A Customer!

Ierne Weyrhold - Book Place

The door swings easily on its hinges, at last, and the walls are painted brightly in blue, except for one corner, which is yellow. The floor matches the walls, blue carpet for the majority, but yellow tiling in that one corner. The windows are sparklingly clean, the shutters long since repaired and painted the same this-paint-was-on-special blue as the interior. Glows are scattered throughout the store, seemingly randomly, providing a homey atmosphere, as well as a casual one.

The store counter is by the door, no-one gets in or out without passing it, and it has a good view of the rest of the store. The rest of the front half of the store - front two thirds, actually - is taken up by rows and rows of blue shelving, one half carrying brand spanking new books, and the other carrying the loaner books, very much a 'pre-loved' set. The yellow corner in back has another counter, also yellow, with a cheery klah pitcher, and an assortment of pastries. To get to the counter, one must pass the tables and chairs also scattered in this area, which is clearly delineated and separated from the book section. The opposite back corner is more cosy, sea-green pillows strewn about, and big, soft, comfy chairs, as well as dimmer glows.

People: K'ael, L'ren.

It's almost lunchtime at Ierne and K'ael is finishing up making his morning deliveries. He's saved the best for last really, or he's decided to hold it until last. Whatever the case, he's got a big heavy package to be delivered to L'ren's bookshop hoisted up on his shoulder as he heads in. He's waited on this one, that way he can take the time to look around after he completes the delivery. Business first though, and he heads up to the till with the package. "Here we are then."

L'ren is walking up and down the aisles of the loaner section, pushing a book-laden trolley with a squeaky wheel. Squeak squeak squeak. Quiet shuffling, as L'ren pulls a book from the trolley and puts it on the shelf. And then he's moving again, squeak squeak squeak. The store is pretty empty at the moment, it usually is, only L'ren and Borren are around, the latter leaning absently on the counter by the door, reading some kind of tech manual. He's been kind of slack since L'ren started working here full time. The store hardly needs /two/ people! The younger harper peers over his book at K'ael, flicking a glance down at the package. "Ah. One moment." he says, ringing a little bell on the counter. The squeaking stops, and then starts again, coming closer this time, as L'ren makes his way back to the counter. His eyes light up at the package. "Ah! My books! Excellent!"

K'ael smiles to Borren and nods. He'd introduce himself, but he can't remember for the life of him what Borren's name is. All he can remember is that it doesn't start with an L. Not like Leona, or L'ren. So instead the younger harper just gets a, "How are you doing today?" The bronzer's attention is quickly diverted to the approaching L'ren, however. "You must be L'ren?" At least he can remember his name, but then again it was on the package. He produces a small clipboard. "You'll need to sign here, if you don't mind."

Borren just shrugs, "Doing alright. Quiet. Reading." he says, raising the book again. He's quite happy to hand everything over to L'ren. L'ren however, tilts his head at the trolley. "Borren, make yourself useful, shelve those, yeah?" he 'suggests', and the younger harper obeys, though not without grumbling. The greenrider shakes his head, and turns back to K'ael. "Sorry about that. Now, where were we? Sign? Ah, right." He takes the clipboard, and signs, grinning widely. "Been waiting for these, oh yes." he says, rubbing his hands together and eyeing the package like a starving man might eye a succulent roast.

K'ael nods to the younger man. Though he wasn't much younger than K'ael, if at all. "Sounds good." Is his response to Borren's lackluster answer. There's a bit of a chuckle as he grumbles when put to work by his old man. K'ael nods to L'ren and hands over the clipboard, sliding it back once he's signed. "Oh? Something good, or have you been waiting on replacements?" He can't help but grin at L'ren's reaction to the books. "Shall I leave them here, or do you need me to put them some place in particular?" He looks about a bit. "I've actually been meaning to come by here. I could use some new reading material."

L'ren blinks at K'ael. A customer? Maybe! "Ah, just put them on the counter for now, I'll take care of them." he says, with a dismissive hand-wave. He was thrilled to get them, sure, and he'll be just as thrilled to open the package, but right now he has more important things to worry about. An actual customer! "New reading material? We've got this wonderful line of, um, fiction, Renmal's latest book has just come in." Renmal of course being L'ren's pen-name, not that he'd ever admit it. "Or, if poetry's more your style, there's a wide range towards the back there…" He pauses, and peers about the store. Too many shelves to list the contents of each and every one. "Um, did you have anything specific in mind?"

