Tag Archive | character: mrsbao

Shoot the Moon, Pow, Bow

For flofx‘s Commissioned Continuation of Eggshells and Lineman’s Hopes.

Long before Guarding the Church and referencing Strange Neighbors.

He came around the Stanton Arms and the park like he owned the area, walking in with a swagger like he was the strongest guy in the place.

Tia Lian hated him immediately. This was her street, her neighborhood. She didn’t need some big sleek guy with slicked back hair and a shiny smile coming in. She didn’t need no fairy who screamed fey from every line of his body to take over when she was just sort-of-fey-around-the-edges. She didn’t need him.

So she ignored him, while the others flooded around him. “Who are you? What are you doing here? Where are you from?”

And he just smiled.

“What kind of fairy are you? Are your family from around here, did you come from the Other Place? You’re fey, right? You’ve got to be fey, tell us you’re fey.”

And he just smiled.

“Do you play? You like games, right? We’re playing Cowboys and Indians and the Wild Fey, come on, you can be an Indian.”

And he just smiled, and made a hand gesture like he was pulling guns out of his pockets, pointed at the two in front, and said, “Bow, bow. Dead.”

“That’s not how you play!” Tia Lian jumped up as the two staggered, playing dead very convincingly. “The Indians don’t get guns. The Indians get bows and arrows and the wild fae get spears and the cowboys, they get guns!”

He just smiled, and holstered his invisible guns.

Tia was enraged. “That’s not how you play!”

He wouldn’t answer, which just made her angrier. Nothing but “bow, bow.”

“Let him play a cowboy, then,” one of her friends urged. “He can have my hat. I bet he’d make an awesome cowboy, with those guns.”

“Those are just his fingers!”

“Your spear’s just your hand, what’s your point? Come on, he’s new, let him be the cowboy.”

“That’s not how it works! I’ve been here longest, I get to be the cowboy!”

“You get to be the fairy, you’re the best fairy we have.”

That almost placated her. “I do pretty good at the fairying thing,” she admitted.

At that, the new stranger nodded. He pulled out his invisible gun and shot up into the air. “Bow, bow. The moon.”

“He thinks you hang the moon! See, come on, let him be the cowboy this time!”

Tia had already determined that they would never let her be the cowboy, but that didn’t mean she had to take it in good grace. Besides, she knew that “shoot the moon” wasn’t the same as “hang the moon,” but she wasn’t sure it was a compliment either way.

“Fine.” She couldn’t sulk without looking like the bad guy, which just made her want to sulk even more. “He can be the cowboy. But you know what they say, cowboy. Watch out for trech’rous fairies.”

“I thought the Indians were supposed to be trech’rous!” Her minions were beginning to grate on her. She gave them all her best evil-girl smile.

“That’s what we want you to think.” She made a stabbing gesture, aiming for the new guy’s armpit. He caught her imaginary spear in his heart, and staggered backwards, falling to the ground.

“Bao, bao,” he whispered. Under the shadow of a borrowed hat, he winked at her. “Right in the heart.”

Tia Lian felt an echoing stab in her own heart. “Tia Bao,” she corrected him.

Everything after that was just formalities.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/369935.html. You can comment here or there.

Eggshells and Lineman’s Hopes

For flofx‘s second prompt.

Long before Guarding the Church and referencing Strange Neighbors.

Tia Lian was born, as her kind were, in an eggshell watered with the tears of an unmarried woman and fertilized with the hopes of an unemployed man.

Or so she liked to tell people… and in her childhood, she was so small, so clearly fay, so touched by the other, that people tended to believe her.

The truth might have been more prosaic, but it was no less magical. Born to a fairy mother in the doorway of the Stanton Arms, gotten on that mother by a goblin line worker who couldn’t find work (the unions were going through an era, back then, where they didn’t like the fay), left on the doorstep of a church and from there taken to an orphanage, Tia was a midsummer baby, touched in magic and born in the mundane.

Although her mailing address was the Antwerp Orphanage, the place was only two blocks from the Stanton Arms in one direction and three from the church where she’d been left in the other, and a young Tia Lian ruled all and the places in between, running the small gangs of children and fay by the time she was old enough to spin a lie.

“Born in an eggshell,” she fibbed proudly, “blessed by my father’s hopes and my mother’s tears. As fay as they come and as wild as they can’t cage.” Her elders, fay, priest, and state, despaired of teaching her discipline. Her peers despaired of ever being as cool as she was. Soon, boys despaired of the chance of a kiss. She was as she’d made herself, fay and wild.

And then she met Bao Bao.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/340941.html. You can comment here or there.

Guarding the Church

For flofx‘s commissioned prompt, a continuation of Re-blessing the Church

Father Nehemiah wasn’t entirely comfortable in the new church.

He had been told, by the kindly woman that cleaned the building, Mrs. Bao, that most priests didn’t last long in her city (and that was how she put it: “You priests, you usually can’t make it too long in my city. Don’t worry your head about it when you find yourself having to leave.”) As such, he was determined to, as the vernacular went, hack it.

The corpse-lamb was his first challenge, although not the strongest or worst he would face. The spirit of what he was told was a kirkevaren was quite visible to the naked eye, hovering around the freshly-blessed churchyard, apparently waiting for someone to die so it had something to protect once again.

While it waited, the kirkevaren had decided to guard everything else. The pews. The baptismal. The children in the nursery on Sunday. Sometimes it inserted itself into the stained glass window patterns for a while, another lamb in the wide field of them. It was, Father Nehemiah thought, bored.

It was tied to the land, Mrs. Bao and her husband, Bao-Bao, told him; it could not go very far from it. So Father Nehemiah pondered things that the spirit could do to keep it out of trouble.

Much, he pondered, the way he did with troubled teens in other cities. Much as he was soon to find he would need to with the fairies here.

The fairies. He’d thought the kirkevaren was strange – no other church he’d ever served in had had anything similar – but the fairies, they were downright malicious.

He found the first one pretending to be a corpse, hanging itself from the iron fence posts at the front gate, eyes bugging, tongue sticking out. “This place kills us,” the thing told him.

“Now don’t you be silly,” Mrs. Bao told the thing over Nehemiah’s shoulder. “It’s a place of love and faith, and if it harms you, that’s your own silly fault.”

That one had moved on, shamed into stopping its protest, but they kept coming. They would catcall the congregation as they came for Sunday services, shout obscenities at funeral-goers and wedding guests alike. If Mrs. Bao was around, she would shoo them off with her broom, but she was not always around, and they would not listen to Father Nehemiah.

“I don’t understand,” he asked the cheerful cleaning woman. “What is it they have against our Church?”

“They have a very long memory, these creatures,” she told him, “a reborn memory, in some cases. And some just take any chance they get to complain.”

“Much like every other person I know,” he sighed. “What can I do?”

“What can you do?” she echoed back at him, with a shrug. “They are faeries. They do not follow human rules.”

“Hrrm.” Father Nehemiah had the glimmerings of an idea. He lit some incense, murmured a few prayers, and went to speak to the kirkevaren.

The next time the faries came to protest the church, the kirkevaren was there, fending them off, defending the church from their complaints. Mrs. Bao smiled at Nehemiah.

“You’ll do okay. You’ll do just fine.”

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/289421.html. You can comment here or there.