[P] In a golden age.
for Kalypso
Battalion remembered her conversation with Kalypso Savoy when she had been visiting and had an aim to find the older female to speak with her further. Their last discussion had been obviously held back by the fact that Tali was a visitor. There were certain things you could discuss with a packmate that you wouldn't tell an outsider. It was the way that pack secrets were kept and the group maintained its safety. Especially when it came to things like mercantile work, where letting someone know too much could put you at a disadvantage.

Tali had heard that the Trade Company was housed in Lanya. Luckily, as a wolf, once she was in Lanya it was easy enough to track a scent to where Kalypso was. The other female hadn't tried to hide where she was going and it smelled quite a bit like the Councilor. Obviously, this was a place that she went quite frequently. It would've been harder to miss that the Savoy wolf was there a lot. Leon swayed her ears back and forth once in anxiety. Hopefully, the impression she had left on the Councilor had been good. It had seemed like a good conversation, but still she worried...

She lifted her hand to the door and knocked, uncertain if it was a "just come in" kind of thing or a "wait til allowed to enter" thing at the Trading Company. Better safe than sorry. Getting off on the wrong foot by barging in would definitely not be how she wanted to start the conversation. Continuing to make a good impression on Kalypso was important to Bat; she hoped they'd have a solid working relationship, at least, for years to come.

When violet eyes get brighter
And heavy wings grow lighter
I'll taste the sky and feel alive again
Counting beads was not the most fun thing to do with her time but it was a necessary one to make sure the records were kept well organized. There seemed to be fewer hands eager to help with the Trading Company than before and it ate at her that there were not more lined up to join the traders in their goals of wealth and prestige. So be it, they could get wealthy on their own without any help from the Company's connection. See if she cared when they struggled.

She sniffed dismissively at the thought as she jotted down the number of sea glass beads and particularly fine bone ones on her lists. Most of them would end up at the Dye Studio rather than sent along for trading, but it was worth noting all the same. Some would disappear into her private atelier (aka her worktable at home) only to be used as accents for a piece of jewelry or tinkly home décor. She did sometimes snag the disgustingly pretty ones for herself, but that felt excusable as the person standing there counting the damn things in the first place.

A knock made her ear swivel back but she continued on checking the long coils of useful rope and twine hanging from hooks on the wall. It wasn't a storehouse, per se, though things seemed to wind up there now and again before traversing to more useful locations.

"Come in," she shouted over her shoulder as she tittered at rodent bite marks on the bottom bit of some thin cordage that had dangled to the ground.
The response was quick and definitely sounded like Kalypso. Battalion hadn't smelled anyone else in the building, but she didn't trust her senses as much in pack lands. There were a lot of canine smells overlapping all the time, so sometimes they muddied each other's trails. Especially in more heavily trafficked areas like this.

When she opened the door, she was impressed by all the magnitude of what the Councilor was doing. There was a lot gathered and it seemed fairly well maintained. The blue-eyed wolf wondered if Kalypso was managing it all herself. The Councilor seemed to be taking stock, which seemed a job below her echelon. Shouldn't there be Commoners managing that information? Her heart dropped at the thought. She could make general marks to help manage inventory, but she couldn't write well. It was one of her greatest flaws and something she greatly needed to remedy. Maybe she should've made a point to see Losse first and take him up on his offer to teach her to read and write. That wasn't going to be a quick thing, though. It was going to take months to learn to read and write properly. She hadn't wanted to wait months to make herself useful to Councilor Savoy. She'd just have to admit her fault and hope that wasn't the only area where Kaly needed help.

"I hope you don't mind me interrupting, Councilor Savoy. I'm here to offer my help. Before I joined, Lossë had told me that you were in charge of the trading guild. And, well, I think my skills could be an asset." should she jump right into "I can't read and write" or wait for Kalypso to ask what she could offer as far as skills? It seemed better not to volunteer the information. It wasn't exactly a secret, she just didn't think it was a good idea to jump in right away with what she couldn't do.

When violet eyes get brighter
And heavy wings grow lighter
I'll taste the sky and feel alive again
Kalypso took the damaged bit of cordage off the peg and set the loop on the nearby table. She grabbed a sharp knife from within reach and deftly cut the chewed up end just as the younger woman entered the Trade Guild headquarters. It was, perhaps, an ominous display but it was one that just happened to be timed supremely poorly and thoughtlessly.

"Ah, Miss Tali, I'd heard you'd decided to stick around with us," she said with a pleased smile as she returned the knife to its usual spot on the nearby shelf. She returned the coil back to its peg and straightened it a little so that it hung more evenly without dragging the end. Even as she looked at the coil with dissatisfaction, she was aware of Battalion's presence behind her.

"You're not interrupting, don't fret. I just like keeping track of the things I usually supply for trading and that tends to get away from me," she added with a sigh as she wrapped the loose ends of the cord over and over again around the coils to keep the ends as far from the ground as possible. Kaly was decidedly more satisfied when she faced the younger woman again. "Lossë was correct." Though Calan and the others had been just as useful, she was the nominal head of it for formalities sake.

