"Well, yeah. That's mandatory, kid. And for the record, it sure looks like you can afford to put one down." The accompanying snort and rolling of the eyes made it clear that the furred individual was being sarcastic. San considered making some other entreaty, but truthfully there was not very much more he could offer.
"If the vacancy is still open a few days from now..."
"Come back when you can produce references, and the sign up front will tell you if it's still there." They were no longer even looking at him now. "Wouldn't get your hopes up though. Things go pretty quickly around these parts."
San sighed as he exited the building. Rei landed on his left shoulder and laid a hand consolingly on the back of his neck.
"Thanks," he said. He wasn't surprised by how it had gone, but it still hadn't been a pleasant experience.
He tried a few other places, but the results were more or less the same no matter where he went. If there were vacancies, he couldn't afford them, or they had policies on creatures that they wouldn't have met. Their original apartment hadn't been much, but the rent had been very reasonable, and they hadn't objected to the presence of Rei or Roku.
Strictly speaking, Rei shouldn't have counted as a 'pet', but then, given their level of intelligence, none of the creatures here ought to have qualified. It was just that Rei... looked human, and it was a lot harder for San to draw the distinction between her and... well, and humans. Roku had been the one to inform him about how 'creatures' were classified here; Rei's silence had corroborated his claims, which San might not have otherwise believed.
But then, maybe it was hypocritical of him to think like that.
In Xinzhou -- or at least, in the heartland, near the capital, which was the only part he had personally known -- their treatment would have been worse. Had been worse. Here, they had the small comfort of being common enough to be unremarkable. Perhaps they were not always treated well, but they were not scrutinized the way they would have been in a foreign land where their kind was nigh unheard of.
None of this would be a problem if they had enough money to purchase their own property. Land here wasn't... expensive, exactly, but 'Linyü' was a new immigrant with nothing to his name, and what San earned through his collection of odd jobs was just as soon squandered away by Seveth's spending.
They returned to the inn that evening with no leads and no prospects. In the privacy of their room, San sank into the cramped chair at the cramped desk with a sigh.
Another two days' worth of room and board, and likely more... He did some more quick math, and started wondering if a tent would be cheaper. But Seveth wasn't likely to tolerate that kind of living, at least not before they had exhausted their savings entirely.
Maybe he would have to ask his employers for a raise. Or take up another job. How many was it now? Four? No, he had gotten fired from one of them two weeks ago. Seveth, again. There was only so much San could do when a shift fell on one of Seveth's days. Trouble was bound to happen sooner or later.
Feeling a headache coming on, he rose to his feet again and opened the window. They were on the second floor; it was an easy drop to the little alley behind the building. Maybe some training would clear his head, and if it didn't... He would deal with it once he woke again.
Rei's face was impassive as always, but her ears were flattened against her head. Still, Seveth couldn't help but look at her beseechingly, as though if he just put enough earnest hope into his gaze, it would somehow change the outcome.
Of course, life didn't work like that. "No vacancies," she said. He chose not to take her flat tone to heart. She was just like that. Some kind of post traumatic whatsit, probably. Even Seveth knew better than to pry about things like that. And it was easier not to take it personally knowing that this was how she was with everyone. A lot of people reserved that kind of treatment for Seveth in particular.
Nevertheless, the news was crushing. "Really? Nothing? No vacancies anywhere?"
Rei, who had been staring out the window, shifted to glance sidelong at him. Then, dispassionately, she listed a series of addresses... And a series of amounts.
The monthly rent, Seveth realized after a moment. And as he listened, his expression fell further, until he had to hold up a hand. "Okay, okay, stop, I can't take it anymore." He flopped backwards onto the bed -- which really wasn't comfortable, not that anyone was asking -- and covered his face with his hands. "Ugh... Why did she have to report me? I would have gotten Chai out again. It didn't fit through the door anyway..."
If Rei had any thoughts on that, she didn't share them.
In retrospect, it had been kind of a stupid idea. But it shouldn't have been so stupid as to cost them their home. The building had been lenient about so many other things that he had sort of expected them to just laugh this one off too. Apparently his luck had run out though, and now they were stuck here until San found them another run-down little apartment.
Letting his hands fall from his face, he spread his arms and committed himself fully to staring up listlessly at the ceiling. He was kind of at a loss. He didn't have classes or any shifts he had to cover for San today, but he had also more or less been counting on San to have figured it out by now...
"That's it!" Springing up from the bed, he jumped to his feet and began grabbing his things. Ah, no, he couldn't go out dressed like this. Where did he put his favorite shirt? Opening one of the several bags he'd stacked haphazardly in one corner of the room, he rooted through their contents until he found something he liked, pulled it out, then frowned and tossed it aside.
"What are you doing?" said Rei.
"Why didn't I think of this earlier?" Seveth muttered excitedly. "Rei-Rei, I'm going to find us a new place!"
