Mapping It Out

JP with Lorem and Cindy

Ellington Estate, Paris
May 12, 1889
Around 9 PM

Lorem staggered her little self back to her workshop with the heavy pack on her back. It was bigger than her and from a distance hid her from view, making it look almost like it was an inanimate object with legs.

Upon entering the workshop she cleaned and put all of her equipment away. Then tidied up a little on her workbenches from earlier. Then came a steam shower, a fresh work dress, and time in front of a mirror in order to braid her long blonde hair. It felt good to be clean and refreshed.

The entire time she couldn’t help but let her mind wander to thoughts about what she just witnessed, concerns for her stolen teammates, and what was happening with everyone right now with their two new guests. It apparently had nothing to do with her, so she filled her pockets with some nuts and bolts and made her way to dinner.

Upon arrival, she found she was the only one there to eat. It felt strange, but she took her seat and was attended to by the staff. She awkwardly ate in silence, but it wasn’t long before she was thinking about the perimeter security system again. She made good headway on it today, but it would probably take her one more day to have the full schematics and mathematics completed for final review.

And that’s when something peculiar caught her ears. What was that sound? It was dreadful as she listened closer in. Like a titanium pick being ranked over something hard, but brittle enough to scrape and break. It made her shudder and sent a eery chill down her spine. She looked about the room, and over her shoulder, the awful sounds making her imagine that some evil was lurking about and would soon jump out at her. What on earth was that sound? Her curiosity and anxiety were teaming up and had her listen further to try and figure it out.

Elizabeth couldn't say she was particularly hungry but figured she should eat something to keep up her stamina.

She entered the dining room to find Lorem sitting alone, eating by herself. "Miss Ipsum," Elizabeth started to greet the gnome but was clear the gnome wasn't hearing her. She wondered if this had anything to do with what was going on downstairs in the cellar. Elizabeth couldn't hear anything of the interrogation but Gnomes did have exceptional hearing.

Elizabeth took a little food and sat down, waiting to see if Lorem realized she was there.

Gnomes did indeed have exceptional hearing; however, Lorem did not hear Elizabeth enter or speak to her. The reason was because she had placed into her ears a little invention, of her own making, that acted like noise-canceling earplugs. She would use them when working in loud industrial areas at work, or in this case when the dreadful sounds of an interrogation were making her sick to her stomach. No longer being able to hear the torturing was helpful, but she felt awful that something like that was taking place. One could probably tell by the awkward way she was eating and picking at the food on her plate that she was a little off her normal demeanor.

When her peripheral vision alerted her of Elizabeth’s presence, Lorem jumped slightly in her seat in surprise. The chair wobbled but returned to equilibrium quickly. She removed the earplugs and looked relieved to see Elizabeth well and moving. She offered a relieved smile.

“Thank goodness you are alright Lady Elizabeth.”

"Thank you, Miss Ipsum. I did not mean to startle you." Elizabeth responded. "I am mending, anyway." She thought for a moment and decided to ask. "Miss Ipsum, I could use your help with something, if you are able." Besides seeing the Gnome remove the earplugs only confirmed her suspicions of Lorem being able to hear what was going on in the basement and going to a room where she likely couldn't hear that it might be useful.

“If you need help with something I will do my best.” She placed her folded napkin down on her finished plate. She eagerly looked up at Lady Elizabeth with a twinkle of curiosity, wondering what she was going to say.

Elizabeth wasn't that hungry and put down her plate, and stood up. "We will need to go to the library." She walked with Lorem to the library, asking one of the servants to bring some tea into the room in a few minutes. Once they were in the library, Elizabeth closed the door behind her and went to a door opposite the door to the hallway. This door led to a closet. There were a few various items in the closest but the ones Elizabeth seemed interested in were long cylinders, there were several with different covered caps on them. Elizabeth pulled out a red one and a blue one. Then asked Lorem. "How good are you at reading maps?"

It might have become apparent that with the door to the hallway closed, the library was very quiet. The sounds from the cellar and most other areas of the house couldn't be heard, even Lorem couldn't hear the cellar noises any longer.

Lorem breathed a sigh of relief with the welcomed silence of the library. She followed Lady Elizabeth and waited patiently to discover what her assignment would be.

“Proficient. My sister works in agriculture and I used to color on her old topography maps under her workbench back home when I was growing up.” She laughed lightly remembering the pleasant memories. She had much more experience with maps than that, but that was the only thing she shared about her exposure to them.
"Oh good. I have been trained in reading maps as well but am unaware of how much my head can handle it this evening. So, your expertise will be of use.." Elizabeth pulled out a fairly large map from the blue cylinder and out came flat round stones. She laid the map down on one of the larger tables, putting the rocks in the corners so the map would stay down. "This, as you can see is a map of Paris." Elizabeth went to the desk and pulled out two pens and inkwells and brought them to the table with the map, She put one in front of Lorem and kept one down the other side of the map. Elizabeth then said. "We have several of these maps so do not worry about marking them." The Eldren then marked an E on the map. "This is where my home is." She marked another area. "This is where the temple of the Children is." And then made another mark in a different area. "This is where Miss Lagrave, Cronk, and myself were dropped off. " She turned to Lorem, "Can you make off where you were attacked and the area where the exposition is taking place? " Elizabeth could do that last part herself but it was easier to have Lorem do it at the moment.

Lorem admired the map, her eyes scanning it systematically. She then took the stylus available and after getting her orientation set marked both locations.

“Here and here.” She replied as the back of her mind paid attention to any patterns.

Elizabeth made a few more marks for the building Staniadis's office was in and the building she had seen William in the Elizabeth had been out with Cronk.

A knock was heard on the door, Elizabeth opened the door and at first it was a servant with tea and and snacks. He put the tray down, on a different table but m near where they had the map.

Right when that servant left, Harold entered. "Lady Elizabeth, Captain Wayneright has arrived."

"Thank you, Harold." Elizabeth went over to the desk and got out a different bottle of ink. When it marked something it would be in blue, as opposed to the black they had been using. She then went back to the table and opened the second tube. A clear map with lines on it came out. When it was unrolled, it fit directly on top of the map of Paris. Sort of a clear overlay. "This map shows the underground network of tunnels. The blank areas are alcoves or larger areas that might be rooms. The areas with the X's are Catacombs. What I need is for all the blank areas that are near any of the areas we marked off on the first map, to be marked in blue ink. We might be able to find one that's within good access to all or most of the areas we marked off. " Elizabeth hoped she was making sense. Her headache not helping much with that. "Just do what you can. I will be back in a moment."

The Eldren went into the shelves of books and pulled out one, it was entitled Lost Magical Artifacts. She followed Harold out of the room with the book in hand, closing the door behind her.

Lorem loved a good puzzle to uncover and immediately organized and relocated herself, the maps, and her marking tools to be more efficient. Her eyes meticulously scanned the maps and made the appropriate marks in relationship to the key areas already indicated. If someone were to walk in they wouldn’t even see her. She had moved to the floor behind the desk and was down on her belly working. Her lower legs were bent at the knees and her feet were keeping rhythm in the air, back and forth like a metronome.

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