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Young Kannadi's Tea Party Adventure [story]

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[To consume time until next week, I'm posting stories previously written two years ago on Kannadi's Lodestone blog. This one happened because it was cute.]



Kannadi Albedo, age seven, poured a cup of invisible tea for her guests.


“It’s a special tea I got from the Sultana,” she lied creatively. “It’s her very favorite and she only let me have it ‘cause her chocobo was sick and I made it feel better.”


She scooted the cup towards a plush dodo sitting on a cushion opposite her. The little hardwood table between them was tiled black and white on top.


“It’s real good, Alcibiades, take a sip.”


Alcibiades gave the cup a glassy stare.


Kannadi reached her bare foot under the table, grabbed the plush bird’s leg with her toes and tilted him. Alcibiades toppled forward and his beak plunged into the cup.


“There, you see? Isn’t it good?” Kannadi sipped from her own cup, a gold-rimmed floral-painted porcelain treasure which had no business in the hands of a seven-year-old. She cast a practiced glower over another guest at the table. “I don’t know why you don’t like it, Mister Salad.”


A solid jadeite statuette of a peiste stood on the table and hovered its hooded head over a cup. Mister Salad had an estimated value of just over nine hundred fifty thousand gil, but was never so busy that he missed a teatime.


“He’s just im-possible, isn’t he, Alcibiades?” Kannadi shook her head. “He won’t even try it. He’s so rude.”


Mister Salad’s permanently open mouth caught a passing mote of dust.


“Oh, well why didn’t you say so?” Kannadi smiled. “You know we have plenty. Could you pass the sugar, Grandmother?”


Karen Albedo sat cross-legged on her cushion like a mountain, daintily holding an empty four-figure teacup in the same hand that had written men’s death warrants. For a hyur, she was immense in height and build and intimidating in her one-fourth roegadyn features. Kannadi (who would, in the fullness of time, inherit nothing physical from her except above-average height) knew her only as the biggest, kindest playmate in the world.


“Certainly,” she said, and scooted a bowl full of white cubes toward her granddaughter.


Kannadi transferred the sugar to Mister Salad’s cup with tiny silver tongs. “Mister Salad really likes sugar,” she explained. “He’s a peiste, and Missus Trepe in the nature class? She says if they find a beehive and a dead aldgoat at the same time they actually will really truly eat the hive first. And honey’s mostly sugar so there you go.”


“Really?” Karen asked.


Really really.” Mister Salad’s cup quickly mounded with sugar cubes.


“So how did you cure the chocobo?”




“The Sultana’s.”


Oh, oh. Well!” Kannadi took another sip of air. “What happened was, he ate the wrong kinda greens. They were the Super Poison Gysahl Greens!”


“Odd, I’ve never heard of them.”


“Well they’re really rare,” Kannadi said evasively. “But they look and smell just like regular ones except they’re poison. Like, super sick poison for anybody, but even worse for chocobos.”


“I see. Go on.” Karen sipped her imaginary tea.


“So the Sultana came to me and said—” with a high, noble drawl, evidently— “oh Miss Albedo, please help! My dear sweet Lord Maplefeathers is so very sick! I need him to be healthy for the big chocobo show I’m having with everybody today!”


“Goodness. What ever did you do?”


“Well…” Kannadi looked pressed, for just a moment. “I, uhm, I had to talk to an esspert! So I did! Alcibiades was glad to help ‘cause he’s a bird too, so he knows all about everything about chocobos.”


Alcibiades remained beak-first in his cup, glassily regarding his surroundings.


“He said,” Kannadi continued in as low and therefore boyish a voice as she could manage, “’Kannadi! You must go to the mountains of Coerthas and find the Remedy Flower to cure Lord Maplefeathers!’ So I did.”


“All by yourself?” Karen raised a graying eyebrow.


“Well no, of course not. I took Mister Salad ‘cause he’s from Coerthas. Peistes live there, you know.”


“They live here too.”


“Well yeah but, but he’s different, he’s a mountain one. They, um… they live in mountains.”


“I imagine they would.”


Kannadi took Mister Salad from his place at the table and bounced him lightly in front of her grandmother, coming dangerously close to breaking his meticulously-carved claws. “So anyway,” she continued, “I rode on his back right here between the spikes. It wasn’t really uncomfortable but I had to hold on a lot. Then we went to Coerthas and saw the mountains and the spine trees--”


“Pine trees.”


“Pine trees, and took a swim in the rivers and it was really cold ‘cause the rivers there are made of ice water, you know.”


“I’ve heard.”


“So after we swam I started looking for the flower and there was this…” she paused long enough to skim her mental inventory of mountain animals, “this squirrel, and he was holding a Remedy Flower! So I asked him may I please have it and he said no because his mommy was sick, but he was real nice and he led me and Mister Salad to this hyuuge field of flowers!”


“Huge, was it?”


Hyuuge!” Kannadi gestured wide, swinging a million gil worth of jade statuette by its hind leg. Her gesture bumped Alcibiades and he tipped over, teacup and all.


“There was, like, every kind of flower in the world!” She continued, too caught up in her story to notice. “Not like here where we only have bushes and things. Real-life flowers in all the colors ever. Oh, and there was like a million Remedy Flowers. A million bazillion.”


“That many? Oh my.”


Kannadi’s youthful excitement built with her own narration. She interrupted herself occasionally with carried-away gasps like sharp hiccups.


“So we went there,” gasp, “and Mister Salad helped me pick a bunch of the Remedy Flowers ‘cause he has big claws,” gasp, “but we left a lot behind so the squirrel and everybody else can use them. Okay and so then we came back and gave them to the Sultana. And she said,” gasp, “she said ‘Oh Miss Albedo, thank you so much! There are so many here, no chocobo anywhere will ever be sick again!’ So she cured Lord Maplefeathers and she won first prize and she was so happy she gave me this tea and that’s how I got it.”


“Well!” Karen looked at her empty cup as if it were full of diamonds. “I’ll have to ask her for some too, the next time I see her.”


“Um…” Kannadi carefully put down Mister Salad. “Well she’s real busy so she mighta forgot.”


“Oh, I doubt if the Sultana would forget someone having an adventure like that just to help her.”


Kannadi bit her lip and picked her feet under the table. She glanced at Alcibiades, still vacantly enjoying his tea despite it being sideways, and whispered to her grandmother behind her hand: “I didn’t really avenshure. I made it all up.”


Karen whispered back, behind a hand as hard as a garden spade: “That’s okay. One day you’ll grow up strong enough to bend the world to your will. Just like me.”


Kannadi continued to whisper. “Thank you.”


“Kannadi, dear?”




“Why are we whispering?”


“’Cause Alcibiades doesn’t know I made it up.”

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I just want to say that after reading the stories you've been posting up, you've really inspired me to get back into writing. I hope you don't mind, but I've started formatting the dialogue in a similar fashion. I find your stories so easy to read and get engaged in. Been loving everything so far. :D

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So..so... so adorable! Young Kannadi seems like a proper daydream adventurer. With lots of imagination ^^ Very well written, I loved all the small details, like "

Mister Salad’s permanently open mouth caught a passing mote of dust."

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Thanks again!


The dialogue formatting and the little concrete details are just how I write. I mostly write screenplays for my own creative project just because I can, so my prose comes out very... economical.



I don't like wasting time, being vague on important things, or being specific on unimportant things. I do like crafting dialogue, utilizing terrain in fight scenes, and extrapolating logical consequences of canon.



And I've worked with young children before, so I went for "authentic cute" in young Kannadi's delivery.

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