When Worlds Fall

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This is a Title.

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11 Re: This is a Title. on Wed Oct 26, 2016 4:25 pm

Taking the offered mask, I nod softly before humming a soft 'mm-hmm'. I don't love the prospect of being in debt, but being mute leaves me even further fucked than I was. A few days without the mask would give me time to rest, sort out my finances, and figure out where I stand for the next month or so. If I won't owe him what meager amount I've saved up, then maybe I can finally get some proper ingredients for my wares, or even a decent coat for the rainy weather.

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12 Re: This is a Title. on Wed Oct 26, 2016 4:27 pm

"Do you have a way for me to contact you if I have questions?" I ask as I grab a bin to put the mask in. "I know the wires won't work well, but if you have an address, I can send one of the little ones to send a message."

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13 Re: This is a Title. on Wed Oct 26, 2016 4:36 pm

I watch with a pained expression as he tucks my mask away, looking at him as I reach for the keyboard on the counter still. I notice the small puddle underneath it, frowning at the mess as he reaches up to offer me his hand. 

8-5 E D-O-W-N-I-N-G. He nods his understanding as he takes the keyboard to inspect, and I step back from the counter hesitantly. Pulling my gloves on, I right the mask to put on as I turn for the door, glancing back towards him as I swallow thickly. 

"-Ankoo." I wince at the harshness of it, the wet and ill-defined speech. Holding the mask to my face, I step out of the door and into the rain.

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14 Re: This is a Title. on Wed Oct 26, 2016 5:24 pm

***

Two days pass, and the woman (whose name I completely neglected to collect) has left me to my work. Her mask, with all it's cheap and decaying leather and tarnished bronze, has been completely dismantled on my desk. I've done nothing that remotely resembles fixing it aside from drying the moisture that had collected inside of it. Even with the right motivation and skill, the circuit board for her keyboard is fried, and fixing the loose wiring would only be a bandaid fix before the entire unit failed her permanently.

I could replace the circuit board, true, but the artisan in me can't abide a young woman walking the streets in a mask that belongs in the history books alongside the war and ugliness that takes place on the earth below us. It's unseemly, and if Skycrest stands for anything, it's beauty and innovation - not gas masks turned gramophone.

Needless to say, it's with great pleasure that I drop the pieces of bronze into the melting pot in the back of the shop. I already have a broad idea of what I intend to do for the woman, the bare bones rough draft already fitted to an aged mannequin beside my desk, notes written in raised ink in a gibberish language only I can piece together beside it. The metal from her old mask is useless as far as functionality goes, but I'm sure I can get a few vanity pieces out of it to adorn the finished works.

It's a long and arduous task to shape the metal, sweat dripping off of my brow as I work. I barely notice the hair on the back of my hands singing off before I've moved on to the delicate task of assembling the fine clockwork and attaching it, fully functional, to the metallic lining of a collar while the vanity pieces cool. The gears and springs for this task are so small and thin, they're almost like fabric in the way that they flex and move together against the lining.

I can't see it, but I know that the tiny crystals I use to shape the vox unit glimmer in the light, each facet catching it and bending it into colors I can only begin to imagine. Far from done, I sit back and smile slightly at what I've accomplished so far. Even without my sight, I can appreciate the beauty of it, the pang of loss doing little to dampen my spirits as I wonder what it must look like. Most of what I make favors golds and bronzes with bright highlights of color from items that used to please my mother when I was growing up. It's a template I'm quick to fall back on for general purposes, but this isn't a general item that'll go up in the store.

Unable to proceed without more information, I get up from my workbench and grab my jacket off of the hook by the door. I know exactly where the woman's home can be found, and it's a small task to walk the few blocks in that direction, sight cane in hand to guide my way. When I knock on her door, it takes her a moment to answer - finding her mask, I conclude - before the door opens and I smile broadly.

"Hi," I say cheerfully. "What's your favorite color?"

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15 Re: This is a Title. on Wed Oct 26, 2016 11:17 pm

I'm still confused as he looks vacantly past me expecting an answer, clearing my throat uncomfortably as I step back and reach over to tug his sleeve so he knows to come in. I glance around the small apartment, grateful the man can't see it's cramped walls and cluttered surfaces, as I go to sit back on the bed. I haven't the slightest clue how I'm going to answer him, so instead I remove my mask and watch him.

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