Breaking a few eggs (Attn:Ran)

Lono had been helping a lot lately. He was showing her more about the modern technology and he often accompanied her on outings in public. People tended to leave her alone when the large Hawaiian man was with her. Several people had commented about how cute they looked going on father/daughter outings. Mai was not entirely certain they looked very much alike but then again she perceived things differently so perhaps they just weren't as good and telling people apart and she was.

Her familiar, because Lono had chosen to become her familiar, liked to cook and was one of the chefs for the Manor. She rarely ate at all and hadn't bothered to cook things in...well, millennia seemed accurate.

However, she decided to do something for Lono for being good to her. He had once said that he enjoyed breakfast but didn't eat it as much because of the hours that everyone kept in the Manor. There were those who cooked for the familiars who kept daylight hours but Lono tended to have a late shift.

So, here she was trying to figure out how to cook crepes for him for when he woke up. Mai poked a finger into the powdery white flour and eyed it dubiously. Her other hand ran over the printed recipe.

The first step said:

In a large mixing bowl. ( She rummaged around in the cabinets and pulled out the largest one she could find ) whisk flour and eggs....

She was already lost. How did a person whisk?

Ran Iyala 5 years ago
Ran watched the little stoat curiously as they cooked; he wondered what it might be saying. It didn't seem to be having a terribly good time, as it abandoned the Elder's shoulder in favor of their discard pile, then tried to burrow into said pile - with results pretty much as expected.

He hadn't really been paying a ton of attention to Mai, though, other than to make sure nothing was burning. So when she said her crepe wouldn't flip, he turned to look and saw her with her pan upside down.

"Oh. We have to add some more of the spray," he said. "If we don't keep a little bit of oil on the pan, then the crepe can stick. Can we scrape that one out?"

He reached over to Mai's pan. He could probably flip the crepe out with his fingers, if it hadn't burned itself to the bottom. Then they could proceed. Or he could get her a new pan, although he wasn't sure if there was another one this exact size and they really should all be the same for the sake of uniformity.

"Can we get that one out? Then we can spray the bottom of your pan and you can keep going. You should probably spray it every few crepes. I'm sorry. I should have said that."
Mai 5 years ago
Mai inspected the crepe and the shallow bowl which was called a pan. That sounded familiar now that she thought about it. Not really having much interest in food left her vocabulary limited when it came to food related words in any language other than her native tongue.

She looked around the kitchen and found a flat thing with a handle that looked like it would be useful to scrape the crepe out with. Mai pushed on it and it came out without too much difficulty despite the fact that the side stuck to the pan was very...cooked.

Adding the burned crepe to the discard pile, she set down the flat spoon thing and then re sprayed her pan with the weird smelling grease.

After flipping a few more, Mai asked.
"What are we going to do with them once we are done flipping them, Ran-san?"

((OOC: The flat spoon a spatula. She used it as a scraper and then set it aside, having no idea that it was what Ran was looking for originally. Flipping crepes is obviously the best way to make crepes.

Also this is short but I have been looking at too many cute videos of red pandas and now it is after midnight.))
Ran Iyala 5 years ago
Ran watched as Mai produced a spatula, of all things, and pried her overdone crepe from the pan. It occurred to him to mention that they could simply turn the crepes over with it, but where would the fun be, then? He just shrugged and stayed silent as she set it aside again.

As they continued working through the large amount of batter, Mai asked what was next.

"Well, we have to let them cool so while they're resting, we can work on a fruit filling and maybe some cream too. I don't know that fruit will be enough to stick them together. So, we make a fruit filling and a whipped cream, and then we put those in layers with the crepes. And then, it's a crepe cake."

He guessed. Having never really made one before, he supposed it was a cake when they said it was a cake and no sooner or later. That was good enough for him. He enjoyed cooking, but he was definitely not the perfectionist that Mara was.
Mai 5 years ago
Ran said that the crepes needed to cool and needed While the crepes were sleeping they could make some cream and find some fruit. Even she knew that Ran didn't actually mean sleeping but Mai thought that after all the flipping that perhaps it was only right that they get a little break.

"I will look for fruit."

She went to the refrigerator, or the fridge, as she had heard the cold box referred to.

