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Jul 23, 2019 12:11 PM
Dusk in Fabulous
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These?

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"Yes, those. If you sense them stay back from them, it's best to fight them at range if you get involved at all, and you can call 911 to get emergency services for a swarm just like you can if someone's injured or committing crimes or if there's a fire."

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Okay. Thank you.

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"If I think of anything else I'll let you know but those are the important things a novice magical girl needs to know. I'll go fix your soup."

The soup is ready at a quarter of eleven and presented in a bowl with melty cheese on top, thin enough to slurp.

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She thanks Flora again and, absent indication otherwise, retreats to her room.

She goes back to sleep again when she's done - she's not turning down food but she'd rather not be awake until noon, really - and then pokes around the room a little to see if there's anything interesting, when she wakes up.

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The room has nothing all that interesting in it. Spare sheets, extra blankets, sewing kit, teddy bear in decent but not new condition, Josef Albers prints on the walls, nightstand, lamps with shades made of leaves pasted together, potted larkspurs.

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Well, she can entertain herself messing with the editor again. She doesn't have any idea what to do with her hands - the 'squid arms' suggestion seemed like just another thing she's never heard of, though that's not quite true - but she fiddles with them some anyway, enough to be pretty sure that just changing the proportions of human hands doesn't help. And then - she thinks mote-shaped stars are best, but the magic might prefer star-shaped ones, or a mix? She'll check that out.

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Motes are better, though polygon stars with many points are better than ones with fewer.

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Motes it is, then. And maybe some mote clusters in her hair, similar to Flora's floral clusters? It'll take her a while to figure out something that works, probably, she's not sure how to get good-looking motes in 3d, but she's got time to spare.

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If she takes a closer look at Flora she will notice that the flowers are in fact growing out of her scalp, but Denice can do star-spangled hairpins that the magic likes quite a lot if she plays hot and cold.

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She's not leaving her room until she's disturbed, or until she starts worrying about dinnertime if Flora hasn't returned by then; it'll help her keep up her appearance of being very shy and not wanting to talk about things. She figures out the hairpins and switches her sleeves over to transparent ruffles that match her skirt and adds stars to the soles of her boots and fiddles with the exact shade of her sunset-colored parts and spends a while trying to come up with a way to make her aesthetic work with the cartoon look of the things she makes that doesn't look too bad and generally tries not to let herself get too bored.

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Flora asks about dinner at five o'clock. "I was thinking omelettes, and I could wrap yours in a tortilla so you could grab it and bite it if the fork would present too much of a problem," she says.

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That should work. She appreciates it.

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"What do you like in omelettes? I have ham, deli turkey, smoked salmon, pickled peppers and tomatoes and carrots and green beans, spinach that isn't pickled, and Swiss and pepper jack and American cheese."

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She freezes, and fails to answer the question.

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"Janet?"

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She flinches back a little, curling in on herself. Sorry, she sends, after a moment.

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"- Are you allergic to anything? If you're not I can just make yours with what I'm putting on mine, but most people don't like pickles as much as I do."

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She's not allergic to anything. What Flora is having will be fine.

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"All right, Janet," says Flora with a worried furrow in her brow, and she goes and makes omelettes.

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Well that wasn't great. Hopefully she's gone hard enough on shy-shy-shy that she can get away with not wanting to talk about it; she doesn't know enough about how things are out here to come up with an explanation for that reaction that makes sense and isn't the true one.

She can leave if she needs to. She doesn't want to but that doesn't matter. She can leave; she's safe; it's fine.

She's calmed down enough to only be moderately warry by the time Flora gets back.

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Knock knock. "Your omelette's ready. Would you mind eating in the dining room, Janet? I worry about pests."

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Not enough that she's going to object, anyway. She follows quietly.

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There is her omelette, ham and cheese and assorted pickles, wrapped messily in a tortilla and some foil over the bottom half to hold it closed.

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She eats. She's a little robotic about it. She can't make herself look appreciative and doesn't bother lying about it when it'd be so obvious that she was.

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