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Setting


The Ink Expanse. A dangerous, dark and dense nebula of deep purple gasses crackling with electrical energy. Jagged alien rocks clustered together throughout much of the mass of cloud, with narrow cleared corridors in those areas were traffic dared to tread. For unknown reasons, strange rare spacial anomalies commonly blossomed into being here. Bizarre miniature wormholes, glowing beads of energy and strange rippling pulses.

Within the dark fog - so thick that it blotted out any view of space beyond, reducing visibility to a few hundred metres away from any given ship's viewports - was a singular bubble of open space. Small devices evenly spread throughout the perimeter of the bubble toiled away to redirect stray gas so that this respite remained clear.

Aside from the occasional patrol ship and pirate raider, traffic - as sparse as it was - kept itself largely to a single line of travel through the bubble. It entered from the navigation buoy on one end and left via the counterpart opposing it, powerful slowly-flashing red lights guiding to either navigational aid. On one end was the eventual exit to the system that hosted this nebula cloud. A bustling commercial and administrative hub that existed as capital to the sector that surrounded it. On the other was a warp gate that provided a shortcut to the strange frontier worlds known for being host to a vast array of ancient alien ruins and relics. This trade conduit was a vital one that provided water, air and perishables to a handful of small but significant colonies who had little native supply.

Within the centre of the bubble, acting as waystation to the passing traders, freelancers and escorts was a single small station. Nobody quite knew why, but strange spacial phenomena commonly occurred within the station;s proximity. It was rumoured that once every 365 days - or 366 every 4th cycle - the phenomena would flare up and break down the walls between dimensions. At first, the people brought through were confused and disorientated, appearing miraculously in a supply closet on the station's commercial decks. But as the years went by, they began arriving in costume, demanding from the various service dealerships tricks or treats. Eventually, this phenomenon was turned into an annual event, with even the space travellers passing through the nebula joining in. Visitors were redirected to the station's small but serviceable bar, where they were presented with local candy and other snacks. And so also did such events proceed on this day.


The Bar


The Tungsten Wrench was a utilitarian affair. Small enough that it could only support eight tables in total, all made of thick metal that was designed to last as long as the station itself. One wall of the bar was entirely made of reinforced transparent material, creating a huge window that allowed for a view of the swirling gasses beyond, as well as the occasional passing trade ship. Positioned between the two entrances on the wall opposite the window was a bar with a row of stools lined up by the counter. A selection of multi-coloured beverages lined the shelves beyond.

Today, the usual drab decor - only made interesting by coloured lighting that was designed to match the atmosphere of the nebula outside the window - was supplemented by festive decorations. Cables laden with plastic winged rodents spanned the gaps between support beams like spooky bunting. Plump orange gourds with alien faces etched into the sides of their hollowed-out shells sat upon tables and counters with surprisingly realistic faux candles flickering from within them. The occasional spiderweb plastered itself to corners despite there being no actual feral arachnids on the station; instead providing home for robotic replicas that twitched and wiggled and occasionally darted across the webbing.

Cauldrons of candy from various cultures and species sat piled up on one corner of the bar, whilst a section of the drinks cabinets behind had been set aside for seasonal beverages.


Behind the Bar


Hired for this particular event by the bar's owner was a mercenary who was chosen for his own creepiness. The cyborg arachnoid with his four robotic arms and eight expressionless eyes normally caused quite the discomfort, even despite his unimpressive size. Though the advanced technology embedded into his prosthetics suggested he was more suited to more action-packed endeavours, he was no slouch when it came to serving drinks either, what with his ability to perceive everything within range of his unblinking eyes with simultaneous focus and the artificially enhanced dexterity his robotic limbs provided when handling delicate glasses. It wasn't hard to guess that he was chosen on this particular date for the aesthetics of his appearance; but he was also competent at his job. As for why he had accepted it... well that was something that only he really knew, given he was used to far better paying employment.

As strange crackles of energy and spacial distortions warped the view beyond the bar's window, Ch-tkt was alerted to the fact that the day's proceedings had begun. Very soon now, the first of the trick-or-treaters would make their way through one of the bar's entrances, and he was prepared to greet them and get this job over and done with.


