Posted: Apr 16 2018, 08:03 PM
Port de Paix
Cali stands roughly 5’5” with a slender but well toned build. She knows well her own measurements are 36-26-34.Her hair is just past her shoulders and dark brown, it tends to naturally curl a bit towards the ends which makes it rather time saving for her to get ready. Normally worn half up & half down when she is working or completely up depending on how far into her work she is, the rare occasions it is down would be the general indicator that Cali is not planning to do any kind of work that day.
Some claim her eyes reminded them of chocolate while others tended to claim they were more a greenish, which led to the decision they were hazel green. Rather fair in complexion, slightly sun-kissed thanks to her time spent outdoors which she enjoys as much as possible. Cali also possesses a birthmark resembling a rabbit on inside right ankle and a scar half an inch long on her left palm.
Despite her skills at making them, her own attire tends to be rather plain and reflective of her status. Having grown up in an orphanage used clothes were a sight better than complete rags or none at all, so she learned to work with what was available to her. Anymore her own attire tends to consist of a dark boned bodice dress with a petticoat and floor length skirt. Just a smidge past elbow length sleeves, accented with a pinch of lace around the edges and around the square neckline. Dark brown flats, always very well worn given she spends so much time on her feet.
She’s thoughtful, always mindful of others even if she needs something her own needs take a back seat to those in dire straights. Polite but not one for talking too much, Cali prefers keeping to herself she simply watches and listens learning everything she can about the people that surround her. Once one gets past the quiet exterior she can be quite bubbly and sweet natured. Her loyalty is hard to earn; growing up in the orphanage made her wary of whom she trusts and the level of trust allowed.
It was the way of things growing up in the orphanage so she adapted as she has always done, those she considers true friends will know it though because there is very little they could not ask of her. Cali truly sees the world is not so simply black and white, everyone has their moments they’d rather not be known and she does her level best not to judge anyone based on such instances alone. Happiness comes in small doses, every little thing counts and it helps makes the hard times bearable for her. The little freedoms she’s had in her life give her that much more appreciation for them.
One thing she brought from her growing up in an orphanage is her inability to speak up for herself. Allowing people to use and walk all over her is just in her nature and she often finds herself unable to speak up about it. Tending to hold it all inside instead of letting it out. She also tends to get her feelings hurt easily because she truthfully has a big heart, though she refuses to show it most times there are the rare occasions when she’s alone that she will let it out.
Likes the beach, watching the waves crash upon the shore and the sun set is her favorite way to end the day. Being creative and making up new designs for gowns and jackets gives her mind something do while work is slow. People watching is sort of a hobby, seeing how others interact and learning from it. She’s a bit of a book worm too, since she learned how to read she’s rarely without a book of some kind when she can help it.
Dislikes being on a ship for long periods of time and bad storms. Wasting a perfectly beautiful day indoors, when she'd rather be out taking in the sights and sounds around her. And last but certainly not least, people such as herself or others being treated as less than others simply because of the circumstances of their birth.
Born in Marseille, her mother died during childbirth and being as her father was unknown Calista Marali, given her mother’s last name was placed in an orphanage to be raised. It was a hard beginning but since she didn’t know anything else of life at that time, she had no idea how lucky she was to be taken in at all. Growing up in the orphanage wasn’t a bad lot in life, there were always other kids to play with and she made a few friends with the ones who seemed more or less to be permanent fixtures there like herself. She watched as others were taken in by families who could not have children and often wondered why she was never a candidate but it didn’t stop her from enjoying her life as best she could.
A sweet child and endlessly curious, often watching the goings on around her silent as a church mouse; which was what lead to her being called ‘Mouse’ by most of the adults who looked after them and the other children. It was a term of endearment she imagined, it at least meant they noticed her presence and cared enough to acknowledge it. Remaining in that orphanage until she was eight years old, Cali was soon sent to a different one in Toulouse in the hopes that her background would be forgotten and a family might take her in. It hurt to leave the friends she had but she’d been told over and over again by those that seemed to care it was a better start for her. Which it did in fact turn out to be, while she wasn’t adopted into a new family she took an interest in watching the older woman who mended their clothes and was offered the chance to learn the skill herself.
Taking to the task she learned the simple steps first and it wasn’t an easy task, often times painful even for a young girl but she didn’t give up. Soon it became her task to mend the clothes of her fellow orphans and by the time she was twelve the older woman whom she’d studied under had requested if she might be allowed to take her to the tailors shop to learn more there. After some convincing (and possibly some coin) Cali was allowed to venture out and learn more about her trade, it wasn’t smooth sailing though. The first hurdle they had to overcome was the realization that she did not know how to read or write, which would certainly hamper her ability to understand the notes and measurements the tailor wrote down.
Years passed as she studied and learned, passing the age of fifteen in the blink of an eye; Cali became more aware that it was doubtful she’d ever be adopted but she was happy. She had a roof over her head, food in her belly and she could work which had even started to earn her a little coin of her own. Most of which she gave to those who ran the orphanage in order to help when times were tight or there were more children in need. She’d excelled in learning how to read and write, even beginning to sketch out her own designs basing her measurements on those she knew around her. The work wasn’t easy even if it had become easier as time passed, once she was too old to remain in the orphanage they offered her an empty room above the shop and that was where she lived and worked from sixteen to twenty-two.
The elderly woman who’d brought her into the work had passed much to her sadness and the old tailor was slowly losing out his business to much finer tailors in Marseille and Nice. It took another two years before the shop had to be closed down entirely and Cali found herself without constant shelter or work. It was mere chance that she happened to overhear of a need for woman in New France, the King was actively seeking to send in order to encourage more men to colonize the area. It wasn’t what she’d dreamed her life would end up as but there were worse things than being sent away for an arranged marriage. Another year went by before she finally received word she’d been selected and would be heading to Port de Paix to meet her future husband.
While she didn’t know much about the place or the man she was to marry, Cali gathered what few items she possessed and prepared to make the trip. It wasn’t what she expected, the journey over at least; but upon arrival she was pleasantly surprised at the beautiful landscape around her. Another surprise awaited her though, her intended had unfortunately passed away shortly before she arrived some sickness had taken him. At first she worried she’d be taken back but was quickly assured that she was there to stay, the King had paid for her trip over and certainly would not pay for one back.
The dowery wouldn’t be needed though so that money would go to someone else which lead her to seeking out the local guild in an effort to find work. She didn’t have much coin of her own so opening her own shop was out of the question but they found her work with a local aging seamstress who could use a pair of young hands. A new place, a new job and all on her own; it was a daunting adventure standing before her but Cali knew it was the chance to make a life for herself.
Handy with a dagger but not much else at least without practice.
Port de Paix
Posted: Apr 16 2018, 08:42 PM