Maximillian Armor

January 21, 2017:

Repairing antique armor takes a special set of skills so Morien reaches out to a specialist.

Umoja Tower

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions:

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Punctuality is a virtue, especially for first impressions, which is what has lead a jury-rigged motorcycle to a parking deck in New York's wealthy finance district a full half hour before its rider's scheduled meeting. While the smith might have wasted a little time peeking into a cooking store on the way over, she still arrived at the imposing entrance to Umoja Tower with a few minutes to spare…

Which is why she's now ten minutes late and still outside the tower.

"Ma'am, once again, I have to ask you to remove your armor and any metal or electronics you're carrying before entering the building," a guard instructs sternly but wearily.

"And I told you it doesn't come off! I'm metal all the way down, you'll be letting a puff of air through the metal detector," the metal smith complains back. Rain, shine, snow, or ice, in any weather she's dressed in the same ornately gilded suit of full plate, and at the moment it's giving her trouble. Clanking a hand against her faceplate in frustration, she sighs heavily, a sound tinged by a metallic echo as it passes through her rigid steel lips. "Look just… can you call Mr. Washington? I'm supposed to be talking to him like five whole minutes ago!"

The security officers were in the middle of turnover and training a new security officer, and Kelly Smith just happens to be confronted by officer under going training. One of the senior officers stops with turnover, and looks at the access list. "Stand down. You check the name on the list. When you see this symbol. You know that we have a powered individual visitor at the Tower.

The security guard motions Kelly to the security camera, takes her picture, and prints out a security badge for her. The experienced security officer eyes meticulously traces Kelly's entire form up and down, "You still need to keep this badge on you at all times. The badge will grant you access to the elevator and the conference room where your meeting is to take place.

The other experience security officer presses the intercom, "We have a code 56 visitor. I repeat we had a code 56 visitor. Please follow standard guidelines and procedures. Several doors that were previously open begin to shut, and some more guards appear on various floors. There are several officers outside the elevator leading to the conference room to where Morien is waiting for her. There is a small buffet set up with a host of various foods and drinks.

Kelly rubs the back of her helmet awkwardly as she presents her face… well, facemask, then finally gets to step inside the tower. Accepting the badge, she slips a metal wire out from the seam of her neck and threads it through to create a quick necklace. "Right, powered… it can never be just a normal shopping trip," she mumbles to herself. "At ease boys, I'm just here to talk shop…"

When she finally reaches Morien's conference room, the smith pokes her metal face in the door and waves apologetically. "Sorry I'm late! Uh… human… things… got in the way," she finishes awkwardly.

Morien waves his hands in a dismissive manner, "No, need to apologize, and I hope you accept my apology for taking extra precautions. It is not really my rule, but more of the board that I reluctantly agreed too. I believe it helps our employees believe that we are doing our best to keep them safe, and I think our board just wants us to be able to say that we kept our people safe, so we can avoid any lawsuits if we attacked by someone."

Morien tilts his head toward his left shoulder as he dark eyes admire the craftsmanship of her armor, "Your armor is exquisite. Did you do it yourself?" Morien points to the table where the food is located, "I wasn't sure what you look liked to eat or drink to fuel your artistic spirit, so I hope you find something that stirs your senses. I was wondering did you get a chance to look at some of the sculptures as you came into the building?"

Kelly's posture straightens with pride as she steps fully into the room while her cat-ears and tail tuck themselves flush against the back of her armor, not wanting to appear too exotic. "Every inch of it," she beams, her voice holding the same mildly metallic echo as her earlier sigh. "And I understand. Funny looks and special treatment come with standing out. This fashion kind of died out in the last four hundred years, but some of us still know how to make things the old-fashioned ways. And thank you for the food - really - but I'm actually not hungry right now, sorry." To a discerning eye, while her armor has several personal quirks, it also shows influence from the old Nuremburg armorers.

"I got to see a few of them," she nods cheerfully, veering back to her preferred topic. "I don't think I recognized any, but they're very nice."

"I was hoping to add one or two new sculptures to the front of the building, perhaps maybe even used the revealing of the sculptures at a charity slash art exhibit." A soft smile appear on his lips, "My CFO, Mrs. Reynolds stated that one of her sisters recently purchased one of your pieces, and she took a picture of it. It is an amazing piece of craftsmanship.

Morien settles down in his chair and clasps his hands together and again his eyes fall to her armor. "I apologize for staring. Really, I am not one of those lecherous playboy rich men that have here in New York and Gotham. I considered myself an amateur historian. He chuckles softly, "Perhaps, calling myself an amateur is giving myself to much credit, but where did you study. I am just looking at your armor and seems to have some old Nuremburg influences.

