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Debbie Willow approached the ornate gates of Art’s Haven with a lively step. The two guards on either side recognized her immediately opening the gates as she approached. She flashed them a smile as she entered the courtyard before her place of work. The courtyard was paved with white tiles that almost seemed to glow with the rising sun. Art’s Haven was beautiful. The tall building (5 floors altogether) was lined with marble pillars that were carved with fanciful beasts. The roof was tiled with a multitude of bright colors, making it look like a rainbow dwelled there. Two fountains bubbled happily, joyously on either side of the walkway leading to the magnificent building. Debbie loved those fountains. They, as was everything here, beautiful. Twin statues stood atop their pedestals one hand upraised as if to summon a shardblade their posters betraying strength and nobility. They were of Knights Radiants one male the other female both dressed in stunning shardplate. A clever use of heating fabrials inside their upraised hands created steam so it seemed that you were actually seeing their shardblades form. Water flowed down the statues backs like capes, filling the wide basins at their feet.

Debbie shook herself, hurrying past the fountains up the marble steps and to the main doors. Her coworker, Talam, opened the door for her while shaking his head. She was late again. Rushing in she tried her best to ignore all the beauty in this one room. The high vaulted ceiling with paintings seeming to dance up the walls until they could soar across the ceiling its self. The floor was marble, pristine and crisp. To her left was the lounge where waiting patrons could relax; to her right was her desk. Debbie rushed over to it taking her spot as the receptionist. Along the sides of the wide hallway directly in front of you as you entered were meeting rooms. One of the many master craftsmen or artists would meet with costumers in those rooms. They would talk with them learning exactly what it was the man or woman wanted the finished product to look like. The entrance was only a small part of the large building; the rest was where the actual work took place. The purpose of the entire entrance from the courtyard to the elaborately decorated room was to awe and impress potential customers.

Art’s Haven sold more than just statues and paintings however, the store’s main stream of profit came from the owners themselves. Valath and Nakome were masters at their arts. Valath made all the fabrials, while Nakome….. Debbie shuttered as she thought of Nakome, The Forger, she could twist an object’s soul. It wasn’t natural, but who was she to judge?

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We sell fabrials and forge stamps...... as well as art! Paintings and sculptors for the most part. (Will edit in more info when I'm not tired.) Debbie is an NPC.... probably never to be heard of again....

 

Edited by Steel Inquisitive
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A craftsman approached the gates of Arts Haven, knocking on the front door. He was here to make a proposition. To hopefully get the manufacturers to join in a union. Hopefully someone would answer.

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Valath watched one of the newer craftsmen put the finishing touches on a small figurine. It wasn't bad but she would have to get Nakome to make a stamp to fix an error on one of the legs. The man had cracked the stone there. 

An apprentice ran up to her excitedly she spewed out her message. "There's a man here wanting to see you!" 

 Valath rolled her eyes. "Fine. Take him to one of the meeting rooms and get him tea and snacks." She turned her attention back to the craftsmen. "I'll be right down."

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The Craftsman was led to a meeting room where he was sat down and given some snacks. Hopefully this meeting went over better than the last one. While the Boss was busy in Newcago, he was in charge of getting the companies together for the Traders Union. 

Hopefully these people were nice and cared about the people. Otherwise his proposal was likely to fall of deaf ears.

He rubbed his leg, which still hurt from from the last time his proposal fell on deaf ears.

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Nakome slashed at her training dummy, making it's right arm swing in a wide ark for her head. She went to one knee, hearing the wooden arm of the dummy whoosh over her head. Pressing closer, she sprang up beside it, stabbing the throat piece and, with a shudder, stopped the dummy from swinging again. Nakome stepped back from the dummy, sweating just enough to be noticed.

You lose again, she thought. After a she wiped her face with a rag. She looked out of the fifth floor window and spotted a business man heading for the building. I'll let Valath handle him, she thought, and after storing her pain knife in her right sleeve, she went to see what was going on.

When she went down she checked on some of the craftsman who she busy at work. She spotted a nice figurine on one table, though it could still use a little touching up. 

 "Lady Nakome." She turned and saw the craftsman who must have been new, for no one in the store called Nakome 'lady '. "Yes, what is it?" 

 " lady Valath requested that I ask you to add the final touches on my work . " the young man replied, seeming a little nervous now. Nakome rolled her eyes. "Fine, take me to it." 

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Valath marched into the room taking a seat directly opposite the man. 

"What can I do for you Master.....?"

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"Lehir. Thoroth Lehir." The craftsmen said.

"I am not known for mincing words, so I will get straight to the point. The Master Craftsman Mack is trying to get a Traders Union together with all the Manufacturing companies and organizations in the Alleyverse. Individually our businesses and guilds are weak, but together we represent the economy of the alleyverse. But more important than power is the impact we could make on the lives of citizens.

