Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Marchant, Orb's Year 937-940


Orb's Year 937
Baji was furious that Darius had gone behind his back to set up Marchant Wares without speaking to him first!  "I have struggled for years to provide for the family and you have wasted it all on that frivolous shop!"

Darius put his hands on his hips and glared, "That's the point! You've struggled for so long on your own - never letting us help carry the burden!"

Baji sputtered, "Not let!  Nothing but your own selfish pursuits has kept you from inside that shop!"

Darius tried to take a deep calming breath.  "I know it, brother and I am ashamed.  I thought Marchant Wares would help take the load from your shoulders.  Let me help," he pleaded.

Baji shook his head sadly before trudging to the shop.  "You have ruined us.  All the hard work was for naught."
Darius didn't care what Baji said!  Marchant Wares was going to be successful! It was just the thing to pull their family from financial ruin! 

Why, he'd even gotten royal paintings from the King's sister to display! 
Darius had carefully chosen all of the Potter's best pottery to display, as well as beautiful paintings and decorations.  He felt sure that Celestians would stream into the store in droves to decorate their homes!
And he was right...
Why even King Barron himself came down from the Royal Summit to look around his store!  "I heard the Princess Celeste is displaying her artwork here," he inquired, glancing around the store.

Darius bowed low before showing King Barron to the art room.
Finally, late in the night, Darius closed the shop and headed home, exhausted and elated all at once.

***

"I'm telling you Devon, you should've seen the people gathering in the store! And Baji thought it was a bad idea," he scoffed.
"Darius, be patient with Baji.  He was the sole provider to his siblings from a tender age, protecting you from the world and your mother," his wife chastised.  "Give him time and do not push so hard!"

Darius sighed, "You're right, of course," he said sullenly.

"Of course I am!" Devon smiled broadly.  "Now I must go get Gabriella.  It is time for her bottle."
Devon hurried from the room and lifted Gabriella out of the crib. It struck her how fast her sweet little girl was growing...

Orb's Year 938
It was not hard to notice that Baji's shop was less full than usual.  Everyone sang his brother's praises, as well, congratulating him on Marchant Wares success.
He looked around his store and shook his head with regret.  Darius had left behind all the furniture and taken all the decorative items he had been selling, insisted that they should be sold at Marchant Wares shop instead.  He had and even talked Baji into adding a few more tables and chairs for variety
It didn't sit well with Baji - all these changes!  Things were going fine as they were.  Surely and slowly Baji had been adding to their wealth.  Now that nest egg was gone and their family was one bad sale from peasantry.
And of course they argued over it, once again.

"Why can't you give me the benefit of the doubt?" Darius snapped in anger.  "You're not the only one that can successfully run a business!  I bet my shop could outperform your shop!"

Baji scoffed.  Darius' shop was too new to pull in extra money.  It was likely Darius was using the family coffers to fund his crazy scheme.  "Fine! Prove it! We will see which store does better! If you lose, then you will shut down Marchant Wares!"

"Fine by me! Because I will not lose!  And if you lose, you will make a public apology in front of Marchant Wares for all of Celestia to hear!"

"Fine!" Baji snapped as he stormed away.

***

"Could you please ask Baji to pass the jam?" Darius asked his wife who was sitting beside him. 

Devon turned to Baji, only to have him interrupt.  "Please tell Darius that if he wants the jam, he can get up himself and get it!"

Devon threw her hands up in the air.  "Really!" she said in exasperation.  "You two are acting worse than children! What an example you are setting for Fabian and Gabriella!"

When the two grown men both avoided eye contact, it seemed that nothing could make them put aside their argument.

Orb's Year 939
Only, it wound up being the children that brought them agreeably into the same room as one another one day. 

Not just any day, though.  It was Gabriella's 5th Orb's Year celebration!
"Happy Orb's Year," Devon said as she hugged her daughter close.  Baji gazed down at his little niece and smiled.  He fondly remembered when his own daughter Farha was that young.
Now Farha was a grown woman!  He watched as Devon headed over to share an inside joke with Farha.  She'd grown up so beautiful, like her mother!
His gaze going around the room, Baji caught Barika's eye.  Smiling, she came over and hugged him.  "The children grow too fast," she told her twin in sympathy.

***

Gabriella was a beautiful little girl, the spitting image of her mother.
And just as loud and noisy as any other child!

"Come on children, let us go outside and read a story," Devon said, shooing her children into the sunshine.
Darius waved to his little family as he headed to Marchant Wares. 

Orb's Year 940
Time was running out before Darius and Baji would determine which shop had profited the most.   Today was the last day and they had agreed to work until 11 pm and then close shop to calculate their profits.
At 11 pm, Baji counted out the money in his drawer and felt his heart drop.  It wouldn't have even been enough to pay the King's taxes.  He was struck by his absolute and total failure.

***

"We did it!" Darius cheered when he returned home to find his wife waiting.  "Baji will have to apologize in front of all of Celestia!  I knew Marchant Wares was a good investment!"
"That is quite enough, Darius!" Devon said firmly, with her hands on her hips.  "I've had enough of this competition!  How could you gleefully wish your brother ill?!  We are a family and I will not have my family split into two any longer!  This baby will not be born into a house rife with anger and strife!"
"Pregnant?" Darius asked, placing his hand on her belly.  He looked up hopefully.  "We're having another child?"

Devon softened and placed her hand to his cheek.  "Yes, we are having another child." She paused a moment to let that sink in.  "Mend your rift with Baji.  Not only is he your brother, but he is the only father you have ever known!"
Darius nodded, ashamed at his behavior and his glee at his brother's disappointment.
Cautiously he entered the shop and felt his heart drop when he saw his weary brother bent over the cash drawer.

Baji did not even look up when Darius put his arm around his brother.  "Did you come to gloat?" he asked.  "You were right. I was wrong. Marchant Wares is more successful than my little shop. Without your help, we would not have been able to pay the King's taxes, yet again..."  Baji trailed off disheartened.
It hurt to hear Baji so dejected.  "I'm sorry, too.  All I wanted to do was help!  I've seen you struggle to support for the family so many years, I wanted to do my part. But, I was too eager.  I should've talked to you first.  If we had worked together, we would have had more success in all we did!"

Baji reached forward and clasped his brother's arm.  "We'll do it together from here on out. Agreed?"

"Agreed!" Darius said proudly. 

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