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Here are some classic Thanksgiving recipes and instructions. These are recipes for people eating alternative diets.
Know where to find cooking measurement equivalents and ingredient substitutions. My favorite substitution? Tapioca starch! It's my favorite thickener for sauces, slightly sweet and very glossy, much less hassle than cornstarch or wheat flour without that pasty flavor.
Practice safe turkey.
Give thanks with prayers from various faiths and nondenominational gratitude prayers. Here's a huge list of Thanksgiving blessings of all kinds.
Stay sane during family gatherings and accommodate special needs. Give people something to do with family bonding activities.
What are some of your favorite holiday traditions? What are you thankful for?
JohnWayne, you've met plenty times before. Azariah is the daughter of two back-story characters: Abednego and Birgit. This is set in JohnWayne's second year of school
"You look bored."
JohnWayne sighed. The dance floor was full of beautiful girls. The brunette in the rose-pink dress? Had turned out to be his half sister. The one in royal blue? Could not be pinned down; she bent space and time.
That one over there - well, that had turned out to be a boy. Which was fine for some, but JohnWayne was, if nothing else, looking to fill his second grad requirement. And the 29th Cohort was smaller than many others, the ghosts of those who hadn't made it as visible on the floor as the pretty girls.
"Bored would be one word for it," he admitted.
"Here, I bought you a drink." From behind him, a long-nailed hand pressed a glass into his hand. "John, right? Yoshi's girl Kept you last year?"
"Dáirine. Yeah. And it's JohnWayne." He took the drink and turned to see who his mysterious benefactor was.
He had the drink to his lips when he turned, and had to make a quick assessment. She had her Mask up, but the eys were still the same. They flickered with electricity over the blue-sky color.
He swallowed a few sips of the drink, wondering if he'd regret it. "Azariah. Uh. Thanks for the drink."
Her smile became more gentle. "I'm not going to drug you and drag you off the floor. But if you're finding hunting frustrating this year..."
JohnWayne looked at her, really looked at her. "...I'm probably not the only one, am I?"
"Look, I know Pippa was rough. But that's Pippa. We could work out a contract."
JohnWayne swallowed. "You want to Keep me."
"Well, it beats trying to Keep your sister, doesn't it?"
People Couldn't Believe What I'd Become
Angelica leaned her aching head back against the couch, stared at the ceiling through the tinted computer glasses that helped reduce the visual noise of her new power, and listened to her friends amble around, getting drinks and snacks from the kitchen. As they chatted with each other, she thought about how she was going to do this.
She became aware of an expectant silence and looked around. Kit was perched on a kitchen stool, a bottle of soda held in both hands between his knees. Kendis was settled in the chair she found easiest to get out of, her crutches propped in the corner, and her glass of soda water on the end table next to her. Simon was folded into the deepest armchair, his jeans-clad legs tucked up tailor style. They all watched her with a vaguely inquiring air.
"You may all be wondering why I asked you here today," Angelica said, not intending a joke, but covering her face as soon as the line was out of her mouth. "I mean… oh, hell. All right, I have something I need to tell you. And I need you to swear on whatever you hold dearest that this doesn't leave this room."
Simon and Kendis nodded, giving her looks that said, almost identically, "What do you take me for?" and Kit made all the motions that go with the "cross my heart and hope to die" promise.
"Okay," Angelica said, and she narrowly avoided biting one of her freshly manicured nails. "Okay. This is… really stupid, actually. But huge. And… well, shit, I guess I have Jane Liberty's power."
There was a silence. Then Simon said, in a small voice, "Which power?"
"The main one! The big kahuna!" Angelica exclaimed. "The one that made all the others possible. Shit, I don't even have words to describe it. Like, I can see everything alive. Every. Fucking. Thing. I guess, eventually, I'll be able to figure out what bits I'm seeing are powers, and what bits are normal. I… already know what cancer looks like." She shuddered. "I might be able to figure out how to change them. Powers. Genes. That sort of thing."
"You mean," Kendis said, picking her words carefully, "that Jane wasn't always superstrong, invulnerable, shit like that? That this one power made it all possible?"
"Yeah," Angelica said. "Yeah, that's what I mean."
"And she gave it to you," Kendis said.
"Like she made your power more powerful, yeah," Angelica said.
"Shiiiiiiiit," Kendis breathed.
"Yeah," Angelica said, letting a little of her misery out in an exhausted sigh.
"You can see and manipulate genes?" Simon said thoughtfully.
Angelica nodded, and when his face brightened, she said, "I've already thought about it, dude. Eventually, maybe, I can give you a Y chromosome in every cell. Someday I might be able to give myself a second X chromosome. Maybe we can just swap. I don't know. I kind of think I probably can't. Even Jane's superpower can't work miracles."
Kendis said, "And anyway, even if you two swap chromosomes, you've still got the outside junk to deal with."
Simon's shoulders sagged. "I know, I know."
"You could remove the power from yourself," Kit said. "Just delete it."
