Digital Ischemia

05/01/2014

Parents / Tea

The Lassie and The Legume continued

[ Starts at https://digitalischemia.wordpress.com/2013/10/13/interview-hut/ ]

The Parents

Those of you expecting a monstrous mansion or fairytale castle should switch to self-delusion now. The edifice that greets Cecilia through sopping vegetation is half a bungalow; not a lower or front or left half, but a diagonal wedge. It starts well with a conventional front elevation: a window and door among some well-ordered bricks, then tapers away via a bird box to a patio. Out leap bedewed parents.

Percy’s mother has hair like white feathers, in pinched tufts, each pointing back at thirty degrees to that piece of scalp, like a sequenced illustration of centripetal force on orbiting objects. She’s cloaked in a mosaic of sequin shards, a full field migraine teichopsia. And to finish the caricature, her speech is curiously gulping.

Percy’s father is a tweed cape mounted on plus-fours and dark orange, friction-polished, leather gaiters. The cape flaps, agitated by an arm that’s propped like a little teapot–

Before the description is complete, the topmost tweedy weavings part, revealing themselves to be camouflaged facial hair. Thus Percy’s father shouts, “chicken!”
Cecilia darts a bewildered glance at Percy’s mother.
Rich explains, “my uninterest in his conversation dequates to coward.”
Cecilia is distracted but relieved.
Percy’s mother calms her husband, “very robust of you, dear.”

Rich bolts for the door, muttering, “tea times.”
Percy’s mother grinds a gear change and quivers her head. “Yes, let’s go in.” She pirouettes, slips into the house, drawing her followers with funnelled hands. Her husband extends his spout arm, directing Cecilia to the doorway.
Cecilia forces demure, intrepid footsteps around a wary radius of tweedy whiskers.

The Tea

Cecilia adjusts her posture on a remarkably uncomfortably upholstered chair, printed with realistic roses, and suffering a peculiar tilt. A pin of varying location jabs her buttock again. She covers her wince with a sip of hot pond from an elaborate thimble. As if cooling the brew, she tactfully blows a dainty leaf to the far shore of the cup. Where are the biscuits?

Percy’s father, who remains formally unintroduced, froths a few suspicious crumbs.
“Books?”
Cecilia welcomes this, “oh, thank you,” before her neurobots highlight that she hasn’t been offered anything, and certainly not biscuits. Luckily, unsurprisingly, no-one’s even faintly attentive to her response, let alone her imminent hypoglycaemic collapse.
Percy’s father tweedily gestures an impenetrable rotary shelving arrangement. “My son’s read them all. Very well read, him. And them!” He hoots at his own hilarity. His wife titters perfunctorily.
Cecilia glances a query at Rich. He vigorously shakes his head. A faint cloud of moisture is released. Her craving for any morsel, even the crumbs in those tweedy whiskers, causes a malevolent decision to create a distraction.
“Perhaps he’d read something out?”
Rich has palpitations. Fortunately both parents forget the deception, showing only puzzlement at the suggestion. Percy’s father cranks his jaw, trying to get traction on some language befitting his son’s eloquence. Rust sets in.
Percy’s mother jolts into animation. “Time for tea!”
Cecilia takes her turn at bafflement, in a limp way due to lapsing into a starvation coma.

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