Completed There Is A Spider In This House

Lani prepares a meal for her crow, and gets a little more comfortable living in the Infinity Manor.

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The Diamond of Kalea is located on Kalea's extreme west coast and called as such because its completely made of a crystalline substance called Skyglass. Home of the Alvina of the Stars, cultural mecca of knowledge seekers, and rife with Ethaefal, this remote city shimmers with its own unique light.

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There Is A Spider In This House

Postby Lani Stranger on April 10th, 2019, 4:44 am

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45th of Spring, 519AV


Lani was beginning to adjust to her new life, underneath Madeira's roof. Although the idea of children made her very uncomfortable, she had grown to spend time with the little creatures and found herself quite fond. Moritz was prone to chewing on her hair, and Amelie was always trying to tear the few pieces of jewelry that she wore from her skin. They were cute babies, and she didn’t mind. In fact she almost found the annoying habits endearing, starting to wear her hair down more, even knowing it would be used as a teething tool for the little boy. Spider was settling in fine, which she found because he was disappearing for longer spans when she let him out in the morning. The juvenile crow was still attached to her shoulder, and so never strayed far enough that he could not hear her whistle, but he had scared her a time or two since taking up residence in the Infinity Manor.

”I swear, he eats better than me.” She muttered to herself, sweeping past the greatroom into the open kitchen area. Feeding the crow a balanced diet was one of her new favorite pass-times, although she had never put that much effort into herself. The half-Eypharian had never learned how to properly cook, preferring to eat at taverns or restaurants when she could, otherwise snacking on cold food that require no preparation from her. Spider, however, was a different story. Luckily she didn’t have to cook anything for the bird, merely set out what was appropriate for him to eat, and the crow would tear it up.

She had bought bird feed of course, but the thin meal wasn’t enough, and she tried to subsidize his food with protein and vegetables that he needed, like Val had taught her. Luckily Lhavit usually always had fish available, and so she was easily able to get him his protein, but fruit and appropriate vegetables were harder to come by. She had acquired oats, corn, pecans, Halibut, apples, cherries, cabbage, brown rice, and rhubarb. Although none were exactly what Val had showed her, they were the easiest Lhavit substitutes, and she hoped they would satisfy her bird.

The cabbage was mostly to add to the food in the house, although she would give Spider one or two leaves. She had witnessed him tear apart lettuce before, and while she was not entirely sure that he actually ate it, he seemed to enjoy ripping it to teeny tiny shreds, and it was enough to interest the doting Lani into buying it for him.

Preparing his meal was easy. She pulled the wide tin dish she had bought for him, and scooped out a very small handful of oats. She was supposed to measure but at this point she was good at eyeing how much grain the bird ate. She took what she had and cut it in half, knowing that she would be offering some rice as well. Setting the plate aside, she took the rice bag and hooked her finger on a hanging pot. She pumped some water into it from the spicket, and set it atop the stove. She grabbed two logs and set them inside, preparing to turn in search of tinder, when a quick puff whoosh of fire sounded in her ear. Lani turned to see that the stove had begun burning already, and was entirely unsure of what to say.

Last edited by Lani Stranger on April 10th, 2019, 7:08 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Lani Stranger
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There Is A Spider In This House

Postby Lani Stranger on April 10th, 2019, 4:45 am

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She logically knew it was Madeira’s living house, but she rarely got favors from it. ”Thank you?” She said, uncertain if the sentient manor understood her words. But the act did get her to thinking. As she dumped a handful of rice into the pot, she remembered the note Madeira had given her, about the house trying to scare the bird or fill her room with spiders. She had not met any abrasive behavior from the building, not really, although this was the first act to help her. Rather than contribute it to the sentient thing warming up to her, she wondered if it was warming up to Spider. After all, the curious bird had not feared the house upon first meeting it, and he was a hoot. Lani found the crow very entertaining, and she wondered if the house did too?

