Leaf

Alder's Grove

Write the Dark

Welcome to Alder's Grove
Leaf
aldersprig
"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.

My commission rates are here (and on LJ); you can tip (tips go in a general pool to sponsor longer stories, voted on monthly), sponsor an already-written story, or commission a story to be written. Or you can become a Patreon Patron and unlock even more fiction!

Enjoy!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/64348.html. You can comment here or there.

Cloverleaf: A Basic Write-up of the City
Leaf
aldersprig
Cloverleaf is built approx 50 years after the apocalypse, or about (plus or minus 7 years) 2061.

Notably, it was built almost entirely by magic, and as such the walls show no block marks, no seams.

Built about 14 miles (23 km) northeast of Helena, Montana - to take advantage of the prewar hydroelectric dam there - Cloverleaf takes the shape of three large (approx. 1 mile diameter) walled circles, touching at one edge.

Two of these circles hold farmland; the third holds the city of Cloverleaf, itself taking the shape of three overlapping walled circles with a very tall tower in the center (where the three circles overlap). Three gates pierce the outer wall, one for each inner circle, and from those gates to the Tower in each circle runs a wide "Main Street."

Each Main street is lined with inns and restaurants close to the gates, stores and shops and light industry (home crafts) in the middle of the circles, and apartment buildings then factories (still rather light industrial - think fabric, grain mills, stuff I haven't quite figured out yet) closest to the Tower.

On the wide sidewalks on Main Street, street vendors abound, often taking over much of the street as well.

Most traffic is foot or horse-and-carriage; cars are rare although jury-rigged car-to-carriage/wagon set-ups are not uncommon, esp. in traders coming from the outside.

Fae are common, welcome, and visible here. Guards are visible at the front gate -- they check in all guests with a level of interest that ranges from "casual hello" to "three-hour interrogation." They also patrol the city, and so, while there is crime, it is not rampant.

Off Main Street, streets branch to either side in a very regular pattern. There are quite a few parks and green spaces, punctuating neighborhoods of houses, many of which have a certain sameness to them and a very pointedly stone construction: stone buildings with slate roofs, many painted or tinted in brilliant colors. Yards are big by pre-War city standards, big enough that you could, if you want, subdivide each yard and put a second house on it. Houses are small by pre-war Suburban standards but large enough to comfortably house large families.

Every house has running water and electricity; phone is not a thing and neither is TV but there are radios and radio programs. The library is huge and full of a very random, completely un-curated selection of "anything we can find." There is also an art gallery - similar collection style - and a history museum.

Much of what is available is industrial-era technology, and there are a lot of scrounged and repurposed items, especially metal things.

Fashion is driven by a few very visible people, and has a sort of Turkish-meets-bazaar-meets-medieval feel much of the time. Cotton, linen, and wool are produced in/near Cloverleaf; the dyes are still mostly natural, except those things Meentiked up magically.

The Clover is the unit of currency; a 100-C bill is approx one day's salary for a basic job.

The political system is a representative democracy under an unelected benign dictator; each circle has (at the beginning) 2 representatives into a council. There is also an appointed Administrator who works much like a VP/Speaker of the House. Economy is lightly taxed capitalism with basic needs for all citizens, the guard system, and maintenance of the city paid for by tax revenue.

Citizens are provided free basic hotel-style housing; there are no homeless in Cloverleaf (unless they want to be. Still working on that). Very basic food/clothing needs are also provided.

Cloverleaf does not, as far as I know, have an army.

It does have a Leo.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/964849.html. You can comment here or there.

Busy Couple Days! Poll Still open
Leaf
aldersprig
My August Theme Poll is still open!

As of this moment, Fae Apoc (Setting) and cats (motif) are neck & neck!


If you haven't already read it, the last installment of Regine visits Doomsday is up, as is the next installment of the Narnia/Valdamar "Pevensies Visit Valdemar" fanfic.

And when you're done with that, check out [personal profile] inventrix's new serial, Red Crow Company and [personal profile] lilfluff's Unused Trope Bingo Card Revival Prompt Call!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/964582.html. You can comment here or there.

A Letter - Enion Dayton to Leofric
Leaf
aldersprig
Some 50 years after this and after a meeting between Enion, Cynara, and Leofric roleplayed between Inventrix & I.

Enion Dayton, the Loophole, is Cynara's father, elsewhere known as Moosedad. He's also Orlaith's father, but that is currently unrelated.

(And yes, Orlaith's daughter Ce'Rilla ends up married to Cynara's son Viddie. At least she didn't marry Yoshi, who, like Ce'Rilla, is the child of an Ambrus-get on his father's side. ;-))


Dear Leofric Lightning-Blade,

Meeting you again - and this time with my daughter Cynara - was certainly an education. The rumors are that you two are close. From the looks of things, you are more capable of swaying her opinion than anyone.

I don't see why you would try to keep me away from Cynara, unless you have some ulterior motive. If you don't, I would like you to release me from the promise you forced me into. There is no reason why I shouldn't be allowed into Cloverleaf. After all, my daughter created it.

You can send your reply to the Halfway Inn, outside of Salvation, in what was once Idaho. I'm sure your messenger can find the place.

Sincerely,
Enion Dayton
Loophole

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/964215.html. You can comment here or there.

New Travelling Companions, a continuation of a fanfic of Narnia and Valdemar
Leaf
aldersprig
first: A Door in the Wall
Second: On the Other Side of the Door
Third: The Call Comes Again


The Pevensies found themselves alone again, in front of a strange forest in a strange land.

The four of them shared a long and thoughtful look.

“I have to say,” Peter admitted after a moment, “I feel underdressed.”

“We are, however, less under-armed than we were a few moments ago,” Susan pointed out. She was glad it had not been her who’d admitted to feeling improperly clothed, but she certainly was feeling much the same. A Queen wore raiment. A school-girl on a lark wore her brother’s hand-me-down pants and a blouse to grubby for wearing out.

