Fun Fictional Distractions
The characters Kailian belongs to Nakase and are used by permission.
The smells of the dinner were better than any restaurant Kailian had been to recently, and the people here seemed to smell okay, too. The most frustrating part was the dance of dining and serving that seemed to be going on. Every now and then in the conversation, someone or another would randomly get up and go get something and serve it to several people around their part of the table. Sometimes they would go to another portion of the long table and get a dish from several sections away to take it back to where they were seated. Sometimes they stood talking for a while before returning with whatever they went for. There was a lot of talking and laughter, and it was confusing her, and that was distracting her from more important questions, like the one she turned to ask the middle-aged vulpine woman beside her.
"Where are the drinks?"
"Hmm?" She said, looking away from a conversation she was having with several others about chakras or something. "You want me to show you?"
"Sure whatever," Kailian said.
She had been thinking of leaving the table to get away from all this noise, anyway. Being around so many people at once was not her thing at all. Maybe she could lure Teerian back to the log where they had been sitting before dinner. She pondered this as she walked through the grass behind this fox with her lilting jaunty steps.
She was wearing a long, flowing dress and lots of bangle bracelets on each wrist. Kailian wrinkled her snout, baring her teeth a little. This bouncy little furball barely came to the height of her waist, but she didn't show any signs of trepidation around Kailian. That's when it dawned on her that not many of those here were jumpy around her, not like usual. Well, other than Teerian, the one creature there she really wanted to talk to.
"It's getting dark, here," the little vulpine said casually. She turned to face a torch that was planted in the ground, and cradled the wick in her delicate paws. She breathed gently, and a flame danced to life between them. Light slowly spread from it.
"Hey… Do that again," Kailian said.
The vulpine looked up at her, one ear cocked.
"Okay…" she said, looking confused as she walked to another torch a few yards away.
The frustrating part is that Kailian could almost remember what that felt like. That was so long ago. She felt at her back, along the creaking metal implants on her spine. She grunted softly as she watched another small flame dance to life. The vulpine's small face smiled at her beside the new light.
"So what, do you like doing party tricks with lighters?" Kailian asked. "That's not very impressive."
That was met with a soft, canine sounding giggle.
"You mean this?" The woman said, holding up an open palm with a small flame above it. She passed it from one paw to another, focused intensely, shadows dancing around her from her little flames. She split them into two, one for each palm. There was a strength and intensity to her eyes as she looked to Kailian again, and the flames disappeared.
Kailian rolled her eyes and grunted.
"I've seen better in old movies. Before there was CGI," she said, crossing her arms.
"Are you still thirsty?" The foxine said, already busy lighting one more torch.
"Damnit," Kailian muttered, trying not to sound hurt.
Images flashed in her mind of her younger days, when fire was danced from her own hands like an extension of herself. She could remember how wonderful that power felt. She growled.
"Everything we have to drink is over here," the fox said.
She was standing amidst several barrels and drums. There were crates and boxes sitting around, too.
"Ew," Kailian said, "Wine…"
The sound of flowing water could be heard. In the torchlight, Kailian could see a tap coming up from the ground, and the vulpine was filling a tray of glasses from it.
"You want one?" She said, looking over her shoulder at Kailian.
"No thank you," Kailian said curtly, looking through some of the crates. "Aha.."
"Oh," the fox said. "You found Captain's stash. He's the only one around here who drinks beer."
Kailian lifted a keg from a wooden crate. She counted several more sitting there.
The fox said, "He says he saves buying a few months worth."
"Months?" Kailian grinned, "It'll be gone by morning."
Maybe that would rattle miss pretty fire fox lady. It was time to claim some space, here.
The vulpine lady laughed.
"He'll have a fit." She said, slapping her thigh and turning to look Kailian in the eye with a grin. "Do it!"
Kailian stood there silently, holding the keg by the flange with her fingers.
"Okay," she finally said, "You're cool. Can you do something for me, though?"
"What?" She said.
"I need you to send Teerian back here," Kailian said.
"Sure," she said, giving a cheeky grin. "I'll have him bring you a straw."