Lt. Cmdr. DeVeau - "The Problem Of Clothing"

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Amanda Nordstrom

Jan 3, 2019, 4:13:56 PM1/3/19

((Planet Limbo, Day 35))

::Sewing had been a skill that Alora’s mother insisted she learn, despite no need to really have it.  Starting off with quilts, the young woman had eventually realised why some people continued to dabble in arts and crafts - it was soothing, sometimes therapeutic.  Despite her busy schedule, Alora had made quite a few gifts, though most of them were baby quilts or wall hangings, which mean they didn’t take as long to make. Having something handmade also was special, and it helped her appreciate the antiques and other things handed down from previous ancestors all the more.::

::What Alora and her mother had never expected was that sewing was actually going to come in handy in a place neither had thought she’d ever be.  Over a month had passed, and Alora’s uniform had gotten more and more worn. Holes enlarged, leaving more swaths of skin exposed, and eventually, the entire thing was just going to fall off.  After finally getting used to trapping her own food, Alora had set out figuring out how to skin animals in order to use it.:: ::The skinning itself hadn’t been too bad.  After several attempts, which had resulted in a rather bloody mess, she had managed to work out the best and even cleanest way to do it without splattering fluids everywhere. How to cure the skins, however, was even worse.:: ::First, Alora realised that to do so, she was going to have to stay put for a while.  Carrying a skin that was curing wasn’t really doable. Second, the only thing Alora had to go on were memories of what she had read when she studied Native Americans.  Since that had been some time go, the memories were dim. Not to mention, she hadn’t really done anything, nor had she really read step by step instructions.  Descriptions of the technique were about it, and even that was hard to bring to mind.::

::Unlike the skinning, figuring out how to get the skin to a point where it was decent to work with had taken a lot more tries.  She knew she had to remove the sinew and any tissue, she knew she had to wash it, and Alora knew she had to dry it. Washing and drying it hadn’t been difficult once she found a shallow river, and it was there she had decided to set up camp.  No, removing the undesired parts - that had annoying. As useful as the scavenged claw had been, it was too large for that particular project. Alora had attempted it anyway, and only succeeded in tearing a hole in the skin. So what else was there that she could use?::

::Eventually, she’d settled on rocks and searched for ones she thought would work.  Eventually, she procured a long, thin, sharp one that seemed to do the trick, though not without a goodly amount of elbow grease.  Just that activity had taken half a day, and she was exhausted afterward. Dimly, she remembered reading that the fur was generally removed as well.  Since the pog’s fur was short and soft, she decided it wasn’t worth the effort. The fur would stay. What she needed was something functional, not beautiful.::

::Functional was still a lot of effort.  After finally getting the gunk off of the inside, she had washed it and laid it out on a rock.  That had resulted in a stiff, unpliable plate. She might has well have just sewn bark together.  So what could she do?:

::After some though, she started rubbing it against that self same rock.  That seemed to help. Unfortunately, that also took a lot of effort. All in all, it had taken at least a week to get the skins useable, and her arms and back ached from the work.  After that, there was a matter of how to stitch them together. Native Americans knew how to weave thread and all that jazz. Alora didn’t even know where to begin with that, and she had no cotton to even start the process - not that she’d have an inkling what to do with it if she did.::

::Of course, the entire time, Sachiko pretty much just watched as she wrestled and struggled.::

DeVeau: Try not to rub it in.  Not all of us have a ready made fur coat.

::The cat didn’t reply, simply trotted off in order to secure another meal for herself. ::Back to the vines it was.  Carefully slicing them, she’d managed to get them thin enough that she could use them as a thick cord to tie.  There was no way she’d be able to get them thin enough for a needle, but she didn’t have one anyway. Still, it was a similar concept, and her experience with sewing had, at least given her a framework for how to go about things.  Carefully poking holes with the tip of her claw-dagger, Alora made the large enough to thread the vine-cords through. Then she slipped it on and stepped to the edge of the river. It moved slowly enough that she could get an idea of how things looked from the rippled reflection.  Not that it mattered -it wasn’t like she had anyone she had to impressed. She’d given up trying to do that with Sachiko long ago.::

::Alora’s shirt was more of a tunic.  She’d pretty much folded over a skin, cut a hole for her head, then lashed the sides together with her vine-cord.  It was a little to big, but she’d have her belt to help fix that. Pants were not something she was sure she’d be able to figure out.  Eventually, she wound up cutting off the legs of her uniform pants and turning them into shorts, and hoped they’d last a while longer.  Otherwise, she’d have to get and prepare more skin and make a skirt. Yeah, that would probably be the way to go. If she did that, she’d have to make sure she could move around in it easily so she could climb the trees for fruits when she found limbs low enough to climb on, not to mention just being able to run if need be.  Alora was still in a forest, and she’d be considered prey by at least one animal that she was aware of. Yes. Yes, running was definitely necessary.::

DeVeau: I just hope my clothes hold well enough that they don’t fall off while I do so.

Lt. Cmdr. Alora DeVeau
Medical Officer
USS Veritas
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