sabine: (Default)
https://twitter.com/fairytaletext/status/821344980191023105

Once, there was a lord who lived in the ghostly woods with a curious hen.

This was less strange than you may think. No one with any sense would live near or in the ghostly woods without an animal companion of some sort. Animals, as it is well known, aren't negatively affected by ghosts. In fact, they're critical for being able to tell if the visitor at your door is a living person or a ghost attempting to gain entrance. Even the choice of having a hen wouldn't have been considered odd by the neighbors. After all, if you're going to be living with an animal, it may as well be a useful one. True, most folks would choose a more easily domesticated animal, but it worked for the lord.

Living in the ghostly woods put a damper on one's social life. Travel after dark was inadvisable, even if travelling in a large group with many torches, lanterns, and a veritable cacophony of voice and instrument.(1) Still, the rent was cheap and the lord's nearest neighbors were a good hour's ride away. He had groceries delivered twice a month and was generally able to live a simple life, devoted as he was to his books and studies.

No, the problem was that his hen was curious. Generally, curious animals in the ghostly wood had a habit of turning into, well, ghostly animals.(2)  The lord had lost a hound to curiosity when he was a boy. He hadn't taken the logical step of swearing to never invite another curious animal into his life, though, which led him to the matter of the hen.

The hen, as I mentioned, was curious. It wanted to know things. Some of these things were good and some were troubling. The lord had learned that if he wanted to keep the hen entertained, he could put an hour glass in front of her. She would watch the sand tumble and be entranced. Other scientific endeavors led to the hall being filled with the smell of singed feathers (3), flooded (4), or on one memorable occasion, exotic dancers (5).

For all its faults, the hen had just barely enough sense to confine her curiosity to the lord's manor house. She would occasionally look out the window and was employed in evaluating every guest, but she never tried to venture outside. Most days, she was content in her nest in the corner and her collection of chicken-operated experimental equipment.(6)

One day, the lord left the house. He'd been invited to brunch at a neighboring manor (7), so he set out shortly after sunrise. He saddled his horse, left some extra corn in the hen's dish, and rode through the sun and shade. The hen, having not been invited to brunch, sulked in her nest.

The moment the lord was out of sight of the house, the local fairies, ghosts, and witches began attempting to gain entrance.(8) The windows, doors, chimneys, and vents were all warded, of course, which deterred many of the contenders. A few of the smarter ones attempted to cajole the hen into allowing them inside. 

The hen hopped up onto her favorite window seat to watch the show. The wards kept out the sound, but a few of the fairies had clearly been practicing their charades and put on quite a show, explaining through the power of mime why the hen should let them in.

The hen managed to resist all the requests for a time. She even took a nap. But when she woke up, everything fell apart. For there, on the lawn, a being appeared. It wasn't a ghost, for she would have recognized those. No, this was a wizard or a warlock. The hen flew to the door to allow the man in the house. 

Later, when the lord was trying to recover the front section of the house from the mess of chaos, he came across a note from the hen. It read:


Sorry about the mess.
I'll be back someday.
When you meet Bill, you'll understand.

The lord shook his head. Clearly, allowing the hen to subscribe to journals had been a mistake. Still, the lady's gift of a cat was turning out to be a serendipitous treasure. The cat, upon seeing the note, shook his head. Chickens, man. What did you expect?

The lord renewed the wards and made safe the house. The cat took up the hen's post, watching for intruders, ghosts, or anything else that it could chase. He was not curious. No, not in the slightest. He wouldn't be tempted by mere science. 

The woods watched and waited. They'd find a way in. Sooner or later, the cat would acquire an adjective and the woods would send out the call to gremlins, ghouls, dragons, or elves. Sooner or later.

 
---
(1) -  It is well-known that ghosts approve of silence and can tolerate harmony, but will flee from sounds that clash. 
(2) - Yes, animals leave ghosts. However, that's not important to this story.
(3) - What is this bright stuff in the fireplace - OH GREAT BIRD IN THE SKY IT BURNS!
(4) - What if I pick up all my shed feathers and stuff them into the drain of the sink? Oh, look, an indoor bird bath! Awesome!
(5) - Okay, so maybe it was a mistake to invent a contraption that could easily replicate letters and invitations. It was probably also a mistake, in retrospect, to automate an address book into the mix. In the lord's defense, however, he hadn't known that the address plates contained those names. Upon inspection, he found the names carved in his cousin's handwriting. He made a mental note to retaliate as soon as possible.
(6) - You can buy almost anything from a catalog. There are some EXTREMELY clever tradespeople these days.
(7) - Everyone who lived in the ghostly woods was nobility. Or enchanted. Or both. It goes with the territory.
(8) - They wanted to cause mischief of some kind or another. It wasn't personal, just business. 
sabine: (Default)
Downwood's up at the hospital. He was having chest pains and shortness of breath and the EMTs took him there last night. I got the kids back to bed and then tried to stay awake to find out what was going on with him. So I tried to make my daily NaNoWriMo word count. The worry and upset crept into what I was writing. Eventually I realized that I wasn't going to be able to stay on target, so I gave up and just wrote what I was feeling. I wrote most of it with my eyes closed (see above about trying to stay awake).

