Stitch does a Sketch
Fifty-second day of Spring, fortieth Turn of the Tenth Pass.
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The first really noticeable things in this room are the four oversized wooden worktables. Each of these is lined with wooden stools for the artists to work at. A large set of cabinets and counters line the four wall everywhere except at the door. These are strewn with paints, pencils, paper and all sorts of other things. Small stands site about the room with works in progressed and finished works alike, giving the room a very welcoming feel.
Ylisa is standing by one of the large work tables. There's a blue firelizard with her; in fact, he's perched on the edge of the table. Both of them seem to be looking at a small portrait - just a miniature - that's lying on the table. The room is unusually empty for this time of day.
Stitch shuffles into the room, his satchel over his shoulder stuffed with books. He's been in and out of the hall for a while, one of his journeys taking especially long this time. "Ah, Journeyman Ylisa, such a fine day, isn't it?" but his usually jovial tone is a bit flat.
Ylisa looks up from her study of the painting and smiles at the apprentice. "Hello, Stitch. It is indeed, nice and bright. Not that I've seen much of it today! You don't sound so bright though - is something the matter?"
Stitch shakes his head and fakes a yawn. "Nay, I'm just fine. What are you working on? I didn't know ye were an artistic type."
Ylisa laughs. "I'm not. That's why I'm glad to see /you/. In fact, I was meaning to track you down. I gather you need to do some work on your art, and I need some sketches done. Take a look at this." She indicates the portrait, then moves it sideways along the table so that it's not right in front of her.
Portrait of Lady Alebra
This miniature portrait is oval in shape and set in a frame of dark wood. It shows the image of a young lady of obviously good breeding, the product of an aristocratic line. Whilst her stature cannot be seen from a head and shoulders view, she is certainly not thin, and if anything, a little overweight. Dark hair is dressed in an elaborate coiffure, with ringlets falling to her shoulders. Dark brown eyes shine beneath neatly plucked brows, and seem to hold a glitter of intelligence. The nose is small and straight. Softly rounded cheeks show an attractive blush as they curve towards an unobtrusive chin. The mouth is neatly bow-shaped, lips rendered in a deep coral. She wears a dress of some lustrous fabric in a rich deep red, trimmed with ruffles of cream-coloured lace at the neck.
Stitch lifts a brow. "Interesting. What do ye want done? Looks like it's already a done portrait t'me..."
Ylisa glances round the room. Nobody's there except the two of them. "Well. This is Lady Alebra of Nabol. She's missing - you've probably heard. Oh, you've been away, haven't you? Did you hear about this? She's Lord Bramero's daughter, and he wants her back."
Stitch blinks. "Nabol? By the egg I just came from not too far from there. When did this happen? So ye want the lass tracked down and brought home? What are they sayin' happened? Kidnapping? While I don't use popular gossip as a means of finding information, sometimes it can give clues."
Ylisa nods. "We had a letter a few sevendays ago, and then another one a few days back saying that she might be in Ista. She was reportedly seen at Tillek, in the docks, near an Istan ship. So I'm not asking you to go off looking for her, but if you could keep your eyes open?" She pauses with a questioning tilt of the head before going on. "There are a couple of things I would like you to do, though. We need some copies of this to send to the harpers at Gar and the other holds. Sketches, with a bit of colour, will be fine. I'd like you to do, say, three. Think you can do that? We need them fairly soon. That's one thing."
Stitch hmms. "Yes, I can do that. It will take me a couple of days, but I can have it done for ye. Where would ye like me t'begin lookin for the lass? She would certainly not be difficult to spot. Do ye think any foul play is involved?"
Ylisa walks towards the shelves and starts to gather drawing implements and a few sheets of paper. "Thanks. We don't really know whether she's run away, been abducted, or what, but from the rumours that have been reported, it's possible that she's eloped. There are rumours of an unsuitable man on the scene - no description, unfortunately. If that's so, she may not want to be found, which brings me to the second thing I'd like you to do." She deposits the drawing materials in front of Stitch.
Stitch hmms. "If she's eloped, what's the big deal?" he asks, looking over the woman's features in the painting. "What sort of unsuitable man?"
Ylisa shrugs. "Someone her father doesn't want in the bloodline, presumably. It's a rumour - we don't have that from Lord Bramero. It could be way off beam." She taps the frame of the portrait. "If I wanted to go to ground, I wouldn't still be looking like that. You know all about changing your appearance. What do you think she'd do? Dress differently, cut her hair? Can you see if you can do a rough sketch or two, to show me how she might look now?"
Stitch rubs his chin and nods. "Perhaps. Has anyone seen this unsuitable man around the area since? Surely if they know he is unsuitable someone has seen him."
Ylisa points to the paper and pens. "Try." She bites her lower lip, then nods. "We had it from Fort that someone's working on it at the Nabol end - I don't know who. But - this is confidential, right? Lord Bramero's not been too forthcoming about that aspect. Maybe he's wanting it kept quiet that his daughter was associating with a holdless type."
Stitch hhmms "Well, perhaps getting into Lord Bramero's personal staff would be the best way to get information. I'm sure he could use another drudge." he beings sketching, looking at the portrait for details.
Ylisa nods thoughtfully. "That sounds sensible. For all I know, Master Oriana could have sent someone to do just that. Anyway, unless you hear otherwise from her, we don't need you to do anything about this right now, except keep your eyes open - and we're all asked to do that." She pauses for a few moments, watching the developing sketch. "Which reminds me of something else."
Stitch shrugs as he continues to sketch. "Ah. Well, suit yerself then."
Ylisa twitches an eyebrow. "Did you know that there's been a thief around? I haven't heard if anyone in the men's dormitory lost anything, but several of the girls lost trinkets of one sort or another, and they took a mirror from Master Jueann's bedroom. If you spot anyone suspicious in the hall, will you tell someone?"
Stitch nods. "Indeed I will, Journeyman." he says, sighing. "I go away for a sevenday and the whole planet goes crazy."
Ylisa chuckles at the world-weary sigh. "We've had worse sevendays. How's that drawing coming along?"
Stitch taps his pencil on his chin and turns it to face her. "Here's one version at least."
"Let's have a look? What have you done here?" Ylisa peers at the sketch, her forehead creasing into a frown of concentration.
Stitch points at it. "Well I shortened her hair and left out the makeup. This is what she might look like with some minor changes."
Ylisa pulls the sketch towards her and studies it. "Yes... that does look different, even without being terribly short. It makes her face seem a different shape, somehow." She nods thoughtfully. "Thanks. I'd like to keep this for now, and I'll leave you the portrait to do the other sketches."
The dragons at High Reaches Weyr are thrumming away, and a crowd is starting to head for the galleries to get a seat and place bets on who High Reaches newest weyrlings will be! To come watch, @go high, n, sands, and then head to the galleries.
Stitch nods. "Of course. Whatever ye want, Journeyman, my duty is to serve afterall." he runs a hand through his mop of curls. "I'll bring them up to ye when I'm through."
Ylisa smiles. "Thanks. You're not doing badly on the sketching - I expect it's a useful skill in your particular line of work." She tucks the sketch into her ever-present well-packed shoulder bag.
Logfile from Ylisa