"If I knew how to spot it, I suppose I could," Angelica said, rubbing the bridge of her nose. "Maybe. I wonder if I would remove my own ability to edit it before I could delete the power entirely. I could end up stuck with the vision, for instance, and no way to get rid of it. I can't believe it's only a single gene thing. From the reading I've done, no paranormal ability is a single gene mutation."
"You know better than I do," Kit said with a smile and a shrug. "Just an idea."
"No, it's a good one," Angelica said.
They sat in silence for a while.
"Anyway," Kendis said, "you'd never forgive yourself for getting rid of the power."
"What?" Angelica said.
"It's like my power," Kendis said, tapping the side of her own head. "I can't give it up. I couldn't at this point. I couldn't ask Jane to knock it back down. Because I do too fucking much good with it. I make people happier just by existing in their space. Who could give that up?"
"As long as no one really figures out it's you," Simon said. "Think of the Plum Blossom case."
"That the chick they chopped up and grew clones of?" Kendis said. She shivered. "Shit, thanks, Simon. I hadn't thought of that."
"You met her," Angelica said absently. "That was Madeline."
Kendis stared at her and said, "Wut."
Simon said, "Yeah."
Kendis looked freaked out and kind of ill; Angelica felt bad for having sprung that on her. One does not meet people who were at the center of a gigantic military atrocity every day.
Kendis finally shook her head as if to clear it. "Anyway. My point was: how can you… I mean, 'one', really… refuse a power that has so much potential?"
"I guess one would have to find a way to pass it on to someone who wanted it," Angelica said with a grimace. "Jane said it had to go on. I guess she felt pretty strongly about it."
"Why you, though?" Simon said.
Angelica shook her head and shrugged. "She said that maybe because I was a biologist, I could figure out how to do things, like cure cancer, that she never could. Really fixated on cancer. I guess 'cause she was dying of it right then."
"Is that what happened?" Kendis said. "I figured her heart just gave out. She was pretty old. Eighty-six the obit said?"
"No," Angelica said, rubbing the bridge of her nose again and the area between her eyebrows, hoping to relieve the headache. "Definitely cancer." She remembered the scene again, for the umpteenth time, and finally said aloud, "Lady J was asking her to 'stop using Maddy's power.'" She turned a baffled look on Simon, their resident para historian.
Simon scowled and put his chin on his fists, elbows on knees. "I think one reason the Army decided on Operation Plum Blossom was because they tried… kind of… giving some of their recruits infusions of Madeline's blood or something. Anyway, the research showed that if you weren't born with her power, use of the power would make things grow that shouldn't."
"Like cancer," Angelica said.
"Like cancer," Simon said.
"Why was she using Madeline's power?" Kendis said.
"For the same reason she was using yours, I think," Angelica said.
"She told me it was slowly helping fix the holes in her head," Kit said, interrupting Kendis' outraged outburst. "Or something like that."
Kendis settled back into cynical silence with a snort.
"Anyway," Angelica said. "Jane told me not to tell anyone until I knew what I was doing. But I can't do that."
"She was probably thinking of Plum Blossom too," Kendis muttered.
"Probably," Simon said. "Don't worry, no one will hear about it from me."
"Or me," Kendis said.
"No one smart believes me anyway," Kit said with a grin.
"Also, if there's anything I can do to help you figure it out," Simon said, "I used to help people figure their powers out all the time when I was in high school."
"Thanks," Angelica said, sunk in a brown study. Then she shook her head and pulled herself up out of it. "No, really, thank you."
"We could make you a costume," Kendis said. "With all the stars and shit."
"You should have a code name ready," Simon said. "Just in case you need to anonymize yourself quickly."
Angelica didn't want to admit she'd already been thinking about that. She didn't want to be in spandex, would never be in spandex like Jane had been. But… "I already know that," she finally said.
"Oh?" Kendis said. Kit and Simon both perked up with interest.
"Of course I do," Angelica said, with a little more confidence and her first smile of the whole conversation. "I can't be anything other than… Libertad, right?"
What are some of the hard things you've done recently?
"tired traveler, busy city"
"going to the ocean"
"friendship and enmity"
Those fall near the end of the series, so if you're new to it, starting at the beginning will make a lot more sense. It's Asian fantasy about two women who are paper mages and rivals.
Well, I've been trying to get back into the swing of things here, but I've needed to nap during the day both yesterday and today the point that I haven't done much writing. With the holiday weekend coming up, I'm just going to declare it a wash and resume Tales of MU on Monday.
Thank you for your patience and support.
Tairiekie felt hollow. She opened up her trunk, even though she knew she hadn’t put it in there. Clothes, mostly uniforms, looked up at her. She dug through them, finding something hard – no, a spare wrench. Nothing useful right now. And then her spare boots. Something that felt like a pipe end… and it was a pipe, and it was hooked onto something.
“I think I found it!” She yanked hard, only to have the pipe come off in her hand. “Feces and bezoar… oh. Oh, blast this thing.”
Miss earlier chapters?