OOC


All are welcome! Non-sci-fi characters included! If your character is non-sci-fi, they can arrive via a dimensional rift. The default entry point is a supply closet, from where they are redirected to the bar (this is implied unless you have an alternative entrance you wish to make that fits the narrative). Afterwards, when you leave the bar, your character will be escorted to a dimensional transporter that will take them back home (again, this will be implied unless you wish to write out an alternative).

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This location was certainly new to Bailey.

She too was going Trick-or-Treating this evening; dressed as a stereotypical witch, her adoptive mother- a real witch, Winifred- allowed her to borrow one of her many flying broomsticks for the occasion. As Winifred was interested in handing out candy to other costumed travelers, she sent Bailey off with Asher, the talking family cat, to supervise her while she was out. While Bailey was perfectly capable of protecting herself, it was much safer to go with a guardian!

And while on their candy heist, Bailey had soared through a magical rift that led her here.

"What is this place?" She mumbled under her breath, slowly hovering through the metallic halls of the space station.

"Miss Bailey, if I may," Asher chimed in. "You know how humans are back home with their advances. I would avoid using magic for the time being. We do not want to get in trouble."

"Good point, but..." Bailey slid off her broomstick, holding it in her hand. "I think we're a little far from home. Dont'cha think?"

Asher rubbed against her legs in very catlike fashion. "You may have a point. I would be cautious, however."

The two marched their way into the bar. The decorations had Bailey's hopes held high, and Asher noticed that the creature standing by wasn't exactly human. His movements were too natural for that to be a mere costume. With his fears somewhat alleviated, he continued to trot by Bailey's side.

"Excuse me!" Bailey called out to Ch-tkt, holding out her knapsack. "Hello! Trick or Treat!"

Asher said nothing, but he stood close to his human's side.
Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha (played by Riik) Topic Starter

It took Ch-tkt a moment to remember to turn his head. Even so, the fact that he was alive and not a stuffed object was clear from the occasional cat-like flickering of his ear. When Bailey came to a stop was when he eventually moved. His vision was such that he did not need to face something to place his full focus on it, and sometimes forgot that other species found such a gesture a part of conversation.

Instinctively, two of his arms reached under the counter - then stopped as he caught himself. Being a four-armed bartender with a penchant for multi-tasking meant he often spent such jobs in hectic environments and whilst his bartending career occurred only on rare occasion, he had developed an instinct for it. He had to remind himself that his primary job today was not to serve drinks.

Mouth-parts twitched and a clicking, chittering sound erupted from his throat. Then, a robotic hand found the sensor on his chest harness and activated the adjacent speaker, which spoke in a gruff masculine voice that only vaguely sounded artificial. Rather than translate for him, the voice spoke as though it was his own. Commanded into being through technology that seemed connected to his brain somehow.

"What'll it be?" He asked, gesturing to the cauldrons. "Candy, snacks or a mix of both? We still serve drinks too..." He took a device from a holster hanging above the bar, pointed it at Bailey and pressed a button, taking a moment to examine the readout on an attached screen. "It'll be non-alcoholic-only for you, I'm afraid, though," he added, putting the device away now that it had told him of her age. "Candy is free, drinks are not." Even water, such was life in space.
While Bailey had a bit of a mixed set of feelings towards technology as a whole, she couldn't help but feel fascinated by it. They even allowed this creature to speak! How cool was that?

"Oh, oh! I'll take some candy, please!" Bailey was perfectly content to make snacks in her own free time. Candy was a rare treasure, and she wanted as much as possible!

She would've loved to buy a drink as well, but unfortunately, she didn't come prepared. With no money on her person, she couldn't afford one. But that was okay, she could always swing by her house later in the evening if she was thirsty.

She presented her knapsack in anticipation for the candy. Asher, once again, said nothing, as he absentmindedly licked his paw.
Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha (played by Riik) Topic Starter

Ch-tkt reached into a cauldron and took a handful of candy, though he didn't immediately deposit them into Bailey's knapsack. Instead, he dropped them onto the counter and spread them out slightly to provide an easy view of them.

