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Prelude: Always Be Ready To Lend a Helping Shove

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Always Be Ready To Lend a Helping Shove - Varlyrian Proverb

A Prelude for Challenge II of Book III

 

The newly established trade agreements between Varlyrio and the other Historican lands had been a mixed blessing for Varlyrians.  The Varlyrian economy had been a masterpiece of supply driving demand and monopolization that largely affected the wealthy and affluent of Varlyrio.  With the new influx of resources, many lowly merchants and tradesfolk had found their way of life turned upside down.   The common folk had gone from dismal expectation to volatile ups and downs, without knowing how things would change next, or in some cases where their next meal would be coming from.  For some, the news  of High Queen Ylspeth's decree instilled a cautious optimism, while in others - more trepidation.  And some viewed the news with thoughts of opportunity and profit.  As with most twists of fate in Varlyrio, a precious few would stand to make great gains at the cost of the many.

Illaryian - Capital City of Varlyrio

Part 1 - Varlyrian Business as Usual

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A Varlyrian guardsman converses with a merchant; the merchant seems somewhat tense.

Lorgiono: All I can tell you is that the market for exotic creatures and performers has exploded since the word got out of these "Exhibitions" as everyone is calling them now.  I tried to buy up the contracts on Elephants, dancing bears, unicorns...

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Agnacian: I swear Lorgiono, sometimes I don't know how you even made your first Copper!  You don't think those would be the first to be secured?  I told you to book the Golden Sail pleasure barges!  With the extravagant fireworks the Artori Family keeps putting on at each Tradewinds Festival, they're bound to want to paint their names across the skies during these exhibitions, and we could rake it in with spectators in the Bay.

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Lorigiono: I thought about what you suggested, but do you know what they charge to rent those out for just an evening?  I didn't have that kind of money at a moment's notice....

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Agnacian interrupts: You FOOL!  It wasn't a suggestion!  All you had to do was scrounge up enough money to butter up their purveyor and secure the contracts.  We could have gotten the loans from your Uncle, or even one of the money lenders if we'd needed to.  I swear, first you squander our earnings on the barley contracts, even after you heard Amancio was securing all the grain barges he could, now this!  If you weren't Amancio's nephew, I would slit your throat and be done with it - maybe...

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Lorgiono: NO, I'm still of value, I swear!  I will secure those barge contracts, I swear!  I won't fail you!

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As Lorgiono hurries away, Agnacian shouts: This is your last chance!  Don't make me regret this!

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Maybe the fool will actually pull it off, then Amancio will be stuck and will pay a fortune on those garish cogs. If not, I could always fulfill the contract on Lorgiono with the Rabianacis....

PART II - All the Fish in the Sea

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Fisherman: I tell you Ramse, all these foreign arrangements are just sending money out of Varlyrio, out of the pockets of hardworking people like us!

Ramse: With the new influx of all these foreign contracts, it's anyone's guess as to where the profit will be.  It's like throwing darts in a squall at night - no one knows what is even worth pursuing right now.  I had been saving up for one of the sweet red wine contracts, but now they are all being sent to Kaliphlin instead - Dirty sand peasants!

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Fisherman: You're telling me!  It used to be that the big fish merchants would choke the fish supply to keep the price high, and I was making a nice healthy living selling off my boat.

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Ramse: I feel for you, but at least you've still got a way to make some money.  The racing stallions used to be my go-to, but with the combination of foreign horses being added and with the betting houses laying out all these sucker odds now, I have to spread my money too thin to get any returns. 

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Fisherman: Some of these fish have been rotting here for a week now!  The wharves are flooded with Avalonian fisherman who stink worse than the canals in a spring flood.  How can I compete!  I might as well fill my boat with stones and be done with it!

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I can think of something else that stinks around here, Ramse thinks to himself.

Ramse: Well, I have to get going, but I will stop by next week.  Good luck friend.

 

Part III - Learning the Ropes

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Two fellows chat amiably

Rory: That's 5 silver you owe me now.

Orvier: You never cease to amaze me.  I should have known better than to wager against you.

Rory: Well, you are still learning, that is the goal of any apprentice.

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Orvier: I know, and I want to thank you for all you've taught me so far.  These sessions have been extremely valuable.

Rory: You are too kind.

Orvier: No, you are held in high regard by every one that I asked.  I clearly chose the correct profession.

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Rory: You are too kind, but you are right on both points.  Varlyrio will always have need of our service, and I feel I am indebted for the patronage I have received so far.  At least that has not changed with these new winds that have been blowing in from the East.  Now, why don't you run along, and I will clean up here.

Orvier:  Same time tomorrow:

Rory: Same time.  Why don't we meet at the great fountain, the sunrise is a beautiful sight from over the bay.

Orvier: The great fountain it is.  So long!

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Rory whistles cheerily as he drags the corpse of a young noble back into the alley....

Edited by Henjin_Quilones

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Great to see more of Varlyria and it’s different peoples. All of the cut throat deals make it seem a breathing, living world. Looking forward to seeing whether Varylians enjoy the end of their isolation or not. I like the cobbled streets and the decorations on the buildings especially the white building with thin pillars and some exposed brickwork.

I am getting quite excited for this challenge!

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Nice job here, RA! I really like the colorful houses (they remind me of my homeland, softspot.. :laugh:). Bets thing is how you got those scenes going and how they depict life in Illaryian. I'd be curious to see a full-build shot. Nice to see the Book advancing, too. Oh, and I love the fig heads you chose :rofl:

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This is awesome. The storytelling is great and you know just where to jump in and jump out. Definitely expands the flavor of Varlyrio while also shaping some dimension for it. Makes me think I should have tried a storyline about capitalism instead of mother-daughter issues and ancient treasures! Oh well, maybe in the future.

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Great insights into the commerce and intrigues of Varlyrio :classic:

The storytelling style with the close-ups of the figures and all-Lego surroundings works very well here.

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While the best part of this is the expansion of the feel of Varlyrio, expertly imparted through the conversations, there are certainly some great build usages, as well. The skeleton legs holding up the rails along the canal are a nice touch, and the darkened alleyway is perfect to accompany the story. I am not a huge fan of the loose 1x1 round water, but that is a stylistic preference. To me it just looks too busy and cluttered to have all those pieces just lying there. The cobblestone is nice, too; in particular, the few studs showing, without a 2x2 or 1x1 round tile on them, actually work quite well as a slightly smaller round stone, since you left them exposed so strategically, rather than looking incomplete. Thanks for showing us more of Varlyrio, especially from the perspective of the commoners!

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Nice work!  I like all the details that make the MOC seems very Varlaryian: the small columns, inclusions of gold decoration, the nice railings around the stone harbor... well done!  I appreciate the work and time that goes into taking closeups for conversations as well; it is a lot of work but sometimes helps clarify who's speaking, and adds something of a movie-like or comic-book feel to the story, keeping the reader moving along.  Great job!

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Very nice variety of building designs while maintaining the Varlyrian style :thumbup:

I like how you used the printed 2x2 heroica tile as a sign, and it was a good choice to include a ladder on the wharf wall :classic:

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