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occam's razor [africa trip]
#1
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July 3rd, 1889 — Mafré, a town on the Niger River

As the afternoon wore on, the sun finally retiring from its almost unbearably hot zenith, Arven emerged from lunch, picking a stray piece of cassava root from his teeth. He'd been eating with some of the native West Africans who made up half the population of Mafré, a small township on the Niger River. The other half were British settlers. Currently the British collective also included Arven and the crew of the good ship Voyager from London, headlining evangelists from the Church of Saint Fergus. Arven was very much not an evangelist, but he was very much part of their mission to enhance the area's access to developed sanitation tools.

The tall adventurer had tied back his rugged blond hair and rolled his sleeves all the way up, used to the scorching sun and taking it in his stride. Arven was working on installing another water tap in the town; this one behind the school house. He dipped to one knee, drew his wand, and tried another couple of muttered spells to get it working — but to no avail. He remembered why he'd given up and gone to lunch. And then as he thought of the muggle citizens of Mafré he'd just eaten with, a thought struck him — think like a muggle. So Arven swapped his wand for a wrench, twisted the bonnet nut tight, and the water gulped, churned, and finally began to flow from the tap in a merry cascade. "Hah." Merlin, had it been that simple all along?
#2
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They had stopped off in Mafré which suited Pablo just fine. Most of his time had been spent canvassing the wild. His naturally darkened skin was getting even tanner already and he had stopped with the 'proper' way of tying back his somewhat long hair. He was dressed loosely and comfortably which had scandalized an evangelist woman or two already. Oops.

Coming back into the town, writing something on a bit of parchment, he came across one of the other adventurers. One he knew to be related to his cousins wife or some such. Not that he had personally ever had the pleasure of meeting him. Odd considering their familial link but then again, Pablo had been thought dead for some years. He noted his actions with amusement. "Very nice thinking outside the magical box." Merlin only knew that there had been times when Pablo had not had magic to rely on and only his wits.
#3
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As the water flowed and Arven shut off the now-fixed tap with a satisfied smile, he turned round to see the expedition's Magizoologist, a handsome chap with a ten-yard gaze.

"Yes, funny when the muggle way is best", he replied in agreement. For it was not an intuitive solution — and yet it had worked!

"I don't think we've been properly introduced. Arven Fisk", he held out a slightly muddy hand. "Herbert is my brother by law. I understand you're his... first cousin?" Or something like that.
#4
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"Pablo Medina and yes, I am," Pablo confirmed when Mister Fisk mentioned their family link. "A pleasure to finally meet you." The man was handsome and Pablo was not at all adverse to being in his company so far. "I heard a little rumor that you usually have a ferret with you," he said, wondering if the man had brought it along with him, left it back on the ship or back home entirely.
#5
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He turned off the tap, which screeched faintly, water drops still dripping from his long fingers. The element felt so precious in lands such as these; precious and scarce.

”Oh, that would be Virgil”, Arven replied with a chuckle when Pablo Medina mentioned his pet ferret. ”He’s around here somewhere — hunting snakes most likely. You’ll know him when you see him.”

With his work on the water tap done, Arven straightened up to his full, considerable height. ”I’m not surprised you heard about the little fellow. I once made the… contentious decision to bring him to my uncle’s dinner party.”
#6
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Pablo smiled when Mister Fisk told him the name of the ferret and mentioned that he was around somewhere. Pablo was very fond of critters of all kinds so he definitely hoped to see the critter for himef.

"I'm sure that went quite well," Pablo could not help but laugh, wondering how his own mother would react were he to bring a furry critter that wasn't a cat or dog home as a dinner guest. "I've heard you've been on many an adventure yourself," he said conversationally, inviting the man to talk about them if he so chose.
#7
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Having made a bit of a mess while attempting to fix the water tap, Arven set about sprucing up the area, replacing some of the stones that had fallen out of the low wall. ”Ah, don’t get me started”, he joked as he did so, responding to Medina’s remark on his wider ventures. ”I could talk your ear off about some of my more dramatic exploits. But let’s start with yours”, he looked along at the gentleman. ”What tempted you on board the good ship Voyager?”


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