[community profile] 15_minute_fic // Untitled

Dec. 16th, 2008 07:08 pm
katiefoolery: (15_minute_fic - creativity in a hurry)
[personal profile] katiefoolery
Right.  So, if I'm planning on writing 200,000 words next year, I should really get some practice in now, shouldn't I?  And what better way to do that than by writing a ficlet based on a prompt word from my [livejournal.com profile] 15_minute_fic comm?

It's strange the way some of my ficlets seem to gravitate towards each other, almost as though they're little snippets of the same world.  This one would definitely fit with at least a couple of my earlier ones.  I hope you all enjoy reading it.

Lie if you don't. :D

Title: Untitled
Fandom: Original
Rating: G
Word count: 561 words
Prompt word: (withheld)

Written for prompt word #90 at [livejournal.com profile] 15_minute_fic.

“Go on then.”

Go on then.  Right.  Because it’s that easy.

“Use your influence.”

Nanny Edwards expects me to use my influence.  Nanny Edwards expects me to make scones fly out of their tray.  Nanny Edwards expects me to be a credit to my family.

Nanny Edwards expects the impossible.

Or miracles.  But let’s face it – this is a woman who manages on a daily basis to get my brother to wash his face and scrub his nails.  With that sort of thing happening in her life, she probably has a right to expect miracles.

“I can’t.”

Besides, what’s the point of making scones fly out of their tray?  I’d much rather tip them out gently and then spread them with cream and jam.  And not just because I’m hungry right now.  Flying scones are a waste of the cook’s good time.  Scones on the floor are a waste of the cleaning girl’s time.

I can’t always results in a tsking sound from Nanny Edwards.  Mostly because she thinks I shouldn’t be using horrible, lower-class contractions like that.  Well brought up girls declaim I cannot!  They don’t mutter I can’t like some slattern from the slums.  And while that was irritating enough, it wasn’t as bad as other people who liked to respond with ridiculous statements, my most hated of which was “Can’t means won’t try.”

“You cannot,” Nanny Edwards corrects, “because you are lazy.”

And hungry.

Without even thinking, without even appearing to blink, she makes a scone rise from the tray with a floury, floaty little puff.  And then another.  And another.

Four seems to be her limit though, because they all drop to the floor with sad little pattering sounds the minute she raises a fourth.

“What’s the point of this?”  I can’t help but ask, although my words are distracted.  Four miserable little broken scones on the floor.  They could have been adorned with jam and cream and in my stomach by now…

Nanny Edwards is silent for a second and it’s an educational silence.  It’s the sort of silence that always precedes a lesson.  She’s going to say something now; something of great import.

“What do you think is the point of this?”

To prove we’re rich enough to waste food?

Why, why don’t I dare to say it?  I shrug instead and the silence endures much longer this time – far too long for comfort before it’s broken by the sound of the scone tray banging as it flexes unnaturally.

“Answer me.”

“I don’t know.”  A deliberate, sullen don’t in the place of a do not.  “That’s why I asked.”

There’s a tiny smirk in the corner of her mouth.  I only catch it by chance and it feels like a rare gift.  No-one dares to answer back to Nanny Edwards.  No-one dares give her lip.  No-one speaks unless they’re spoken to and they always, always, give the right answer.

No-one but me.

“Influence is power.”  The smirk’s gone.  Completely gone.  Nothing but cold anger and bland authority.  “Power is strength.  The weak deserve none of those and you are weak, my girl.”

I.  Am.  Not.  Weak.

Nanny Edwards smiles.

One of the fallen scones flutters and drops.  Tiny crumbs move out of its path as it falls again.

The smile becomes a smirk.

And I know I will never be free of Nanny Edwards’ influence.

Tomorrow, I venture forth to finish my Christmas shopping.  Wish me luck.  Or, if not luck, then wish me a very big stick and an air-tight alibi.

on 2008-12-16 11:48 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] indigostevens.livejournal.com

And I wish you luck, sticks and will provide the alibi if it is needed :)

on 2008-12-16 12:30 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] katiefoolery.livejournal.com
Thanks! And thank-you for the offer of an alibi, too. I'll let you know if it's required. :D

on 2008-12-16 02:57 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] cornish-pixie87.livejournal.com
Ohhh that was fun :)

Now I want a scone. *tummy grumbles*

on 2008-12-17 01:57 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] katiefoolery.livejournal.com
Yeah, I have a feeling I must have been slightly hungry when I was writing this too. :D

I'm glad you enjoyed it!

on 2008-12-16 11:51 pm (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] seeksadventure.livejournal.com
I really like this, and would love to read more about these characters.

on 2008-12-17 01:59 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] katiefoolery.livejournal.com
Thanks very much! I'm intrigued by the characters myself - they seem to have an interesting dynamic going on there. And Nanny Edwards actually freaks me out a tiny bit...

on 2008-12-17 01:27 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] erinmacha.livejournal.com
I think your original character her has the right questions. Why would you waste perfectly good scones when they could be spread with jam and cream cheese? It seems silly to me as well. :P

Um...did I catch that right? When the OC thought 'I. AM. NOT. WEAK.' She also managed to move a scone? Or was that Nanny?

on 2008-12-17 02:01 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] katiefoolery.livejournal.com
Yes! That's absolutely right - she moved the scone herself the last time. I was wondering if I should make it more obvious, but I decided I liked the slight uncertainty there.

on 2008-12-17 03:34 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] morbane.livejournal.com
I quite liked it that her small, provoked effort just made Nanny Edwards smirk. It was the right conclusion.

on 2008-12-17 03:56 am (UTC)
Posted by [identity profile] katiefoolery.livejournal.com
Thank-you muchly - I'm glad you liked that. It felt right as I was writing it. :)

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