K'ael nods about the books. He feels a little bad, hopefully they empty the box instead of moving it. It was quite heavy. "Sure thing." K'ael was a customer! In fact, he even had money to spend! And he was intent on picking up at least one thing before heading home. "Oh? Is this Renmal any good? What sort of thing does he write?" The bronzer makes a face at the mention of poetry. "I don't hate poetry, but I'm mostly looking for something I can curl up at night with. Leona said you might know something good. I'm an action sort of guy, I like suspense and a good plot to draw you in." He taps his chin. "Uh… not sure if that helps any."

At mention of Leona, L'ren peers a little more closely at K'ael. "You… seem familiar." Well, one was Weyrleader and the other was Weyrlord, they would have had some kind of dealings with one another, surely. "I mean personally. Not /personally/ personally… But… I'm not sure what I mean." K'ael reminds him a little of R'miel. "Er, the book, right. Renmal writes mysteries, about this brownrider, R'mal, with his, er, sidekick, and lifemate, Gelhieth. The first was about eggs gone missing, and there was that one about the spy, and then, in the seventh book, a whole Weyr just … disappeared. Poof. To be continued." Suspense? Perhaps. But it sounds kind of cheesy. "But, uh, if you want to be /drawn in/, there's nothing better than an old journal, people have this tendency to be so honest in journals, they write about everything. Fascinating reading." Sounds awfully close to 'history' territory there.

K'ael grins a bit to the older harper. "Uh… maybe you're thinking of my older brother, R'miel? I think you two know each other. I was uh… weyrleader at Ista for a couple of turns, as well…" Sure, play it off all casual-like, K'ael. But onto the books! K'ael blinks a bit. "Oh? These sound interesting. Are they a series? Maybe I should start with the first, if they are." He considers the notion of an old journal. "Hm. Got any of like… important past political figures maybe?" Maybe ousted weyrleaders perhaps?

L'ren ahs, and nods. "R'miel, of course! How's he been doing lately?" As to K'ael's casual playing of his change in rank, the man flicks at his own knot, journeyman harper with a thread of green. "I was Weyrlord here, until just recently. Retired now." He's a bit /young/ still to be retiring, isn't he? He's not even sixty yet. "Health reasons you see, turns out I'm allergic to politics." A little joke, there. Perhaps too little. "Mmm, yes, a series. Let me check which ones we have in stock." He already knows, the first three, and number five, but he heads over to the shelf anyway, waving K'ael over. "Ah, let me see here. We've got the first three in stock, here. And, ah, the fifth one, as well." The journal question though, that has the older man grinning again. "Oh, yes, yes. Some of the best preserved have been from the higher ranked people of the time. Shame, really. Where are the greenriders' journals, or the assistant to the assistant headwoman's journals?" He shakes his head. He happens to find those ones just as fascinating as the more common ones, if not /more/ so. "But, ah, yes. We do have several fascinating accounts. One holder girl kept a diary throughout her life, recording the loss of family to thread, her search, her impression, her rise to Senior, and her inevitable retirement. Or there's one that's a compilation. Once, turns ago, Telgar Weyr changed Weyrleaders every flight, for half a dozen flights, and they took each man's journal and put them together. Interesting." And then he realises he's been rambling, and he looks a little sheepish. "So sorry, I do tend to go on a bit."

K'ael shrugs a bit. In truth he hadn't talked to his brother in quite a while. "Ah, good, I suppose. Same probably as the last time you saw him." He nods. "Mm. I think Leona mentioned that you were retired now." He grins a bit at the joke, but doesn't laugh. Poor old Ren. The bronzer follows him over to where his books are. "Ah. I'll start with the first, I think. Get a flavor, then check back." He pulls the first down, looking it over. Then he chuckles. "You think the day to day sort of affairs of greenriders and assistants have changed much over the turns? Hm." He considers this for a moment. "I kept a journal on and off while I was weyrleader, haven't written much in it lately though. Maybe I'll have a look at the ona nd off weyrleader one." He chuckles. "Leona warned me not to talk to you about history."

