06 August 2012 @ 01:42 pm
Oh, marvelous, it's August again.  My favorite time of the year.

Students, I hope you've been working on your summer assignments.  Adult men, I hope you're prepared to be perfect gentlemen when we all find ourselves floundering in that ghastly hotel.  Anything else to expect this month?  No?  On to business, then.

I'm sure we're all very distracted by talking pony parties and pool parties and platter parties and inpourings of perpetually perplexed new populations, but has anyone made any effort whatsoever to sort out that business from last month or are we still playing the game where we ignore all interesting information in favor of smashing random objects we find in the dairy?  I don't mind that game; of course, quite invigorating, good for the vasculature, but it might be worth trying a different approach at some point in time.  I venture to suggest today, if no one's too busy holding competitions to see who looks the most absurd absent their clothing.

[action, 726 Anderson Lane]
[Susan can be found hanging up black cloaks and other assorted clothing in uniform crepuscular shades around the house where garish green was all there was formerly to see.  A welcome change, in her opinion; she'd missed her wardrobe from home, even if everything looked exactly the same as the black cloak she had commissioned here in Mayfield.

Still, she pauses for a moment as she handles an emerald-green cloak, never worn, hanging in the hall closet since the previous Christmas.  ...It goes back on the rack after a bit.  And she'll only push it back behind the others an inch or two.]

[action, park]
[A rather unusual sight in the park later on that week.  Somehow, Miss Susan the English teacher has been cajoled into reading a nice story for a small group of drones.]

And so, adding conspiracy and first-degree murder to their trespass and property damage charges, Hansel and Gretel pushed the old woman into the oven and ignored her anguished screams as they left the house of gingerbread, naturally taking all of her valuables with them as they went.  With these illicit goods, they reunited with their criminally negligent father, but not, surprisingly, their 'wicked' stepmother, who had mysteriously vanished in the space of the two nights in which the children were gone, leaving the father sole keeper of his property and remaining funds and raising suspicion as to who it was had devised the plan to leave the children in the forest in the first place.

But it doesn't matter, because they all lived happily ever after.

The End.

[The drones seem quite pleased with her recitation, at any rate.]

04 June 2012 @ 08:51 pm
Something Wicked This Way Comes  
[Being the granddaughter of the Cheerful Fairy could be very difficult at times. ...Enough said.]


Oh, don't let's all be so on edge.  We have enough trouble without everyone being absolutely horrid to each other for no good reason whatsoever.  That reminds me - Do you all know what my grandmother always told me when I was young?  Yes, that's right.

Whiskers on kittens and brown paper, er... chickens.
Bright blue bananas and
... and... aluminum mittens oh, no mittens was in the previous line
Enemas given to quite sore behinds
These are a few of my favorite
... No, stop, I got confused with lines; that was supposed to rhyme with 'things'.  Let's begin again.

[This continues for about ten minutes before Susan finally stops singing.]

Oh, forget the song.  The point is, come now, there's no reason we can't all be friends!  It's a lovely summer day outside.  Who wants to join me for a rousing game of hopscotch?  I'll bake cookies~

[action, 726 Anderson]
Luke!  Slugger!  Edward!

It's time for our weekly game of charades!  I've prepared an entirely new set of clues; everything from 'small child receiving a pat on his head from his favorite great-aunt' to 'dancing on rooftops with chimney sweeps'.  It will be great fun; oh, I simply couldn't sleep last night thinking about it!
03 May 2012 @ 01:52 pm
May I Compare Thee to a Summer's Day? Sweaty, Stinky, and Buzzing with Flies  
[action, school]
[As the students file into the classroom and to their desks, they may note that their beloved instructor has a more dour expression on her face than is normal.  ...Actually, it was a little hard to tell given her default expression 90% of the time, but surely that twitching vein is more noticeable than it usually is.

Susan is quiet as the class settles down.  ...After a few moments of silence, she walks to the door and shuts it firmly.  Slightly ominously.  Susan Sto Helit clears her throat.]

Now, then.  It's my pleasure to announce that today marks the beginning of the apparently annual poetry unit also apparently required in this class.

[This is spoken in the same tone as one would announce an untimely death or perhaps that the grocery store was entirely out of gourmet chocolates.]

3:30 this afternoon will mark the end.  Until then, let's all work together to make this as painless as possible.  As the good majority of you likely know, the 'art' of poetry seems to involve deluging your work with as many metaphors, similes, and vague symbolic phrases as possible until it's impossible to tell what you mean apart from that you're fond of roses.  Just work at it until it all wraps around from agonizingly incomprehensible into what can pass for sheer genius if you squint and read from about five kilometers away.

It's a bit like magic if magic involved a fervent desire to set things on fire with your brain.  ...Or, I suppose, exactly like magic.

Right.  Ground rules.

[Susan snaps her fingers and the blackboard flips open to reveal.]


...Actually, that's the only rule.

Alright, get to work.  First five students to write something that doesn't make their classmates feel the urge to give up on English literature forever will receive full marks.  ...Yes, that means you're reciting your work to the class.