”Half of his diet needs to be grain.” She said matter-of-factly, to no one in particular. No one was in the kitchen, although with the acknowledgement that the house was watching her, she no longer felt alone. Perhaps it was curious. ”But he gets won’t eat large quantities of any particular thing, except when it is not meant for him.” She grinned. ”So I give him a small variety to make sure he is eating it all.” She nodded, turning back to the counter and pulling an apple from the bag. She pulled a knife from a drawer and then set a wood board down to begin cutting it. Spider was still a small bird, and so she didn’t need to cut him much of the apple, but to make sure it didn’t get wasted, she bit into the last of it, chewing the juicy winter fruit before continuing to tell the house what she was doing. With the pieces she had cut, she diced them into small swallowable pieces for the bird. He could tear at it, but she thought the apples were too hard to take the risk that he would choke. Other things she would leave whole, to allow him to work on his own, like the fish.

”I try to cut the hard things, like nuts and hard fruits and vegetables, smaller so that he can eat them. He is still small and I worry about him choking.” She informed the house, scooping the dices of apples into her hand and depositing them on the plate. She waited, as if she was having a conversation with someone and the house would respond, although it did not. She then glanced at the pot, which was now boiling, as she had not put much water or rice into it, and took it from the stove, and set it down on the brick hearth beneath it to allow it to cool and soak up the water.

”I have to wait until the rice is cooled to, because I don’t want to burn him.” She grinned, hearing her words out loud and realizing how much she coddled the bird. ”I’m a bit obsessive, I know, but I had a good teacher.” She explained, thinking of her friend Val. The old linguist who guarded Wind Reach’s gate. He had resonated with her love of languages, and had inspired her towards pursuing them. She now knew four languages, thanks to him, although she was not nearly fluent in all of them. Not too bothered that the house was not talking back to her, she hardly expected it to, Lani continued on, pulling a mere four pecans from their bag and setting them on the cutting board. Carefully she diced them into eighths, but just pushed them aside on the cutting board rather than scoop them into the dish just yet.
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Lani Stranger
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There Is A Spider In This House

Postby Lani Stranger on April 10th, 2019, 4:45 am

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Next Lani took the rhubarb. She personally didn’t enjoy the vegetable, finding it too bitter and sour, no matter how it was cooked. But it was one of the few vegetables that Val had showed her the crow would eat, and so she served it. Because it was not a vegetable she wanted to eat, she had only bought one stalk from the vendor, a confusing transaction, and her explanation that it was for a bird was not enough. Taking the stalk, she rinsed the dirt off of it briefly, and then cut it in half.

”I know, it is not a lot, but the other half can be eaten tomorrow.” She explained to the manor, as if it has asked a question, which it had not. ”I haven’t the faintest why Spider likes the rhubarb, it is so bitter, but I suppose he is attracted to the color. Spider loves bright colors.” She jabbered, splitting the rhubarb stalk down the middle and then chopping it up too. Blood red juice spilled from the stalk, staining the cutting board and her Chaktawe speckled finger tips. When she was done, she scooped it into the dish as well, and then turned to the corn. She didn’t bother to boil the corn like she would for a human.

”Val said you take some of the nutrients out of corn when you boil it. We need to boil it because, well, it tastes good that way, but crows don’t need it boiled.” She said, taking her knife and scrapping off a few kernels. She deposited them into the dish as well, nestling them beside the oats. She wanted to spread out the color, finding that Spider’s diet was focused on what looked the most appetizing, and if she grouped them all together, she feared he would not eat the grains she needed him to. She dug her fingers into the cherry bag then, scooping out a few of the fresh spring fruit. They were soft and ripe, and one broke in her fingers, further staining her hands before she could transport them to the cutting board to pit them. Lani glanced around her for a tick, trying to think of something to pit the cherries with.

”I haven’t gotten a chance to do it yet, but Val told me that you can make little puzzles out of his food to entertain him. Cherries came up, but since they hadn’t been in season, this is the first time I get to do this,” She explained, yanking each drawer out and inspecting its contents for a tick before she found the mundane eating utensils drawer. She pulled a single chopstick from them, and waltzed back over to the cutting board, brandishing the single stick as if it was a valuable object. She held the thing upright on the board in her left fist, and then plucked a cherry from the pile with the right fingers, pinching it on either end. She lined it up with the end of the chopstick and then forced it down, watching the seed pop out. The slipper thing flew from the board, landing on the floor, a few splatters of blood red juice in its wake. Lani frowned, and yanked the rag from its hanger. ”Sorry.”
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Lani Stranger
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Posts: 617
Words: 652563
Joined roleplay: March 21st, 2014, 11:48 pm
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There Is A Spider In This House

Postby Lani Stranger on April 10th, 2019, 4:46 am

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Sheepishly, Lani scooped up the pit and piled in on her cutting board with the other food extras, and pitted the last few cherries more carefully. One’s that did not meet her standard of wholeness, got eaten, but eventually she came out with six pitted, still whole, cherries. Taking the pecan bits now, she stuffed one or two into the cherry as they would fit and then set them aside.