If Kelly could blush she'd be just about scarlet as the toes the floor and rocks in place bashfully at the praise. When she notices the CEO's eyes hanging on her though, her demeanor changes and her hands return from behind her back as she makes a half turn to pose in mimicry of Morien's statues. A delicate inlay of brass catches the overhead light and glimmers up her side.

"Ooh good eye. I've always loved how fluid Lochner's inlays were - he made metal look like painted porcelain. I'm not up to his level but hey, I'm still practicing." Spinning the other way, Kelly arches her back to show the flexibility of her hinged plating - one of several small innovations. And while she's added splashes of alloyed color to her plates, she's also made a few other concessions to form over function. Even if Lochner ever made a woman's suit of armor, it was certainly blockier.

"Mostly I'm self-taught, but I think I've seen every piece of armor on display in eight hours of here, plus a few… too many old books maybe," the smith admits, recalling her overflowing study. "Stare your heart out. I'm wearing this stuff to show off my merchandise."

"Tis okay, I have learned long time ago never to stare to long at perfection, unless one wants to either lost in despair or desire." Morien presses a button and hologram of the courtyard appears, "I was hoping to add a new statute that fits the theme of neo-impressionism. I know what you are saying that there is no such thing as neo-impressionist sculptures. I called these works neo-impressionism because they use a combination of color, the light and shadow, shape, etc to allow the viewer to perceive the designed of the sculpture that could be achieved by just designed it our right. I guess most people would call it abstract, but I believe it is way more than that."

Morien shrugs his shoulders. "Each artist's vision had unique vision to fit this theme, and I just showcased it. Perhaps it is just that I think there should be an oddity that exists in the world for a long period of time."

"So… you want me to make something incomplete that will be filled in by shadows at a certain time of day?" Kelly asks in confusion as she leans in to study the hologram.

"If your artistic energies lead you in that direction. I want you to create whatever you think that I desire." There is a chesire grin that does appear on his face, "I am sure if you put your mind to it. You can create something fantastic and that I desire, and will be a marvel to everyone that sees it. It should be inspiring and uplifting too." Morien stands and walks over to her. "I know I am asking for a lot." Morien furrows his brow as again his eyes are drawn to her armor. "Is it all right that I touch your armor? I mean no offense. Which I know is hard to believe, because I am asking to touch you." Morien taps his left foot a few times as he wonders if he really needs to be more social to people, because he realizes how odd that question was?"

Kelly hums and taps her chin. "Okay, inspiring and uplifting, I think I can do that." She's jolted from her thoughts as Morien approaches and she nods briskly. "Please! I told you, it's here to be admired."

True to her appearance, the smith's armor is smooth, finely polished steel that's cold to the touch and seamlessly transitions in and out of her brass inlays.

Morien narrow his eyes at the hinges and shakes his head in an appreciative joy as his hands move over the armor. He taps the hinges a few times, "Simply exquisite. Do you do other commissions? We provide some clients with some high-end security. I think some of them would look amazing in business suits that were made in similar way. I might wear one myself."

Morien lets out a frustrated sigh as he goes to sit back down. "I am always having to have a security detail with me, when I travel outside. I might be able to lose a few members from my detail with a suit like that. Hmm, I probably couldn't wear one. People would think that I wanted to be some sort of hero. I would hate for people to run towards me for help, and my only way to help them would be to cower somewhere.

Morien lets out another soft chuckle and quickly slaps his forehead. "I am so absent-minded. I forgot that I called you here for another reason. Do you do refurbishing of armor sets?

Kelly's double-hinged cuirass flexes under the CEO's touch, the woman inside not completely insensate to his attention. "My work is pretty well divided between clockwork stuff, armor pieces, and little sharp things," the smith explains. "Moving armor's my favorite; I can definitely craft more of this. Just… don't expect something of the same quality unless you're willing to be patient. This thing took me an insane amount of time."

"Ooh, you mean like restoring old historical pieces?" She asks with an excited chipperness as her hands clank together in front of her chest.

"I have a lot of time on my hands. I will speak with my R&D department and shoot you some few designs. You can make some notes, and shoot them back to me." Morien smiles. "You might have to suffer going through our security procedures and seeing my face again, but I will try to make it worth your while. If we like your official designs, we can provide you with a profitable contract for further work."

Morien presses another button and a large size panel in one of the walls open up. There inside the panel is an original set of Maximilian armor. He peers down at armor and says, "I can have the armor shipped to your business. It has some dings that need to hammered out. It seems that someone took the time to polished, but the lack the skill to restore it to its original state. I still have a hard time believing it is not a fake. I haven't had it tested, because I didn't want the armor to be further damage."

Morien walks over to the armor and his eyes widen slightly as he recalls the first time he wore it so many years ago. He taps his left foot again as he gets lost in the memory. "I hope you can restore it. It would mean the world to me."

"Oh that would be great! I look forward to seeing what you want," Kelly chimes perkily at the offer of work. Then she turns her head, and sees the armor hiding within the wall. The smith stops dead.

