aldersprig: a close up of an alder leaf (Leaf)

"Because everything is better with the end of the world."

Welcome! Below you can find hundreds - thousands, really - of posts, many of them fiction.

I write a lot - much in established universes, some in one-off settings. Much of what I write ends up here. In addition, you'll find homesteading blogging, the occasional crafts-and-clothing post, and journals of my wine-tourism of New York State.

Here (and here on Livejournal) you'll find an index of my universes. Each 'verse has its own landing page with an index of stories within.

Find all of my writing links on

A loose posting schedule (and on LJ) covers weekly recurring posts; other things are posted as the mood hits.

My commission rates are here (and on LJ); you can drop a dollar or two in the tip jar or commission a story to be written. Or you can become a Patreon Patron and unlock even more fiction! This is everything I've written for Patreon to date!


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aldersprig: an egyptian sandcat looking out of a terra-cotta pipe (Default)
MARKED - 4.3

Nilien bit her lip. She looked down at Ember, who turned to look at her. “A tracking mark? So whoever put it on me, no matter where I am, they can find me?”

“That’s the idea. Sometimes students do things like that as a prank, dear. It’s probably nothing to worry about.”

“Nothing,” Nilien repeated numbly.

You do not think it is nothing, do you? Ember’s ears raked back.

“No, I —” she turned to look at Professor Vaudelle. “Could it be, I mean, might it have been done by the assassin, professor?”

read on...
aldersprig: (Aldersprig Leaves Raining)
This started out as something else, but it appears like in addition, it wants to be a murder mystery. Fae apoc, pre-apoc era, possibly 2010.

Senga didn’t believe it until she saw the body. Ellehemaei did not die very often, and they almost never died of natural causes; until she did a very quiet Working on the body itself, she was still working under the assumption that this was some trick of her Great-Aunt Mirabella’s.

The confirmation that it was real took her breath away. She walked past the body again, looking at what her diagnosis told her more than the corpse. Natural causes? Well, hawthorn was natural, she supposed, and her aunt was chock full of it.

“Miss Attenoin? Do please come to my office at noon. There’s the will reading.” The suited man stank of lawyer, and his suit stank of money. No surprise, considering her great-aunt. But...

“The will?” Senga frowned. “Great-Aunt Mirabella and I weren’t all that close…”
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aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 4.2

Nilien smiled uncertainly at Professor Vaudelle. “Actually, Professor, speaking of that…”

“Yes, dear? I imagine Hestinger didn’t bring you all the way down here to pick out a treatise to read, at least not this early in your studies, did he? And it’s unlikely he’s testing your ability to not get lost in this place; he’s not the sort to do that.”

“He pointed out landmarks…” Professor Vaudelle’s logic was leaving Nilien a little lost. “So I don’t think he was trying to get me lost. No, he said you might be able to help with something about magic sight.”

read on...
aldersprig: (Beryl)
The meme is here: Give me the names of two characters and I will tell you why character A loves character B.

Here is [personal profile] kelkyag's third prompt. Beryl and Stone are from the Aunt Family.

Beryl knew how most girls at school were with their big brothers.

In her opinion, much of that was because their big brothers were big jerks, but she had noticed that was the way family dynamics seemed to flow, outside of the Family.

(She made an informal study of such things, because she didn't really want to marry a cousin, should she end up marrying someone, and so she didn't want to be lost the way her father said he'd been, way back when.)

But Stone wasn't like that. Stone helped her with her homework, and, once, showed her how to cast a charm so her worst bully tripped over his feet every time he got close. And they talked about spellwork together, and she showed him secret tarot spreads and tricks with the tea leaves.

She told him Maddy Spinner was no good for him, too, but she was pretty sure any sister would've done that.

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aldersprig: (tea3)
After Poise, to [personal profile] thnidu's commissioned continuation.

The question of was I poisoned was not as easy to answer as one might assume.

I did not, say, keel over (that is, turn my bottom over top) and die. But as I said, sometimes someone can poison your mind as well as just your body.

I knew I had what it took. My displays were perfect. My speech sounded unrehearsed and off-the-cuff and covered exactly everything I needed it to with no stuttering or humming or hawing. And the core product was sound. More than sound, it was brilliant and necessary.

