Archive | February 16, 2012

Step on my Tail

This story contains magic and references to Changes but no slavery, or sex. It does involve references to violence.

For @DaHob’s prompt

This takes place during the apoc, ~2012-2013


I love that house, you understand?

First house, paid for it right out of college with a fudgie little mortgage I only had to twist a few arms to get. So that’s my house, that’s my pride, my joy, that’s my territory.

And yes, I’m territorial. Find me an Ellehemaei who isn’t. It’s in the Law. It’s in our blood. And those of us with animal Changes… yeah. Snarl, hiss, spray on the corners. It’s our territory, gods-damn-it.

And there is, in that year, one thing I love more than I love my house, and that is my man. My beautiful buddy, my partner. My Tiger. We grew up together. We Changed together. Went to college together. We’d been side by side since we were kits, and we were going to be side by side forever. Tiger was the only person with a permanent invitation into my house.

And then three goddamned gods rip through the walls between the worlds and decide our little city is theirs.

I could forgive them that, live with that. I don’t need to be queen of the land, not me. I don’t need to be queen of anything but my own house.

And Tiger, Tiger isn’t really a King-of-the-Jungle sort, either. He’s content with his bars and his clubs and his dance halls, and me. He’s content being a small-beans king and a sometimes queen. We’re happy.

And then those fucking beasts decide that they wanted to go to the clubs. And they decide they’re kings of the goddamned fucking clubs. Of Tiger’s club. Of my Tiger’s fucking club, do you understand?

And there is one thing my Tiger can’t stand. And one thing I can’t stand. And when they tear out three of my Tiger’s ribs and leave him for dead, not knowing he was fae…

Then I get angry. And that’s why the city burns.


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Story of the City, a story of Reiassan for the Giraffe Call (@ellenmillion)

For EllenMillion‘s prompt

Reiassan has a landing page here on DW and here on LJ

When Sahsyō returned home from the city for the festival of Veignevar, she told her family: “The first thing I thought when I saw Ūnetkabyē? I wondered where they kept the animals.”

This was, as her new friends at University would say, a poetic retelling, and as her grandmother would have said, if she’d known, a steaming load of what came out of the far end of the goat.

Yes, Sahsyō had, after a week or two in the largest place she’d ever seen, wondered where the animals were. She had grown up on her family’s farm, raising barrel-chested milk goats and the biggest chickens in the mountains. There had always been animals around: goats and chickens, mousers and dogs. She had never been away from animals.

But she’d never been around that many people, either. And what she’d first thought when she’d stepped into Ūnetkabyē had been “Loud!” The city was loud in a way that she’d never imagined possible, louder than the ocean had been, louder than anything she’d ever heard. There were people everywhere, crowded up against each other, talking all at once, riding through the streets, carriages and goats and people shoulder to shoulder until there was nowhere safe to move.

Sahsyō had, she known, gapes and gawked. Stared, pressed up against the wall, terrified to move. She had tried to go back inside, but she couldn’t find the door-handle, and when she did, she couldn’t make it work. She had, for one long moment, been absolutely certain that she’d made the wrong decision. University wasn’t for her. Ūnetkabyē certainly wasn’t for her.

But she couldn’t make the door work, so she walked forward, through the carts, through the people, through the noise, to the University.

And when she home for Veignevar’s festival, she could laugh and joke. “I wondered where they put all the animals,” and pretend she’d never been terrified.

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Giraffe Call Update – January 13, 2012 Giraffe Call

I’m not entirely done writing for this call, but I’m trying out the giraffe logger @Inventrix made for me.

Theme: In the City
63 stories written.
24 total prompters, 3 new
14 people donated a total of $251, 4 of which were new.
$136 of donations were left unclaimed.
Original Call:

If you donated and told me what you wanted me to write, I’m working on it. 🙂

If you have not yet told me what you’re interested in me writing, please let me know.

This month was HUGE!! And it made for a large, large amount of writing. Thank you, everyone!

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The “A” Shelves

For @inventrix’s commissioned continuation of

The tension in the store was thick and uncomfortable. Jordan was unhappy, and Mrs. Gent was getting back-straight and glowering, like our neighbor down the street that liked to count heads as we left and frown at the number of people who lived in our three-bedroom house.

I didn’t know what to do about it, either. Jordan was in charge of smoothing situations over. I was pretty good at putting my foot in it, but that was about it. Making it better generally involved lots of apologies. I didn’t think I had anything to apologize for, but it was worth a try, wasn’t it?

“I’m sor-”

The floor shook, the items on the shelves rattling. “Oh, dear,” Mrs. Gent frowned. “This is not a very good time.” She turned towards me and Jordan with a careful smile. “If you two could take your lemonade and go into the aisle labelled ‘A,’ please? I think that would be the safest place.”

“Safest?” Jordan snapped, but I wasn’t in the mood to argue anymore. I picked up my tea.

“A is which way?” I asked, talking over whatever Jordan was going to say next.

“That way, thank you,” Mrs. Gent gestured. “Past the radios and behind the coffee makers.”

“Thanks,” I said, laying it on maybe a little thick. “Come on, Jordan, you heard the lady.” Past the radios, that was easy, and we turned left, following her gesture, to find another row of shelves at a right angle to the first set. Candelabras, squiggle-circle-dot-squiggle (looked like fancier, smaller candelabras), 15849(23-09) (looked like long pieces of steel in various shapes and sizes)… there were coffee makers, although they were labelled in French. Close enough!

We headed “behind” that shelf, which meant around, and there indeed was another aisle labelled “A,” appearing to be at right angles to le cafe makier shelf.

“A” seemed to start with a stack of abaci, from bright children’s beaded toys – we should get one of those, I thought, for the beansprout at home – to ancient-looking counting racks with characters painted on the beads. Then were adzes, many of them looking practically stone-age, hung on a rack with their sharp edges dangling free.

The building shook again there, and, as all those cutting edges swayed near us, I wondered a bit at Mrs. Gent’s definition of “safe.” We had, after all, gotten her sort of annoyed.

Jordan seemed barely fazed, staring at a single acorn, packaged as if it were something really expensive, nestled in azure silk in a maple-bole box and placed between stacks of katana. “What is this place?”

“It’s Mr. Ting’s,” I answered helpfully. It wasn’t the altimeters that were getting me, it was the collection of vases labelled “ἀγγείον.” “And they figure the alphabet differently here.”

“They figure lots of alphabets, I’d guess,” she murmured, picking a narrow box off the shelf. It was rusted on the corners, but a pin-up painting of something with more tentacles than body was still clear and bright on its cover. “And… lots of different clients, too.”


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