"So, what skills are those? I think you mentioned something during our last conversation but I don't recall completely." Kalypso gestured to one of the mismatched chairs that stood beside the central table as she took a seat in the closest one.
Seeing a place like this that was designed for trade preparations made her heart rise in a way she hadn't felt for a long time. It was pure excitement. Not trepidation and excitement, just the feeling of being somewhere she could belong. Her fingers felt eager to help count, to help organize... she only wished she could read. It didn't give her trepidation to think about that, though, just a continued determination. It was something she was well aware she needed to remedy to live in this area and trade.

When she saw Kalypso cut the end of the cord, she didn't feel any sort of concern. The gesture was not a threat at her, it was a knife doing what a knife did under the deft hands of someone who knew how to use it. It didn't occur to her that perhaps she should take it as something else. She wondered who had told Councilor Savoy that she had joined; presumably Councilor Tanaka. Their mutual ranks in the Council surely meant that they met at least sometimes.

The long-earred Commoner waited while the Councilor worked on re-coiling the cord. She almost offered to help, but kept herself still instead. As of yet, she had not proven herself an adequate assistant. If the Councilor wanted help, she'd ask for it. Right? Or was it better to offer? Uncertainty warred within her, but it was short-lived because the Councilor Savoy had finished her task and was speaking with Bat about her skills.

"The group I came from was traveling traders. I mostly did hunting and the management of the results of hunts, but I also helped with trading when we stopped. I learned a lot from watching the other members trade, too, even when I wasn't the one doing the actual trades. And of course, I am happy to help with anything else that needs maintenance or minding. I cannot read or write at present, but I can do figures. And I will remedy the situation with my illiteracy." the wolf swallowed hard, knowing that it might be a deal breaker to say "ah, I can help so much... but uh, as long as you don't need me to actually write things down for future reference." Though as she looked around, there was plenty of manual labor to do as well that she could do. Perhaps even while she tried to work on learning her letters.

When violet eyes get brighter
And heavy wings grow lighter
I'll taste the sky and feel alive again
Kalypso hummed thoughtfully and nodded along as the woman explained her skills. It was true that most trading was learned b watching, though plenty of folks had a strange instinct for good deals and the value of objects or labors. Kaly had fallen somewhere between most of the time, even if she was more often part of the background now instead of an active busybody going out to peddle wares.

She did, however, raise her brow at the fact Battalion didn't know how to read. It seemed like such an easy ability to acquire, but she had been raised by a literate woman and family. Being unable to read would have been shocking and a huge red flag about her mental capacity. Or obstinate nature, either one. Still, an itinerate caravanner? It made plenty of sense that time hadn't been wasted teaching her how to read when it wasn't a skill she needed.

None of them needed it, really, but it made some aspects of life easier. Records, notes, messages, books. All of those things were repositories of information, both valuable and inconsequential. There was only so much that oral tradition could keep track of, after all.

"Well, you're not the only one here, I think, who can't. Or that came here and couldn't. You're no slouch; if you want to learn, there are plenty of people who would be more than happy to teach you." Kalypso helped teach her children their fundamentals, but she had not taken on a young unrelated student of any kind since Cidro before La Marea came. It was probably better someone more patient taught Tali.

"So, are you asking to join the Trading Company? Because I have no issue with that if your skills are as you say. We can always put you to the test with numbers and management when we organize another caravan." There was plenty of time left in the fair months to plan any number of trips, local and even as far as Portland. Well, maybe one trip to the Citadel before winter set in.
It was hard for others to understand, sometimes, that her life had been vastly different from theirs. Especially if she dug into her history and the weirdness of a place that scorned shifting. She had quickly learned when she was younger that there were very few canines who lived in the more civilized area that had met someone with that particular upbringing. Perhaps because most of the time, they kept to the packs that raised them and didn't learn the skills one would need to roam into the greater world. Sometimes she thought her mother had done her a favor by driving her out into the wilds. Otherwise she'd probably still be in Silver Falls living that same life.

It encouraged her that Kalypso seemed to recognize her hardworking nature. "Lossë offered and once I have the basics, I can practice more on my own." she said, to make it clear she had already been making plans to fix her illiteracy. It bothered her a lot. Even if there were others who didn't know, it was something she had always wanted to know and never been able to learn. That was going to change now because she would make sure it changed. There was a determination in her that she was finding far fiercer than she'd ever thought it could be.

The Guild thing was still... sort of confusing to her. There were a lot of aspects of the rank structure here that still felt strange to her. Mostly because the only other pack she had been part of was really just a natural hierarchy of dominance/submission/status. Sure, there was some specialization on what someone did, but there were far fewer routes one could take. Everyone hunted, everyone cared for cubs, everyone did everything that the pack needed. There weren't textiles to manage or gardens to tend or books to read, though. Just the mountain and its inhabitants (wolf and otherwise).

"Yes, I'd like to join the Trading Company. I think Solveig told me that I needed to be a higher rank before I could officially join one officially? But I'll do all I can to help in the meantime, even if I'm not officially a member." her blue gaze roamed over the room. There seemed a lot to do, especially if there weren't many members of the Trading Company. Was it going to just be her and Kalypso? Surely there were more to the Guild than that.