"Do you know where to find the cream?"

Mai began moving things around and pulling containers out of the refrigerator until she found some strawberries and some pineapple. She also found some cooked chicken. Opening the container, she took a small piece out and tore off a chunk for Yoshi.

"Does this smell better?"

There was immediate interest. Yoshi scrambled to the edge of the counter and was in the process of making a leap to her arm when Mai brought the chicken over to him.

"You may eat this." She placed the small piece on the counter. "With manners." Mai added the last part as Yoshi did his best to inhale the chunk of meat bites as big as he could possibly manage.

He squeaked at her in protest and turned his head toward Ran, holding his chicken tightly to his chest.

"He will not eat your food." There was another softer squeak. "I will not let him."
Ran Iyala 5 years ago
Ran set his pan aside when Mai asked where to find the cream. He went to the cooler and, after a few seconds of searching, found a large container of heavy whipping cream. He brought it back to the counter, which already had an assortment of bowls as well as their whisks, and located sugar and vanilla extract.

He watched with amusement as Mai fed her little stoat some cooked chicken, stepping back when there seemed to be some concern that he might eat it himself. he tried to give them plenty of space.
"I'm not out for your chicken, mate," he said, attempting a reassuring tone. Not that he knew exactly what that was. Wen the Elder softly said she wouldn't let Ran take it, assuming he tried, he gulped and stepped back a good distance more. While the words hadn't been spoken threateningly, he was very much aware that he was a little bitty fish in a sea in which she was the apex predator.

He cleared his throat nervously and attempted a subject change.
"We might need to look up a recipe for the berries because I don't know how to do those, but I do know how to make whipped cream. Remember how I said whisks can put air into something?"

Ran rinsed off one of the whisks in the sink and grabbed a new medium-sized bowl. Pouring a generous amount of cream into it, he cradled it in his arm and showed Mai. "This is one of those times when we want to put air into it."

He channeled his nervous energy into whisking way faster than they had with the crepe batter. There was some moderate spray before he found the right angle, but he was too jittery to care. After a moment he slowed down and held the bowl out to Mai. "Do you want to try? It won't take long, and you have to watch to make sure you don't get it too thick, because then we have butter. Which is probably tasty, but we don't want butter on crepe cakes. I mean maybe Lono would like butter on crepe cakes? But Mina definitely wouldn't so we'd have to make it again..."

He trailed off, realizing he'd just rambled on, and blinked at Mai, waiting for an answer.
Mai 5 years ago
"He said he wasn't going to eat your food." Mai nodded when Ran backed up. "You are safe to eat slowly." She watched Yoshi a moment longer before turning her attention to Ran.

Apparently the cream needed to be made. He pulled out ingredients and started adding them to a new bowl. He said they might need a recipe for the berries. She knew that was the directions she was following to make the crepes. Jin had called it that when she had asked him how to make crepes and found the directions after stating that he had not made crepes and so could not tell her.

"We do not need recipe for berries. I have berries." Mai lifted up the container of strawberries and brought them over to Ran. Perhaps he had not seen them.

Whisking cream meant going fast. This looked like more fun than making batter. However, Ran then said that you couldn't do it for too long or you would get butter.

She accepted the bowl from him and tilted it at the angle that he had been holding it, looking up at Ran to make sure she would holding everything right before she started. Then Mai whisked as fast as she could. Which would be faster without kimono sleeves. They tangled up around her arm and nearly caused her to lose the bowl...or more likely caused her to break the bowl when she felt it slip and then held it tighter to keep that from happening.

Mai set the bowl down.
"I will be right back, Ran-san."

((OOC: She might have splattered him with her whip cream making efforts. Too bad Ran is stuck with Mai for this and not Akahana.))
Ran Iyala 5 years ago
Mai said they didn't need a recipe for berries and Ran figured maybe she might want to keep the berries whole, sliced thin, layered with the cream. That would be yummy. He might have gotten in over his head if they tried to do too much. Crepes with cream and berries would be delicious.

When he handed the bowl to Mai, she began to whisk it, but only a short time had passed before she set it back down and excused herself. Leaving him alone in the room with a very defensive stoat.

