Chalelle meets that gaze with that wide-eyed look that all but says, how did she know?? Hook, line, sinker. The herder swallows hard, hands tightening over her knees. Worry causes her to frown, fingers digging in hard enough to turn them white. She opens her mouth slightly, but ends up saying nothing. Instead, her gaze falls to the stack of cards again, trepidation evident.

Perhaps it's the mark of a professional that Jovie doesn't exhibit any particular reaction to whatever she sees displayed in Chalelle's demeanor. If she feels some kind of triumph in capturing the herder's rapt attention, it's certainly not visible on her stoic face. She turns another card, with a man standing amid a slew of staffs driven into the ground. "This is the present. It's a break, a pause to rally yourself. You're tired, you've come far, but there's one more hurdle to get past. One more trial to face before success. You're taking stock, you're taking a deep breath." And then there's the card: four poles holding a string of flowers over a happy couple. "This the future." And a bit of surprised light comes to her tone, as if she wasn't expecting whatever she reads here. "It's good. It's completion, celebration, stability. Fulfilment and harmony. All of those things." You know, happy things. So how does Chalelle like that? Because Jovie herself seems a bit impressed. "Good for you."

How indeed? Chalelle has no poker face to speak of, so with each of Jovie's readings, her reactions are there in plain sight. The Present card brings a thoughtful look to her face, brows minimally creased as she tries to fit it into the puzzle she's living in right now. It's not hard. With that last card, though… surprise doesn't quite cover it. Where her fingertips were pressing moments before, now her nails are digging right into the fabric of her work trousers. Hard. She stares at those strings of flowers as if they might jump off the card and choke her on the spot. Wide, dark eyes then regard Jovie, searching for… meaning? For some celestial joke? For the catch? She sucks in a deep breath (just like in that second card!) and lets it out with strained control. "I don't…" Know how to speak, apparently. Finally she asks, "How do the cards know that?"

Jovie's strong brows arch high, apparently understanding — believing it — little more than Chalelle does. She shrugs a thin shoulder under the drape of that ratty shawl. "I just read them," is all she can claim. And when it seems like the herder is done studying those hand-drawn flowers, the gypsy starts to sweep the cards from the dirt, brushing them off on her skirt before they're returned to the deck. "It's a pretty happy ending. It's not usually so…" Good? She don't finish the thought, though perhaps her surprise makes the outcome more believable. Or maybe that just what she wants Chalelle to think. Either way, she goes about tucking the cards back into her bag and pulling out a dark-wrapped cigarette instead. "So what are you waiting for?"

Chalelle has to take another deep breath before she can get her tensed hands to relax, leaving the impressions of her fingernails behind. Jovie's answer doesn't seem to comfort her at all, but as the other woman starts to pack up the cards, it prods the herder into action, though it's a little stiff and forced. She frowns at the dark-wrapped thing and gets to her feet, going right back to rubbing her hands on her trousers. Not that it's helped so far with making them cleaner, more like a nervous habit. "It's just hard to believe," she answers quietly, not quite mumbling, but close. With a heave, she lifts one end of the hide roll so it's against the wall again, then kneeling down, she maneuvers it back onto her shoulder, though the opposite one from before. "Thanks, though." Does Chal look disturbed? She should. Pausing there, with the roll wobbling like a stiff, hairy carpet, she regards Jovie for a long moment. Whatever goes through her head, though, the social trainwreck ends up just turning and heading farther into the bazaar, soon turning a corner out of sight.

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