She and the house were talking – one-sided but it was still something of a conversation – up in Mélanie’s bedroom when she realized that the sun was starting to set. I’ll be back by dark with all luck, Jasper had told her. She looked out the (now very clean) window and wondered how long it would be until true dark. A plate bumped gently at her arm and she jumped. “Oh!” The plate was full of what looked like a very tasty meal. “Thank you. You didn’t have to do that, you know!” The plate started dancing out her bedroom door and down the stairs. She followed the plate – there were so many halls she hadn’t gone down yet, but I’m going to ask you to only go places inside the house that I have shown you, he’d said, and he might have phrased it as a request, but she was not unwise enough to think that it wasn’t an order. She’d cleaned the dining room, his bedroom, and her bedroom. The kitchen was already sparkling clean; she had a feeling that was where the house spent most of its – her – energy? Time? It was hard to figure out what, exactly was going on when the house very clearly didn’t want to tell her.Continue reading →
They walked – catching rides from local farmers twice – until the sun was just threatening to disappear behind the mountains. By the time they clambered into the slight curvature of the hill that made something that could, with generosity and broad definitions, be called a cave, they had been trading bad jokes and worse stories for more than an hour, started when Carrone told her one about a bear – the animal sort – that walked into a tavern.
“Can you…” He waved his hands.
“I can. Are you sure you want me to?”
He pointed at the sky. “It might not be planning on one of your stupid man-killer storms, but it’s going to do something tonight, and I don’t want to sleep wet. Or bug-eaten.”
“I don’t, either.” She dug into her bag until she found everything she needed; he, in the meantime, laid out the bedrolls (there was just enough room for the two of them pressed against each other in the dubious shelter they’d found) and then dug around for cooking supplies. Continue reading →
Originally posted on Patreon in September 2018 and part of the Great Patreon Crossposting to WordPress.
This story is not, per se, for this month, but since it’s about Autumn, here it is. This is because Eseme made an Autumn doll, but her hair faded, leaving me with the urge to write a story about Autumn’s hair fading.
The working title of this story, right up ‘till today, was ‘Autumn Hair.’
At over 7000 words, it’s a bit of a read.
The fest was just beginning Day Four — Thursday — when Autumn came into town to set up her booth. That was within the festival rules; as long as you were there for the weekend and as long as you paid for the time you were there, you could show you whenever. It was part of what had attracted her to the fest in the first place.
She unloaded her gear from the back of her van, set up her tent, and, from the pleasant shade of its canopy, looked around. Continue reading →
When they left the master suite – Erramun had redecorated the bedroom into shades black and blue that made it feel much more like a space Senga lived in and had somehow made it smell fresh and aired-out and not at all musty – they found Chitter and Ezer arguing over the other wing of the upstairs.
“Senga!” Ezer called. “Tell Chitter that I need this space to coordinate the three of you on your ridiculous death-defying missions!”
“Senga,” Chitter whined, “tell Ezer that I need all this space for my computers!”
“Guys…” Senga looked between them. “There’s literally two wings of residential space, not counting the servants’ quarters in the back. There is literally room for each of you to have a floor of a wing to yourself. Why do you need this space?”
“The view” they answered as one. Then Ezer added, a little sulkily, “Allayne got the wing below yours. And that’s the next nicest.”Continue reading →
Mélanie waited until she was sure Jasper was gone, watching from the window while he got the horses in harness and set out. She waited until the gate made a distinctive noise, clanging shut. Then she waited until her tea jostled her elbow.
“I’m… I guess I’m not alone, am I?” She smiled; she didn’t want the house to feel like she didn’t want to be around it.
Even if she wasn’t a hundred percent sure that the house wasn’t going to eat her.
“Dust cloth?” she asked. “And something to clean windows with?”
Content warnings: dehumanization (literally), torture, captivity, more torture, humiliation, loss of self, semi-starvation and food-based torture. Off of this prompt.
And, since he identifies himself, The Man in this is Nathan from Lightning in Autumn (also, for those that follow us on Masto/Discord, what Cal means every time he says “Nathan!” since there’s a very long-running story we’re working on…)
His left rear paw hurt badly, and he was pretty sure that some of the bones in his left front paw were broken. He had gotten the hang of all of the basic things — running, walking, drinking, hunting — but that did nothing for the fact that he had no idea where he was, had no idea where he was running to, and was pretty sure he was sick with some sort of — he didn’t want to think about that.Continue reading →
“It’s a van.” Autumn looked at her sisters in confusion. “You know, driver goes here, then park, sleep goes back there? Art supplies in the middle, passengers hold on for dear life?”
“Autumn…?” Spring raised her eyebrows. “Have you looked at this thing?”
“I had Cousin Jimmy look under the hood for me and Aunt Caroline did a thorough inspection…?” Autumn was hovering somewhere between offended and worried. “Guys, the paint is a little esoteric but it’s my van, it has to be a little weird.”
“No, no, I like the paint.” Summer patted the side of the machine lightly. “Good van. It looks like the dappling of sunlight on the forest floor. Autumn, when you were painting it, did you, ah, did you paint it?” Continue reading →