Archive | January 24, 2012

Tea with /HER/, further continued, a story of Tir na Cali for the Giraffe Call

For @daHob’s prompt, in continuation of Sunday’s installement: Tea with HER (continuation) (LJ) and Saturday’s Tea with HER (beginning) (LJ)

Tir na Cali has a landing page here on DW and here on LJ

“I know this, Treanna, because, believe it or not, I was nineteen once, myself. And when this happens… come to me again, and we will talk.” She sipped her tea, her eyes smirking at me. “I’ll enjoy it.”

I sold him, of course.

I didn’t want to. I was entirely in love with him, a little more gone than was reasonable. And selling him without him ever getting him to love me was admitting defeat.

But I’d started to grow up, even as my mother got more and more ill. And looking at him, I couldn’t help but remember every childish tantrum, every teenaged secret I’d whispered in my ear. He’d known me at my worst. No wonder he’d never love me.

When you reach a certain point, you put away the pink diary and the teddy bears and the dolls. When you reach that point again, it’s time to move on from your first companion.

I bid him a quiet, respectful, tearful goodbye, and sold him to the best broker in town, demanding – and getting – promises about his well-being and the type of place to which they’d sell him. He’d do well. He was so very well…

There (exactly) ends 750 words… *evil laughter*
(note: I’m not THAT evil. I’ve already written another 150)

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Strand-Workers & Strand-Working Organizations, an excerpted article

This is the new-donoerperk from the December Giraffe Call, a setting piece on Stranded World

Strand-Workers and Strand-Working Organizations

by Ernesta Roundtree

It has been said – indeed, it was the way I was taught, and my late husband as well – that Strand-weaving is by nature a solitary occupation, and that those who can see and twist the Strands of life and existence do so on their own.

And, of course, there are many walks of life for which this is true, and many who can see or move Strands who spend their entire life doing so alone: if they are lucky, they are taught, and if they are wise, they teach another, but the time in between is spent alone, working small, single-person effects, having small and often selfish results.

But there is nothing inherently isolationist about the craft itself, and, while the organizations that exist today are nothing compared to the great Leagues and lodges, those that exist do great good (or, in some sad cases, great evil) within their spheres.

I will say nothing about the Order of the Linked Circles except that they exist, that that is not the name that they call themselves, and that they are very secretive. One of my children has met one person who claims to be of this Order, but I myself never have.

The Team I belonged to in my youth, with my husband, was a smaller, and, I believe, more informal, certainly less secretive group, closer to a motorcycle gang that happened to twist Strands than anything formal. We had, however, and still do have, an alliance with the Collegium Filorum, which is a small but world-wide organization.

The Collegium has three major missions:
1) To connect new Strand-weavers with teachers, so that they can not only learn best practices but share innovations.
2) To provide a network of weavers, so that, when an emergency occurs, a single weaver will know where to turn for help
and, in some people’s eyes most important,
3) To look for those who would cut the Strands, and stop them.

As far as I am aware, the Collegium is the only world-spanning organization of Strand-weavers still in existence, although small groups still exist, like our Team, around the world.

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Behind Door Number Three

To Anonymous’ commissioned prompt, a continuation of this story (and on LJ).

Addergoole has a landing page here and on LJ.

Porter stared at the strange girl who had so tidily taken control of their lives – Arundel’s more than his, certainly, but still. Then it hit him. “Right. Come on, Arun.” He dropped to his knees and got a shoulder under his friend’s arm. “Stand up, that’s it.”

“Ow,” Arundel complained weakly.

“Yeah, I know. Those look like they’re gonna hurt worse than a tail and my ears did. But you gotta stand up.”

“Stand up,” Sylvia echoed, and with a muffled whimper, Arundel made it to his feet. “That’s better.” She slid herself under his other arm. “Porter and I will get you there. I’ll take care of you.” She opened her door and they edged, carefully, through it. “Do you know any combat magic, tiger?”

“Um. I can aba… destroy stuff, but that’s about it. We’ve only barely begun to learn anything useful.”

“Pity. Well. Look fierce if anyone tries to stop us, then, how about that?”

Her tone made Porter bristle, even as he helped Arundel down the hall as gently as he could. “Who do you think you are, to boss me around like this?”

“Well,” she answered, maddeningly calmly, “I believe I’m the person who just Kept your friend. And while you’re under no obligation to do as I say, of course, he is, and, furthermore, I am only taking charge to keep you and he – and myself – safe, so it’s safe to believe that my ‘bossing’ is in your best interest.”

“Seems to me,” he grumbled, “that the only person I can trust to act in my best interests around here is myself. Come on, man, it’s not that much further.”

“Yourself, and your crew,” she agreed placidly. “Which, you may have noticed, we agreed to be.”

“Mmm,” he muttered, focusing on Arundel’s pained footsteps. “So you get a Kept out of this. I get to keep hanging out with my friend. Arundel gets…”

“A benevolent Keeper, the continued companionship of his friend, and my assurance that I’ll do my best to keep you, in turn, from being Kept. I also get your protection, once the two of you learn to fight. In other words, we become a small consortium of watching each others’ backs.” She smiled, a small, tight thing, as they reached Dr. Caitrin’s office. “If we end up liking each other, that will be a pleasant bonus. You two seem like people I might be able to like, and there have been precious few of those so far in Addergoole.”

“I could like you,” Arundel muttered. He was twisting in their arms, trying to arch his back. “But that could be the Keeping thingy.”

“Probably,” she agreed, the smile barely shifting. “I’m told I’m not, generally, all that likable.”

“That’s sad,” he frowned. “Porter will like you, too, won’t you, Port?”