"Ho-"
"-ly"
"Martensite."

The metal smith appears almost instantly behind Morien's heels and peers around his side at the glimmering fluted steel. Her eyes shine in wonder and she stutters with excitement. "Y-you mean I actually get to… to *work* on this?!" She asks breathlessly.

Morien lets out a small chuckle because of Smith's response. "Well, only if you think you can fit it into your schedule. I am willing to wait for it to return to it's original condition. I believe the last owner stated that his family had been searching for someone to repair it for quite sometime. It seems very few people still trained to work in armor smithing, and very few have the skill to repair pieces."

Morien eyes turn away from the armor and back to Kelly, "You seem to be quite skillfull, so I was hoping you could repair it. I calculated and enclosed some pieces of metal from roughly the same time period that the suit was created. I was hoping you could used it to repair."

Morien lets our a nervous cough and catches himself, "If the piece of armor is real, if not you are adding some old metal fragments to a really good forgery.

"I've never tried repairing a suit like *this*," Kelly blurts before she can catch herself. "Oh! But I'll make up a dummy first to make sure I can get the curves and everything else right. At least it's white steel so I won't have to worry about inlays and alloying. How concerned are you with matching the look with or without matching the structure? As long as it's close I can burnish other steel to match the appearance but if I don't match up their tempers and really work the pieces together, you'll have a little weak spot where the hardness changes. That means reburnishing a lot of it though, because that much heat will spread."

Morien taps his left foot again as contemplates what Kelly is saying. "Hmmm, I don't think anyone will be wearing anytime soon. I think we should go for look over structure, besides I just met you. I think it would be a bit greedy to have to know have a perfect set of armor and know a person who has a perfect set of armor.

Morien says. "I can have it to your shop by the day, and please whatever you need to restore it is yours."

"Phew," the smith sighs in relief. "That will make things a lot more — eheh! You really like this armor don't you, Mr. Washington?" Kelly giggles as finally tears her gaze back from the armor and sets her hand on her hip.

"As I stated before I have study history from time to time, and know what it takes to pull off something as meticulous and grandiose as your armor. Please call me, Morien." Morien walks backs over to, and extends his hand to her, "It has really been a pleasure to meet you. I have a feeling that might be the beginning of an interesting partnership, Ms. Smith."

"Oh goodness, it's Kelly. That makes me feel ancient," the smith laments with a bright laugh as she straightens up and accepts Morien's hand, giving it a snug but gentle squeeze with her gauntlet. "I just hope I can meet your expectations, but I'll make sure your armor gets treated right even if I have to build three whole replicas to fix it the way it should be."

"Thank you, Kelly." Morien furrows his brow again, "Before you go, can ask you a personal question?"

The smith's helmet tilts curiously to one side, canting her expressionless mask. "Sure, I guess?"

"You really are just your armor?" Morien says. "This is not some sort of amazing way to show of your work combine with performance art. It seems that you have been force to live the life of a modern tin woodsmen.

Kelly rubs her helmet again and glances aside awkwardly. "Yeeeeah, that's my deep, dark secret," she admits before turning back to Morien and holding out her arm. The double-hinges of her armor spring to life as her plates shift, unlatch, and spring apart, revealing a framework of metal and mechanisms inside her arm and torso. The purpose of each isn't immediately clear but much of Kelly's body… is just empty space.

After exposing herself for a few seconds, the smith's armor swings shut again and settles back into place. "Honestly it's not so bad. I mean, my food bill is nothing, I don't even sleep so I have twice as much time to study and smith as a normal person, and I don't have to go clothes shopping every time I grow out of my…" Kelly catches herself and coughs into her hand. "Ahem. Anyway the alternative is being dead so compared to that it's kind of nice."

Morien lowers his bit and whispers, "I apologize for my question. I am sorry that you find yourself in this state." Morien hates the words that he is about to speak next, but he still speaks them, but he turns so his back is to her. "I cannot imagine the mixed blessing of not dying, but being forced to lived in an unpleasing state.

He lets out a cough and looks down at his watch. "I keep odd hours at times. If you call ahead, and you need to talk about smithing, crafting, or anything else, please call. I might be free. If you are free, I would like to see your shop sometime."

"It's alright. I mean I'm going to die at some point - I think. No one's *that* immortal. Besides I haven't finished crafting yet - I still have plenty to do," Kelly asserts firmly. "One day I'll be in the history books alongside Lochner, Masamune, and John Fritz." Looking down at her gauntlet, the smith flexes her metal hand slowly. "Steel still has a lot of secrets in it…"

Jolting back from her errant thoughts, Kelly nods briskly and gives Morien a small curtsey, accentuated by a momentary flare of her articulated skirt, before making her way to the door. "I will, Morien. Once I get a little ways into the suit I'll let you come over and see the work-in-progress."

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