“It doesn’t matter.” Lucy’s smile was back, her proper smile, bright and gleaming. “We’re Kings and Queens the same whether we’re in wellies and mackintoshes or in gowns and crowns.”
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This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/963929.html. You can comment here or there.

Follow Inspector Caracal on Patreon for an awesome new serialized story!
Leaf
aldersprig
Inspector Caracal, known on Dreamwidth as [personal profile] inventrix, has begun a serial on Patreon!

To quote the Inventrix, Red Crow Company is an "episodic, action-y, heavily anime-inspired story about the titular mercenary company and the jobs they take." And as of its first episode, it's enthralling!

Check it out! Get in on the ground floor of an exciting new fandom! Then you can say "I liked it before it was world-famous."

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/963610.html. You can comment here or there.

August Theme Poll Open
Leaf
aldersprig
It's time to pick August's Theme!

What's a theme do?

It informs the Patreon Prompt Call.

What's the Prompt Call do?

It informs the Patreon Stories.

What do the Patreon Stories do?

Entertain you!

What's next?

Vote on the poll!

Want to see previous themes?

Check out the tags below, or look at my Patreon!



This Poll will close in the evening of August 8th, Eastern Time.

If you do not have a DW account, you can vote in the comments.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/963435.html. You can comment here or there.

Pickled Daikon - an update
Leaf
aldersprig
The recipe says to wait 2 days. I tried it yesterday, and found the pickling hadn't really penetrated the daikon completely. Today - delicious. Absolutely tasty.

However, it might actually be a little TOO sugary for me...

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/963106.html. You can comment here or there.

Click-Through Poll: Do you Click Through to stories on other sites?
Leaf
aldersprig


This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/962868.html. You can comment here or there.
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Tropes I like Reading (& Writing) in no particular order
Leaf
aldersprig
Inspired by cluudle's post here, written in 3 minutes so probably not nearly a complete list, and much of it will not be a surprise to anyone.

Capture the flag and all variations.
Enemy prisoner, unwilling captive, angry slave
And of course the stockholm
Princess that doesn't fit in.
Warrior princess
Warrior people <.<
Animal people
Feral people.
A top who isn't quite.
Corrupt society and the slow fixing/surviving it
domineering society/adults/powerful people
eugenics (as a story theme!)
Gender swapping
New World
World under the normal world
Portal fantasy
Finding Kin
Taking a clever stand against authority
Unlikely romance
uneven power roles
Thick chewy worldbuilding
Especially world-building in post-post-apoc real-world
Apocalypses
post-apocalypses
rebuilt societies
prepared people
colonization of new worlds
Alien interactions

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/962670.html. You can comment here or there.

The Queen's Councillor, a fiction piece of Tir na Cali
Leaf
aldersprig
This piece is written to [profile] kc_obrian's prompt to my "write something short, Lyn" prompt call here. It is set in my Tír na Cali setting; read more about Cali here.

This story is open to all readers on Patreon!

Nobody knew where he had come from, and among the Queen's courtiers, this was a strange and unheard-of occurrence. He was tall, like an American, fair and freckled, like a Californian, polite and brilliant, like a politician. He sat by the Queen's side in meetings of state and he spoke, quietly, and only when he was asked to. He, it was said, counselled Her Majesty on all matters....

(read on)

.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/962413.html. You can comment here or there.

A Rescue in Kind posted on Patreon
Leaf
aldersprig
A Rescue in Kind

a story of captivity, continued: the ongoing story of Daxton and Esha, begun here:

Daxton was captive again, struggling not to take it in ill grace. This time, it seemed unlikely that Esha could rescue him...

Want to read this and many other stories? A Patronage of just $1/month will give you access to everything posted on Patreon.

Want input into the story prompts? A Patronage of $5/month lets you prompt in the monthly prompt calls. For $15/month you get your own personal story!

Check it out!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/962275.html. You can comment here or there.

Pickled Daikon
Leaf
aldersprig


The picture above is what Daikon looks like on seed packets.

What it looks like when allowed to grow IRL is more like the second picture here. Picture that about the size of a small-to-medium butternut squash.

Now picture three of them, two ripped out of the ground by a wind storm.

That's a lot of daikon.

Daikon, if you haven't tried them, aren't as bitey as red radishes. They work well in baked dishes, but, ah, it's July. We're not doing much oven work.

They also keep really really well. However, our fridge was getting rather full of long whitish roots.

So we pickled some!

(By "some", I mean, T sat there with a mandoline matchsticking daikon until the salad bowl was over half full).

We used this recipe, trebled. We used a salad spinner to get the water out, after letting the daikon sit in a colander with its salt. I used half rice vinegar and half distilled white for cost, and I replaced the sake with ginger brandy, 'cause we had it on hand.

We stored them in three old salsa jars in the very-cold back of the fridge.

The pickling juice tasted heavenly. I'll let you know how the pickled daikon taste in a few days!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/962002.html. You can comment here or there.

An Educational Visit, Part VI- The End
Leaf
aldersprig
Written to [personal profile] inventrix's and Kuro-Neko's request/commission after I Should Visit, Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV and Part V; 2500 words


“...you might consider, in due time, why some people’s children seem to know so much more, coming to Addergoole, than others’.”

Regine watched the woman walk down the stairs, her mink tail bobbing. She watched her open the back door and head out into the back yard, where Feu Drake was telling the toddler some convoluted story.

It was a question she had not given too much thought, she was forced to admit, if only to herself. Some students came in with basic or no educational background; some came in nearly college-educated. Some knew what a Kept was, what a promise was, what hawthorn was. Some learned those things the hard was during the course of their time at Addergoole.

It did make it harder to shock them into Changing, but the tight, Ellehemaei-full environment did what surprise did not.
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This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/961728.html. You can comment here or there.