Ran swallowed again and continued to back slowly up, leaving as much room as possible, fairly certain that no matter what happened in the room while she was gone, Mai would know immediately.

He slowly pulled his cell phone from his pocket. Every movement cautious and as non-threatening as possible, he Googled 'can stoats climb trees' and gulped at the result. He slid his eyes up to the ceiling and sighed. Okay. If things got dicey, chances were good that he could fly out of the way.

The standoff continued. Or at least, Ran basically just remained exactly where he was, forgetting everything including breathing. Because if anything went wrong while he mucked around with an Anantya Elder, innocent as she appeared, if she didn't murder him herself, Amir would kill him.
Mai 5 years ago
Mai ran to her rooms and into her oshiire. She pulled open one of the drawers and selected a long thin flat sash. Putting one end of it in her mouth, she pushed up her left sleeve and wrapped the sash over the folds gathered under her arm. She then passed the sash along her back and then over her right shoulder. It then went around the folded right sleeve and back behind her again, looping back over the left shoulder to be tied off where it had started, making a figure eight pattern that held her sleeves back without her needing to keep pushing them up.

She should have thought of tieing her sleeves earlier.

Running back to the kitchen, Mai skidded to a halt in the entrance. Ran hadn't moved at all while she was gone. He was staring at Yoshi. The stoat was chewing on the last of his chunk of chicken and appeared proud of himself.

"You ate it all, yes?"

Yoshi looked at her and asked for more.

"Not right now."

Mai nodded to Ran and then took up the bowl again. . "I needed to get a tasuki. I should have done so from the beginning." She got caught up in things and once she started doing something she rarely paid much attention to her clothes until they became a hinderance.

She began again with the whisk. Occasionally she would stop and look at it suspiciously as if it were going to instantly turn into butter at any given moment.

"How is this?" Mai handed the bowl back to Ran.
Ran Iyala 5 years ago
Ran was relieved when Mai returned with her sleeves tied back in a manner he was familiar with. He nodded at her explanation, and ventured back into the fray when she started whisking again. As she did, he took the berries and rinsed them at the sink, then found a knife and cutting board and began to slice the strawberries first.

When Mai showed him the whipped cream he paused long enough to gently take the whisk from her. He lifted it to see if the cream was smooth and fluffy. Too little air and it would still be runny. Too much whipping and it would be stiffer and buttery. But it happened to be a nice consistency. It was just shy of being ready, which was perfect.

He gave the whisk back to Mai, then held up one finger for her to wait. He got some sugar and vanilla extract, brought them over, and dumped them into the bowl with the cream.

"Ok, whisk again but only for a short time. It's just about ready. Now, all you want to do really is stir in what I just added. We don't need too much more air in it."

He eyeballed the stoat briefly, but mostly watched to make sure they had good whipped cream. Sweet butter probably wasn't a bad thing, although he was pretty sure it was supposed to be more salty than sweet.
Mai 5 years ago
Ran dumped more stuff into her bowl and told her to mix it in. That went easily enough and then they had fluffy white stuff. She scooped some off the whisk when she was done. It was sweet but delicate. Not very bad for not having cooked in millenia.

"We are making a very good team, Ran-san." Mai smiled at her cooking teacher. "I think you must be very patient. A good teacher." She gave him another little bow before setting the bowl next to their crepes.

They would now need a plate to build their cakes on. Mai opened a cabinet and got several down for them and handed one to Ran.

"Do we spread the cream on and then add fruit or do we add another crepe and then add fruit?" She wasnt sure if the fruit and cream needed their own layer of crepe or if they could be touching. Maybe the cream would help the fruit stay in place while they built the layers of cake. Or maybe she should just let Ran show her.
Ran Iyala 5 years ago
Ran beamed at Mai when she called him patient and a good teacher. He wasn't sure he was either of those things, but surely Amir would be happy that he wasn't making a complete screwup of things with his Elder. See, he could adult! He returned her bow.

"Thank you, Elder. This is fun."

He wasn't sure he'd be signing on to teach cooking classes on the regular, but playing around like this was enjoyable.