[action, grocery store, late afternoon]
[Mother's Day was next week.  ...That meant chocolate displays.
There was nothing wrong with stocking up on chocolates for the rest of the year when they were in greater stock than usual.  A grocery basket half filled with them is certainly nothing unusual.  Even if she is eating one out of the box before she purchased it.  It's been a long day.  ...What do you mean, a personal rule of one a day, how do you even know about that?  Shut up.  Go away.  Mind your own business.  Do I judge you when I come across four bottles of wine in your basket?  

This is not a conversation Susan is having with anyone in particular, but it soon will be if the expression she wears on her face as she chews on a chocolate (nougat, ugh) is at all prophetic.  It's been a very long day.]

14 April 2012 @ 08:09 pm
[An elderly woman's voice sounds over the phone network, sounding positively disgruntled.]

If you all would stop losing your heads for just a moment, perhaps we can actually try to make some sense out of this rigmarole.  Everyone who's been swapped, stop clogging up the phone lines and just find your swap-partner to work something out.  Everyone who hasn't been swapped, yes, everyone is acting a little strange, and if you haven't picked up on what's going on yet, consider, perhaps, that your brain might have been swapped with a cockroach's.

I can't be having with all this ruckus!

[Well.  Clearly, nothing was wrong with Granny Weatherwax.]

Now.  Who's missing an elderly, wrinkly body with an impeccable sense of fashion?

[action, all over town]
[There was a broomstick in the corner.  There was a witch's cap on the table.  This wasn't too hard to figure out.  Susan is far too mature to indulge in such ridiculous things as getting on a flying broomstick just for fun; no, it was perfectly obvious that she was only doing this to facilitate the task of reuniting with her body.

This is precisely why she spends the next hour flying around town like some sort of ghast, alternating between going as high into the sky as she possibly can and dipping low enough to smash straight through folks on the ground.

She needs to spend some time getting used to the controls, alright?] 

Out of the way!  Respect your elders!  Don't clog the walkways!
16 March 2012 @ 10:34 pm
A Letter  
A Letter for the Major )

[For the first time since she has arrived in Mayfield barring zombie apocalypses and nuclear explosions, Susan Sto Helit is not in class on Friday.  She can be found, instead, reading a book of poetry on the bench in the park and making liberal use of a highlighter.]
13 February 2012 @ 06:57 pm
What is this Feeling?  
[action, 726 Anderson Lane]
She detested flowers.
...Alright, no, she didn't, but everyone seemed to expect that she ought to, so she never really had much to do with them.  When they appear in the house, though, it seems quite clear that town hijinks are on the verge of occurring again.

As if she would put up with that.

The flowers reappear the next hour.  And the next.  And the next.  By the time Susan is setting them on fire and stomping on them with her foot, she has finally begun to realize that a very odd scent is invading her senses.

.......No.  Absolutely not.  This was almost as bad as last year; this was downright insulting.  There was no possible way she --

And then she is ironing Edward's suits with a strange coloration on her cheeks and a voice at the back of her head screaming in perpetual agony.  What a lovely shade of green this was.]

Does anyone have any cake molds in the shape of a question mark?  No?  Just thought I'd ask.  ...What about green food coloring?

06 February 2012 @ 10:15 pm
Resurrection Blues  

I want a rundown on how terribly all of you messed this up.  You can start from last Monday and work your way forward from there.  I'll assume beforehand that it elevates in the degree of tragedy until culminating in a lot of pathos and suicidal despair all around; if you must cry, try to sob out 'Miss Susan, I'm so glad you're back' first, so I'm more inclined to listen.  An explanation as to why I'm currently a walking corpse would also be nice, but not strictly necessary given that I suppose I didn't really need any of these functions in the first pla -- dammit!

[action, 726 Anderson Lane]
[The phone clatters to the ground as Susan's arm sags dangerously from her body, on the verge of falling off again.  She jams it firmly back in place, though it still dangles uselessly.]

This is the most idiotic thing I've ever had to do in my li -- Ohm curse this thrice-afflicted festering excuse of a revival!

[She reattaches her left leg, gets back to her feet, and storms off to the kitchen.
Some time later, she will be momentarily mollified as she stares down at what appears to be a Christmas card with something of a smile.]

((Susan has returned to life with the following:
-No pulse, heartbeat, or blood movement.
-Low body temperature
-Inability to breathe
-Inability to eat/drink
-Wounds still present
-Heightened feelings of anger.))

29 January 2012 @ 08:25 pm
Death Comes As the End  
[action, all around town]
[She stands atop Makeout Point and looks down at the town, cloak rippling in the breeze as she hefts her sword behind her.  ...Mostly for dramatic effect.  There was something strange happening, as there always was.  Souls were vanishing at an increasing rate, people were dying in droves.  And yet... reappearing.  Sometimes intact.  Sometimes not.  Flickering in and out.  Sluggish.  What in the world did this all mean?