When violet eyes get brighter
And heavy wings grow lighter
I'll taste the sky and feel alive again
Kaly basically saying "FU I'm a Councilor, I do what I want" but Bat won't get the whole shebang until she's gotten to Privileged hahaha
Kalypso nodded at the younger woman's reply. "He would be good at teaching you. There are probably a few others here who would do a good job, too, but start with him since he offered. You'll figure it out in no time." If she wanted to learn, there was nothing limiting her other than her drive. Sure, it would be a little slower going than if she had started as a pup fresh to two feet, but it could be done.

She gave a deep laugh of amusement. "You're not wrong but no one seems to come to a Guild before then anyway." Her teeth flashed in her grin, mostly because of how entertaining the notion was to her. "You're not likely to stay as you are for long, so I have no issue telling you so that you can join the moment you rise up." Battalion had already demonstrated more get-go than half of her own offspring and they had been part of the Enda once they were old enough to leave their puppyhood behind them.

And who was she if not the Councilor of Lanya and a former Queen if she didn't put her foot down to be contrary just for her own whims?

"Besides, it's a technicality. We can pretend that you're not for the sake of things, but it's just for appearances. Am I not a Councilor? I can do as I please in this since it's my domain, anyway." She smirked as she fiddled with one of her necklaces before offering a hand to the younger woman. "Welcome to the Company, Battalion. I expect great things from you."
Battalion was actually really excited to learn to read from Losse. There was... something about him that interested her. Sparked her attention in a way no one had before. The logical part of her recognized it for what it was: the beginning stirring of attraction. The emotional side just went: tehe cute boy, he'll teach me to read and it's an excuse to spend time together more! Honestly, she hated that second side. Unfortunately it was as much a part of her as the first side, so she had to accept it.

It was true that she would not hold a guild position until she was officially a Privileged member, but that shouldn't take her long. Commoner seemed to be an entry into the pack to check that one was serious. It didn't sound like it took long for someone to leave that rank as long as they weren't a fool. And as long as they didn't leave themselves to go somewhere else. "That's true, I don't intend to stay Commoner for long at all." her ambitions were small, but even she didn't want to be bottom of the rankings. That would just be embarrassing and also mean she had failed to show any value to New Caledonia.

Her tail swayed and she shook Kalypso's hand firmly. That was the most important thing when one struck a deal, a firm handshake; if that was the custom of the area, anyway. "Thank you. I will do you proud." there was no hesitation about that; when it came to defending the pack, she was a bit leery of her skills. When it came to trade, the blue-eyed Commoner was experienced. She would need to get accustomed to trading differently (it wasn't the same to trade from pack to pack as it was to trade from a traveling group), but she would do it well. Of that she was sure.

"What can I help with now?" she asked.

When violet eyes get brighter
And heavy wings grow lighter
I'll taste the sky and feel alive again
We can wrap up with this post or your reply <3
Kalypso had to laugh in agreement. Though Battalion didn't have that bloodthirsty drive to rise to the top that was very obvious in a few individuals (herself included), she was still a young woman keen on doing her part to engrain herself in the home she had chosen. It was noble and admirable while also posing no threat to the status quo that existed at the top of the hierarchy. Though change was a good thing, there were still a few things that the Councilor could not tolerate.

"Good. I'm sure you will." There was little doubt that Battalion was the sort of person that meant what she said and would do all she could to meet those offered promises. The handshake, too, was firm and reassured the Councilor even more that allowing the woman a place with the Company was far from miscalculated. Of this, she was very sure.

She pulled her hand back and put both on her hips as she looked at the relatively tidied headquarters. The storage was likely more disheveled but she went there less frequently because of the disorganization that often greeted her there. She hummed thoughtfully as she glanced back at the younger woman.

"There's no point in asking you to check the logs if you can't read them yet, but if you have the time, let's go over what you've seen traded historically for some of the things here. That you've actually dealt with at least." She waved her over to a shelf of goods with a crooked grin and obvious expectation in her eyes.
The wolf was glad that she had fallen into good company with New Caledonia. Though she was sure there would come a time when she wouldn't feel happy with everyone she met in the pack. For now, everyone had been great; more than great, they had been welcoming. Something she had wanted her entire life and was finally finding here in her new pack. Luck was swinging her direction for now.

Kalypso seemed confident that she would do well, too, which was encouraging. Though she had never given a reason for the Guild leader to feel like she might be anything but useful. It still felt good to be wanted and expected to perform well at something. Though she was kind of expected to her job in the trade group. It hadn't been the same. There was no warmth at all there.

"Ah, yes, I'd be happy to tell you what I've given and taken in trade for what you have." she said with a wave of her tail, eager to join Kalypso in their task. This was something about which she had actual expertise and a desire to show it; she'd enjoy whittling away her days with this kind of work.

When violet eyes get brighter
And heavy wings grow lighter
I'll taste the sky and feel alive again

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