I read over the last little bit of it just now. I'm....not entirely sure what I was thinking.

I present to you: Unedited Ramblings of a Tired, Worried Sabine:

And no, I am really, really tired. Faling asleep at the eyboard again tired. There needs to be an argument where bakerhas to admit that the machine isn't totally rea ready to discussion and leanring. Also, he investion needs to be strong and slow. Sometimes'Now, if someone else would tae a risk, tat'd be neat. Hus Hedird.

And now bed, I think. Not sue why I was thinking about my poor, defunct html code

Yeah, bed. Otherwide I need to start talking about some of the even wirder things going on in my  min. Also, Iceland is the center of dealing with things from the imort file. I had to write an autohokey scrip to be able to pull the dat from the view into the master. Then the Master decides what it needs/wants to send with a…not master, View-model. Then the view modelt post back to the database. And the circule of life, liberty, and the perusuirt of broken doorknos, I need to wonder if the dorornobs there have funny or lewed shaps. Or if they're just pling door knockers.



friday yay

Feb. 5th, 2016 03:09 pm
sabine: (Default)
It's Friday! Woo!

Tonight is for dropping the car off to get fixed, dinner with friend, books, and buying of ice cream
Tomorrow is for Ice Cream For Breakfast Day, calling Mom to sing Happy Birthday, and picking up my car from the fixers.

Downwood and I just passed 50k words on this thing we've been writing. We started it on 1/6. Therefore, we won a NaNo.

KUEC just said, in response to someone on Twitter wondering if there are dildos in Star Wars, "Anywhere there are humans, they have invented dildo technology! Humans are just like that." I'm laughing too hard to breathe. Now they're discussing the anthropology and archaeology of dildos. I. can't. breathe.

Work is making me crazy. Whatever.

Emi has a pretty nasty chest cold. She shared it with me. She's been pretty miserable lately.

Alex is trying new words and new sounds every day. He's becoming more and more vocal. It's an amazing, wonderful thing.

I've done a good job (I think) managing anxiety this week. Meditation is helping. I'm very much enjoying the Self Esteem pack so far! 15 down, 15 to go.

My zendoodles and zentangles are becoming popular-ish on Instagram. Actual artist people seem to like them. Enormously flattering.

Friday. Yay!
sabine: (Leggy!Me)
I've been making an effort to write something every day. Yes, some of the entries lately have been rather lacking in entertainment value or anything resembling good prose, but there are other projects that are finally getting some love.

Every so often, I have to issue myself a challenge. I try to make these things that are good for me - writing, dancing, petting my dog - rather than things that are bad for me - eating an entire pan of caramel brownies. Since it's NaNoWriMo and several of my friends are doing the novel thing, I decided that it's a good time to force myself to sit and type or scrawl for not-very-long each day.

I'd forgotten how much fun it is to tell a story. I don't have very long stories usually, and most of the truly epic ones are tales of stupidity and blockheadedness that only Corporate America can generate. Luckily for the rest of the world, Downwood absorbs most of those rantings and tries to redirect me into more constructive uses of my time.

Soundtrack is important - creepy stories do not get written to happy bouncy music. Since I usually start grooving and singing along to whatever's playing (though the words sometimes morph into what I'm typing - apparently, it's kind of surreal if you happen to be listening) I really need the right mood music. Luckily, I have about 20 gigs of tunes on this hard drive and more that are accessible on the network. All hail living in the future!

But there's a cranberry-apple crisp that I sort of randomly threw together cooling on the stove for tomorrow and I have still more apples that I need to make into something. I'm thinking apple cake. Mmm...cake. I also have pumpkin fluffy pie makings - never tried this recipe, but it looked really incredibly yummy. Mmm, pumpkin!

I love fall baking. It is delicious. I'm starting to pick out my recipes for this year's cookie binge, so if you have requests, let me know now. My goal is to get them out a smidge earlier this year than last.

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