(You didn't miss last week's chapter, I did. :-/
done with the writing before I start today.
This month was an experiment - several experiments, actually.
* Writing 15K fiction pieces.
* Writing fiction-for-submission serially, i.e., one after another with no break.
* writing several pieces of different lengths for nano.
What I've learned already is that I have a process in writing for submission that is different from my process for writing for y'all or for serials, and that messing with it messes with my brain.
The process is:
* write 250-1000 words of a piece
* throw it out
* start again.
* finish that, then edit heavily.
skipping steps 1 & 2 totally messes with me. <.< Also, wastes time.
I've also learned that pacing for longer short pieces is totally foreign to me and I have no idea how to do it.
also, I need/want/crave/like distraction projects. See Doomsday.
that's it so far. See you on the 1st!~
But, to be fair: Leave a prompt (or prompts) for any setting of mine not Addergoole/Fae Apoc, and, over the next month, I will try to write 100 words to each of at least 10 prompts.
Optional themes - holidays, family, winter/seasons's turn, i.e., anything you can think of as a December sort of theme.
See JohnWayne here: http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/tag/ch
See Dai here - http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/tag/ch
JohnWayne had been at the Ranch for a week when he heard a woman's exasperated voice call out "Storm! Breeze! Rain!"
It wasn't Dáirine's voice. Even four years later, he knew his first Keeper's voice.
But it didn't quite sound like a weather forecast, either, and it sounded a little too much like the names he'd given his triplet daughters. He looked around, casually, while doing the stack of chores he'd been assured Howard gave to every new Kept.
He caught the flash of black curls before he saw anyone, and then the tall figure of a woman who was definitely not Dáirine, despite having similar coloration and hair. For one, this woman had spots, which Dáirine did not. For another, she had almost a foot on Dai.
"Storm, what did I tell you? Wait till I tell Dái what you've done, you naughty thing, you. Come on." The drawl was thick and southern as the woman scooped up a little girl.
From this distance, it was hard to tell. But she had her mother's curls and his complexion.
JohnWayne swallowed. If his former Keeper - and the daughters he'd fathered on her - was living on the Ranch, his time under Cynara's collar had just gotten a lot weirder.
It is a trope of the series that she picks up a new Kept every year on Addergoole graduation/send-home-for-summer-vacation day.
Lady Maureen runs the creche where children of Ag students spend time until or unless their parents claim them on graduation.
Yoshi is Cynara's son; Howard is her crew-mate, Kishmish is Howard's adopted daughter and Nibibizhiw is his blood son.
It didn't surprise Luke to find Cynara leaning against Lady Maureen's fence; by this time, the surprise was the few years she didn't show up.
It did, however, surprise him to see her with another woman. The girl looked to be about the same age as Addergoole students, although he had spent enough time around fae to doubt appearance. She was blonde, with freckles sprinkled across her nose - the current partner of one of Cya's sons or grandsons, maybe? Luke moved in a little closer.
"Mo-o-om." The girl sighed with clearly long-suffering patience. Luke, recognizing the sound from his own children, smiled. The smile died quickly, however - mom? Cya had given two sons to Addergoole.
And told him about others having third children, fourth, fifth to have kids they didn't have to give away to Luke's school. She'd as much as told him.
But who was the father? Luke studied them, muttering a Working to let him eavesdrop from a safe distance. Blonde, well, that was likely an Aelf-get, but considering Cynara's taste in Kept, that didn't narrow it down. The freckles were Cynara's; both her sons had them.
"...No. I don't want a maid. I mean, I probably do want a maid, but it's not like we can't just hire a maid. I don't need a house-Kept."
Interesting. Shopping. Well, from the looks of Yoshi & his occasional visits to the same fence where his mother was now sitting, it ran in the family.
"Well, what about a-"
"No. I am not talking about that with you."
"Well, what do you want?" It was both interesting and a bit reassuring to find Cya sounding every bit as frustrated as any other parent of a teenager.
"I don't know, why don't you just find someone?"
"I thought you'd never ask. Look, it helps if you drop the Mask. Then they don't worry you might be a lost human." Cynara dropped her own Mask.
The girl did the same. Pronghorn antlers poked from her blonde hair. That - did not actually help.
Cynara had only once given a Kept a child, Luke remembered. And she'd been in love with Howard, even if neither of them would ever admit it.
Well, the kid had good genes, and Howard - well, Howard spoiled them rotten, which would explain a lot. But he'd raise them well, too. He'd done well with Kishmish and Nibibizhiw, at least.
"Now. Who would be good for my daughter..." Cya's eyes landed on Luke, and, very deliberately, she winked.
I have a linkback poem, "House of Cards" (26 verses, Polychrome Heroics).
If you're interested, mark the date on your calendar, and please hold actual prompts until the "Poetry Fishbowl Open" post next week. (If you're not available that day, or you live in a time zone that makes it hard to reach me, you can leave advance prompts.) Meanwhile, if you want to help with promotion, please feel free to link back here or repost this on your blog.