As you well know, the Alleycity was thermonuked about 18 years ago. Much of that damage has been left unfixed, and while concerned Citizens have started to help, he thinks that a combined force of all the manufacturing companies could help improve life dramatically for the Homeless of the Alleyverse.

Each of the guilds can do something for the Alleycity. Trident manufacturing can provide all sorts or materials and production. Alleyzon can ship everything, Dusk and the Citadel can provide the natural resources. The Art haven we hope will be able to beautify the alleycity. Make it an enjoyable place to live. The Craftsmen can fund the entire procedure in addition to our magical invested projects." He paused for a breath.

"Separate, we are a bunch of businesses. But together..." He grinned. "Together we might be make the impossible a reality."

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Valath actually began laughing. 

 "You like direct? Let us be direct! A Traders Union bent on fixing problems and not on money or power? Ridiculous!" She leaned in, eyes fierce.

 "What is the real goal? Where is the money coming from and who's profiting? Which Guild will be running the opperation? Don't even try to tell me someone's not planing something more with the power and wealth this would bring together." A glance at her emotion bracelet showed her he was nervous. They weren't always the most reliable however.

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Lehir looked confused at the laughing, then realization dawned. The normal rules of funding and resources didn't apply with the Craftsmen. Not many people realized it, but they didn't depend on anyone for money.

"You haven't been around recently have you? The Craftsmen are a post scarcity organization! We don't rely on anyone or anything for money or resources. We depend on no one. When we make a proposition, what we say is what we mean. We are going to be funding the project, 100%. It helps that we can create necessary resources out of nothing. Ideally the Traders Union would be a Joint effort. Mack doesn't want to be solely in charge because there is a severe conflict of interest. He is a Member of the Newcago court.

There is one thing though. The Traders Union will retain a tight hold on most of the communities that it improves.

The Great guilds haven't done anything in 18 years. They are starting to form a government right now, but based off of past experience, most governments formed by great guilds aren't that great. They tend to spend more time playing politics than helping the people.

Mack doesn't exactly trust this new government, and urges the other people too keep an eye on them. If the rest of the Union agree's, we will try to maintain a measure of control over the areas that we improve."

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"The Newcago court." She said flatly. " Interesting. Why? Why does this Mack care? " She studied him. "You intend to undermine the authority of the budding government. Earning the people's love and trust so that they will support you over the government."

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She's not the most trusting. .....

 

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I gathered.

"I am unaware of your guild allegiances, so sorry if this is offensive, but the government isn't looking to be that trustworthy.

I mean, look at them. The 2 great guilds get guaranteed seats, and one of of the two great guilds is the Ghostbloods! These guys kicked out their own founder a while back! With all due respect, I'm not sure that I trust them to run the city. So yes this will undermine the authority of the government, but when it comes down to it, none of the great guilds have helped the city. If we are at least trying to help the city, I fail to see why they should be in charge in place of us." He took a breath and continued.

"As to Mack, why does he care? Now he tends to be a mysterious guy, overly theatrical and the such, but we think he cares for two reasons. One, he has a small measure of concern for the people of the City, somewhere inside of his ornate appearance he cares about people, their well being, and that justice is served.

Second, he got bored. And he needed a new project, fixing the city is that project. He hasn't had an interesting commission in years, so he is trying to find a new focus. The choice is yours. You would be equal members on the council with the rest of the member companies. And For what its worth, personally I think that this is a good cause. Mack is sincere in that he wants to help out people. He has set his mind on it, and if he sets his mind on something, it will happen."

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She smiled. A real smile this time. "You did NOT do your homework before this meeting."  A decision needs to be made!

Valath slowly nodded. "Very well, I'll join." She hoped she hadn't just made a mistake.

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He grinned and stood up.

"Thank you. We will get back to you about our first meeting. Now I am sorry, but I must make a quick departure. I left an experiment concerning the the impact of prolonged exposure of the Dor on invested glitter bombs. Last time they exploded all over the base."

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Nakome stamped the figurine with a stamp to not only mend cracks and splinters, it also set new lines, carving around the legs and forming lone knight radiance, summoning their shard blades. She could since the young craftsman starring at her. "Be sure to keep the stamp intact." She said and walked on to find the lower floors. 

When Nakome made it to floor one, she snatched a walking staff and headed for the front doors. She stopped at the door, and turned to the receptionist. "Debbie?" She spoke calmly and bluntly, "perhaps you should try getting out of bed an hour sooner, and maybe you won't be late on arriving."

 She saw Debbie's eyes open wide, then turned and headed out.

Edited by Chasmfiend#1
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A messanger ran up to Valath, letting her know about a meeting for the traders union occurring in Newcago.

@Steel Inquisitive

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After gathering her things, Valath left the store on her way to a "important" meeting. As if anything would actually come of this.

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