Nick leads his channel into the warehouse that is currently housing a busy trade fair.
Katsura doesn't need to be led, but lets Nick be a little overprotective when he wants to. After all, she's often overprotective of him.
Nick is ~~ enjoying ~~ the bustle. He much prefers this sort of thing to sitting through boring meetings.
Nick: We should be able to find someone who can make those parts for Sat'htine here.
Katsura thinks he looks great in his dress livery. The two of them must make a striking pair, especially to anybody who can zlin.
Nick is enough his father's son, and/or grandfather's grandson, to look handsome in just about anything.
Katsura: Yes. Although -- is the Genlan term "glad handing"? -- is probably more important.
Nick gives a theatrical groan that manages not to affect his nager.
Katsura: You wow the women and the Simes, and I'll take on the male Gens. How's that?
Katsura isn't very serious, of course.
Nick: Good enough. Although, one of these days, I'd like to just go out somewhere without having six errands as an excuse.
Katsura: Hey, don't we get some walks in the park? Well, the Sime Center garden, at least.
Nick: True. But even in the park, we ended up on a daring nautical rescue.
Nick winks, remembering a small child and a toy sailboat.
Katsura: You were the daring nautical rescuer, and you volunteered. I merely observed.
Nick: True. It's that idealism that comes with a House ring, I suppose. Now, where do they have the stalls for the folks who work metals?
Katsura looks around.
Katsura: There's a map of the exhibits on the wall over there.
Nick: Ah, good.
Nick steers in the indicated direction, then scans the listings.
Nick: That one looks promising.
Nick indicates the occupants of Booth 26, Templeton Tool and Die.
Katsura twists around mapping the map to the territory.
Katsura: Um, that would be over... there.
Nick: So it is.
Nick offers his arm ~~ gallantly ~~.
Katsura: Templeton... I don't suppose this would be Roger's family's business?
Ashyel is watching the two rich-looking people in fancy clothing from a vantage point at a nearby booth. He's pretending to be really interested in some silly kid's toy on display at a craftsman's table.
Nick: He did say he had relatives out-Territory. Perhaps it is.
Track Templeton is the local representative of that subsidiary of a well-known out-Territory conglomerate, or at least is so for the purposes of appearing at this fair. He looks up to spot the Sime-Gen pair in the vivid clothing approaching.
Track speaks in Simelan with a wretched Genlan accent:
Track: Gratings and good day to you, Tuiben. Why can I help you today?
Ashyel cranes his neck a little, trying to figure out where they would be most likely to keep their money in all that cumbersome clothing, and wishes he could zlin.
Katsura figures her English is better than his Simelan.
Nick speaks both languages fluently, of course.
Katsura: [English] Hello, sir.
Ashyel reminds himself that, like his big brother told him, kids have an advantage over either Simes or Gens in that they can't be zlinned as easily.
Track: [English] Uh, hello, sir, ma'am. How can I help you today?
Katsura waits for Nick to take over in describing what parts the Householding needs for the agricultural equipment, since he got the explanation from the farm crew.
Nick gives his most charming smile.
Nick: We have a few metal parts that have to be fabricated for our farm equipment. You do such custom work, I hope?
Track: Ah. Excellent. No job too large or too small. You have engineering drawings of the parts?
Nick reaches into the battered satchel that even Katsura and his new Householding status haven't been able to pry off his shoulder.
Ashyel leans forward intently as he sees the Gen reaching into a dirty-looking old bag.
Nick spreads out the blueprints, and begins explaining the diagrams.
Ashyel starts walking closer, keeping one eye on Nick to make sure he isn't about to go anywhere.
Track raises his hands and waves them, meaning "Stop!"
Track: I'm sorry if I gave you the wrong impression, sir. I'm not an engineer myself. Those are all back home. I'm just the account representative.
Ashyel chooses what he thinks is an opportune time to butt into the conversation as he approaches.
Ashyel: Hey, mister, do you have any cool machines I can look at? I really like machines.
Katsura zlins children a great deal more easily than renSimes do, and is alerted by the mismatch between what the child says and how he zlins.
Track: No, son. No machines here. Check out some other booths.
Track doesn't say: ... at the other end of the fair.
Ashyel: Do you have any farm machines? Stuff like that? Tractors?
Track: Just me and my papers here. Nothing to see: run along.
Ashyel comes over to the table and leans in.
Track actually has some posters and flyers on his table as well, but nothing that would interest a child.
Ashyel: Is that a picture of a machine? What does it do?
Track: ~~ mildly annoyed ~~ It's a machine to make parts for other machines.
Ashyel surreptitiously glances up at Nick's satchel with a combination of ~~ nervousness, excitement and greed ~~.
Katsura can zlin the kid working himself up to do something that scares him -- she can zlin the effort at bravado quite clearly.
Nick notes the incongruous interest, and the glance, and keeps a discreet watch.
Ashyel: Oh. Well, what kind of machines do you make parts for?
Track: Any kind.
Nick waits to see what the child will do.
Ashyel catches the guy staring at him, and flounders around trying to think of some way to distract him.
Ashyel: Well, um... do you know where the booths with the machines are?