Ran took a plate from Mai and tilted his head when she asked about the order of things.
"I think we should put the fruit and the cream on the same layer," he said. "That way the juice from the fruit will flavor the cream a little bit."

They began to build the crepe cakes, starting with a crepe on the bottom, then whipped cream and fruit, another crepe, and so on. They had a lot of crepes. Ran had sliced the fruit fairly thin, so they were able to make nice smooth layers like the pictures he'd seen online. Overall, he thought as the cakes came together, not bad at all! Mina was going to be happy. And a happy Mina meant a well-fed and satisfied Ran - satisfied in a number of ways. The idea made him warm inside. Maybe he would see if Hana and Jacob would come over to celebrate with them. Mina loved her cousin, and Ran more than enjoyed the company of Hana and her familiar.
Bindi 5 years ago
"So then I said to him 'Sir, you cannot have that live chicken in here." Bindi said to her companion behind her. She smoothed a few stray wisps of white hair back from her face. The spring air had been crisp and floral and she had thoroughly enjoyed riding on the motorcycle with her Creator. Amir was one of her most favorite people in the world. Bindi had hugged him tight when she wasn't tilting her head up to look at the stars or out at how Nachton had changed since she had last visited.

Bindi turned back toward the kitchen where she was headed to get a little after flight snack. Maybe a nice crisp apple and a diet soda...

"What in the actual..." She looked around the kitchen in surpise, amazement and even a little awe. There were bowls,pans, and other cooking items everywhere. The kitchen was coated with flour and there were a couple of dark circles on the ceiling. The stoat, which could be a clan member or just a stoat, on the counter was barely noticeable by comparison.

Her brother and her Order's Elder were both standing behind two plates each topped with a beautiful stack of crepes. Bindi grinned from ear to ear.

"Elder Mai" She bowed deeply to the leader of the Hunt.

"Ran!" Bindi exclaimed with more enthusiasm. She bounded, literally, with her talents a couple of gravity defying leaps, over to her brother and wrapped her arms around him. "Hey, is there any more of that fruit?" She had thought she wanted an apple but the pineapple smelled amazing. "I don't suppose this was a welcome home present?" She looked up at Ran with big hopeful eyes. Really, Big, Really Hopeful. Adorable Visage was her very first vampire ability.
Amir 5 years ago
Amir wasn't sure if he wanted to hear the rest of Bindi's story or not. Probably? She did tend to have some good ones to tell.

Of all his remaining children who weren't in Nachton, Bindi was the one he least suspected would be susceptible to Subira's Commands. She was his independent child, who didn't want to be tied down and enjoyed having her own autonomy. Being Commanded would not sit easily with her.

When they entered the kitchen at Heolfor, Amir peeked over Bindi's shoulder and had to fight not to drop his jaw at the sight before him. Ran and Mai, engaged in some kind of... cooking tornado. He watched Bindi greet Mai and bounce over to Ran, and they embraced enthusiastically.

He bowed deeply to Mai, offered a little bow to Yoshi with the smallest of smiles, and then turned to Ran.

"I assume you plan to return the kitchen to its usual state before you leave."

It wasn't a question. And it was really hard not to smirk at Ran when he swallowed audibly and paled a little. He probably shouldn't take such delight in tweaking Ran's sensitive feelings, but he couldn't help it.
Ran Iyala 5 years ago
Before he knew it, he and Mai had made two entirely presentable crepe cakes, full of fluffy cream and strawberries and pineapple. They smelled great. Ran added a finishing touch of powdered sugar to the top of each; just a little dusting.

"These look amazing, Elder," he said, admiring their handiwork.

He heard a noise at the doorway and turned to see one of his favorite people, his older sister Bindi, staring at the kitchen. Probably in awe of the delicious cakes. She came over and greeted Mai, and then he had his arms full. He embraced her happily.

"Bindi! I'm so glad to see you!" She was probably the sibling he got along with best and he missed her as much as he ever missed anyone when she wasn't around.

And then Amir appeared from behind her, one arched eyebrow raised, and pointed out that the kitchen would need to be cleaned, and that Ran should do it. Ran looked around. He hadn't even considered the state of the room. It was... pretty extreme. There were splatters of cream and batter everywhere, some of which had started to dry already. He spotted crumbles of broken crepes, some splattered juice from the pineapple, and a few strawberry tops which had fallen off his cutting board onto the floor. He steadfastly did not look at the ceiling, because Amir would absolutely have him up on a ladder cleaning it as well if he noticed it.

