Evangaline was making chocolate fudge for the high school holiday bake sale.
In a normal house, in a normal family, this would be a nice, sane, normal activity.
In a normal house she probably wouldn’t be using her great-grandmother’s recipe, written out on an old index card, likely by her grandmother or her mother. Or she might, but she might not be using her great-great-aunt’s measuring spoons, the ones that had a tendency to yell at you when you were going to put in too much of just about anything.
And if she hadn’t been using her great-grandmother’s recipe, she wouldn’t have been grinding cinnamon sticks and dried cayenne peppers by hand, nor what she have been putting in a tiny drop of devil’s tears or the shake of pixie dust.
Her family’s fudge always sold out, no matter how many trays they made. “It just makes the holidays more magical,” Mrs. Steinberg down the street liked to say, with a wink and a laugh that suggested she, too, kept her great-grandmother’s recipes wrapped in silk and boxed in ivory and ironwood.
Evangaline always made sure to get an extra helping of Mrs. Steinberg’s chocolate babka, too. It made the holidays feel… proper.
And maybe a little bit more magical.
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