Check out Lucy Weaver's Prompt Call!
Leaf
aldersprig
My friend Lucy Weaver (here she is on Patreon) is holding a prompt call here to help defray car expenses. Prompting is free; tipping gets you longer stories, as does being a Patreon patron.

Check it out!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/961315.html. You can comment here or there.

Venison, a rather short story of Cloverleaf (@inspectrcaracal)
Leaf
aldersprig
(This one born out of a dream in a rather different way than the last dream-story)

They didn't hunt venison in or around Cloverleaf.

Oh, sure, sometimes someone snagged a buck for their table, but they did so on the sly, and they didn't hang trophies.

There wasn't a law against it — there were very few laws in Cloverleaf against what you could hunt, sell, or eat in terms of food, and they mostly said "don't hunt or eat sentient beings" and "don't sell poison or other non-foods as food." But early on in the city's life, someone had shown their founder-and-leader a prize trophy buck.

The proud hunter — and everyone around him — had noted the way Cya Red Doomsday went pale and a little green. And then someone took a long look at Leofric, one day in Autumn when his Mask was down.

Word got around, slowly but surely. And nobody hunted venison around Cloverleaf anymore.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/961058.html. You can comment here or there.

Last Bid, a ficlet of Tir na Cali, free for all to read on Patreon.
Leaf
aldersprig

This story was written to @cluudle's prompt on my "Write something short, Lyn" prompt call here. It is set in my Tír na Cali setting; read more about Cali here.

 

 

The buyers were all bored, or perhaps they simply didn't like the opening bid. More interesting purchases had gone first, prettier people, stronger people. No it was down to this boy in chains, trying not to panic...

(Read on)


This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/961018.html. You can comment here or there.

"Write Something Short, Lyn." Not quite a prompt call
Leaf
aldersprig
I've been doing really well on longer projects, but sometimes I just want something I can post right away.

So leave me any or all of the following:
* a setting (pref. one of mine, or a fandom you already know I'm part of)
* a character/pairing
* a mood
* three words
* a color

and, over the next while, I may write a story.

You may leave more than one set of these (for instance: Jamian, pink, triste; Vas' World, darkness/flowers/running).

As always, my list of settings are here: http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/938780.html

A look at my tags page: http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/tag/ in the "character" section will give you a broad swath of the characters I write about.

Cheers!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/960606.html. You can comment here or there.

Train-of-Thought Cloverleaf Worldbuilding considerations
Leaf
aldersprig
went like this:

- Cya starts trade routes relatively early on, as soon as she has trade goods in the city
- because of the climate control, Cloverleaf can produce crops not otherwise available that far north.
- Ooh, flour sacks. They have cotton... https://blog.etsy.com/en/2011/feed-sacks-a-sustainable-fabric-history/, http://www.buchanancountyhistory.com/feedsack.php
- (From that thinking about IRL examples skipped to)
- Baby Boxes: http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-22751415, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maternity_package
- Cya does a lot of basic-standard-of-life stuff, I bet they do this
- there are probably unwanted children. State-run creche/adoption center? Probably
- what about abortion? Oh, bog, abortion.
- "Government cheese" and basic rations? Still thinking about details here
- Free hostel-style housing, free xx months in actual housing - not designed to eliminate poverty but to eliminate some of the horrors of poverty
- booming fabrics market as well as the custom-made fashion set by people like our printing-press guy
- And BOOKS! Entertainment! !!
- Spices, spices are very important
- how much of the means of production does our dictator control? How much does she allow to be controlled by the elected government? (how much of a fascism is she okay with and does she slowly relinquish control?)

Side note: I figured out why she runs it as a dictatorship!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/960419.html. You can comment here or there.
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Nightmare in Gotham, a story based on a dream
Leaf
aldersprig
This is almost 100% based on one of my dream/nightmares last night. It's not the entire dream, and I filled in some background and smoothed a couple things out. But the rest - it's as dreamed

Zombie Apoc AU, Gotham/NYC DC/Marvel


The Joker's crew was clearing buildings again.

Other neighborhoods, sure, the Bats protected, but there were only so many of them. A couple neighborhoods, the Family protected, and the Penguin was rumored to have his whole underground town laid out in the basements of fallen buildings.

But over here, nobody but the Joker ruled. Those who cared about such things did a lot of hiding -- not that everyone wasn't hiding, anyway. People said the zombie threat was past, but could you believe them? They'd said that before, and look where that had gotten the world.

Once a week or so -- as the joker got bored -- they would pick a building, at random or at will -- and scour through it, taking anything that his Funnyship wanted. "Tax," they called it. Sometimes a more clever minion would point out that the Joker's crew protected them from zombies. Nobody believed that. The Joker's crew protected them from the Joker, mostly.
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This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/960110.html. You can comment here or there.

Fox Hunt Continues - On Patreon!
Leaf
aldersprig
The Hunt Continues, the July Patreon microstory, has been posted:

George sidled up to the clothesline, checking the lay of the land. Nobody around; he could hear the household slaves in the kitchen, gossiping around what Her Ladyship had done.

They ought to be more careful, he thought dryly; someone might overhear...



A Patronage of just $1/month will give you access to the rest of the Patreon stories!

Want input into the story prompts? A Patronage of $5/month lets you prompt to your heart's content and for $15/month you will get your own personal story!

Check it out!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/959789.html. You can comment here or there.

An Educational Visit, Part V/?
Leaf
aldersprig
Written to [personal profile] inventrix's request/commission after I Should Visit, Part I, Part II, Part III and Part IV; 1,425 words


Regine’s eyebrows went up. “You have an Addergoole student here?”

Cynara, curse her, smirked. “We have several. However, Deimos was conceived and born outside of Addergoole.”

Regine twisted her lips. Definitely a student of Feu Drake, this one. “He is on our rolls to attend Addergoole next year.”

“His mother didn’t contact you?” Cynara raised her eyebrows. “Perhaps she was waiting until her first two children graduated.”

Regine held Cynara’s gaze. “Why do you think she would do something like that?”
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Next: http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/961728.html

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/959578.html. You can comment here or there.

