Eventually with use of message stones, which let you send short messages long distance, we were able to get in contact with a trader who is hitting a port town soon after coming here. His name is Jaden Santz, a human name, he is charging the least out of all the traders we talked to by a fair mark so that I can actually afford his services. It's the only way I can enter Kentin, and still have food to eat on top of treat Phi to the attractions in the town without spending the whole time delving.
I meet with him on his arrival in town as he peddles his wares. At first I watch him set up his cart. He seems to be a junk dealer most everything he peddles in seems to have a bit of wear and tear. A kettle with scorch marks here and there for example. He seems to also be well traveled, and isn't exactly weak looking himself granted most humans are built stronger than elves. Even for a human though he's built like a bear. He also doesn't seem to have any guards directly affiliated with them.
It seems like he's tough enough to handle the dangers of the road himself if he can make it through everything. After observing him interacting with customers for a bit he seems kind enough. His prices are decently cheap, and he is willing to negotiate lower with those whom have little to share.
I stride forwards a bit after a while of watching him carefully, and he immediately turns his head to greet me, "You know instead of watching me from a distance, you could've painted a portrait. Would've lasted ya longer pointy ears." He gruffly says not showing me that kind grin he was giving others.
I wave off the insult about my ears as I heard it a lot when I went to Veva. Every human thinks they're clever with their knife ears or watch how you turn your head! You'll poke an eye out! It's not even offensive anymore, just annoying. I open my mouth to reply, but a customer comes up to buy a pair of boots off of him. He puts up his kind facade again. The moment the man leaves he's back to glowering at me, "Sorry. Wanted to see the type of person you were. I'm the one who payed for passage to Kentin." I reply quickly before he barks anymore at me.
His expression softens quite a bit as he gives me a large grin, "Ahh. You're the one covering my travel expenses." He stretches out a grubby nicked hand, "Nice to meet ya. Where's your plus one?"
I reach out a bit reluctantly, and grab his large bearlike hand, "She's doing some last minute packing. We're not leaving til the evening correct?"
He shakes my hand with quite a bit of vigor, "Yep! Gotta peddle my stuff."
"It seems to be a bit worn. I mean useful. People need it, but it's all used." I comment looking over the patchy clothing, and scuffed boots.
"Once people outgrow their clothes, their boots get scuffed and they get a new pair, or they decide to get a new kettle I buy it for cheap, or grab it after its tossed. It's not that glamorous, but it's a living." He says with a bit of a charming grin.
I feel pretty comfortable traveling with him he seems to know his way around the outside of village, and will hopefully help me protect Phi. "Well I'll leave you to your business, and handle some last minute preparations." He and I share a mutual wave as I head back over to the ranch. The walk feels shorter than its ever felt before as my strides feel extremely effortless.
I look at the people clamor in the opposite direction to go explore the merchant's wares, as I internally count every gold coin I have. There are a number of things I need to pay for in the capitol, and a number of things I'm sure Phi will want as well. The airship will be one of the larger costs as it is a two way trip.
I make it to the side house that pretty much only Phi and I live in anymore as the large house is fully repaired. After stepping through the door I see a frantic Phi going through just about everything in the house to see what she wants to take.. "Calm down Phi. I already packed necessities. Just worry about clothes or personal stuff." I laugh a bit as she starts clanking through pots and pans.
"Are you sure? I mean what if your little mess-kit pan breaks! Then we won't have something to cook with!" She frets needlessly as I giggle at her expense a bit.
"It won't Phi. If we pack too heavily we won't be able to travel easily. Remember everything we pack up we have to carry. The merchant we're riding along with isn't our servant who does our bidding. Do you want to carry all the pans?" I ask her with a bit of a grin.
".. You can just get all big and bulky, and carry everything!" My face blanks out a bit as I shake my head.
"I can't do that whenever. If I look all inhumanly strong it'll get us chased out of town, ya dummy. Besides he's seen me like this so if I go changing my shape he'll probably be freaked out.' I sigh and shake my head as I recover from that silly suggestion. It's strange that it is even an option for me, but it is just where I've ended up now.
She lets out a sigh, "Fine... Well I'm all packed. Let's go!" She points forwards regaining her excitement, and begins marching for the door before I grab on her collar.
"We leave a night Phi.." I shake my head laughing even harder.
She turns around at me and huffs, "Then what do I do until we go?" She whines out a bit.
I wordlessly move and go upstairs, "I'm going to lay down until we leave. You're welcome to accompany me." I suggest. She takes up the suggestion, and we spend the day relaxing in each other's presence. The entire time we've waited I think that her family has found out about our relationship. Then again perhaps not since Pha hasn't spoke a word of it.
At night fall after relaxing with Phi most of the day we move out towards the town square when one merchant is packing up his cart. There's a couple of spots saved for his travel companions, Phi and myself, and it seems he's just about done. It looks like he sold a decent amount of stock. I guess that because he sold so much at a cheap price. "Good business today?"
"Yep. Sorry if I don't converse much. Been dealing with haggling customers all day." He grumbles a bit as he hitches his cart to his ox. "You two ready?"
"Yep! Onward to Kentin!" Phi calls out happily.
I shake my head and hand him some coin "Like we agreed, half now, half when we arrive at our destination." I inform him calmly, and climb into the back of his cart ahead of Phi who does the same.
"Yep. We should be there in a week. Better get comfortable." He says as he urges the ox forwards, and it gets ready to take the winding path out of the village, and down the cliff. I nestle back into the cart with Phi practically squeezed in with her. Any closer to her and we'd be sharing blood circulation.
Phi turns to me and whispers in my ear, "We have like no personal space." She softly whines after that.
I think things over a bit, and sneak my hand under her backside as she yelps softly as I lift her up pushing her into my lap. "That's more comfortable. Right?" I whisper in her ear back.
She sort of fidgets in my lap quietly as her eyes dart around from the town that recedes behind us like the tide as she looks behind us at the driver despite being unable to see him. "Yes, it's much better." she whispers before she leans in and pecks me on the lips. "This is the start of our big adventure right?" She grins wide.
"Yes Phi, yes it is." I give her a lazy grin as I lean back a bit into the junk, and rest my eyes.