But as I walked into that building - chin up, laptop bag in hand, looking like a million bucks and walking like I owned that place - I was secretly terrified. Five people had turned it down. Six of my friends had told me it was a long shot. Seven relatives had laughed in my face. To sum it up: I had been poisoned in my mind. I was ready, or I wanted to be ready, to make this presentation.

But was I ready? The doubts crowded onto the bus with me, shoved for a place in the elevator with me. I looked prepared. I looked proper. I looked prosperous. (Three more words that had no root in common, much to my surprise).

I was terrified.

I made my posture perfect. I smiled sweetly. I swallowed as if to bring more of that potion of poise into my body, into my mind.

I ran over all of my lines. I debated pertinent points sub-vocally. I told myself, once again, that my product was predestined to win this contact.

And in the back of my head, the poison continued to war with the potion. I was poised — but I was tainted by doubt. Two different sorts of weight were pulling at me.

The situation was grave, and it deserved gravity. Yet I found myself giggling. Here I was, pulling in two directions by the same thing — by a potion. By a great weight.

And that, my friends, was the lift I needed. The giggle, the laugh — the joke. By the time I left the elevator I had cut the strings weighing me to the criticism and doubt — if only temporarily, for those strings are very persistent — and I was buoyed up, walking on air, poised but yet no longer poisoned.

But had it even been poison? For if it had not been for that pun, I may not have been smiling, they might not have smiled, and the day might not have been won.

Funny things, potions and words, both.


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aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 4.1

“Professor Vaudelle’s office is just down this hall. Now, when you come back, it helps if you use landmarks. See, here’s this door with the stripes of stone and metal in it.” Professor Hestinger pointed out a doorway. “That used to be Professor Marein’s office, and nobody wants to change it, so it stays that way. It helps tell you which way you’re going, though. And then here’s the old archway with the tiny gargoyles carved into it. It’s a little out of place back here, so it's easy to recognize. And here’s Professor Vaudelle’s office.” He knocked on what looked like a plain, ordinary door.

“Hestinger! Come on in. And who’s the student?” A clear, high, cheerful-sounding voice came through the door as if it wasn’t there.

read on...
aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.12

Nilien sighed. “It’s not working.”

“No?” Professor Hestinger leaned forward. “You said ‘oh.’ What was that?”

“Oh, that?” She wrinkled her nose. “I was trying to see the black stone, but I ended up seeing Ember and your familiar glowing, instead. And our runic marks.” She gestured with her marked hand. “They all glow.”

“Oh, very good. That’s magic sight.” Professor Hestinger smiled broadly at her. “That’s an excellent skill to learn; it can be very useful. So you saw the familiars and the marks, of course. They must have glowed rather brightly?”

read on...
aldersprig: (DragonBaby)
The meme is here: Give me the names of two characters and I will tell you why character A loves character B.

Here is [personal profile] sauergeek's first prompt.

Jin had been just old enough to be annoyed by this whole little-sibling thing when his mother had put Junie in his arms.

He hadn't instantly fallen in love with her. She was small and fragile and loud. He, at that point, had very little interest in things small and fragile and loud.

It was weeks later, when he found out that he could make very minor illusions and had to show them off to someone, that's when things changed.

His mother was brewing a tisane and couldn't be disturbed; his father was reading a large tome in the library and looked like disturbing him would not go well. He could wait for dinner - but Jin did not want to wait for dinner. (Patience was a hard- and late-earned skill for him.)

So he decided to show the new baby the illusion.

And she cooed. She reached out for it with her chubby little hands. She was thrilled. Jin felt amazing. This tiny little thing, this thing that cried all the time and nothing at all seemed to soothe her - she liked his illusions.

That cemented it. From that day on, Junie was Jin's first audience for every illusion, every spell (that was safe to her, of course; he kept the others to a room behind the garage where no-one else came), every cantrip.

And, eventually, Junie found out Jin's secrets, too.

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aldersprig: (Marked)
We're on Web Fiction Guide! If you're enjoying the story, please stop in and leave a review.

AND THEN the easy one:

Stop in at Twitter and tell us how you're liking the story!

When you're done with that, there's a piece up on Patreon about the process Cal & I use for MARKED, as well as several pieces of patreon-only content.

aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.11

One more try. She could do it. She closed her eyes and reached out for the bowl, for the black pebble somewhere inside it.