All of the items were individually wrapped. All of them were labelled in various alien languages, some shaped like regular candies, some shaped unusually. For the most part, the wrappers were the only indication that a lot of these items were candy in the first place. There were six items in total - moderately sized - and each was equally alien in appearance. One was a sort of green jello in transparent packaging that was still wiggling even after it was placed down, taking its time to settle into place. One was some gummy-adjacent material in the shape of a large insect that going by the packaging was a gummy replica of a creature regularly eaten by at least one nearby alien society. One looked like a block of chocolate-coated ice cream, but seemed to retain consistency at room temperature. One going by the sound it made seemed to be a box of small hard candies that the packaging suggested were the shape and colour of natural-formed crystals. One was a hexagonal block of nougat-like material with a small cylindrical hole all the way through the middle for seemingly no reason. And the last was what looked to be one unusually large mint.

"If there's anything you want to swap out, let me know," Ch-tkt said. "All the candy here should be edible and appetising to most species. Though I wouldn't know. I can't eat solid food and don't have much in the ways of a sense of taste."
Bailey was by no means a picky eater. Ever since she kicked off her life by barely having any, she finds that rejecting food simply by how it looked was not the smartest idea.

Now, as these were treats that weren't from her world, perhaps some of them were unfit for human consumption. But Bailey wasn't afraid of them; in the off-chance that eating one of these yummy treats made her sick, her mother's magic and strength in brewing potions could easily purge poisons from Bailey's system.

How Bailey looked up to Winifred, so. She could only wish she would be as powerful as her one day.

"No thanks! I'd like to try all of them, please!" After inspecting the candies and going over her thoughts, she took a sleeved hand and brushed the candies into her knapsack. "Thank you very much! I can't wait to try them!"

Bailey looked up once she was done. "That's okay! I'll be sure to tell you what it's like. Oh, oh, if you don't mind me asking, what are you, exactly? You look really cool! I've seen my share of neat-looking creatures, but you're new!"
Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha (played by Riik) Topic Starter

Ch-tkt tilted his head to one side to the backdrop of the sound of the weird wiggly candy taking its time to settle down in Bailey's bag. "I'm skyttrki," Ch-tkt explained. "My name is..." they switched to their natural voice to produce a series of clicks and chitters that vaguely resembled - if one was intent enough on attempting to write it out as best they could despite the inhuman sounds - 'Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha'. "We don't all come with four arms," he added in the synthetic voice, trying to create an accurate profile of his species. "But after losing mine, I decided I wanted an upgrade."

His ears shifted and fangs tightened in a change of expression. Ch-tkt may have been a father - or 'mother' depending on how one wanted to qualify the terminology - but his species were not even slightly maternal. He had only met his children in passing. But even so, he still fostered a soft spot for kids. Perhaps on account of his own traumatic childhood. He knew one or two things that kids of other species seemed to find fascinating.

"Here, let me show you something." Ch'tkt's chelicerae unfolded from within his mouth, revealing the long, sharp fangs that protruded from them. He wiggled them about in the air like a pair of clawed fingers, before tucking them away again. "They can inject venom too," he added. Whilst his tone was mildly boastful, it wasn't actually his intent to show off in the traditional sense. He just knew plenty of kids found joy in such things.
Right he was; Kids like Bailey showed great joy with these kinds of things!

"Whoooaaaa!" Bailey readjusted her glasses. Everything, from the mechanical limbs to the fangs, was incredibly fascinating! "That's amazing!"

Maybe technology wasn't all bad, just like how magic wasn't all bad. Both had their pros and cons? And one of the many pros of tech was that it gave this guy some arms after he lost them, plus a few more! How incredible was that?! Not to mention they let him talk past the clicking noise he made!

Asher wasn't quite as impressed as Bailey, but was very neutral about this interaction. Just like every other one.

"Thanks for sharing, Mister... Uh... Ch- Kit... tak... takatatcha..." Bailey's syllables tripped over one another, eventually resolving into giggles. While she wasn't able to pronounce his name so easily, she still thanked him for the candy and for the display.

"Miss Bailey," Asher chimed in. "Pardon the interruption, but the night is still young. Don't you think we should best be on our way?"

"Oh! Right! We've got more places to go!" Bailey closed her knapsack and made her way back the way she came. "Thank you again, sir! Happy Halloween!"

Perhaps, next time, Bailey could travel through this rift once more and buy a drink when she had the money? She would love to learn more about all the creatures that lived here!

In the meantime, she mounted upon her broom with the cat, and zoomed away.
Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha (played by Riik) Topic Starter

"Call me Chatik," Ch-tkt suggested. The artificial voice sounded on the verge of chuckling. Most skyttrki found it painful to hear their name mispronounced. Ch-tkt wasn't most skyttrki.