Porter, sighing, forced himself to calm down, the fur on his neck and tail slowly settling. “If you want me to like her, buddy, I will. What are friends for, anyway?”

He met Sylvia’s gaze as they maneuvered his semi-delirious friend into the exam room. From the look in her eyes, she knew as well as he did that it would be a longer process than that. But they would both make the effort. That was, as he’d said, what crew was for.


It seemed she had a very specific, very close interpretation of “crew,” which Porter couldn’t really object to. Arundel was hardly standing again, swaying a bit with the effects of the little blue pills, when Sylvia dragged them to the Director’s secretary’s office.

“We need a three-room suite. I know one’s opened up recently.”

The woman looked over her glasses at Sylvia, clearly less impressed with her preemptory manner than Porter and Arundel were. “You do, hrrm? Didn’t I hear that Arundel was now oro’Sylvia?”

“Well, yes,” she answered easily, “but that doesn’t mean that we don’t need a three-room suite.”

The woman raised an eyebrow. “Will I need to schedule an appointment with Dr. Mendosa?” she asked quietly, but with clear, if entirely vague, threat.

“I believe we’ll be just fine. But a three-bedroom suite will give us all a little more breathing room, and that would be a very good thing,” Sylvia said very precisely.

The woman frowned, but nodded. “Very well. Since Professor Pelletier had suggested we hold this suite, I’m going to assume this is why. You can move in today.”

“Just like that?” Porter couldn’t help but ask. Why Professor Pelletier?

“When the psychic deems something,” Sylvia murmurs, “this Administration listens. It’s one of the advantages of this school.”

Porter, who had heard plenty of the disadvantages, listened with curiosity. “So. Arundel’s moving in with you, and you want me to move in with you, too?” The three-bedrooms thing was, he had to admit, strange, at least from what he’d heard.

“You want to spend time with your friend, don’t you? And we’re crew now, aren’t we?”

He had a feeling he was going to hear that argument a lot. “All right,” he muttered. He wasn’t all that attached to his room, anyway.

Later, with all their things carted into the suite and generally distributed between the three rooms, Sylvia declared that, now that they had a kitchen, she was going to do some real shopping.

“Stay in the suite,” she ordered Arundel, after having taken a close look at his eyes. “I shouldn’t be more than hour; if I’m longer than that, you may come looking for me.”

He mumbled something uncomfortable, and waited until she left to flop face-first onto the couch. “Shit.”

Porter flopped down in the armchair. “It could be worse?” he offered. “I mean, you have wings.”

“Yeah, they’re pretty awesome,” he admitted, twisting to look at the feathers, which coordinated with his hair nicely. “But … Sylvia.”

“Well, you said yes?” Porter pointed out, mostly to avoid the stab of guilt he felt. “I’m sorry about the doorway thing, man.”

“The porthole? I figured that was you. Though the rest was a bit of a surprise.”

“She promised she’d be good to you.” For some definition of “good,” he supposed. “Why did you say yes?”

“I wasn’t paying attention!” he shouted, and then put both hands over his head. “Ow. It’s like she planned this all out. And that’s impossible.”

“Well, think about what she said about psychics?” He wasn’t sure that was right, but it was an option. “Maybe she really did plan it out.”

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Tuesday, with FIRE!

First, a pretty Icon. Thank you, @inventrix!!

Second, guys, we MADE FIRE!! We finally got the wood-burning stove installed and MADE FIRE! There was some smoke and some mess but then fire happened! (the seam on the pipe popped but we got it put back together).

Remembering how to start a fire is, it seems, like riding a bike. You let the memory muscles take over and it works.

And, while our house is not at all set up to be entirely heated by the stove (It’s on the high end of a slightly-sloping downstairs, for one), it certainly helped, and we have lots of scrap wood & half a freecycled ruined barn and grapevine galore to burn, and that’s a lot cheaper (i.e. free) than heating oil/kerosene, which are stupid expensive.

Window is almost done. Next… painting the utility room (woo). 🙂 And the accessory parts of the bedroom.

Signals to Boost!

The Kickstarter is up for Plunge Magazine. Guys, I want to write for this magazine! Help make it happen?

Rix_scaedu wrote me a lovely erotic story , because she’s an awesome friend.

[personal profile] clare_dragonfly had an awesome Garden of Prosey! Read all the stories!

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Summary-Like Update thing! See all the pretty Fiction! Answer all the Questions!!

The Giraffe Call is closed (and on LJ), but if you only left one or two prompts, please feel free to go add another 1 or 2.

Since the last update, I’ve posted several requests-for-feedback:
What do you want to know about my Settings? (LJ) (Stranded, Reiassan, Dragons)
Mid-month mini-giraffe-call poll (LJ) (what & When?)
Pretty Icons (LJ) discussion on possible February Giraffe Themes

I’ve posted three pieces from the last call:

Under Scrutiny (LJ)
Encyclopedia Draconic: A Survey of Reproduction Methods (LJ)
Teasers (LJ) Arundel, Sylvia, Porter

Two non-Giraffe pieces (in payment for an icon from @inventrix):

Separation Anxiety (LJ) Boom!/RP timeline/ Cynara
Parting Advice, and Mother Bears (LJ)

And seven more Giraffe Pieces:

Further Exploration Reveals… (LJ)
“I said, Further Exploration reVEALS,” (LJ)

Tir na Cali
Tea with HER (beginning) (LJ)
Tea with HER (continuation) (LJ)

Road Map To… (LJ), a story of Steam!Callenia

Fae Apoc
Scrounging for History (LJ)

Family Legacy (Dreamwidth)

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