Nothing. “Maybe…” She furrowed her brow and considered the bowl. If she could see the stone, she could find it without a problem.

So first, she needed to see it. She stared at the bowl. Focusing on seeing a thing, that’s what Lorque had said. So she just needed to focus on seeing a black stone.

She petted Ember a little bit and focused her power on vision. She had to be able to see it. It was there; it had to be a simple matter to find it, or Professor Hestinger wouldn’t have assigned it to her, would he have?

read on...
aldersprig: (luke)
A long time ago

"Don't mind them."

The fur-taker looked up to see a man filling her doorway, wings spread, carrying something on a tray. Bowls, mugs - whatever it was, it smelled good.

"Come in," she offered weakly. The threshold here was so much less than her swamp, so thin she was fairly certain it held only out of courtesy. Even in her little house in the Village, Regine's magic weighed heavily. In here, in her office...

It was nice of him to pretend, anyway.

"You're Luca, aren't you? The Hunting Hawk."

"And you're the pelt-taker. Regine said you're using the name 'Shira' here?" He stepped inside and closed the door with his foot.

"It's close enough." The Fur-taker wondered if she ought to be worried, but he was not giving off any sense of menace or danger, spread wings or no.

"The others..." He sat down and put the tray between them on a small table. Stew. And tea. "Don't mind them."

"You said that already." Which meant he had more meaning in mind than the words themselves held.

"They're..." He shrugged. "... Fancy."

The fur-taker smirked. "And I am not." She plucked at the hem of her sleeve, a loaned outfit - from Luca here, not from one of the women - and comfortable.

"I'm not, either. But it suits us. They're not sure about seers. The pure-bloods, they don't like what they don't understand."

The fur-taker smiled her sharp smile, the one that said life is hard. "And they understand so little. But you." She looked at him, Looked at him, and nodded. "You understand too much. Be ware, Hawk, or it will cripple you."

It would, she already saw it. But there were paths in which it would free him, too.

The meme is here: Give me the names of two characters and I will tell you why character A loves character B.

Here is [personal profile] chanter_greenie's first prompt.
aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.10

Nilien stared at the pen. It was a nice pen, with marbling throughout in green and purple and mauve and a gold nib. She’d had a pen like that before she went away to school, a gift from her aunt…

Ember’s teeth touched her finger. Concentrate, it suggested. Nilien nodded mutely. If she couldn’t focus, she’d never go anywhere in class.

She focused on the pen lifting. Should her hands be in some special position? Should she be feeling something? Nothing happened. The pen, if anything, seemed more resolutely on the table.

Relax, Ember chided, and focus.

read on...
aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.9

Nilien swallowed. “Oh. Oh, I see, of course.” She gave Lorque a quick hug. “I’ll see you after class, then.”

“Chin up.” Lorque looked a bit stunned, but, well, Nilien supposed what Professor Valents was saying made sense. It was one thing to be a bit behind — a week or two, maybe — in history or sciences, but in magic? “You’ll catch up in no time.”

“I’ll do my best.” Nilien no longer felt very certain, though. “I’m sorry, Professor Valents, I don’t mean to dawdle. Where…?”

“It’s all right, dear. It’s good you’re making friends so quickly. This way.”

read on...
aldersprig: (KinkBingo2)

Find Chapter 1 here
Chapter 2 is here
Chapter 3 is here
Chapter 4 is here
Chapter 5 is here
Chapter 6 is here
Chapter 7 is here.
Chapter 8: here

Chapter 9: here
Chapter 10: here
Chapter 11 (R-Rated) here
Chapter 12: here
Chapter 13: here
Chapter 14: here
Chapter 15: here
Chapter 16: here
Chapter 17: here

You can skip Chapter 11 without losing the plot.
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aldersprig: (LynBack)
Writing letters and cleaning house: that's what I did last weekend.

I’ve been taking part in the Month of Letters (, it's also for almost half a month now — really, a whole two weeks, because I started writing on the 29th and mailing on the 30th January.

It’s weird. That’s the short version: It’s really weird. Also, it’s fun, although it’s perhaps, like most things I do, a little too all-consuming.