Ch-tkt gave Bailey a farewell gesture that one could assume was the alien equivalent of a thumbs-up. It wasn't quite the correct gesture, as Ch-tkt's prostheses lacked the required number of fingers. But it was close enough that someone familiar with it would recognise it.
Hanley (played anonymously)

Hanley entered the Inky space from her rattling hyperspeed travel, a sudden jolt of being not there, and then suddenly there, right outside the edge of it. A pulsating and dark place, like heavy laughter and static and warmth tangibly created into a pool of almost life, a cup nearly brimmed in this cold space. She ran her sweaty hands through her hair, clammy after stripping off her gloves, and reached for her water bottle. After two gulps, she was close to the bottom; she needed refills, to be honest, as her tank was getting stale and she couldn't recycle it forever without feeling samey and slow.
Tapping her navpad, she looked at the mapped-out area of the semi-spaceport existing around her. Her pulse thudded, the place seemed quiet around her, the walls thin and heavy at the same time, the outdoors past the padlock pulsating and glowing, fizzing with energy.
She shook herself, a little, slightly dissociating and then coming back. She looked at the glowing red spaces on her map, marking liveliness in little spots and patches here and there.
That one seemed alright. She slipped her less-sticky-than-before gloves back on, adjusted all the straps of her outfit and her seat, and steered herself, her mindfulness, and her ship towards the small section of the hub that looked like it might have good energy and some water to purchase for refills. She needed a place to rest her mind and fill up her physical resources.

Besides, it was that time of year when interesting things happened and different cultures had various celebrations that appealed to her. Usually. Some were a little macabre, some involved chanting and holding pieces of pumpkin on a stick around a fire, some simply involved whizzing about on robotic sticks and dressing as feline species from various parts of many, many, many of the 'spheres out there. She'd even seen a tradition where people did dances and threw candy at each other from across the room. All sorts! The sometimes-Captain wondered what she would see in this particular place. She prepared to dock in the space for small-medium ships and transportation vehicles, and requested formal entry. ...The Tungsten Wrench. The title seemed to have a nice aura about it, at least, even if it was a curious sort of name. Perhaps she should ask about it upon her entry.
Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha (played by Riik) Topic Starter

It was normal operations as far as the station's external services were concerned, though eyes were always focused on the strange spacial anomalies forming around it with caution. Docking was granted swiftly and a free berth was provided. As a small station, there was only one docking section that typically allowed for a handful of ships as was usually the maximum quantity of visitors at any given time. Transport vessels and freighters had external airlocks available to dock at, which were generally offered at greater convenience, as those were more common amongst the traffic. Any larger ship would have to send a shuttle.

Ch-tkt continued waiting behind the bar, serving customers and trick-or-treaters alike. Halloween-related folks tended to trickle in with the same frequency as a home in the middle of a busy neighbourhood. Patrons of the bar's services, meanwhile, were less frequent, though the fact that they usually stuck around for a bit meant that there was always an occupied table or two at the least.
Hanley (played anonymously)

As she removed herself from the small transport shuttle, Hanley shivered a little and zipped up her jacket so as to make the process of disembarking a little more comfortable. The staticky, crawling alive-feeling on her skin was a little strange as always, but she was mostly used to it.

The adventurer made her way into the bar, glancing over windows made of what looked like the glassteel or transparasteel of the planets near to her home.

"Howdy, there," she said with a hopefully friendly-looking smile. "Do you have water here? I'm in need of some refills... And if you're doing any Halloween celebration," she looked around the place, feeling her eyes crinkle up at the sides with her smile; it looked really nice, "I'd love to be included. I have intergalactic credits and some coin as well, if that's what you take."
Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha (played by Riik) Topic Starter

"Five credits for a glass water, ship restocks are handled at the equipment dealership by the docking zone," Ch-tkt's vocabulator spoke on his behalf in a flat tone. He wasn't the most personable bartender. Though he was trying his best to be a little more chipper for this specific event. As it happened, five credits was a little steep for a glass of water, but generally, for stations of its type, it was about as was to be expected. "Everyone gets a free sample of candy," he added. "As long as you say the password."