Invisible People, a continuation of a thing.
Leaf
aldersprig
First: http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/958781.html

Steven’s new — potentially temporary — mistress walked around him twice. She was barefoot, but he could still hear every footstep shusshing through the soft carpet.

“I had someone picked out. I’d met with him and we’d clicked in a practice session. Tell me why I shouldn’t return you and demand recompense for the insult.”

Steven swallowed. She had come back in front of him and, with tell me, she sat down so she could look him in the eyes. He risked holding the look for a heartbeat before dropping his eyes to the floor.

“I’m...” He coughed and tried again. “They were trying to get rid of me, mistress. If you send me back, well, subs don’t exist legally and I don’t exist in their paperwork.” He looked up at her and took a gamble. “I’m invisible. And you know what happens to invisible people.”

He was looking at her feet, but he could see that it struck home anyway. Her toes tensed. “Yeah.” He thought he heard her voice crack. “Yeah, I do.”

Steven dove into the opening. “Look, I’m not Silver-Quill trained, not properly. You were looking at a nice petboi, a butler, right? I can’t do everything he could, probably, but I’m a good sub. I can make you happy. Just please, don’t send me back there.” He bent down as well as he could, pressing his forehead to her feet. “Please.”

She was quiet for so long that he was certain he’d blown it. He got ready to run; he didn’t want to be on the lam again, but it was better than ending up in the Silver Quill’s oubliette.

“Tell me something.”

He looked up at her cautiously. “Mistress?”

“Are you even a sub? Really?”

Steve ducked his head, fighting against a blush. “Yeah. Yeah I am, Mistress. I-— I spent most of my life hiding it, fighting it. But I think I am.”

“Think.” She made a rumbling noise in the back of her throat; it took Steve a moment to identify it as a laugh. “Won’t we be a pair, then?”

He risked a peek. “Mistress?”

“Yeah. Yes, it appears that I’m going to be that.” She patted his head lightly. “Let’s see if can do this, mmm?”

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/959397.html. You can comment here or there.

Invisible People, a continuation of a thing.
Leaf
aldersprig
First: http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/958781.html

"You are not what I bid on."

The sub shop had delivered Steve as per their standard issue, hooded and bound. The gag was extra, but Steve understood why they'd added that part.

He looked up at the speaker -- she'd said kneel and he'd knelt, not because he was feeling particularly obedient, but because he wanted the hood off -- and tried to communicate his frustrated scorn by eyebrows alone.

She looked down at him with something that could have been irritation. "The Silver Quill has a very good reputation. They shouldn't have mixed something like this up."

Steve worked his mouth around the gag, trying to make his displeasure with being something like this as clear as possible. The sooner she worked through her little complaint-fest here, the sooner he could be out of these bindings and...

...he really didn't know what came after that. He sat back against the bindings and waited. She'd come to her conclusion, or call the Quill, or something, eventually. All he could do was --

"Do you know what happened?"

Steve blinked. Him? She was looking at him, not at anyone else, not at a phone.

"You," she agreed. "Did you overhear anything?"

He considered that. Those were two different answers. After a moment, he decided he could answer yes to both, and nodded.

"Okay, good. I'm going to take the gag out. It's easier than playing twenty questions."

Steve nodded again. What was he going to say? What could he say?

The gag coming out felt strange. The Quill had not really wanted to hear Steve, and so he'd been muzzled for most of the last week. He waited until she sat down in front of him, and then until she cued him to speak with a hand gesture.

"They wanted to get rid of me, as quickly as possible. Mistress." He bowed his head carefully. It pulled at his bonds in several places. "And they said -- that is, I overheard them saying you seemed like the sort that wouldn't complain."

Steve risked a glance at her. Her eyebrows were up and her lips were pursed. "Well, then. I suppose I ought to prove them wrong."

Steven swallowed hard and thought harder. "Please don't. Look. Please don't send me back."

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/959397.html. You can comment here or there.

Jumping Sharks, a dystopic story bit for Thimbleful Thursday
Leaf
aldersprig
The new TV shows were stretching further and further, going more and more extreme in their desire to get the viewer's attention. First it had been the Extreme Games. Then it had been the Survivor Shows. Now... Now it was this.

Aisleigh left the television on as she tidied the house. She was an honest citizen in good standing, and so her home wasn't monitored, of course. Still, it was easy to track viewing practices, so she left the TV going.

The bookshelves needed a good dusting. Not only did that make the place look sharper, Aisleigh often found things she'd mislaid, and, less often, bugs someone had intentionally hidden. If they thought she never moved The Lesser Uses for Goldenrod, well, then obviously they weren't studying her all that hard.

"Today, here on The Biggest Challenge, we have a brand new obstacle! Stay tuned to see our contestants struggle to stay on their skis as the tow boat executes turn after turn. Will they make it? Just how skilled are they?"

The announcer's voice dropped deeper and softer. "The station and the Enforcement would like to remind all of the viewers that theft, murder, and rape are crimes. All criminals will pay restitution to their victims and to the state. And we all know --" now his voice rose up into his dramatic near-shout "--what happens to those who cannot pay!"

The audience behind him shouted happily. "They dance the dance!"

It was, Aisleigh thought, one of the worst slogans: Those that can't pay the fiddler must dance the dance. But it certainly kept the reality shows stocked with "actors."

"Today," the announcer declared, "triple-murderer Shaun Cortwright is going to face an even more exciting challenge. Today, he is going to have to jump a shark! Let's see how long he can stay on the skis while the hungry beasts swim below him!"

Somewhere in a planning meeting somewhere, Aisleigh was certain, someone had uttered the phrase "jump the shark" to a director. And someone had said "that's it!"

She turned off the television. Criminals couldn't pay their restitution if they didn't bring in the ad revenue. Certainly, people would watch. Bloodsports always garnered attention. But maybe, if enough people turned off the tv, someone would explain exactly what "jump the shark" was supposed to mean.



written to Today's Thimbleful Thursday prompt.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/959052.html. You can comment here or there.