My letter-writing falls into a few categories:
* Writing to relatives I haven’t seen in a long time, or very rarely in that long time.
* Writing to facebook friends, who are generally IRL people I haven’t seen in a very long time and barely interact with.
* Writing to twitter friends — people I talk to every day on twitter but rarely see in person.
* Writing to people I encountered on the LetterMo site.
* Writing to and/or as fictional people, mostly to real people I know.
* Writing to family I see on a semi-regular basis.

All of these have their own unique challenges, and I’m finding all of them quite interesting for that.

For instance, writing to LetterMo people combines this “getting-to-know-each-other” sort of protocols with a fear of being judged by (and this isn’t really a thing) Professional PenPals (Okay, it might really be a thing, but I don’t know anyone who is). Like, am I doing enough? Is my letter pretty enough? Are there unspoken rules I’m breaking?

And then you add in all of that stress with contacting estranged family — people my father feuded with, or feuded with him, for instance, back when I was in college. Do they even want to hear from me? Do they remember me? My dad has four siblings, a half-sister, and four step-siblings, and almost all of them have kids. That’s a lot of nephews and nieces to keep track of.

(Okay, so there’s a lot of anxiety going on there).

Letters to family, I’ve been trying just to put into the world and let go. If they answer, they answer. If they don’t, I’m no less connected than I was before.

Twitter friends — that’s it’s own challenge. I talk to these people every day, or very near to it. (These people? Many of them are you guys.) What do I say that I wouldn’t share on twitter, or on gchat or in e-mail?

The thing is, for the most part, a little anxiety aside, these are fun challenges. And getting letters back in the mail — that’s amazingly fun. It makes going to the mailbox a blast!

Will I keep writing letters after LetterMo? Well, April is National Letter-Writing Month...
aldersprig: (Shooting star)
January by the numbers continues deep into February...

From [ profile] sauergeek's prompt Everyone eats everything: a ficlet, although more of a start of a story than a story.

As far as strange rules and regulations go, the colonies usually didn't rate too far up there. When they were colonies, at least, they had far too much to worry about to spend time making rules, other than the very direct: "everybody works" sort of regulations. It was only as time went on and they found themselves in situations where their original survival-based rules were insufficient that most places started coming up with more and more elaborate rules.

Egdarton Seven was a little unique in this matter. It was settled by a small, closed group - one of the few cases where that was allowed, but there was a trend for that around that time, social or avocation groups gathering together and filling a colony. It worked best if the group had wide enough skills to fill all the positions, because one or two outsiders in specialized, necessary positions led to some pretty bad social dynamics on some colonies.
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aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.8

It was a relief to be out of the lunch room, and the closer Nilien got to the classrooms, the more excited she became.

“How long do you think it will take for me to learn how to detect poison?” she asked Lorque.

“Oh, not much time at all.” Lorque waved off the question with a breezy gesture. “You’re clever. You’re going to be caught up to us right away, just you see.”

“Do they teach much theory? How it all works? I want to know how the pieces all go together. I want to be able to protect myself,” she added in a much quieter voice. She didn’t want another incident like with Thesri. “Nobody else might believe it, but I really am worried.”

read on...
aldersprig: (Evangaline)
This is written to [ profile] sauergeek's commissioned continuation of King(Maker) Cake and King for a Day, a story of the Aunt Family.
Stone was cornered.

School started tomorrow, and he had never, ever, not since kindergarten, been so happy to be going back to school.

At the moment, he was cornered by his Great-Aunt Rosaria, who was, he had to admit, one of his favorite relatives - normally. Right now, he didn't want to see another Family woman as long as he lived.

It had started with his mother, because nobody was going to argue her precedent, and then with his grandmother, because Eva was too polite to argue with her. And then Eva, Beryl and Chalce and even Amy, his sisters taking turns asking him questions that ranged from ridiculous (mostly Amy) to far too penetrating (Beryl),
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aldersprig: (Tairiekie)
The meme is here: Give me the names of two characters and I will tell you why character A loves character B.  Here is clare_dragonfly's second prompt: Riensin and Tairiekie.

Riensin knew he was handsome.

He didn’t take it as any particular virtue of his — he had the same face as his twin, an

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aldersprig: (Evangaline)
The meme is here: Give me the names of two characters and I will tell you why character A loves character B.

