• Graded • Patience Is A Virtue

Hera navigates a simple job with a simple man.

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• Graded • Patience Is A Virtue

Postby Syhera Ki'hadi » Thu May 26, 2016 4:14 pm

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    53rd of Ashan, 716 Arc

    The boat rocked uneasily beneath the two figures, the red headed one running quite thin on patience. She sighed quietly, staring at the deep set and confused frown her coworker seemed to be wearing. The man tugged at his wispy beard, "I just dunno, Miss."

    Hera wanted to scream, "What." The word came out sharper than she intended. She took a minute and softened her question, 'What is bothering you, Henry?" The two had been leaning over a map for some time now, and more than once the Biqaj had explained the rules of what she was doing and why. For some reason, it just didn't stick with the simple man. Not often did she find herself thinking herself better than men who worked the sea, but there seemed to be quite a difference in intellect. It was blaringly obvious. How he kept his ship afloat was far beyond her interests. As soon as she finished this job and made it back to land, the better. The cabin smelled awful, and the waters were uneasy. Syhera's own circumstances could relate.

    The captain of the boat continued to pull at his facial hair, "How'r the stars... How'r they gonna tell you where to go? Sounds like hocus pocus to me. Biqaj black magic." If he noticed Hera's outrage, he ignored it, pointing stupidly to the map, "Where'r we?"

    She took another deep breath, her words through gritted teeth, "We should be around here. I'll have a more exact location when the stars come out."

    "Whata if ther'a no stars?" Hatred flashed in her eyes, but she kept a straight expression, staring at the lantern that burned to her right. Henry glanced at her suspiciously, and she had enough. She wanted to scream a thousand things!

    How do you run this ship? Have you ever navigated? Do you know anything about seafaring? Are you simple?

    "There will be."

    Hera snatched the compass that was holding down a corner of the map, coordinates, and stomped a few feet away. This man was an idiot. For someone who worked with her race quite a bit, he was ignorant. Ignorance was worse that stupidity, and she ignored his calls to her, shoving open the doors and heading for the deck. Down the hallway, she squeezed past a burly woman with no teeth, and another with one too many. They were both human, and dressed in near rags. They carried sacks of potatoes and buckets of water. She assumed they were cooks of some kind? Their hands were grimy, but they nodded at her politely, and the Biqaj reached her destination, taking in the fresh, sea air. Land was gone, and she was in her element. Where she was supposed to be.

    She made her way towards the center of the ship, a few sailors turning their head to glance at her. Lowering herself to the deck, she resituated the map and compass, leaning her head back to look at the sky. Dusk would be falling shortly, and then night. She made a note on the map where they were going, and their coordinates from the night before. If she had been correct and they hadn't strayed from their course, they should be... Her fingers noted the grid lines on the parchment, lining her compass up with them. Rotating the bekel, the circular metal piece caught the last remains of sunlight. It took her a moment to get the notches lined up and began to twist her body. Her hands wavered slightly, keeping the compass as level as possible and when the arrows aligned, she looked up.

    "Now that I know where I'm going... where are we?"

    To say that Hera didn't trust the captain would be an understatement. She found him incompetent. Settling into her spot, she huffed out a sharp exhale and waited for night to fall.
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Syhera Ki'hadi
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Patience Is A Virtue

Postby Syhera Ki'hadi » Wed Aug 03, 2016 4:23 pm

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    53rd of Ashan, 716 Arc
    While she waited, Hera's patience began to return. Something about rolling waters and soft breezes were relaxing this far away from everything. It was easier to get lost in the lull of the ocean, and the Biqaj smiled, rising to her feet. Around her, other deck hands worked and she joined in on the workload, grabbing a spot next to dark headed sailor, and picking up the end of a rope he was pulling on. She assisted in heaving backwards, and holding it as he started to tie it off. When he was done, Hera was surprised to find her hands sore and sensitive. They burned slightly, inexperienced at hard labor. A day at sea working the ropes and shifting sails would no doubt end in blisters.

    She rubbed her hands together and went to retrieve the sextant, astrolabe, and a few charts she had left under deck. She moved quickly, not wanting to talk to the captain if she ran into him, and was lucky to find the metal contraptions waiting on the desk. When she returned, the sun had shifted lower into the sky and she quickly held the sextant and looked through the eyepiece. The concept was simple enough. At noon, when the sun was at its highest point, you line the horizon up and begin tracking the time, noting on the charts the latitude and comparing standards. Every hour was equivalent to 15 degrees, so if three hours passed, it would be the equivalent of 45 degrees.

