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Thomas awoke in his bed inside of The Swans Nest and stretched. Even though he had logged out it felt as if his body had slept for the night. This made him wonder just what happened to his avatar when he logged out? Did it vanish? Did it just lay there unconscious? Did it phase out partially? He honestly didn't know yet. Laying back down on the bed to relax for a moment he opened his character sheet and was about to spend some experience to increase his stats, but stopped himself.

"Wait a moment. Last time I pushed Power and Endurance past ten I was wracked with pain and knocked out for hours. Will that happen again if I increase Agility and Magic past ten?"

Frowning to himself he looked at his character sheet and let out a long sigh, "Dammit. I should have increased my attributes before logging out! If I increase my attributes and pass out again I'll waste a huge portion of the day. I'm not as good at tailoring as other professions so I can't afford to waste a single moment."

Thomas sighs longingly as he looks at the 1,213 experience he has but was too afraid to spend. With that much experience, he could easily increase his attributes by a fair amount and make himself stronger. Well. Maybe it doesn't really matter for today. After all how strong do you need to be to push a needle through fabric anyways? It's just... it was a fundamental part of the gaming experience to grow stronger! It felt wrong to not be getting stronger with so much experience to spend!

Just thinking about it nonstop would just put himself into a bad mood, so Thomas got out of bed, got dressed for the day, and headed down to the dining room to enjoy a nice breakfast. As he was eating he double checked his remaining funds, 137 gold. Enough to stay at The Swans Nest for another five days. In that time he would need to earn a bit of extra money. Hopefully, he would get paid for his work at the tailor shop.

After his breakfast, Thomas headed out and found a guard to ask for directions to Zella's Fashions. With simple directions, it didn't take him long to find the building. It was on the same main street as Hekrin's shop and Rock's Armory so it wasn't too hard to find. It seemed like this really was the center of the artisan district and most of the shops were pretty close together. Zella's Fashions was actually right next door to the shop he'd bought his spare set of clothing at, he just hadn't noted it before.

After entering the shop, Thomas was greeted by an older woman with graying hair. Despite her age, it was easy to tell that she would have been a real beauty just a few decades ago. The woman smiled at Thomas, her bright blue eyes practically glittering, "Welcome to Zella's Fashions. Is there anything I can help you find?"

Thomas smiled at the woman and nodded, "Actually, I'm looking for madam Zella. I was hoping to learn the art of tailoring from her."

The woman's smile immediately vanished and was replaced with a frown, her eyes turned a bit frosty, and her warm tone turned a little colder, "I'm Zella." She looked Thomas up and down for a moment as her frown deepened, "If you're just another pretty boy muscle head coming here to gawk at the girls while pretending to want to learn from me, you can go ahead and leave now."

Thomas raised his hands defensively and waved them back and forth, "No no. I swear I am only here to learn tailoring and improve it to rank 25. I have no ulterior motives for being here."

Zella studied Thomas for a bit longer before letting out a sigh, "We shall see. Follow me."

Zella turned to her right and entered a door into a side room, beckoning for Thomas to follow her. Once inside of the room Thomas understood her skepticism. There was a veritable bevy of beauties in the room working on various pieces of fabric. The only other man was slightly overweight and was very clearly gawking at the woman as he barely put effort into what he was doing. Seeing the man Zella yelled at him, "Drukker! I swear if you don't stop gawking at the girls I am going to kick you out onto the street and ban you from my shop. I've already warned the other seamstresses of your lechery so don't expect any of them to take you in either!"

The man, Drukker, jumped and immediately focused in on his work trying his best to not piss off Zella any further. For her part, Zella just huffed in displeasure and turned to one of the girls, "Daisy please watch the counter for a while. I've got another 'gentleman' to teach. If he turns out as bad as that other otherworlder, Drukker, I'm going to ban all otherworlder men from learning here in the future."

The woman, Daisy, nodded and headed out the way Zella and Thomas had entered. After she departed Zella lead Thomas over to the same table Drukker was working at and gestured for Thomas to sit down, "Let's get this over with."

Zella pulled out a small section of cloth, a paper pattern, a coal pencil, a needle, some thread, two leather thongs, and a pair of scissors, setting them all in front of Thomas, "I'm going to have you make a simple money purse. Just follow my instructions to the letter."

Zella pointed to the paper pattern. It was a shape reminiscent of an hourglass with a slightly thicker center, "Use the pencil to trace the pattern onto the cloth."

System Notice: Tailoring Tutorial. Follow the directions of Zella to unlock the Tailoring Skill.

Thomas nodded, and to Zella's surprise, placed the pattern down near the bottom right corner of the square of cloth. The cloth was deliberately made big enough to make four purses with, it was a test of sorts. Most people without tailoring experience would tend to place the pattern in the center of the cloth, thus wasting a lot of material. With Thomas putting the pattern at the bottom right corner he would be able to make the most out of the material.

After tracing the pattern, Zella nodded, "Very good. Now cut the traced pattern out."

Thomas would have preferred to use something like an X-acto knife to cut the thin material. Handling the material and the scissors was an annoyance since the material wasn't very stiff. He managed to cut the pattern out without any major issues though. Zella instructed further, "Fold it in half and align the flat edges at the top and bottom. Once it's folded thread the needle and try to sew the edges. Don't sew all the way to the top though. Keep an even space from the top that can be folded over later."

Seeing as how Zella didn't give him specific instructions on how to stitch the cloth together, Thomas decided to use a type of stitching method known as an overcast stitch. It was a very simple stitching method that would hold the edge together nicely. Thomas picked up the needle and quickly threaded it with thread that matched the color of the fabric. The matching colors would make the thread stand out much less. Once the needle was threaded and knotted at the end, Thomas began his careful work.