Here is [personal profile] kelkyag's second prompt. Rosaria and Willard are from the Aunt Family, as per the tree below.

Rosaria and Willard

Rosaria had brothers. She had sons, she had a father. She had had, for a while, a husband, although that seemed like a very long time ago.

So when she tried on "I love him like this," like a father, like a brother, like a son, she knew of what she was speaking. And none of them quite fit.

She had other nephews, too, and she could not say that she felt for any of them what she felt for Willard. Willard was - he was different, and not just because of the spark. He was important, and not just because the family had severed him from their embrace and their power. He was her friend, and that... that was what had saved them.

"He should be gone from you," Elenora had complained. Elenora was the sort that would complain about that. "He is gone from the family, and yet I can see you're still writing to him. You're still pining over him."

"He's gone as my nephew." She lifted her chin and glared at Elenora, glared at her Aunt, at the Aunt and dared her to challenge that. My nephew sounded strange when she was still so young, but that was what he had been, and in their family, that was a special bond. "You severed that. But he was my friend. And he is still my friend. He will always be that, no matter how far away he is."
aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.7

Nilien cleared her throat. “I’m Nilien, by the way.” She looked pointedly at the intruder. “And I hear I have magic classes this afternoon, so I’d like to finish my lunch. I’m sorry, I didn’t catch your name…?”

“Oh, I’m Thesri.” The peach-clad person shrugged, as if that didn’t matter one bit. “You ought to find out more about what happened to you.”

“Why?” Augustin turned to glare at Thesri. “Because you’re nosy?”

read on...
aldersprig: a red-heded freckled girl, smiling (Autumn)
The meme is here: Give me the names of two characters and I will tell you why character A loves character B.

Here are [personal profile] rix_scaedu's second and [personal profile] clare_dragonfly's first prompts. Kailani and Rozen are from Addergoole; Autumn from Stranded World.

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aldersprig: (Dragon Orange)
The meme is here: Give me the names of two characters and I will tell you why character A loves character B.

Here are [personal profile] rix_scaedu's and [personal profile] kelkyag's first prompts. Doug and Fridmar are from Addergoole; Cxaidin and Zizny from Dragons Next Door. To quote Zizny in an earlier piece:

"For a grown adult dragon, the pronoun is 'thez.'"

"Theza" is the possessive.

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aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.6

“So.” The peach-clad intruder moved even closer, nudging Riva and Augustin aside. “What was it like? I mean, if someone really tried to kill you, was it scary? What did it feel like? You said poison? Did it make you sick?”

I will bite this nuisance, Ember offered again, although Nilien thought the fox was starting to look amused by the whole thing.

“I don’t really like talking about it,” Nilien demurred.

“Yeah!” Lorque glared at their intruder. “Come on, would you like talking about it, if someone had tried to kill you?”

read on...
aldersprig: a close up of an alder leaf (Leaf)
I am bringing back the Love Meme from 2012, but just for today/maybe as long as this week:

Give me the names of two characters and I will tell you why character A loves character B. (Please chose characters from my settings.) I might answer with a drabble, a quick bit of meta, or a list, just to make things that tiny bit more interesting.

Note 1: The love may be agápe, éros, philía, or storgē.

Note 2: Warning, you may get incest if it's canonical to the characters or fun for me to write.

Note 3: Name as many sets as you like *g*

Note 4: I'm only writing these for V-day and around that time. I might not ANSWER all your sets. ;-)
aldersprig: (kai-sky)

This is a series of tiny stories written to an old Love Meme - little vignettes of various characters in various types of love.

Taro and Kailani, from Addergoole the Original Series

First week of Year 5:
"She's gorgeous," Taro told Conrad, who had heard it all already at least a hundred times. "Those eyes. Those legs. That hair. Gods, Con, I've got to have her."
read on...

In the spirit of the greats, I offer a rhyming couplet poem I wrote in 2013 as a signal boost incentive. I only got through G, but I do think it's still a fun poem.
It's a survey of my characters and my worlds, from A through, well, G.

With annotations.

A for Aelfgifu, for Audrey, and Autumn,
Addergoole, and Aelfgar's myriad daughters.

read on...
aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED, the serial I am writing collaboratively with Cal, has returned from its unexpected hiatus!