    Using this knowledge, the Biqaj made a few minor calculations, rotating the arm of the sextant and being careful to keep a steady hand. When she was done, she set it down and picked up her astrolabe, motioning one of the deck hands over to help her.

    "I need you to pay attention," Hera instructed, the boy she had picked staring at her with a confused expression. The stars were beginning to twinkle, and she held it up, "Can your read this?" She pointed to metal ring on the astrolabe, or the aliade. He squinted, turning his head and then nodded.

    "I think so, miss." His voice didn't sound too sure, and Syhera watched him for a moment before making her decision.

    She pointed to where she had set her supplies, the boat rocking gently beneath them, "Good, grab that chart and flip it open. I want you to write the calculation when I tell you too." With precision, Hera did her best to line up the heavy globe to one of the stars and let it hang, the movement of the ship making the task difficult - exactly why she sought the assistance of another instead of just herself. Using astrolabe on board was a tricky task and often required two people unless one was an extremely skilled mariner. Hera was sadly not. She shifted her position, re-aligning the stars with her globe and tweaking the aliade to her own guesses, and asked him to compare it to what he saw.

    Together the two rattled off numbers, Hera watching him a bit nervously as his chicken scratch dirtied her clean page. They made a few measurements, before the redhead asked to switch places with him. "Are you sure?" he asked, suddenly caught off guard when Hera began handing the metal device to him. It was heavy, and she could see him surprised by the weight.

    "Yes, I need to make sure these are right. Here," Hera grabbed his arm and tried to look over his shoulder, "You see that star?" Her red fingernail pointed in the direction of the one she pointed at, and she leaned close, their faces nearly touching, "Hold this beneath it. Line it up. There," His body was stiff and smelled of sea salt, but he was a quick learner. She enjoyed the proximity, "Good. Let me look."

    Hera circled around to eye the aliade, straightening the metal ring and quickly jotted down her own notes. She was pleased to find his calculations were only slightly off, perhaps one or two notches, but their degrees had been calculated the same. A relieved sigh escaped her lips as a brief bit of knowledge her mother once told her embedded itself into her mind. One degree miscalculation could result in an offset of 60 nautical miles, "You did wonderful."

    That kind of error wasn't something easily overlooked, and depending on the terrain you were sailing it, could result in some serious trouble. And this stupid captain wanted to say using the stars was Biqaj magic. Ha! Simple tools to be used as means to an end. They were guides. How could you ignore them? Maps and compasses were necessary, but a real navigator utilized every bit of their resources available, sometimes a matter of life and death. She would need to make sure the next job she underwent, she wasn't working for an absolute idiot.

    The ship hand laughed lightly at her compliment, and he scratched the back of his head. A tattoo of a merwoman peaked out from beneath his shirt, proudly displayed on his strong bicep and she wondered if he had anymore. She took the astrolabe from him and smiled. She briefly wondered if she would have pursued him seasons ago. He was shorter than some of the other men she had been with, but he was strong and she liked his smile. The thought vanished as quickly as it came and when she looked up, fat clouds began to drift across the star laden sky.

    Gathering her things, Hera thanked the man again and her swirling eyes searched for constellations. She took a deep breath and went to relay to the captain her news, longing for the security of home.
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Syhera Ki'hadi
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Patience Is A Virtue

Postby Faith » Tue Sep 13, 2016 12:19 pm

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Peer Reviewed: Rewards!

Syhera

Points!:
Story: 5/5
Collaboration: 0/ 5 (solo thread)
Structure: 5/5

Knowledge:
Navigation: Using stars and maps in conjunction
Navigation: Using a compass to determine position
Navigation: Using a sextant
Navigation: Using an astrolabe
Navigation: Always double check your calculations
Endurance: Building callouses on your hand
Business Management: Dealing with difficult customers
Business Management: Delegation is key to success
Mathematics: Basic Mental Arithmatic

Loot: NA - although you go get paid!
Fame: NA
Overview:
General comments. Fun and well written thread where Syhera obviously really wanted to throttle the captain and throw him overboard. The story was short and sweet, but functional as a story. I particularly enjoyed how much more relaxed 'Hera was once she got in sight of the sea! Her internal dialogue was great and the story was clear and sequential.
Story All good! How the captain survived to become a captain I don't know and I think Hera almost deserves fame points for not killing him!
Structure All good, easy to read, cohesive and well laid out.

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