A drabble of a thing I've been thinking of (Partially from something @cluudle said)
Leaf
aldersprig
in the same not-yet-a-'verse as http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/938413.html

"You are not what I bid on."

The sub shop had delivered Steve as per their standard issue, hooded and bound. The gag was extra, but Steve understood why they'd added that part.

He looked up at the speaker -- she'd said kneel and he'd knelt, not because he was feeling particularly obedient, but because he wanted the hood off -- and tried to communicate his frustrated scorn by eyebrows alone.

She looked down at him with something that could have been irritation. "The Silver Quill has a very good reputation. They shouldn't have mixed something like this up."

Steve worked his mouth around the gag, trying to make his displeasure with being something like this as clear as possible. The sooner she worked through her little complaint-fest here, the sooner he could be out of these bindings and...

...he really didn't know what came after that. He sat back against the bindings and waited. She'd come to her conclusion, or call the Quill, or something, eventually. All he could do was --

"Do you know what happened?"

Steve blinked. Him? She was looking at him, not at anyone else, not at a phone.

"You," she agreed. "Did you overhear anything?"

He considered that. Those were two different answers. After a moment, he decided he could answer yes to both, and nodded.

"Okay, good. I'm going to take the gag out. It's easier than playing twenty questions."

Steve nodded again. What was he going to say? What could he say?

The gag coming out felt strange. The Quill had not really wanted to hear Steve, and so he'd been muzzled for most of the last week. He waited until she sat down in front of him, and then until she cued him to speak with a hand gesture.

"They wanted to get rid of me, as quickly as possible. Mistress." He bowed his head carefully. It pulled at his bonds in several places. "And they said -- that is, I overheard them saying you seemed like the sort that wouldn't complain."

Steve risked a glance at her. Her eyebrows were up and her lips were pursed. "Well, then. I suppose I ought to prove them wrong."

Steven swallowed hard and thought harder. "Please don't. Look. Please don't send me back."

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/958781.html. You can comment here or there.

The Call Comes Again, a continuation of a fanfic of Narnia and Valdemar
Leaf
aldersprig
first: A Door in the Wall
Second: On the Other Side of the Door


...Perhaps you could find the help that you needed as well

Susan looked at Edmund, who was frowning. She looked at Lucy, who wore a smile which was at the same time hopeful and very confused. She looked finally at Peter, who was looking what she thought of as Kingly.

Help that they needed? What could it be that they all needed together?

Peter took a step forward. He bowed politely to the cat and cleared his throat. “Please,” he said, sounding so much like a schoolboy that it hurt Susan to listen. Who was this shy boy? “Where are we? And who am I speaking to?”

::You are in the southernmost corner of a nation called Valdemar, in a world that is not that which you were born on, nor the same world as your Narnia. And I am Tesnel. I am a Firecat, a representative of Vkandis Sunlord.:: The Cat - Firecat, Susan supposed - took a moment to groom herself. ::I was chosen to speak to you because of your affinity towards other catlike avatars of the gods. And... we need your help.::
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Next: http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/963929.html

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/958642.html. You can comment here or there.

A Double-AU Crossover in need of a title, part the second: Intimations
Leaf
aldersprig
First: http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/955989.html

The tension was high in the room, and one of the most deadly people in the world was smiling at Tony. Things were about to get really, really bad.

Tony leaned back against his suit and grinned, his billionaire playboy philanthropist smile, all razzle and a little bit of dazzle. “Oh, you know me.” He flipped his hand sideways, taking in the whole tower and everything else. “I like to fuck everyone.”

He leaned forward before she could attack, which was a miracle in and of itself. She was holding back. Why was she holding back?

Hopefully, the same reason he was.
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This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/958239.html. You can comment here or there.

A Clever? Addergoole Idea
Leaf
aldersprig
I came up with this idea last night, something a bunch of upperclassmen might come up with ~Yr16-Yr19

Rather than leaving the whole Keeping thing up to hope-and-chance, right after Regine's orientation, they bring all the new kids into the gym/somewhere for a "meet n' greet and mentor set-up." This consists of something like speed dating, where each new kid meets each upperclassman that's interested in "mentoring new students;" I.e., having a Kept.

The administration allows this on a few caveats, one of which is that part of the meet-and-greet is to allow students to choose several upperclassmen they either DO or DON'T want as their "Mentor".

All the upperclassmen put in the same information - they'd like x, y, and z, they don't want A, b, or c Kept. Then a computer program runs random numbers.

If a "want" matches up, that's the most likely pairing. "Don't wants" won't be paired. Obviously, not every upperclassmen will get a Kept. But every new student WILL get a Keeper.

All nice and tidy and SO MANY stories I could write off of this

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/958099.html. You can comment here or there.

Down, Down, Down, a continuation of Doug for Patreon - open to everyone!
Leaf
aldersprig
"Down, Down, Down" has been posted here. It comes after the second portion of Into the History of Addergoole, and delves into the plotline of Addergoole: Year 9.

Doug was back in a war zone. They were in the bowels of Addergoole, battling creatures that would not see reason. They’d brought Agmund down with them — three of Doug’s cy’ree, two of Luke’s, and two of Agmund’s were guarding the rear, in case anything got through — but these creatures seemed impervious to Panida Workings. Just in case, they’d tried Intinn and Tlacatl. Nothing.


A Patronage of just $1/month will let you read all Patron-only posts! Check it out!

Edit: This is open for everyone! I was thinking that Fox Hunt was my free post for last month - and it wasn't! So Fox Hunt's requested continuation will be my Patrons-only short short fic for the month, and this is my free fic. Backwards!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/957840.html. You can comment here or there.

