==== February 13, 2014
==== Veresch, Chel
==== Veresch comes with a message and does not leave with a very bad cigar.

Who Veresch, Chel
What Veresch comes with a message and does not leave with a very bad cigar.
When 16th Day, first month, 12th Pass
Where Dustbowl Cantina

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Dustbowl Cantina
To enter the Dustbowl Cantina is to descend: the heart of the ancient tavern lies half underground, at the foot of ancient steps, insulated from summer heat and winter cold by the volcanic rock surrounding it. A windowless place well-lit by glows, it is homey, even cozy, with a certain bijou charm - but for the deep gouges worn in wooden table and solid stone, some //clearly lingering evidence of boisterous brawling. The wall behind the well-polished bar, though, remains free from scars or graffiti, as does the door into the small kitchen, and the stairwell up into the owner's quarters: the barkeep and his staff reign, and they guard their territory well. After all, only a fool angers the source of the booze. //


Seriously, what kind of person needs a message delivered to the Dustbowl Cantina this early in the day? Veresch had always, from what few murmurs she heard in the lower caverns, thought it to be a sort of evening establishment. Nevertheless, she wanders in, with hair still lightly oiled and messed and a clear, forthright sort of look, though she pauses almost inside the door. There has to be a moment to take in the ambiance of the place, right? It feels almost likea forbidden experience, standing there with the faint smell of booze, dagger-scored tables and the like. After that, her steps are more awkward, gangly almost, as she makes her way to the bar and presumably staff there. "Good day," she greets, eyeing the bottles with fascination. "Got a message here for, um, Jharlodar?"

Situated behind said bar, Chel's gently fixated on the atmosphere of the room rather than her usual sharp-eyed attention to customers. An extra bustle threads through the Cantina, but there's something distinctly off about it: no one's really drinking and the waitresses are hesitant to stream through their ranks, one even looking down her nose at a bundle of clothes that's presumably a person in the corner. Who knows, maybe it's dirty laundry left behind. More contemplative, Chel rocks her cheek along the inside of the hand it rests on until her periphery welcomes the scraggy bob of Veresch. Her dark eyes flick over, preceding the trail of her head. The bartender straightens, sliding her hands quickly along her sides to rest at the small of her back in a preparatory stretch. Then her left hand slips forward and knocks two fingers on the bar's edge. Right there will do. Chel's eyes are already beginning to scrape the corners of the room again.

It's Chel that Veresch stares at for a while before scooting along to that side of the bar. The girl's pretty, see, in a way that she's not really thought of as pretty before, and so she takes her time looking. It's the knocking on wood that distracts her from that, and she looks down at the spot on the well-polished wood. Instead of sliding the message over immediately, she chooses to take a spot at the bar, leaning with wrists and elbows on the wood, fingers surreptitiously feeling the varnish. "He's not in?" she asks idly. "I can wait a little." Not quite bright, perhaps, to stand there all straight and curious, with no veil across her face and her expression too openly curious.

Flick. Chel's eyes dart to Veresch with her lips slightly puckering in the beginnings of a variety of possible expressions, none of which see fruition. This messenger's given a more devoted study, even though the waitress in the back has confronted the laundry lump with, "You can order somethin' or you can leave." Chel lets it be, lifting her eyebrows ever so lightly in a vague, teenager, challenge. "Or," is posed, testing, "You can leave the message here…" Sliding her fingers further forward, she raps the bar again, "and make some more use of your time." Slow, deliberate, inching from her right hand have her plucking up one of those fascinating bottles as she thumps it faux innocently down next to where she tapped. Nevermind her, she's just tending bar.

The bottle's interesting enough, as is the offer, but from the steady look in the girl's eyes she's Still Not Getting It, or ignoring it altogether. She takes a moment, first, to look at the heap of clothes being chivvied so, before her gaze wanders the place, from the staircase leading up to the back doors, to, yes, Chel herself again. "Nice hair," she murmurs, with no sense of sarcasm. "I like it. I'd look bushy like that." Thus the sawed-off bob around the scrawny face, perhaps. "I'm Veresch." Pause. "I've got time."

"Yeah, you would, wouldn't you." What bait may or may not have been for Veresch is now uncorked and poured into a serving in front of Chel, herself. What wink exists in her eye without quite forming vaguely tempers her words. "Veresch," a repeat to make sure she has it right, then she clicks her tongue, pointing back at herself, "Chel. Chel," and to the girl, "Veresch. What's your trade, then? Deliverin' messages and muckin' about?" A cocked eyebrow is as heavy as a gesture, as good as nodding straight at the baggage of people seeking rare and tenuous refuge inside the cantina. With that waitress gliding over to mutter at the bouncer on duty, their timer may be ticking already.

"Chelll." It's somewhere between shell and something harder, but Veresch refrains from making another attempt. "More messaging than mucking about, so I figure I'm allowed a minute or two." Besides, teenager. She can get ten minutes change out of five minutes and make it look effortless to boot. "It's not a bad job. Nothing like this though." Obviously. Still, as the bartender's knowing gaze takes in the room again, she's curious enough to look around as well. Still, she'll make use of her stolen minutes before she scampers off: "Don't suppose you guys sell any of that stuff that the folk around here like smoking, do you? Or where I can find a stall that does?" It's her version of a covert drawl, boycotted by the fact that her eyes are glittering with some emotion, rare and sharp and piqued. Pause. "Preferably the kind that even deadbeats would turn their noses up at."

"Allloweeed," murmurs Chel, halfway beneath her breath as she eyeballs down at the drink she's poured herself. In a fortunate bout of timing, she's slipped thumb and forefinger around the tubular vessel and knocks the drink back as Veresch expounds on 'this job'. The soft 'sweat' that's kept the drink cold till now makes it gleam as it's set back down, empty. "Ummm." Posed a question like that, the attempt at professional veneer wipes away for a bit of visible youthful thinking. "Does this look like the midden?" A beat passes, where the bartender becomes distinctly conscious of the riffraff currently huddled about, eyeing scraps of things on the tables. "Nevermind," she murmurs, scraping a finger on the bar, "Don't answer that— there's places around. I know 'em. But you're either askin' to smoke a piece of crap or play something over on a deadbeat and I can't particularly recommend either." Because she's older and wiser, obv.

The refrain of 'Yeah, but I really want to' doesn't seem quite alright to Veresch. Suspiciously sulky, see, and her mother already restricted that quota early morning. She's running on fumes. Reaching over to tilt the now-empty glass just a little, she slips the corner of the owner's message into the space, leaving it there for the girl to decide what it's fate is going to be. "Sometimes people deserve stuff, that's all," she says as she takes a step back, then another. "Nice to meet you, Chel. Thanks for letting me get my breath back." Because, obviously, that's what she was trying to do. "If you find something interesting, let me know, please." With that, a jerky nod and a motion that's still all gangly limbs, she trots out of the cantina, scrupulously avoiding all the dodgy puddles.

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