L'ren frowns a little at K'ael. "What, greenriders can't live interesting lives?" Oh dear, that's hit a nerve, a raw one by the sounds of it. Greenrider stereotypes, how he loathes them. "/This/ greenrider was Weyrlord. That's pretty interesting, wouldn't you say?" There's a pause, and then, "Not that I, er, keep a journal." No, he writes fiction in his spare time. …and keeps a journal. A journal that he'd be rather embarrassed if anyone actually /read/. Some future harper can find it, and make a big deal of it, he'll be long dead by then, he won't care. He shakes his head, and tries to shake it off, moving to the shelf where the journals are kept. And then K'ael mentions Leona's warning. "Oh, she did, did she?" There's a pause. "Pass on a message for me, could you? Remind her that I'm not Weyrlord any more, and sooner or later someone's going to move in to that old weyr. She'll know what it means." Possibly related to her ale? In a pleasant tone now, he notes, "Ah, here's that journal. Will there be anything else?" At some point the constant squeaking of that trolley wheel has stopped, and it and Borren are back at the counter by the door, the latter with his nose deep in that book.

K'ael blinks, then chuckles at L'ren. "Now I didn't say that. They're always interesting, though I'm a bit more interested in the politics. Which they usually stay out of. And when this greenrider's journal becomes publicly available… well then maybe I'll take a look." Hint hint. He tilts a head at Leona's message. "Um. Sure?" He takes out that clipboard to make himself a note. "So.. does that mean we're without a weyrlord here, then? " Or have they just not moved into the proper weyr yet? Or is he taking it the wrong way? "Er. I'll make sure that she gets the message. I'm on babysitting duty for our son tomorrow anyways." Really that's more of a reminder to himself. "I think that should be all. For now at least." He starts inching his way back towards Borren.

L'ren actually looks sheepish. "Ah, er, well, okay. I'll admit, I prefer the old journals, back when greenriders were the frontline against thread. Zippy little dragons, they are." As he listens to K'ael, he raises an eyebrow briefly. "Actually, never mind about the message, ought to go see her myself." Was it the 'our son' that did it? Possibly. He knew she was pregnant, because she couldn't come and collect her ale, but that may have been all he knew. "Ah, hmm, yes. Hadn't thought about leaving the Weyrlord spot vacant. Have a stand-in, of course, but…" There's a pause, and then, "Why, you interested?" …it's a genuine question. But Borren comes to the rescue, finally putting his book down, and waving K'ael over. "C'mere, let me sort those out, and you can get on your way. Sorry about him, he's a bit out of sorts lately." The store's not doing so well, and L'ren doesn't have his Weyrlord income to support it any more.

K'ael chuckles. "Want to be up there fighting, hm? I can't say I blame you. I sort of imagine what Azaeth would be like against Thread." Azaeth was big, but still a very good flyer. K'ael could imagine the gigantic Azaeth destroying a whole strand with just one tremendous breath of flames. The bornzer blinks a bit at L'ren and then nods. "Er, are you sure? It's no problem." Maybe he thought it was just another Karell baby? "Ah. Uh.." That's all he manages to get out about being weyrlord before Borren is calling him over. "Out of sorts?" He hands over his books. K'ael wouldn't have any advice about running a store, other than that you need customers. But how to get them was the issue here.

L'ren shakes his head quickly. "Oh, no, no, not me, I'd never have agreed to search if there was /thread/ to fight, shards, no." Just a mild-mannered harper, really. He doesn't even fit the /harper/ stereotypes. Once K'ael moves over to the counter, L'ren follows, picking up that package from before, and heading out of the store, muttering to himself. Borren just shakes his head. "He's due for some, ah, vacation time, in a couple of weeks. He just needs to /relax/, things aren't /that/ bad." The store /isn't/ doing so well, but it's not in any immediate danger. L'ren's savings should last a good few months, if not longer. "Wouldn't listen to me, I said, get some computers in, they'll draw the young crowd. But nooo, he won't have a bar of it." Borren rolls his eyes, and then checks out K'ael's list of books. He rattles off a very reasonable price — perhaps the reason the store isn't earning so much — and writes out a receipt.

K'ael blinks, then chuckles at L'ren. "Just like reading about it, then?" Obviously the thought of Thread wouldn't have deterred K'ael! Of course nothing would have really. He peers at L'ren as the man heads out. "Vacation time?" K'ael has a… way of missing the point. He doesn't do the whole… subtly thing very well. And has no idea what the younger harper is referring to. "Ah, computers. Can't really help there, I don't know a thing about computers." K'ael pays for the books. At least he'd be coming back more than likely? "Thanks. I'll uh, see you around."

Borren just shakes his head. L'ren is his father, he'd really rather not think too hard about the greenrider's 'vacation' time. "He just needs a break." he repeats, tossing the marks in the drawer with the others. "Yeah, see you around. Fair warning, if you see him down on the beach, just sitting in the sand, reading some brightly coloured book… Keep an eye on Reonth." is all he'll say, before burying his nose back in his tech book.

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