Edward was dead.  Luke was gone.  There was a ticking timer on her own head, she knew, but so long as she was alive, there were things to be done.

A snap of the fingers and she is in the hospital, watching the doctors and nurses, drone and townsperson alike, rushing about treating the steady influx of the injured and the dying.  She broadens her mind and notes the presence of a few patients with some regret.  Perhaps she would drop by to speak with them.

Another snap and she is at the front gates, at the point where the souls reappeared most often.  This was where those who returned from surgery were brought.  ...There was nothing to mark how they managed to get here, and no one could positively identify the location of this 'factory' which Dr. Johnson operated from.

A third snap and she is by the dairy.  ...The door is locked, once again.  She doubted very much if there was anyone inside working on this fabled revival machine.

A snap and she is in Ukraine's house.  Nina's house.  Caesar's house.  Lyon's house.  Ai's house.  Annie's house.  Mart's house.  All those whom she would defend.  She takes stock of those who are missing, those who are dead.  She lingers beside those who still remain alive, wondering if she ought to make herself known.  ...Perhaps she does.  For Susan is certain, as she is certain of all things, that she is making her final rounds.  Remembering the future was a handy trick to have... And there was no future for her past tonight.

A last snap and she is in her Grandfather's house.  She doesn't bother making herself unseen.  Perhaps they are at home.  Perhaps not.]

[action, Makeout Point]
[She is atop Makeout Point again.  The moon is high in the sky and from here, she can see everything.  Every aspect of the world that she has dedicated herself to defending.  She has certainly faced Death before, many times, in more ways than one could possibly imagine.  ...In a jolly red Hogfather suit, for example.  But the thought of finality... Did it really change things all that much?

Death was death.  She had never taken it less than completely seriously.  All the risks she had taken in the past - They were not because she knew death was not the end, but because it was exactly what she would have done even had death been the end.  Susan did not do anything by halves.

She turns away, takes a few steps towards the path back home.

And finds herself abruptly on the ground.

She faces a scraggly weed, her body wracked with so much pain that it is unimaginable.  She had forgotten how it felt.  Not the pain... The humiliation.  The torture of being completely helpless, lying like a worm that could hardly even squirm.  She is grateful only that she cannot actually see her detached limbs.  Her legs, she felt, were almost certainly several feet behind her.  From the moment the injuries had begun recurring on the townspeople, she had expected this to happen.  But it didn't lessen the excruciation any.

She gasps as a fish would gasp for air.  She shudders, shoulders heaving, for she can move nothing else.  Exhale.  Inhale.  Every motion intensified the pain one hundred fold.  What was it he had said?  You have to want release...]   


[Quickly.  Before anyone else can see.  I'm so sorry to ask this of you...

27 January 2012 @ 11:24 pm
A Conversation  
[action, locked to Slugger]
[A day after the untimely demise of her husband, Susan sits at her desk, tapping a pen, ostensibly grading papers.  The play was a no-go, of course, that was obvious.  There were more important things to worry about at this point than whatever reason she had concocted for forcing her students into that travesty of a performance (alright, there had been a good reason, but it was largely inconsequential now).

With a sudden sigh, she pushes her chair away from her desk, snaps her fingers, and appears in front of wherever her son happens to be.]


We should talk.

As you all know, the revival machine is broken, and everyone is dying left and right from old injuries.  If you happen to prefer a dignified death over bleeding slowly like a stuck pig, I believe there are a few of us who can assist you in that regard.

Grandfather.  Didi.  Is it fair to say this is something we can do?

Don't call back unless you require said service.  I'm a bit busy with my own brand of bleeding like a stuck pig.
19 January 2012 @ 07:49 pm
Wherefore Art Thou, Sanity?  
[action, 726 anderson]

[Since Pokey's somewhat alarming announcement over the phone, Susan has taken to carrying her grandfather's sword on her person more often.  One never knows when a weapon capable of cleaving atoms might come in handy.  So it is that when a package arrives for her, she simply takes the sword and slices it open.

There is a sudden thump.  And then Susan can be found outside, examining a very special tree that has just planted itself outside.  There is a swing attached to it.  .......Most swings don't go right through the middle of the tree.  ...How was it even staying up?

I can't believe I've been reduced to regaining this.  Good heavens, Grandfather, it's even worse than I remember it.

[action, high school]
[Today in class, Susan has organized the desks into a circle.  She stands by the door with a smile that could pass as benign until every last student has filed into the room.  ...Then she shuts the door.  Firmly.]

I'm pleased to announce that we have concluded the section on early American literature a week early, thanks to the hard work and effort that each and every one of you failed to put into this class.  ...Excepting Lyon.  As a result, I've decided to insert a very special intermission before our next unit.  By popular demand... from nearly every one of you at the beginning of the semester...

You shall all have the opportunity to act out one of literature's least compelling love stories.  Yes, that's right.  Romeo and Juliet.

Now!  I believe a few people have expressed particular interest in taking the part of Juliet.

[Susan's bright smile turns to her most beloved slackers.  ...Male or female.]