May 27, 2020 5:50 PM
Walta in Moondust
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Slightly nervously: "I actually meant I could provide you with a few since it's my fault you're -- stuck here -- but we could also have a trade arrangement where you fix up various things if you can? Because we have a bunch of things that are broken and if you could fix them, basically anyone in the house would be happy to do you favors such as providing cleaning elixirs. Because they're very broken things and fixing them would be very good. Fixing things is always good. Gains from trade, right?"

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"Yeah. Gains from trade. What's broken? Can't guarantee I'd be better than someone from this world whose career is to fix the things, but I can definitely look."

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Still a bit nervous but with something to focus on, Flora lists, counting on her fingers, "There's our water heater, Master's car, the dryer, some of the door hinges are all oiled and all but they still squeak, what's up with that we don't know, maybe some other things I'm not remembering because I'm used to them..."

Flora ignores the complicated question because it is dangerous and not good to try to answer complicated questions while it is dangerous.

She does not in fact realize that she's nervous, focusing on the fact that not good.

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"Okay. Door hinges are probably the easiest to look at, which doors?"

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Flora leads Walta around the house, showing a bunch of squeaky or hard to open doors. She switches between babbling nervously or staying completely silent during this. She calms down some, but is still sensitive to various reminders.

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Walta is oblivious to what she reminded Flora of.

She investigates the first door. Opens it a few times to listen to the sound. Applies a little oil and observes that it indeed has no effect.

Then she takes out one of the hinge pins and says. "Oh wow these are old. And filthy. Let's see if cleaning 'em all fixes the squeaking."

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"Uh, okay, what do you need? Will plain soap and water do, or does it need something more complicated? If it does, we probably don't have any - doing it with elixirs is much more convenient for us than the industrial stuff - so we'd have to wait until morning to go to the shop. Or actually just use elixirs."

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"Anything that's strong but not caustic will do."

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Flora runs off and brings back a bunch of things, including dish washing liquid, toilet cleaner, and a bottle of the kind Walta saw in the elixir room labeled "cleaner" put to the side.

"Um. I have no idea what you meant by caustic, but. Here's all we have, will any of this do?"

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"Sometimes just steel wool is fine. Let's try this stuff first..." The elixir, with a heavy rag to rub it up with.

How good it it at cleaning metal and not damaging it?

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It vanishes rust, dirt, oil, and various other things that need vanishing, and doesn't damage the metal at all. The pin is as shiny and clean as new.

... However if she tries putting oil on top of the elixir, even after she's rubbed it off, it also vanishes. And the pin turns pink.

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She'll wash the elixir off with water. Or rub the elixered pin over her dirty work clothes until it runs low and then oil it.

"I'll use soap for the next one though, ha."

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Water just slides off as though the pin is covered in oil and turns it green, instead.

The second thing works. Now the pin is oiled, back to its normal color, and the work clothes are slightly cleaner in general and a lot cleaner in that spot where she rubbed it.

Flora snorts a little when the pin turns green and even smiles when Walta tries the second solution.

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"If it still squeaks you need new pins."

She hammers it back in. Does it still squeak?

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It does not! Hurray! Next door?

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Just so. And then all the rest of them.

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"Thank you for that! So, I'll get you a set of night clothes, hopefully, and you can use the leftovers of the elixir you've cleaned the pins with to clean your current outfit for tomorrow? If that's okay?"

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"Yeah, that's fine. Clothes aren't a big deal to me. I could look at another broken thing now. It's not that late. Probably can't fix the rest of the stuff immediately like the hinges but a glance at 'em and I'll know what to look for tomorrow."

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"Sure." 

The water heater makes weird noises and sometimes fails to work for hours at a time. Flora demonstrates the weird noises.

(There is no central heating. Each house has its own water heater, and when that fails to work there is only freezing cold water available.)

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She pokes around the outside.

"...No immediately visible terrible problems but the weird noises thing is not promising. Need to look on the internet some to make sure these work how I think they do. Probably need to turn it off and drain it and get a look at the insides, which means it definitely doesn't work for a while. Three, four hours minimum, best to arrange when to do that with everyone yeah?"

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"Yeah, okay, we'll figure it out right after breakfast, that's when everyone's gathered and mostly mentally present and not too tired... It's getting pretty late - would you like to check the dryer or should that wait until morning?"

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"Getting pretty tired, I'll take a look tomorrow."

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"Okay."

Flora goes off to a closet, brings night clothes of various sizes -- the closest set is awkward on Walta but fits okay and is comfortable. 

"Good night," she says, in a somewhat unsure tone.

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"Good night!"

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She waves and goes to get ready for bed. 

And realises that she was panicking, and why, and resolves to say something about that to Walta.

And sleeps.

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