As an apology for the break, there are two new pieces up on the MARKED Patreon, free for everyone to read:

Rune Detective, a short story written by Cal, in the MARKED setting but with

Read on:
aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.5

Nilien did her best to ignore the question. She looked at Augustin. “So if everyone has specialties—”

“Well, we’re all trying to find our specialties now,” he temporized, “but I’m not that good at looking for poisons, no. I’m trying to focus on changing colors and shapes. Like… well, I don’t have my familiar with me at the moment…” He frowned.

“Like this?” Riva concentrated on Augustin’s hair until one chestnut-brown curl turned the same blue-green as Riva’s otter familiar. “There. You look perfect.”

read on...
aldersprig: (lock and key)
First: Slaves, School
Previous: Introductions

Everyone had their own story about the stairs. Wesley had run up as fast as possible, until their collar had shouted: “so loud it nearly blew out my ears,” Wesley complained. “And then there weren’t any more stairs.”

Talia had gotten in an argument with a puzzle door that had ended with a chute downwards to the reception area. “My collar’s still annoyed with me. Won’t talk to me.”

“Not even for collar’s-choice?” Jefshan leaned forward over the table, looking intrigued. “Mine won’t shut up. “

“Collar’s-choice?” Talia blinked owlishly.

“You know. That bit near the end where the collar picked out which way to go. Collar’s- choice.”

“Oh, that! Yeah, my collar said ‘left’ and that was it.”
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aldersprig: (Theocracy)
January by the numbers continues (We're in February now but hey)

From [ profile] sauergeek's prompt Bombastic bishop blusters, bristles: a ficlet.

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aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.4

Magic class. Nilien swallowed. “You already know how to do something like…” she gestured at her food, “and I don’t know anything, anything at all, about magic.”

“It’s because you’re a We—” Istore coughed at a pointed glare from Lorque. “A Wild Rune. We’ve all been here for years and you’re just starting. That’s why some people are against Wild Runes.”

“Some people?” Augustin shot Istore a glare.

“I’m just explaining. She knows that she’s behind, and she’s going to have to work very hard to catch up. That’s not fair to her, is it?”

read on...
aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.3

Nilien looked at her food, then back to Lorque. “You can— well, I believe you, but just by looking?” She tasted her food — not the beans, taking Lorque’s warning to heart. It tasted the same as it had a moment ago. She took another bite and gave it some consideration. “So you can look at any food and tell if it’s poisoned?”

“Yep.” Lorque grinned at her. “Neat, isn’t it? And it’s a handy skill to have, living with you.”

“You make it sound like she’s going to poison your food,” Riva complained. Slyly, and in a tone Nilien thought was teasing, she asked, “are you?”

read on...
aldersprig: (Marked)
MARKED - 3.2

Nilien took a bite of her food. Things seemed less tense than they had been yesterday, and now that she was wearing a uniform like everyone else, she did a better job of blending in. Maybe people would forget she was a Wild Rune soon.

She stopped with her fork halfway to her mouth for a second bite. Someone had poisoned her — or, at least, that’s what she’d been told. She’d gotten poisoned. They’d tried to kill her and failed. What was to stop them from trying again?

read on...
aldersprig: (Stormclouds)

This is another post about the Museum of Glass!

Not just because I didn't so as much this past weekend (Well, we DID drive back to Corning...) but because I have more thoughts.

There are two things you need to know to understand this:

1) I am not generally a fan of art museums, unlike my husband and one of my friends I was travelling with.

2) I got my first smartphone (a tracfone) at the end of December. 2016. Yes, really.

I had a blast at the Museum of Glass. Not just the history parts - I love history museums, absolutely love living history, and am really excited about artifacts from the past (This is why I liked the Met so much). I liked the funny glass sculptures and the concept pieces. I read the descriptions and even thought about them — though some of them I think they put more artistry into the description than into the art piece.

I was taking pictures. I had that cheap little smartphone out, and I took pictures of everything.

And, you know what? It kept me engaged. It kept me looking at the things in front of me. Even if I was tweeting, too. This is the most fun I’ve at a museum in, like… ever. Well, ever at a non-living-history museum in my adult life.

I find this fascinating. Especially with all the pushback in media about — ha — taking in too much media, sticking too much to a phone, to our computers — I find it entertaining how much having a phone engaged me in the event.