He started by pushing the needle through the fabric from one side and pulling the thread completely through until the knot of the thread met the fabric. Once it had Thomas looped the thread over the edge of the fabric and pushed the needle through again from the same side. Zella watched Thomas as he slowly worked his way around the edge of the fabric using the overcast stitch. It was a simple and effective method and Thomas took care to do it properly. It only took Thomas about ten minutes to stitch the entire edge of the soon-to-be purse.

With the stitching done he clipped the thread with the scissors and tied it into another knot completing his work on the current step. Zella nodded in approval and was a little surprised at the decent work Thomas had done. In her opinion, Thomas was leagues above that scoundrel Drukker. Zella took the purse from Thomas and examined it, he'd used an adequate stitch that she was familiar with, though it probably had a different name to her. With her examination complete she handed the purse back to Thomas, "Now, reverse the purse so that the stitching is on the inside. Once that is done flip the lips at the top down and stitch their edges to the purse. You want to leave just enough space to feed the leather thongs through so they can act as the purses drawstring to seal it closed."

Thomas nodded and did as instructed after rethreading his needle, though this time he used a basic running stitch. He would push the needle through from one side, turn it around, and push it back through. The most basic of stitches, but a time-honored classic because it simply worked. After stitching both flaps to create the tunnels for the leather thongs to go through he didn't need any further instructions and fed a thong through from the right. He did so by bending the thong in half and pushing each end through each of the tunnels. After that was done he tied the ends into a knot and repeated the process in the opposite direction. This way when someone tugged at the two knotted ends it would collapse the purse closed. Once he tied the second thong into a knot he completed the purse.

System Notice: Tutorial Complete. You have unlocked the Tailoring skill.
Tailoring // Rank 1 // 0/20 // Allows you to weave cloth, create patterns, and sew fabric items.

Zella picked up the finished purse and examined it before nodding, "Not bad, not excellent, but not bad." She set the purse down and looked Thomas over with a somewhat warmer and more appraising gaze, "You have experience as a tailor?"

Thomas nodded, "Some. It's not the thing I'm most proficient at though so I hope I can learn some new things here."

Zella nodded and looked him over again, "I honestly have to admit that despite your bulky build your fingers are still rather nimble. But if you seriously intend to pursue tailoring you're going to have to suck it up and invest more into your Agility attribute."

Thomas looked down at his rippling muscles and grimaced, "No need to tell me twice. This was an accident born of ignorance. I plan to up my Agility shortly so I should have slimmed down by tomorrow."

Zella nodded curtly in approval, "Good! Now, I want you to make me three more purses from that square of cloth. When you're done let me know and I will give you another task. Seeing as how quickly you made this one, I expect them to be done in less than three hours." He tone turned firm at the end of her statement, like a boss ordering an employee.

System Notice: New Quest!
Zella has requested that you make three more purses for her.
Rewards: 100 Exp, 10 gold
Time Limit: 3 hours

Thomas smiled at the quest. The rewards weren't fantastic and there was no possibility of a bonus listed, but what else could he expect from a beginner quest for tailoring? Thomas nodded to Zella and immediately got to work. He repeated the previous process of tracing the pattern, only he traced out all three at once. Seeing Thomas getting into the work, Zella gave a look of approval and relieved Daisy of her duties behind the counter. As soon as Zella left, the fool Drukker, once again began to oggle the beautiful women working in the shop.

It wasn't that Thomas couldn't appreciate the women, or that he couldn't understand why Drukker would be so enamored with them. But as far as Thomas could tell they were all NPC's. He wasn't prejudiced, but this was a game. No matter how lifelike or realistic the women NPC's might be, at the end of the day if AoG was closed they would all vanish. Would it really be worth investing his emotions into them? Well... a couple of one night stands wouldn't be so terrible at least.

Shaking his head, Thomas focused on his work. For now, finishing the quest chain was his driving focus. The more Hekrin denied him the chance to learn something new, the more determined Thomas was to learn it! For the next three hours, Thomas meticulously worked on the purses. He wasn't sure what rating the first purse got exactly, but Zella had said it wasn't 'excellent' so he assumed it was either average or above average. Since he got more crafting experience for making higher quality goods he focused on the quality of each purse. He made his stitches closer and tighter while working at a slightly faster pace to keep up with the deadline.

After each purse was sewn he fed the leather thongs through and finished each purse within a minute of each other.

System Notice: You have created a Normal cloth purse. Quality: Above Average. You gained 23 Tailoring experience.
System Notice: You have created a Normal cloth purse. Quality: Above Average. You gained 23 Tailoring experience.
System Notice: You have created a Normal cloth purse. Quality: Above Average. You gained 23 Tailoring experience.

With that done, Thomas picked up the purses and headed out of the back room to turn them over to Zella. Zella carefully examined each purse and nodded before digging out ten gold coins and passing them over to Thomas.

System Notice: Quest Complete!
Zella has requested that you make three more purses for her.
Rewards: 100 Exp, 10 gold
Time Limit: 3 hours
System Notice: You have gained 100 experience.

Thomas smiled as he accepted the money from Zella, "What would you like me to do next?"


Spoiler
: Character Sheet
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A note from thomasdarkrose

I have to admit I am nowhere near as knowledgeable about tailoring as I am about blacksmithing, so if anyone notices anything I did incorrectly please let me know so I can fix it! Thanks! I hope you guys enjoyed tonight's chapter.


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About the author

thomasdarkrose

  • Georgia, USA

Bio: Just your average self-employed American with some spare time that enjoys reading, and now writing.

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