An Educational Visit, Part IV/?
Leaf
aldersprig
Written to [personal profile] inventrix's request/commission after I Should Visit, Part I, Part II and Part III; 1,676 words

Kurt bowed low, with an overdone flourish. “Welcome to Doomsday, lady and gentleman.” Never had those words been spoken so cheerfully. “I do hope you enjoy your stay.”

He sounded like a movie. Regine raised her eyebrows at him in the gesture that had quelled so many Addergoole students. This child, however, had no common sense, and was unconcerned. He winked at her playfully and turned back to the sidewalk, moving forward with a hop and a skip.

“First up is the dining hall and otherwise gathering-around place.” Kurt gestured negligently at the building.

“A church?” Regine was honestly shocked, enough that it showed in her voice. The building was tall, pale, and had a steeple -- every bit like an old country church.
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This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/957451.html. You can comment here or there.

A Change in Routine, a story (beginning) for @InspectrCaracal
Leaf
aldersprig
Luke was waiting for Cya at the fence around Lady Maureen's.

She was, she'd admit, predictable, but never in the sixty years that she'd been doing this had Luke stopped her. Talked to her, yes. Chatted, asked questions, sometimes even second-guessed her choices.

Something was different in his posture this time. There was something about the set of his feet and the spread of his wings that told her he wasn't going to wait patiently, and he wasn't here to chat.

Cya shifted her own posture, making sure she could feel the weight of every weapon she carried. She couldn't win a fight with Luca Hunting-Hawk, certainly not on his territory. But she could make sure she got away and survived long enough to call in Boom.

He stepped forward. "Cya."

"Sir." She noticed, then, that he had his body and wings angled oddly. Hiding something? "Nice weather this year."

"I have something for you."

That's what I'm worried about. "Sir?" He never had been great at small talk.

"I'm not something!" The complaint came from behind Luke; he shifted, folded his wings, and hauled a young man in front of him.

He was blonde, with a look Cynara recognized well - the chin, the nose, although the eyes were different. He looked more like Howard than like Leo, but they often did. And he looked not very close to either of them -- but that made sense, because it'd been generations, and not every child of Aelfgar could've managed to have children with a sibling.

Unlike any of her favorite Aelf-get, he had a crown of horns radiating out of his blonde curls like a sunburst. Like many of them, he was wearing a seemingly perpetual scowl.

"Cya Red Doomsday, this is Apollo the Sun-fire. Apollo, this is the woman I was telling you about."

Cya raised her eyebrows. "I don't really do unwilling, Luke." She couldn't miss the way the Hawk's fingers were pressing into the boy's forearm.

"You used to."

"I used to be a child. We were all children, once." This conversation was not going where she'd thought it would. "I grew up."

"That's the problem." He pushed Apollo forward; the boy tried to resist, but Luke was a force of nature. "This one didn't. He managed to sit through four years of Addergoole and I don't think he learned a damn thing, not the important stuff. He's going to get himself killed out there."

"He's right here." Apollo shifted as far away from Luke as the grip on his arm would allow. "And I'll be fine. Look, I know how to fight. I'll be able to take on anything I run into out there."

Cya sighed quietly. "I see what you're saying. But the thrill of the fight got old a long time ago, Luke, and I have my hands full."

Apollo leered at her. "I'll give you a fight, Lady."

"Red Doomsday." Luke's voice grew soft and formal. "I am fond of this idiot, and he was my student. I am asking you a favor, that perhaps you might succeed where I have failed. It is not a small favor, and I pay my debts."

Cya let that hang in the air. She looked the boy, pout, spikes, blonde hair, up and then down again.

"You." She nodded at the kid. "You Belong to me for the next year."

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/957294.html. You can comment here or there.

Damage Control, a very-likely-non-canon story of Cynara (And Leo), c. 2009
Leaf
aldersprig
The call came while they were watching TV after dinner: Supernatural, which amused Cynara on one level and reminded her of school in a whole different way.

"Got it," she answered. The kids were listening, so she tried to make her voice sound reassuring. "I'll take care of it. Thanks."

On TV, the Brothers Winchester were fretting about how one couldn't be a monster hunter and have a family. Cynara pulled her Kept aside. He was new, but he was already proving himself to be reliable and reasonably level-headed.

"Look, I've got to take care of a thing." She saw Yoshi was watching her, but what could she do? The life sort of came up on you, regardless of if you had kids or not. "Everything should be okay here, but if anyone comes to the door, if anything strange happens -- look, this is not an order, I am trusting you to use your judgement. But if it gets scary, lock yourself and the kids in the bedroom - their bedroom, the windows are protected - and stay out of sight, okay?"

He was fresh out of Addergoole; things being weird really didn't faze him. He nodded. "Do what you have to do, boss."

Maybe she was getting better at picking them. "Thanks, hon." She gave him a kiss, hugged the kids and told them to behave, picked up Go Bag #3, and headed out.

Her first stop was a quick Find, looking for SWAT-worthy crime that hadn't been noticed by the cops yet. She slipped on her gloves, and, standing across the road and behind a tree, made a hurried 9-1-1 call.

"I think they're selling guns," she whispered worriedly. "And they have some woman tied up..."

It was a bad scene, but nothing the cops couldn't handle. And it would keep them busy.

She dropped the phone in a garbage can a few blocks away and made another call of a similar nature a few miles away. Once she'd gotten the third one down -- it was amazing how much crime went on unnoticed in this city -- she started making the other calls.

Her friend at 9-1-1 wasn't supposed to give away any information, but he could confirm three phone calls of a man with "some sort of sword." He could also deny that there had been any calls of anyone being attacked. Yet.

A quick web search told her the three most likely targets; the two that were most likely innocent got a call in from her second and third burner phones, a bomb threat and a weather warning. She dropped those phones in the river and a garbage can, respectively, and hopped back in the car.

The trick wasn't finding him. Cynara could find him anywhere on the planet. The trick was minimizing the possible damage.