Halloween was not commonly celebrated in this region of space. Perhaps the occasional human immigrant still followed its traditions, but largely, they had to celebrate in private - though with this region as multi-species as it was, nobody would judge a human deciding to walk about in costume, being as unaccustomed to traditional human attire as they were. For a station such as this one to have a specific event for it was rare indeed, as such endeavours were usually limited to certain human-themed clubs in the larger cities of the more populated worlds. Or some of the bars in the larger merchant spaceports where human traders more commonly stopped by. Currently working at neither such a locale, Ch-tkt's briefing of the holiday had been thin at best. All he knew was to pass out candy to people uttering a very specific trio of words. And he interpreted those words as some kind of passcode.
Hanley (played anonymously)

"Oh, well thank you, I should have guessed that, I guess. Little tired right now. Thanks. I'll take a glass of water, uhm, cold if you have it." She scratched her chin and peered at the bartender. "Password, candy, that's nice. Is it... Um... Trick-Or-Treat? Haha."

Hanley was usually a very friendly person, but that was a lot of energy sometimes, really, and this trip she was on last time had sort of taken it out of her. She was just here to get the ship and its tank filled up and take a look around, have a rest, that sort of thing.

"So um... Why's it called The Tungsten Wrench, if you don't mind me asking? And what's your name? Do you usually give out candy or is this a limited time thing? Oh, that's a lot. Sorry, haha." She chuckled. Perhaps she had a little more energy than she thought. Oh, well, events like this she often liked anyway. Perhaps it was okay to socialize a little - not that she was sure this personage wanted to do so. They seemed nice enough however.
Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha (played by Riik) Topic Starter

At the sound of the password, Ch-tkt took a handful of candy out and laid it out on the bar, whilst simultaneously tasking two arms with pouring out a glass of water. His fourth remained on their vocabulator unit's sensor.

The six candies put on display included a long thin stick of something flaky and purple, a gummy treat in the shape of some alien animal's face, what looked like an oversized nut covered in some sort of creamy blue coating, a packet of star-shaped candies that looked like miniature cookies according to the packaging, a strip of what looked like fabric but was in fact an edible sweet substance and a pale pink chocolate-esque candy that was shaped like a miniature book.

"Let me know if there's anything there you want to swap out," Ch-tkt said. "My name is..." he spoke his name from his mouth, unpronounceable as it was for a human. "Call me Chatik," he added. "And I'm only a temp here, so I don't really know how this place got its name. Probably related to how it looks. This is a pretty utilitarian service station on a sparsely-travelled yet quite important trade route. Though it's busier than normal tonight because of the festivities. As far as I know, they don't normally serve candy here." He looked behind at the racks of alcohol, mouth parts twitching in what was a look of dissatisfaction, but to an outsider not familiar with their species appeared about as unreadable as any other expression he made. "Heck, they barely serve drinks." Despite the sheer diversity of options on the shelf, almost all of the alcohol - and non-alcoholic alternatives - were of cheap brands. Nobody stopped at a place like this for a fine wine, after all. "Not that it makes a difference to me. My species doesn't really have a sense of taste. No tongue."
Hanley (played anonymously)

Hanley's eyes widened, and she peered closely at the candies. "What nice treats, they're so pretty! Thank you. Happy Halloween." The blue one was so interesting, and honestly, the flaky texture looked delightful. She liked chewy candies most, but there was something great about a little variety, too, and who didn't like book appreciation besides that? She thought about what they would taste like. How they would feel on her tongue. The flavor of beans or limes or sweet leaves. She remembered the candy of her homeworks as she rarely did, a strong waxy or sugary taste and a gritty melting feeling in her mouth, washed down with water or milk or juice... It made her smile, feeling warm within herself, to think about now.

The explanation made sense, she supposed, and she nodded along. "Well, that's very clear-cut, thank you. I don't know how much of the human sense of taste is based on our delight in diversity of flavor, and how much is necessary to tell what nutrients we're going to absorb." She chuckled. "We ingest some pretty strange things because they taste good, but they aren't good for us, or they don't taste nice but they are good for us... Haha. Then again, there's some stuff that fits and we swallow it or spit it out because it tastes the proper kind of taste for our system."
She could feel her grin crinkle at her eyes. "I appreciate the company on a night like this. Time was I had lots of little birdies twittering around me, but not lately. There's a lot to be thankful for, though, even when you're by yourself..." She sighed, and accepted her cup of water. It tasted pretty good. Heh. "Do you temp often? If you don't mind me askin' you, I mean..."
Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha (played by Riik) Topic Starter

"I'm a mercenary by trade," Ch-tkt explained. "Do a bit of a other freelancing as well, but mostly I'm muscle for hire. Sometimes that well dries up. Sometimes I just need a breather. Taking a bar job is one of my preferred ways of spending that time. I'm not a people person as you might know it. But my species is very communal. Barfront smalltalk doesn't come naturally to me, but there's comfort in a crowd. Especially if I've been alone for too long. And my upgrades serve this job well too."

