"There's eight of us Mom," Juliet had insisted. "What could possibly go wrong?"
Standing in their small but tidy kitchen, apron wrapped around her front, their mother's favourite flicked her fingers through the worn yellow pages of their family cook-book. None of it was in order, no index or page numbers listen with each recipe, so her eyes had to do the searching for her. Spaghetti and Cheesecake and Shortbread, Honey Chicken and Scones and Shephard's Pie, all of them luxuries filled with ingredients that cost a fortune. All of them usual dishes in the Monaghan household.
Finally she found Apple Pie, fingertip stopping in the center of the page as she twitched a pleased grin. At Ratmas, when the house chilled and the fire burned and their oven provided extra warmth Mom and Dad would cook the main meal - but this year, Jules insisted on trying out dessert.
"Noah, four apples," she instructed, barking out orders to her siblings. "Bailey, flour and cups. Eli, sugar and a lemon. Justin, grab some... brown sugar and cinnamon. Sid, an egg and some butter. The rest of you, I need a knife, a rolling pin and a wooden spoon."
Looking up at seven lots of brown eyes, Jules raised her eyebrow and shrugged. "What are you waiting for? Get on with it!"
- juliet -
hey y'all, no posting order, no word count - let's have some ratmas fun!!!
Noah always did what Juliet asked of her. It was a reflex, wandering over to the bowl of fruit on their dining room table and counting out four green, slightly bruised apples one at a time. She struggled through the first three numbers, but "Four" fell out of her mouth as a whisper and a smile.
"Four," she breathed. "Four."
Apples in hand, she shuffled back to Juliet and held up the apples balanced in her stretched fingers. She grinned up at her sister, prize in hand, threatening to bounce out of her grip at any moment.
"Four!" Noah declared with a giggle, enjoying the hustle and bustle around her. She wasn't one for crowds but she did love to be near her family. They were safety, familiar. Home away from home and in it, too - if the house was too quiet she began to worry. Here, with all the tones of their voices and their quirks and their faces and their names, here she and they were safe.
"Thank you Noah," Juliet nodded, taking the apples and placing them on their tattered chopping board. Thousands of knife marks were carved into the old hunk of wood, each telling a story of the Monaghans and their full bellies. Of luxury and privilege. Not that Noah would know - but they fascinated her nonetheless.
Suddenly transfixed, Noah settled into watching her siblings spring to life, glancing at the tiny little lines in the wood and finding them in the frown lines and creases of her siblings faces.
“and men said that the blood of the stars flowed in her veins.”
Whenever Ratmas came around, it filled Sid to the brim with a kind of excitement that was only rivaled by her joy at having made her first sale (granted, one of her siblings had done most of the work, but she'd been standing there the entire time). It was like all of District 12 had come alive with a sort of muted yet authentic joy, even in the parts of the district that Sid avoided because they would inevitably make her feel sad. There was snow on the ground, lots of food - just so much to be happy about, and so many opportunities to make others happy.
She could hardly contain herself as she watched Jules flip through the family's cookbook, bouncing in place as if the mere thought of sugar had sent her into a rush. "Sid, an egg and some butter," her sister said, and she nearly skidded on the floor as she hurried to gather the ingredients. Her fingers grazed over the freckles on each of the eggs before she picked one out, and then a second just for good measure, and then scooped up a stick of butter in her other hand.
Sid scurried back up to the counter, setting what she had gathered next to the cookbook. "Eggs and butter, ready," she beamed, "Although I'd probably go with that one over this one because the first one looks nicer."
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Last Edit: Dec 20, 2019 18:00:33 GMT -5 by fireflyz
He supposes that's really nothing new, but it irks him all the same. He's tired, fucking exhausted after running around all night last night, and all he really wants to do is go up the stairs to his bedroom in the attic and not look at another human face for a few hours. But he knows Juliet would bitch and his mother would moan, and he doesn't feel like dealing with the disappointed looks from his siblings today.
He rounds the corner of the kitchen, and Juliet is at the helm, as usual, ordering the other kids around.
Jamie almost smiles, but there's something wicked in it.
"Jules," he says, slipping one of the knives out of the block of wood holding them all. He holds it in his hand for a moment by the handle, but flips it around so that he's holding it by the blade end, perfect for throwing. "Think fast," and then he flicks it up in the air in a circle, catching it again by the blade.