She made one more call, this one from her own call. "I've got it in hand." The police were thoroughly distracted. The potential victims -- the ones that were probably not actually Nedetakaei -- were warned. Now all she had to do was either help Leo kill monsters or talk him down from killing innocent people.

She made another phone call, just in case, and kept driving.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/956987.html. You can comment here or there.

The Poll Has Spoken: July Patreon Theme
Leaf
aldersprig
The poll has been polled, the numbers counted, and the results for July are: More, please.

I have this habit of writing things that end on cliffhangers, you may have noticed. So this theme is the chance to go Hey, that story you wrote last year? Write more of it, 'kay?

As always, I will write the following Patreon stories:

$5 level - a Patron-only microfiction (or, in this case, micro-continuation)

$20 level - a Patron-only flash fiction (or about 750-1250 words of continuation)

$30 level - if I gain any $7+ Patrons, they may prompt for a private continuation.

And, if we get up to $40 (two more $5 Patrons! or 10 more $1 Patrons!), then we can talk about the Patreon Serial!!

Check out my Patreon here - https://www.patreon.com/aldersprig?ty=c

And let me know if there's any story -- preferably from my Patreon, but anything here in DW/LJ too -- that's just been demanding a continuation. You might try http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/tag/morepls (150 posts!) or the comments here - http://aldersprig.livejournal.com/925861.html

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/956723.html. You can comment here or there.
Tags: ,

Poll, poll, poll
Leaf
aldersprig
Last chance~

http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/955370.html

The Poll controls the Prompt call

The prompt call controls the ideas

The ideas control the stories

Stories are the mind-killer.

I must not story.

Wait.

The Stories control the...

Wait.

Anyway: Vote!

http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/955370.html Closed!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/956455.html. You can comment here or there.

Patreon Posts in June
Leaf
aldersprig
June was a busy month for Patreon!

You can find all of the stories here; for the low price of $1/month, you can read all patron-only stories.

Stranded World
A Tangled Knot - a story of tangling (Free story)

Love Stories
Ashes and Love - a tale of enduring love
The Warlord's Cat - like a cat loves its human (Free story)
Five Locks - forbidden love

Tír na Cali
Leaving the Land of the Free - and wanted to be a slave
Fox Hunt - with a 2-legged "fox"
Sale Price - on a slave, no returns (Free story)

Check them all out here!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/956305.html. You can comment here or there.

A Double-AU Crossover in need of a title, part the first
Leaf
aldersprig
“They think you're human, you know.” Tony wasn't looking at Romanoff; he had his head buried in his new favorite suit and one arm in what would be, if the suit were a person, the sort of compromising position that the tabloids would love to catch him in.

He didn't have to be looking at her, of course; JARVIS was looking at her and relaying the image. Tony didn't know if Romanoff knew that, but she did raise one elegant eyebrow at Tony's ass. “Think?”

“You and Clint both. Rogers, the big guy, they know what they are. Thor -- Thor is his own jumbo-sized issue, but I think you and I both know what he is. But you and Clint, the rest of the team thinks you're human.”

“And you think you know differently.” She'd shifted her posture. Tony might not have noticed, but JARVIS did. She had three -- no, four -- weapons on her body, not counting the exquisite weapon that was her body.

Of course, she was standing in Tony's workroom, which meant she was surrounded by his weapon. It could go either way.

Tony didn't extricate himself from the suit. “Look. I could be wrong, in which case you can say I'm crazy, which will only be the third or fourth time today.”
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Crossover of Avengers and Fae Apoc and thus turning both of them into a bit of an AU, including there being super-science in fae apoc now.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/955989.html. You can comment here or there.

The TARDIS Bag, or the bag of ever-expanding pockets (a blog post)
Leaf
aldersprig
posted here: http://altersprig.blogspot.com/2015/06/the-tardis-bag-or-bag-of-ever-expanding.html on my shiny new crafts and alteration and etc. blog.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/955665.html. You can comment here or there.

A Tangled Knot, a story of Stranded World for Patreon - free for everyone~
Leaf
aldersprig
A Tangled Knot, the last of the April Patreon stories, has been posted:

The sun was out and, therefore, so were the students.

They sprawled across the quad, some of them making an attempt at reading, but many of them soaking up the first real warmth of spring without any concern for academics...



A Patronage of just $1/month will give you access to the rest of the Patreon stories!

Want input into the story prompts? A Patronage of $5/month lets you prompt to your heart's content and for $15/month you will get your own personal story!

Check it out!

April's theme was Stranded World. May's was Love Stories. And June's was Tír na Cali.

Want to help decide July's theme? Vote in the Poll!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/955395.html. You can comment here or there.

Passing Dreams, written for last week's @MicroBookends
Leaf
aldersprig
(I didn't win, so here's last week's microfic at 110 words. Check out the MicroBookEnd page for the photo and prompt.)

“Big freaking deal.” Jenny and the rest of the mean kids kicked at the chalk letters. “So you have a list. Ooh, I see, it’s a ‘wish list.'” Jenny snorted. “Cute.”

Trying to get them to help had been dumb.

“Here, let me see.” Jenny snatched the chalk out of Maris’ hand. “You wished for a new dog? Right.” She scribbled at the bottom of the list. “Twenty dollars. Uh. What?” She jumped, but the list was already pulling her in, replacing her with a twenty, the way it had given a dog when it had taken Maris’ brother.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/954938.html. You can comment here or there.

July's Theme Poll, early and everything - open to everyone!
Leaf
aldersprig
July needs a theme!

Why, Lyn, you ask? Well, so that I have a base from which to do my Patreon prompt call!

Well, what's that do, you ask? Well, then I write stories! Two for the Patreon patrons, and at least one for everyone (that's you)!

If you don't have a DW account, pls. vote in the comments.

I will close this poll July 1 at or around 8 p.m. Eastern time.



This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/955370.html. You can comment here or there.

"Sale Price," a story of Tír na Cali, is this month's Free to Everyone Patreon story!
Leaf
aldersprig
Sale Price, the third of the June Patreon stories, has been posted:

"They don't put slaves on sale."