Ch-tkt raised a robot arm. The hand section began spinning like an automatic blender, stopping after a few moments. A sneak peak into the versatility of the limb. And Ch-tkt had four of them. Couple that with his natural ability to keep visual track of multiple things simultaneously, and one had a versatile drink server and cocktail mixer. Ch-tkt of course worked best in busy bars where his multitasking ability could be put to best use; but this particular job paid well enough, so he was fine with the slower pace of it.

"If you're wondering why I do this and don't spend time with my own kind, it's because I wouldn't get paid for that," he added. "My people don't do money. Which is a shame... they're missing out..." he flexed the same arm he had been displaying. Despite the circumstances that led to acquiring his bionics, Ch-tkt was happier with them than he would have been with his natural arms. In fact he often thought about replacing more of his body with mechanical parts; if only he had any idea exactly what he would replace them with.
Hanley (played anonymously)

"Makes sense." Hanley smiled. "As for arms I have just the two, but I've got upgrades as well, in a manner of speaking. Some say it looks like they're attached to me, but... I happen to keep a hold of them, is all. They're detachable." She grinned. Raised her wrist. Upon the front was a shiny box, flat, with a dull band going 'round, and the box had a light. In her hand was a small machine, which looked like some communication devices from different planets, pretty standard with its own twist, and sounded as though it was whirring and beeping slightly. "I use one for tactical run throughs, lists, marking details, and one's for comms and signaling. Pretty cool, right? Normally I try to keep them away from other people, but..." She shrugged. "I feel like I got a treat, probably not getting a trick now, huh? If that's the case I have my secret backup." She laughed a little.

"That's a lovely life philosophy you seem to have acquired, though, even if you don't hold it in your own sights morally or whatever. Live life doing the things you can, or like to, do, and maybe care about money or maybe not. Then again, maybe that's my spin on things... Perhaps I'm more emotional than I think. Personally I think you should just get where you need to be in life and stay there, but for me that's drifting and calling the people I love from a bit of a distance away, so, hypocritical maybe. Heheh," she drank from her glass until it was nearly empty, "life is just wondering what we're supposed to be doing while we do it, right? And we're already living... Or something. I don't really know, I'm not such a philosopher." She nodded, pondered her candy and cookies. Took one, shook the package, and glanced up at Chatik. "Would you like one, Chatik? I enjoy sharing sometimes. I dunno if you do though..."
Ch-tkt Chtaktch'kcha (played by Riik) Topic Starter

"I don't eat solid food," Ch-tkt replied in rejection. "I couldn't taste it anyway. At least not in any way other than to tell if it was edible to me. Besides, candy doesn't look all that appetising to me. I'm not really one for sharing anyway. Another thing that sets me apart from my own kind."
Hanley (played anonymously)

"Suit yourself. More for me!" Hanley popped the cookies into her mouth, crisply biting down and chewing with the eating equivalent of having a spring in one's step.
"I suppose I should get out of here soon, refills and whatnot to see to.... But it's been lovely! Thank you for the treats, and uh, happy Halloween!" Hanley nodded, and haltingly reached out a hand. "Uh, no hard feelings if not, but care for a handshake? It's customary amongst some of my species, as a show of friendship, but if you're not feeling that it's okay. …..Have a good night!"

Paying her tip along with the bill was a comfortable routine, as she did believe in tipping waitstaff and others, but the decorations were too pretty for her not to linger over for one more moment. She hoped it didn't bother the patron (or matron?) that she was being so leisurely, but as it was, she had traveled a long way and it wasn't like she didn't belong any more than anyone else. She stretched, made adjustments to her clothes and hardware, and prepared to leave, with one more look about the place.

She'd be happy to refill her water in the normal way, check up on her ship, and find somewhere to sleep for the night, having enjoyed this wonderful stop in a moment of Earth's old holidays and customs.

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