He swallowed, worried about what Amir was going to think of him now. His rooms were one thing. They were his, and he could live in a messy room and depend on the cleaning staff for that. But this was a public area. He should have been more careful from the start. Well. No use crying over spilled milk. And he definitely didn't want to seem too sensitive to the criticism, mild as it was.

Ran saluted Amir with the scraper he'd been using to smooth whipped cream onto the crepes and forced a big smile onto his face. "Yep, don't worry. I'll get everything cleaned up good as new!"

He turned to Bindi. "There's pineapple leftover in that bowl over there that we didn't use. You can have it, right Mai?" He wanted to make sure Mai didn't want the leftovers for anything first. But who could resist Bindi when she had that cute face, and those eyes?

Well, Mai probably could. And he knew from experience Amir could. But he wasn't going to even try.
Mai 5 years ago
Mai loved the way the layers had built up into a beautiful design. She noted the powdered substance that Ran put on the top. When her companion pronounced them amazing, she smiled.

"Hai, Arigato, Ran-san."

Amir and someone else was coming into the Manor. She had once again grown accustomed to Amir's particular gait and the rhythm of his heart. Mai listened to the other person and quickly identified Amir's daughter. Bindi was of her Order and therefore Mai had met to her, though Amir saw to her schooling. Over the centuries though Bindi had joined several of her lessons on strategy or special techniques. Mai had noticed them not long after they stepped into the Manor. She was not surprised by them appearing in the kitchen.

Returning, Bindi's bow, she smiled.
"Konbanwa,Bindi-san." "Amir-san." She gave the jackal a bow as well.

Ran's father made mention of the state of the kitchen. Mai considered it a moment. They had staff to clean such things but Amir seemed to think that it would be good for Ran to do. She wondered if it was a lesson of some sort. If so then she might be wrong in getting involved but she did feel that if it was something Ran should do as a result of their making crepes then she should do it as well.

"Ran-san was teaching me to cook." Mai raised her plate of crepes. "I will help him clean." If there was some reason that she should not help him then she would probably never know that reason because she did not request to help. She stated that she -would- help.

Turning to Bindi, she said.
"We have no more need of the pineapples. You may have them. The crepes are gifts for others."
Bindi 5 years ago
Bindi hugged Ran and looked over at the Elder. She was surprised to find that the crepes were gifts for someone special. Not for Mai, she didn't really know Mai but for Ran. He had come to Nachton before her but had he been here long enough to have met someone worthy of a lovely crepe cake? When had he learned to make a crepe cake? She was sure she had missed a few things while she was away. She talked via electronics but that tended to get the highlights and not the every day things and Ran's life was always so full of exciting things that she had no doubt that she missed a lot.

Still there was pineapple. Bindi popped one into her mouth and then raised the bowl toward Amir.
"Want some pineapple?" She smiled at her typically carnivorous father. It didn't hurt to ask.

Letting Ran go, Bindi looked at the stoat. She gave it a nod.
"Anyone I know?"

Mai shook her head and gathered up the stoat. The Elder then presented him to her. "This is Yoshi. He is a little friend." The term was one of the standard terms for an animal companion. Bindi nodded and held her hand out to the stoat. "Good evening, Yoshi."

She then looked at Ran. "So, spill. Who is the crepe cake for?" Bindi waggled her eyebrows at him. She looked then at Amir. "Do you know who Ran would be making delicious food for?"
Amir 5 years ago
When Mai said she would be helping Ran clean and that he had been teaching her to cook, Amir just looked back and forth between the two of them and nodded. He certainly wasn't going to tell Mai what to do, and if the two of them together had made a mess then they should clean it. He didn't worry so much about the humans at Heolfor; they were staff after all. But Ran needed to clean up his messes, literally and figuratively.

Bindi offered him pineapple and he absently took a piece, popping into his mouth and chewing before wrinkling his nose slightly.
"Tart," he said. he crossed over to the cutting board next to where Bindi had gotten the pineapple from and picked up a strawberry that had somehow escaped the knife along with a few of its pals. "These are better."

