Post by seychelles on Sept 21, 2011 23:37:24 GMT -5
The clicking noise it made was less than endearing, but it was really flying! This was the type of thing that all young inventors wished they could do. An actual flying automaton! And it wasn't too big or bulky. It was almost the size of a regular sparrow. And this was just the prototype! She hadn't expected things to be going this smoothly. She watched with wonder as it flew around, right in her general vacinity as if it knew that she had created it. As if it had that animal instinct that mommy meant safety.
And then it sputtered, losing altitude and spinning as one side continued strong while the other didn't. The side that had originally failed overcompensated, sending it tumbling the other way. “H-hey none of that!” She said nervously as she hoped it would correct itself.
Instead it continued to change dominant sides until both were working faster than she had intended them to go. She looked up as it rose past her arm's reach. The sun glinted off it's body, promping her to turn and look away just long enough for it to start a mad flight down the street.
Michelle ran after the mechanical bird as soon as she had a clear view of it. “Come back!” She yelled at it, not sure how great its ability to respond to sounds was. This was just a prototype, none of its abilities could really be trusted... To her horror, she could tell the bird was on a collision course with a man. “Sir watch out!” She yelled right before the bird was about to make contact.
She ran up to the man, her bird now on the ground. She panted hard. “I-I'm sorry,” she had to pause to breath, “He didn't hurt you, did he, sir?”
Post by Francis Bonnefoy on Sept 22, 2011 0:13:47 GMT -5
Francis knew that this trip to the Inventors' District was long overdue. The new chandeliers emitting colored sparks were all the rage with the nobles now, and Francis didn't even own a single one! Luckily, he caught on just before the new vogue had reached its peak, and he had paid double to have the order finished by the next day. His fashionable reputation could still be saved.
With a sigh of relief, Francis navigated his way through the unfamiliar sector of the city, trying not to imagine how horrid life would be if his social status dropped. It would most definitely make his more secret plans difficult to execute.
He was so fully immersed in his musings that the combination of whirring, clicking sounds and shouts made him jump to attention, and it was almost as though he was in the military again, being yelled at to stand attention. He looked up just in time to see a contraption hurtle across the air toward him.
Before he could react, a crushing weight landed on his chest, knocking all the breath out of him.
He doubled over, clutching his chest, unable to speak. There was a voice nearby, but it took him a moment to register the words. When he was finally able to straighten to a more dignified pose, he looked down at the scraps of metal by his feet and glared at the he boy who spoke, who was obviously the culprit.
"You should keep your machine under control!" he snapped, rubbing his chest. "I could have been killed! Do you know just how devastating that would be? The audacity..." he trailed off, muttering.
Post by seychelles on Sept 22, 2011 13:29:26 GMT -5
Aw man he really looked like the bird had smacked him hard. And those clothes he was wearing? If he wasn't upper class than he had recently killed someone who was. Either way he was not the kind of person that Michelle would want to hit... Not that she would want to hit anybody but rich and violent were two of the worst options. She couldn't afford jail time and she really couldn't afford to be killed.
She stared at him wide eyed as he went off on her. At first, she didn't know what to say. This whole thing was her fault. Her prototype had crashed into him. He hadn't been hanging out in the wrong area. This wasn't some official testing track for flying machines. But the way he ranted at her clearly marked him as someone born into the clothes. He was used to respect.
“I'm very sorry. If you need to see a physician I can pay the bills,” she assured him as she bent down to pick up the assaulter. It felt heavier now than it had when she had taken it from the shop. Suddenly it felt more like a canon ball than anything else.
“Or if any of your clothing was damaged, whatever I caused.. I can make it right!” That all probably seemed hollow to a man of his standing. But she had to offer if it might keep this matter between the two of them.
She stood back up and stared at him, holding the bird close to her as if he might demand it be put to sleep like a rabid animal.
Post by Francis Bonnefoy on Sept 22, 2011 23:41:39 GMT -5
Francis sniffed and drew himself up into an even more rigid pose, haughtily peering down at the boy. He had been about to berate the offender some more, and maybe even report him for the dent on Francis' new velvet coat, when he caught the flash of panic in the boy's eyes and the plea in his voice.
Francis was selfish and spoiled, true, but he couldn't be heartless. He couldn't let the boy suffer in misery and guilt for too long. Taking a deep, calming breath, Francis waved his hand dismissively and massaged his temples.
"Don't bother," he grumbled, "I'll live. Besides, I can pay my own bills." He dusted off his coat and smoothed it down to its glossy perfection. "Just mind those contraptions and make sure they don't maul anyone else."