There was no response to his grand declaration. Though, to be fair, his declaration wasn't as grand as it could have been, considering he was still in a nightshirt -- one of San's, since San had been the one to put himself to bed -- and preoccupied with finding an outfit rather than watching Rei for her reaction. He imagined she wasn't impressed, but that was only because she didn't know about the key point to his plan.
Humming to himself, he held up a pair of shorts to see if they matched the shirt he'd found. Not his favorite shirt, sadly, but it would do. Shrugging, he threw off the nightshirt and began changing into his own clothes. He never felt quite right until he was wearing his own things again, even though technically they were supposed to share everything. But that was how it was, wasn't it, living with someone?
You still had your own things even though the household was shared. Their situation was a bit different, but that principle still held, as far as Seveth was concerned.
There was a dingy little mirror on the wall where the tiny little desk was, and Seveth bent to check his hair in its slightly smudged surface. As he did, he glimpsed Rei behind him, frowning. Her reflection made eye contact with him, and she said, "How?"
"How are you going to find a new place?" When San couldn't, she didn't say, but he could hear the shadow of it in her tone anyway, which was funny since he wouldn't really have described her voice as having a tone. Well, he could understand that a little. San was the one who had found them that apartment, and credit where credit was due, Seveth was sure that he must have tried real hard yesterday.
But he'd been going about it the wrong way. Turning to face Rei with a grin, Seveth said, "You guys only looked at rentals yesterday, right? I'm not going to bother with that. This time, we're looking to buy! No more landlords for us!"
Rei still didn't react, but that was fine. She probably didn't get it. Once they were all situated in a new place -- a place they owned -- he was sure she would come around. Not that he could really imagine what congratulations would look like on Rei, since he wasn't sure if she was physically capable of smiling or anything, but part of the fun would be finding out.
Since she didn't seem like she had anything more to say, Seveth turned his attention back to the room. "Where did I leave the-- Oh, it's in this bag, isn't it?" he said, peering into the darkness under the bed.
"Wait," Rei cut in. Seveth straightened, blinking. That was louder than he was used to hearing from her.
"What is it?"
"That's San's." She was looking at the bag. She was right; it was dull and black and it had mostly his things in it, but he had also seen Roku putting a wad of cash in there.
"Oh, I'm not after the clothes," he explained. "This is just where we packed our savings. You need money to buy a place, you know?"
"It's San's," she said again.
Seveth sighed. "Money belongs to the household, Rei-Rei. Besides, this is an emergency. You don't want us to stay here forever, do you?"
Rei's mouth pressed into a thin line, and it really seemed like she was trying to hold back from saying something. In the end, she must have decided against it. Seveth dug around in the bag until he found what he was looking for, then pocketed the money.
Zenjesi: Hey Silv - how do you pronounce Kodakai?
Nov 17, 2023 18:23:56 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Not to mention the baby mosca with wolf skin from Elvye and the sparkling owl of Xentus. <3
Nov 14, 2023 10:27:52 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: I like the Donnor one not just with looks FF, but the description, funny as heck.
Nov 14, 2023 10:26:27 GMT -6
Zenjesi: yours both made me laugh, FF! They're very expressive
Nov 13, 2023 21:57:46 GMT -6
Fiera Ferella: Woooow Twilight, I love that witch drawing!!! :0 It's so pretty! And Zenjesi I think Spectral is my favorite out of yours lol. Just looks happy to be included. and silver now i wanna know which pets youd pick for the other legendary beasts. XD
Nov 13, 2023 21:37:45 GMT -6
Silver: Ah I'm so glad you guys enjoyed it! I love everyone's drawings they're all so cute. ;o;
Nov 13, 2023 17:31:37 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: I like that one as well yeah, loved the old nootnoot image from quest prizes, so that one went perfectly with that particular costume being based around it. X3
Nov 13, 2023 15:23:13 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: The jewelry on tail or at the head definitely tends to be their most recognizable feature for a Mosca, and sadly their pharaoh chin piece as well. XD
Nov 13, 2023 15:21:07 GMT -6
Zenjesi: Your peanut costume is hilarious and adorable too!
Nov 13, 2023 15:14:29 GMT -6
Zenjesi: Yes you're correct! I guess I did a decent enough job with the drawing!
Nov 13, 2023 15:05:27 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: It still looks good on Synkka. She is a shaman Mosca I'm guessing? Its mostly the tail that makes me think of it.
Nov 13, 2023 15:00:42 GMT -6
Zenjesi: I definitely like Spectral's the most too! I sort of cheated by drawing Synkka with a cloak because I do not know how to draw feathered wings, haha ^^'
Nov 13, 2023 13:45:15 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Which one do you like the most out of the three you made?
Nov 13, 2023 12:09:48 GMT -6
Twilight-Claw: Thanks for that compliment! Though I know with the water it doesn't look entirely great, I love the latter one I made the most.
Nov 13, 2023 12:09:30 GMT -6