”I do this, because his beak is small and the cherry is soft. He could tear the cherry apart easily, although once he does so he will find the pecan inside and will have fun tearing at the others for the pecan inside.” She explained, setting the cherries on the dish, and then scooping the rest of the pecans in beside it. Once she had done that, she pulled the fish from its wrapping. It was a small bit of the large fish, and she had been lucky enough to be able to ask the fish vendor to cut the scales off for her. As far as she understood, which was not a lot, the halibut was a very large fish, and so she didn’t have to pick any bones out of it either. Carefully she laid the hunk of fish in the dish and then rinsed her hands in the washing bucket beneath the spicket before turning to her rice.

”They should be cool enough now for him to eat.” She mused outloud, prodding the fluffy brown grain with her wooden spoon. She would not have preferred to eat this rice herself, since it wasn’t seasoned in anyway, but she had accidentally made more than Spider would eat. Lani scooped out enough for the crow, tapping the spoon on the side of the dish so the sticky rice would drop onto the dish, and then she scooped out what was left, stomaching the bland flavorless rice, in order not to waste it.

"And the final touch, cabbage." Lani narrated, pulling two of the large leaves off of the cabbage and placing them ontop of the bowl covering it up. "I'm not convinced he actually eats the leafy stuff, but he seems to enjoy shredding it, so hopefully he has some fun with this. Luckily, as you might have noticed, I only have to feed him this crazy complex meal once a day. He'll pick at his feed mix when he is hungry at other times. He isn't like a dog, he won't overeat... I think." Lani paused, trying to remember if Val said anything about overweight birds... or if she had ever seen one, and she didn't think she had. Lani shrugged, picking up the rice dish.

She stuck the dish into the washing sink, and scrubbed it clean for a tick before using a rag to spread a light coat of oil on the iron and return it to its hanger beside the stove. When she turned back to the dish to assess it, she was pretty proud of her work, even though it was too easy. ”Looks good.” She nodded, picking up the dish and showing it off to no one in particular, as if the house could see. She had let Spider out of the house, partially so he would stop squawking at her and asking, and partially so he didn’t annoy her while she made his food. She had made that mistake more than once, and she always somehow got bit.

The nomad began straightening up the food she had purchased and putting away what was left. She turned to the cutting board, splattered and stained red with the rhubarb and the cherries, and glanced at her hands, laughing to herself. ”Looks like a skinned a small creature here.” She grinned, grabbing the board and bringing it to the washing bucket beneath the spicket to scrub and oil it.

Once she was done cleaning the small mess she had made, she paused on the edge of the kitchen and glanced around the area before heading towards the stairs, making sure she didn’t leave anything out. There was a drawer that wasn’t quite closed all the way, but the half breed grazed over that detail, not the most tidy of people and therefore not caring about such a small detail. It occurred to her that past the initial lighting of the stove, the house had made absolutely no acknowledgement of her mini-lesson. It was the bare minimum of birdkeeping, to feed the creature, but she was proud of the knowledge and familiarity she was gaining. Perhaps she had been talking to herself, and the house had been bored with her talking. Perhaps it only reigned it’s sentience for Madeira. Lani pursed her lips, wondering if perhaps the house had made some acknowledgement and she had missed it. But as she stood there, silent, watching… nothing happened.

”Okay, well, I’m going to give Spider his food now.” She nodded to the empty kitchen, sweeping through the great room and up the spiraling stairs. Just before it swung closed behind her, she thought she heard the soft tap of wood as a drawer that hadn’t been closed all the way got pushed closed, but she didn’t turn around to check.
User avatar
Lani Stranger
Wanderer
 
Posts: 617
Words: 652563
Joined roleplay: March 21st, 2014, 11:48 pm
Location: Wind Reach
Race: Mixed blood
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 5
Mizahar Grader (1) Overlored (1)
Wind Reach Seasonal  Challenge (1) Power Fork (1)
2018 Mizahar NaNo Winner (1)


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