Post by seychelles on Sept 23, 2011 19:33:08 GMT -5
Michelle didn't like the way the man looked at her. It made her feel like a child. She looked down. It wasn't that she hadn't interacted with upper class men before and they did generally have a bit of an attitude, but the context of this situation made it all worse. If she didn't feel an obligation to stick around, she would have taken off with just a single more apology. But that wouldn't be acceptable.
She looked back up when his tone changed. “O-of course,” she stuttered, agreeing with all that he had said, “Its wings are clipped, I promise. Until I get the bugs worked out, of course.” She looked down sadly for a moment before paying her attention back at the man.
“If you don't mind me asking, sir, what brings a man such of yourself down here?”
Post by Francis Bonnefoy on Sept 25, 2011 17:33:55 GMT -5
Francis had been about to sweep off in a huffy flurry - he had a tendency for dramatic exits - when he heard the boy address him again. He stopped, wondering if the boy was being insolent about Francis' personal business. But the thought vanished as soon as it had appeared, and Francis sighed again. It was an innocent enough question, after all.
"I needed to purchase some fire chandeliers," he replied. "Normally, it would be my housekeeper's job to order, but seeing as she and the rest of my household are terribly busy with preparations for the new season, the task fell to me."
He allowed himself a little smirk. "Besides, I don't trust anyone else's taste except for my own. Can you imagine what would happen if she bought the wrong size, shape, or color scheme? Catastrophe!"
Francis tossed his hair back and smoothed down the front of his coat. His eye was drawn to the mad pile of metal that had nearly killed him. After studying it for a moment, Francis couldn't help but remark questioningly, "That's a curious device you have."
She regretted her question a little as he was about to go on his way. This would have been behind both of them sooner if she had let him leave. Then again, she didn't have much else to do but listen to his answer or start repairs.
The gentleman had a really nice smile, she had to give him that. And being on the end of that instead of his original expression was nice. In actuality, his problems were very different than the ones she faced. She wasn't poor, but often size, shape and color scheme came down to what was available and didn't cost much. She only ever had to please herself and her father since she rarely entertained guests. “That'd be quite horrid, I totally understand.”
She looked down at the device as he mentioned it again. Michelle held it less tightly, allowing it to be more visible. “Thank you,” she decided she'd take curious as a good thing, “I've been working on it for a while, but I guess it still has its problems. I'm not even sure where to start buuuut I'm sure I'll get it fixed.”
Okay. Well that was rude. “He's not a weapon or... wasn't a weapon,” she protested, her tone still meek despite that. “It's a mechanical bird, it's supposed to fly around like a regular bird. He was just attracted to your fancy clothes or something. The mind of a bird can be fickle.”
She paused for a moment as she thought about what he said. Despite her not liking it being called a weapon, a military application and thus a military contract did sound awfully nice. “But maybe they could use them for carrying messages or scouting around? If I could make it more quiet or something.”
Michelle was lost in thought when her age was called into question. She blushed lightly, “A-ah yes, sir, I made it all by myself, my old master is in no shape to do much of the work himself...” She tried not to totally detach her father from the business in case people felt more comfortable believing he was still part of the process. Besides, he was, he had taught her everything she knew. She then fidgeted a little, “B-but nineteen, sir...” She didn't like saying it so casually, especially since she had no marital prospects or anything approaching one.
Post by Francis Bonnefoy on Oct 10, 2011 12:30:57 GMT -5
Were he not in public, Francis would have cursed himself for possibly giving the military more ammunition. If this young inventor took the suggestion seriously, it would put the government one step closer to full control over Granor. Francis decided he needed to minimize the damage.
His look of astonishment was only half-feigned. "Truly? You don't look a day older than sixteen!"
He waved his hand dismissively with a little chuckle. "Of course, as such, the military wouldn't be interested. Especially since you are so young and inexperienced. Not to mention the fact that your little invention seems to be built to malfunction. I'm sure the military would be looking to fund someone with more expertise and working machines."
Francis smiled indulgently at the young inventor when a seed of an idea took root. When he considered it, it might be helpful to have a designer for useful mechanisms exclusively in his employ. Nothing too fancy, really. Just the odd device here and a gadget there. It would make his work so much easier.
"But," he emphasized, "I can tell you that you will have a better chance taking commissions from private sponsors. They're bound to be more generous than the military." He kept his voice careful and casual. "Your workshop isn't too far, I take it?"