He popped the berry into his mouth and chewed. When Bindi asked who Ran had made a cake for, he lifted one shoulder.

"Mina, I imagine." He looked at Ran with his eyebrows raised, waiting to see if his assumption was correct.
Ran Iyala 5 years ago
Ran did feel better when Mai said she would help clean. It hadn't really occurred to him to question whether the Elder should or should not help, since he was so far her junior he wouldn't have really minded if the task fell to him. He would enjoy her company, though. Having someone else always helped make things go faster.

Amir correctly guessed the reason he was baking but he wasn't about to give it up that easily. He affected a wounded expression.
"How do you know I wasn't making something for my own Creator? My dearest dad. My amazing father."

Amir's eyebrows went up even further. Ran grinned at him, then looked at Bindi.
"No he's right. It's for Mina. My familiar. She graduates from law school soon and I wanted to celebrate."

He regarded the crepe cake, and considered his not-at-all-shy, lust-driven familiar.
"Though honestly we might end up wearing most of it."

He certainly hoped so.
Bindi 5 years ago
Bindi raised her eyebrows as Amir took a piece of pineapple and then decided on the strawberries instead. "Who are you?" She narrowed her eyes at him. "And what have you done with my father?"

She backed away from Amir slowly until she was around behind Mai. In a whisper she said to the Elder. "He -is- Amir, right?"

Mai regarded Amir for a long, disconcerting moment before nodding her head. "He is Amir." Why had it taken so long to answer she wondered. Maybe Mai was not Mai. She was cooking and that didn't seem like a normal activity for her. Of course she had said that she was learning from Ran which suggested something that she was only just beginning to do. And really if one was going to impersonate someone then they would do their best by doing things that the person was known -for- doing instead of things they weren't.

Discarding the whole thought trail as a potential rabbit hole that would have her deciding the entire Manor was full of aliens, Bindi instead focused on this Mina person. She moved closer to Amir again.
"Do we approve of this Mina person? Have you met her?" She was graduating law school. Bindi tried to imagine some serious law student, hair in a bun, repressed libido, suit dress, glasses and no social life with her adverturesome brother. It nearly made her giggle out loud. You never could tell though. Maybe she was a closet dominatrix. Or maybe Ran just found himself a nice but very normal girl. It wasn't like her brother wasn't capable of charming the pants off anyone. He was very likable. It had saved his life more than once...with Amir alone.

"Okay, tell me more." Bindi grabbed a cloth from the sink and looked into the cabinet. She found some Meyers cleaning solution and handed the cloth and the bottle to Ran and then found more. She handed these to Mai, who nodded to her. Grabbing another few cloths, she borrowed the spray back from Ran long enough to spray the stove and then handed it back. Bindi wiped the stove top while catching up. "You should probably move those out of the way." She nodded to the two crepe cakes.

((OOC: Skipping the esteemed Elder because she had NOT met Mina and has nothing to add. ))
Amir 5 years ago
Amir rolled his eyes at Bindi's theatrics. He waited for Mai to speak, and then corroborated with a scowl that was far more like a facial expression she'd be used to. "Yes, Amir is Amir. It's a long annoying story and I don't want to go into it but I imagine you've heard most of it from Mara already."

He really didn't want to discuss it. Bad enough to have been vulnerable and weak in front of Mara and Jin and Bao, but to have to confess to that same thing in front of his other children. He shuddered.

Fortunately Bindi changed the subject, leaving Amir off the hot seat for the moment. He nodded when she asked about Mina.
"We have met Mina. You'll like her. And it can't ever hurt to have another lawyer in the family."

Bao was great, of course, but Mina was daylight-mobile. It was unfortunate that, with the tension between Bao and Ran, Ran hadn't felt comfortable approaching Bao for a possible internship for Mina. Maybe now, though, that she was graduating. Well, he could put his two cents in.

Bindi was clearly aiming to help clean up, so with a long-suffering sigh Amir also grabbed a rag. He would scowl more while cleaning so it would look more like he wasn't actually enjoying himself.