Track realizes that he is still talking English to a child who probably doesn't understand it.
Track: [Simelan] You try lookening at map, eh what?
Ashyel is assuming his emotions to be totally zlin-proof, so is only trying to keep his nervousness out of his body language.
Nick starts tying the packet of blueprints together.
Nick: Your engineers should be able to make sense of these.
Nick is no longer obviously looking at the boy.
Ashyel sees that Nick's arms are both occupied in tying up the blueprints.
Ashyel: You don't speak Simelan, huh? Sorry, I'll ask someone else. [to the vendor]
Katsura zlins the kid about to act.
Ashyel kicks a wad of paper under the table, and turns to go, trying to look casual. He walks behind Nick, shrugging his shoulders, and makes a sudden grab for the satchel.
Nick's hand moves in unison, grabbing the offending hand.
Ashyel: Hey! Hey! Let go!
Nick: Now, now. There's nothing there that you can use, and quite a bit that could be dangerous.
Ashyel struggles around, but is too scrawny and underfed to have much chance of fighting off either an adult Gen or Sime.
Nick: You might as well calm down, because you're not going anywhere just yet.
Ashyel: You can't arrest me! I'm just a kid!
Nick ~~ laughs ~~.
Nick: Tell me another one. Some of the more accomplished criminals I've known have been "just kids". Admittedly, you're not as competent as they were...
Track is still trying to recover from his shock.
Ashyel: ~~ insulted ~~ It wasn't like I was gonna hurt anyone!
Track: Hey, what's going on here?
Track can't follow the rapid-fire Simelan dialogue.
Katsura is watching Nick handling the matter with ~~ interest ~~.
Katsura: The child tried to steal from the bag.
Ashyel: I wasn't going to take that much! ~~ lie ~~
Nick: You would have hurt yourself, or someone else, if you'd tried to market the drugs in this satchel.
Ashyel: I don't sell drugs! My brother says I'm not old enough for that yet!
Katsura winces at the implications.
Ashyel wonders if he really should have said that...
Nick: I don't know if you have the talent to be a good criminal.
Track: Good heavens! Well, yell for the police, or whatever you do here. I can't have him frightening off my customers.
Track remembers where and what he is.
Ashyel: Hey, man, you think I like to steal?
Ashyel tries to put on a tough-guy demeanor.
Track: But speaking of that, I trust these aren't your only copies? I'll have to send them back across the border before I can give you a proper estimate on the job.
Track habitually handles Scenes by ignoring them.
Ashyel tries to figure out if the vendor will provide a good enough distraction to let him make a run for it.
Nick: You may keep these copies, and have your technicians send an estimate to Sat'htine -- the address is there.
Nick points with his free hand, the other being occupied holding Ashyel.
Ashyel pulls away, trying to see if he can break loose from Nick's grasp.
Nick is stronger than most Donors, thanks to his penchant for manual labor.
Nick: Kid, wait your turn. We have business to take care of before we can deal with you.
Track: And can I interest you in our installation service? We can send our technicians to your, er, facility and ensure a proper fit with your existing assembly.
Nick: You have technicians working this side of the border, in addition to sales staff?
Track: No, but we can send one out here, no problem. We also offer a free six-month warranty or an extended five-year warranty on the new parts.
Ashyel is now more ~~ embarrassed ~~ than scared. He yells some choice words of impolite street vocabulary.
Nick reaches out with his free hand and gives the boy a cuff on the ear.
Nick: There's a lady present. Watch your language.
Katsura is amused by this expression of out-T sentiment.
Track: As I was saying, sir ...
Ashyel has probably never been around a lady in his life, as opposed to merely persons of the female gender.
Nick: Once we know if your technicians can make the parts at all, we can work out the specifics.
Track: Very well. ~~ unsatisfied, but what can he do with the customer preoccupied trying to restrain a pickpocket? ~~
Track puts the plans into his briefcase and Hopes They All Go Away.
Nick: We'll be in touch.
Ashyel attempts the desperation method of kicking Nick's shins in hopes that will make him let go.
Nick manages to keep most of it from his nager, but Kat is sensitive even for a Farris channel.
Katsura: What shall we do with this young thief, Sosu?
Nick wraps his free arm around the culprit and lifts, putting the flailing feet behind him where they can't do any more damage.
Nick: We can discuss it once we're where it's quieter.
Nick starts walking, kid under arm and satchel over shoulder.
Katsura accompanies him, wondering what he'll do next. She knows he has a fair bit of experience with members of the criminal underclass.
Ashyel, having temporarily exhausted his other options, goes for more of the street language, hoping vainly that maybe he can offend this guy into letting go.
Nick looks down.
Nick: Kid, you really ought to save that sort of talk until you learn to do it properly.
Track watches the bunch of them retreat into the middle distance and takes out a pen and a piece of paper to make a note of the transaction.
Ashyel thinks of a rude gesture he could make if his hands were free, but settles for making a face instead.
Nick: Right now, if you tried that sort of talk on a serious criminal, you'd get beaten to a pulp. Trust me on that one.
Ashyel actually doesn't doubt that, but had been trusting his older brother to help him scout out easy marks for a criminal-in-training.