A furious growl shook the entire repair shop into silence, the mechanics taking the chance to pause and look over at their boss. His face was permanently set into a scowl as she scrunched up the parchment and shook his fist angrily, stomping around to the back of the store where he let out a furious howl. To a majority of the workers, his sudden burst of temperamental activity was found to be amusing but of course, any laughter was stifled in the case this pent up anger was aimed at them. Most of them, having the wise idea, ducked down behind the machines and got along with what task they had and if they had none, they would pretend to be working. For weeks now, Mar had been storming around from work station to work station with a dangerously dark look in his eyes and his mechanics guessed it was because of the booming business Rosie had with her mechanical workings. She did have the advantage to draw men into her stores with her attractive female mechanics but the question was if they had what it took to overwhelm Mar's growing business and talented youngsters. "People these days; flocking to charming men and women mechanics that show a lot more skin than they should. Their repairs barely hold up for little over a year."
"That's your opinion." One of his mechanics whispered lowly to his friends. They snorted with laughter and quickly bowed their heads when Mar's sweeping hawk-like gaze fell squarely over them.
"I heard that! Now...I hate to admit it but we're on equal footing with them and we need a way to make our name known to the world. One day, not a soul in the world would be oblivious of Mar's Mechanics fixing with a fixed price!" He threw the letter that had been scrawled with Rosie's provoking words in the bin, "What are all of you lookin' at? Get back to work!"
The room was spacious with various transport vehicles dotting across the area. Mar had bought this old station with high hopes for its success and so far, their name had drifted across to three larger cities, spread by the passengers and workers aboard the large, leisure airships that often visited Misel. He was a proud and often boisterous man, fair yet stern towards his workers and clients. On his brighter days, he could be seen singing -though some wished he didn't- or whistling a cheerful tune as he walked about. Though this was rare and somewhat startling, the mechanics had all agreed amongst themselves that it was no doubt better than seeing him during his less generous moods. They all worked hard to retain their name and reputation whilst they can; all in order to gain more customers and prove once and for all who served their customers better.
Scattered around the floor, at the very back of the workshop's hangar, were various nuts and bolts along with a few tools like the trusty wrench and screwdriver, tools that were almost as common lying around like the growing population of Golems in the Greenlands below. It was always busy: Lively sparks flared, the buzzing of saws screamed against metal, and the raucous of hammers and odd metallic groans breathed life into what would otherwise have been another failed business with a building devoid of life.
Kyfe was lying underneath a fairly small and simple airship model belonging to a happy couple that lived not too far off from the workshop. She had been doggedly working on this one for about two hours now, wondering how the couple could have disregarded the vehicle for so long, waiting until now to bring it in. It didn't matter too much. As long as Mar was happy, everyone was happy. That was generally how it went around here and no one argued with that. Adding the finishing touches, Kyfe reached out with an open hand, "Wrench." She demanded in a plain voice.
"Gotcha." Came an answering reply along with the familiar weight in her hand. She secured the metal seal and made sure it wasn't going to come undone anytime soon before wiping back her sweat with the back of her gloved hand. She could finally take a break. The sudden growl from Mar had been rather unexpected, the voice cutting through the cacophony of metal clanging against metal like how a knife would cut through the air. The ensuing silence would have been deafening if Mar had not continued his rant about Rosie. It wasn't surprising that his anger had somehow come back to this woman who was 'ruining his business' as he would often like to say.
Rolling onto her stomach, Kyfe slowly cralwed out from beneath the airship to see what had been going on only to be nudged back by the toe of her assistant's boot.
"Shh!" He hissed back at her, signalling it was safer for her to stay where she was, "Be quiet, boy." Yes. Of course, he, like the other workers here, were oblivious to her gender. She was a girl who was taking a gamble just by working here in the guise of a young twelve year old boy. Her rival and friend, Gibbs, looked at her from across the room, their gaze locking for a moment before both turned away with fiery determination burning in their eyes. Even though they had known each other for about three years, he still did not know of her secret. No one had seen through her disguise and that was for the best. Her voice had been typical for that of a young twelve year old and there haven't been any suspicions yet. Once the order was given to get back to work, Kyfe was finally allowed to crawl out and stand at her full height, still a head shorter than her assistant.
"What was that for?" She asked, pulling off her gloves and dusting out the folds in her clothes.
"You want to have your head bitten off?" Marcel countered, frowning. "I know you're one of the top five and everything but I've been here long enough to know what Mar can be like when he's in this sort of mood."
"Fine, fine...Thanks for looking out for me." She offered him a small smile before turning to stop him from assessing her too closely. For a moment, he seemed to be distracted by that simple action before she waved the wrench still held in her hand dismissively, "You can tell Mar that this little beauty is as well and ready as she'll ever be." Kyfe had learnt that the guys around here always referred to the ships as female. She could only guess why and had come up with many comical conclusions. No answer. "Marcel?"
"Ah? Ah...Yes. Alright...right away, boss." He scurried away quickly as she called after him.
"I'm not your boss!" Kyfe grinned and placed her hands behind her head, rocking on the balls of her feet as she tilted her head to the side, looking forward to the end of her shift here until the next day where some other customer would have her repairs.
Moments later, Marcel came back with Mar at his heels, the big and burly man looking over Kyfe's work carefully, his grimy face carefully set into a blank mask. Even though she was confident in her skills, Kyfe still wavered under the man's calm gaze. She needed to get used to the fact that the men working here were staring through her and not at her but from time to time, Kyfe couldn't help but feel like she was being watched and the reasons were obvious. Mar grunted and nodded in approval, reaching out to ruffle Kyfe's hair. "Good job. You're doing well, lad. Customers would be coming from all over to this old workshop and part of the reason is thanks to your efforts."
"Thank you, sir....Uh..."
"What is it?"
"Spit it out, boy."
"O-okay. Mar, sir....What else do you know about the Greenlands?"
"The Greenlands? You know the answer to that, yourself, boy...But I do suppose the mind of a child cannot be quenched with information just on Misel itself." Mar said under his breath, "As you have heard, the Gear Golem population is forever growing....Might be season to harvest some gears soon." Was all he said before shoving Kyfe and Marcel forward. "Now go on."
"And what was all that about?" Marcel questioned once far enough. He had been expecting Mar to crack the boy across the face for that question. "Interested in taking down some golems?" Kyfe smiled wistfully as she led the way to the front of the store where those off duty stayed.
"Those days are over, Marcel."
On lookout were two men, one occupied with reading the latest news of the nearing cities and the other looking out for any ships. It was not all that uncommon to have ships dock here so it was no surprise to see busy numbers all in one day. Their booth was situated on top of the second tower connected to Misel, in plain sight for all airships to spot them easily. Below them was a large hangar that dwarfed the one owned by Misel's proud mechanic shops, a number of ships already docked inside. Bored, the second officer on sentry duty peered through the large window once more, catching sight of a large ship in the distance. "Doesn't that look strangely familiar?" He asked.
"What?" The first replied, not bothering to look up.
"All the ships look the same. Let them dock. They may have something worthwhile to trade with the stores here." The second nodded and rose to stand behind a large, reflective screen, moving it slightly so that it caught the light of the sun and flashed twice to signal an 'okay.' During the night, their methods were different. The mouth of the hangar slowly began to open for them. Due to the number of ships they often received each day, there were three different hangars. With larger ships being priority, they were often allowed to dock at the top.