And now I have a load of photos. Prickly kitty!
aldersprig: (Dragon Orange)
January by the numbers continues (We're in February now but hey)

From [ profile] sauergeek's prompt Deep delving dwarves discover dragons; discussions, disagreements develop: a ficlet.

The Dwarves of Daunaiya were not, as a rule, the deep-digging sort. They were, as a group, a little taller, a little less stocky than, say, their Northern Yudarsha cousins, and there were some who thought that they, not the nearby fae, were the cause of the “under-hill” myths. After all, the Daunaiya Dwarves dug under hills, not mountains, their tunnels following veins of silver and copper and lapis that wound under Darrenshire, the tallfolk land above Daunaiya.

Divisha cha-Doathshin was not born for the shallow digging. Some said it was in her blood — a grandfather from Yudarsha, a great-grandmother from Pellaye up in the Pellasher Mountains — some said she was just contrary, and some thought she was too proud for the team-based work of most dwarven mining.

But she was good, and when you are just that good at swinging your ax, just that good at sniffing out new veins, just that good at knowing exactly when to stop mining a seam, you are given some leeway. So when Divisha said she wanted to dig down, she encountered far less resistance — the political and social sort, at least — than another dwarf might have.

Down they dug, finding a vein they had not discovered before, down into metals only their ancestral records had words for, down into stones that glistened and shined like the sun itself, like grass after a rainfall, like lovers’ eyes. They were not deep-digging dwarves, and every hand-width down became that much harder, became that much more tempting, became that much more maddening.

They were twice as deep and half again as any Daunaiya dwarf had ever dug when Divisha suddenly called out “Stop!” And every single one of them know what that meant. Knew to hold onto their pick and hold their breaths the second she said it.

But there were diamonds and fesk-faturn glittering in young Dreniall’s eyes, and she swung her pick one more time.

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aldersprig: (Shooting star)
January by the numbers continues (We're in February now but hey)

From [ profile] kunama_wolf's prompt poffertjes: a ficlet.

It was said of the humans that there were certain things they would always bring with them.

(To be fair, it was said of the Yonra that they always brought everything with them, and of the Pish’teck that they never took anything, never needed anything, and never kept anything. There were sterotypes about all of the space-faring races, and about the three non-space-faring but space-capable races who populated the same region of the galaxy as the others.)

It was said that as soon as there were five humans anywhere, one of them would start selling food to the other four. As soon as there were ten, one of them would start selling art to the other nine. And as soon as there were twenty, one of them would start making laws for the other nineteen.

And one of the things every single space-faring human group brought was food carts.

The Ella Fritzi was a human-run ship out of Luna, carrying a full-time complement of crew and staff, as well as passengers and crew. It wasn’t a luxury liner, not by a long shot, but it was safe, and comfortable, and it got where it was going in decent time.

Decent time was a leisurely ride compared to some of the new ships — it might take a week between stops, or it might be a month, depending on the distance and the spacing of the wormholes. SInce that meant its crew and staff were on the ship most of their lives, and since the Pish’teck crew members, especially, got kind of loopy if their chronobiological rhythms got messed with, the ship had artificial seasons as well as artificial day and night. “Summer” got a little warmer, the light a little brighter. “Winter” got downright chilly, but the Ordalian down blankets packed up tiny and puffed up warm for each cabin.

In the “summer”, Fervin the assistant chef brought a food cart full of hotdogs and hamburgers and gyros around the socialization decks. It always surprised the alien passengers when humans — who had three meals a day included in their passage — would pay extra credits for this strange sausage-inna-bun sort of food.

In the “winter,” Fervin’s cart carried poffertjes and hot cocoa, and the aliens and humans alike ate them up. Once, the elected ship’s-mayor (a civilian position, not related to the running of the chip, the navigating it, or anything except how people spent their off time) tried to regulate what Fervin could put in his poffertjes.

The riot lasted three days and threatened to destroy the Ella Fritzi. After that, the new mayor declared that, as long as Fervin’s foods consisted of things edible to at least humans, no regulations could be made about it.

After all, humans might have a need to govern each other — but their need to be sold food to seemed to trump that.

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aldersprig: an egyptian sandcat looking out of a terra-cotta pipe (Default)

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