Ellen made a point of window-shopping the slave store every time she went to the mall. It reminded her what she was saving up for, what she was working overtime for.Her maternal grandmother had been a freed slave and the best cook in southern Tír na Cali; her grandfather had cleaned floors for a living until his seventies.



A Patronage of just $1/month will give you access to the rest of the Patreon stories!

Want input into the story prompts? A Patronage of $5/month lets you prompt to your heart's content and for $15/month you will get your own personal story!

Check it out!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/954757.html. You can comment here or there.

Read "Technomagic," by Cluudle
Leaf
aldersprig
cluudle has written Technomagic, set in my Tír na Cali verse. Check it out!

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/954563.html. You can comment here or there.

Raise 'Em Up, a ficlet of Cynara/the apocalypse
Leaf
aldersprig
I was listening to Keith Urban's Raise 'Em Up on the way to work today, and... this is what I got. A moment of Cynara as the world burns.

Lift your tear-filled eyes
Up to the sky
Comin' home you've been gone too long
Tonight we're gonna
Raise em' up


Boom Ranch, 2012


She hung up the phone and leaned back with a thump, glad there was no-one around to see her.

Tulsa was gone. Three more friends and 300 hundred thousand other people she'd failed to save.

She indulged herself in a moment of grief. Then she picked up the phone again.

"Catriona? This is Cynara -- ah, Máire the Red. I'm glad I caught you. I'm glad you're okay." She knew she sounded cheerful, upbeat, casual. She had a lot of experience sounding stable when she was shaking inside. "Look, I don't know what arrangements you've made, but some friends and I bought a ranch up in Wyoming, and there's a nice piece of land next door where I'm putting together a tent city of sorts. Running water, electricity..." Her voice caught for a moment. "It's as safe as we can make it, Cat, and that's pretty safe."

The rest was just details -- location, call sign, what to pack. Cya resisted the urge to tell her "pack everything. Pack it all; this isn't going to blow over." Instead she made herself sound calm, practical. Bring what you'd take for a three-week camping event. Bring stuff you like to work on, bring your crafting supplies. Bring friends, anyone you really trust. Bring yourself, fast. As fast as you can pack.

She hung up the phone and indulged herself in a moment of hope. Then she picked up the phone and dialed again.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/954339.html. You can comment here or there.

Fox Hunt, a story of Tír na Cali for Patreon patrons, is posted
Leaf
aldersprig
Fox Hunt, the second of the June Patreon stories, has been posted:

Ariana shifted in her saddle and tried not to look nearly as bored as she felt. This was her mother’s sport and her grandmother’s, not hers, and it bore as much relation to actual tracking as Duck Hunt did to being an army sniper.

Her family still thought it was fun, somehow: they stuck a fox tail on a slave; the slave then dutifully ran through the woods. They sent dogs after him and then, in the grand tradition of the fox hunts, rode the poor schmuck down. Afterwards, he was rewarded, coddled, and praised; the better run, the more praise. Everyone got drunk and praised themselves on how good a hunt it had been.


A Patronage of just $1/month will let you read all Patron-only posts! Check it out!</i>

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/953909.html. You can comment here or there.

A Collar Tale 1, an experimental microfiction of Addergoole Year 10
Leaf
aldersprig
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Collars keep coming across my dash on Pinterest, you see. So I decided to write a story.

Image source (here).

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/953628.html. You can comment here or there.

Leaving the Land of the Free, a story of Tír na Cali for Patreon patrons
Leaf
aldersprig
Leaving the Land of the Free, the first of the June Patreon stories, has been posted

The letter from Jordy had said D- The rumors are true. They really can do it. Ruby slippers forever. -J

It had been in Jordy’s bubbly, heart-dotted-i’s handwriting, even if the envelope had been machine-printed. It explained everything, and at the same time, it opened up so many more questions.


A Patronage of just $1/month will let you read all Patron-only posts! Check it out!


This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/953370.html. You can comment here or there.

Five Locks, a story of forbidden love, is posted for Patreon patrons!
Leaf
aldersprig
Five Locks, the last of the May stories, has been posted:

Five locks clicked open almost silently, quietly enough that the guard noticed nothing. In the cell, the prisoner shifted cautiously, not believing she could be free.

Down the hall, another prisoner started shouting loudly, as if he was being stabbed by a thousand pins. The guard, new on the job, hurried that way, swearing loudly the whole way....


A Patronage of just $1/month will let you read all Patron-only posts! Check it out!


This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/953225.html. You can comment here or there.

An Educational Visit, Part III/?
Leaf
aldersprig
Written to [personal profile] inventrix's request/commission after I Should Visit, Part I, and Part II; 1,785 words

"...we will see you to the gate and bar your entrance.”

Regine raised her eyebrows. “You think you can?”

Cynara smiled back at her. “I think it would be a very interesting exercise for all of us. I also remember, very clearly, something that Luke taught us a long time ago: individually, a single fae may be stronger than another. In a group... it is rare that you will find a single fae stronger than fifty fae.” She folded her hands and smiled. “You can sign the paper. Or you can leave.”

Regine a second look at the paper. It was a short contract, agreeing to much the same items that Drake had sworn -- that she would came in with no desire to seek military knowledge or advantage, that she would do no harm to the staff or to the children, that she would leave if asked to leave. “Do you seriously believe that I am a danger to students?”
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This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/952869.html. You can comment here or there.

Patreon Tinyfic Posted: The Warlord's Cat
Leaf
aldersprig
May's free story, to the theme "Love Story" and to @dahob's prompt, has been posted!

You can find it here.

“He loves you very much.” The ambassador’s eyes followed the warlord’s slave as he left the room. He moved gracefully, like a predator. The chains around his wrists and ankles, shiny and decorative for all their strength, seemed to hamper him not at all... (Read on.)

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/952626.html. You can comment here or there.

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