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Post by Elliot and Isaac Sunderland on Apr 16, 2016 5:43:15 GMT
Huh, an offhanded compliment actually proved useful! Elliot found himself grinning widely at Alicia's acceptance of the idea. "See? That's the spirit!" he cheered. "You're already really good at making food. I know you're gonna go so far one day!" The unspoken promise, of course, was that Elliot and Isaac would be cheering her on every step of the way. "If you've ever got a new recipe and you want to test it out, I know Isaac and I would be more than happy to taste test." Test taste? More like completely devour, if the fact that Elliot had nearly eaten the entire bowl already was any indication. If anything, the big worry was whether he would end up snatching Isaac's plate!
Alicia seemed really optimistic about what was coming up, too. "Got big plans brewing?" Isaac asked her, noticing how her mood seemed to skyrocket. From a text that sounded a little moody, although possibly just for the sake of motivating them, to now cheerily declaring them surrogate brothers and talking excitedly about her future. It made the boy happy to hear that she was doing so well today, and that she was becoming more sure about herself. In contrast, his future was still so uncertain. He'd be going back to California, giving up these new, amazing friends to go back to old ones he wasn't even too close with, and then what would he do? Just regular high school stuff? Did he even know what he wanted to do for a career? Some days, he just felt so lost.
No need to dwell on that. Today was for celebrating Alicia, not worrying about his own confusion.
Post by Alicia Westfield on Apr 16, 2016 6:09:36 GMT
Alicia hummed softly. "Kind of. If one counts inviting one's siblings down some time in the near future. I'd love to get the chance to introduce you guys to my older brothers if things work out." Odd, she didn't seem to be too concerned about the time frame of Elliot and Isaac leaving shortly. "Since I can take the pressure of getting into a culinary school off my chest, that leaves more time to do other things. In a more mundane sense, I'd be able to put more hours in at work and earn more money. In an extraordinary sense, more time to practice with my Digimon forms so I'm better prepared. All in all you really saved me a ton of stress Elliot."
And with that, the redhead went back to devouring her meal, seeing Elliot was nearly done. It was amazing though, given how it taste, that she'd been able to put it down for so long after trying it! Why was she so worried about getting into a culinary school? She had what it took if she just went out on a limb and tried to make things that were unusual and experimented a bit more!
"Good to see you finally got yourself really set to succeed. Reminds me of when Kisara cooked up a meal in our down times." Sol commented, chuckling softly.
"Dear, please, you're embarrassing me!" Kisara shot back, though her happy tone said it all: she wasn't bothered by being put on the spot at all. If only Alicia had someone to share the madness that went on in her head some times...
Post by Elliot and Isaac Sunderland on Apr 16, 2016 6:22:28 GMT
Honestly, Elliot didn't even know what he said that pulled it off. Was she so driven by her past goals that she didn't even notice the easier solution hovering right in front of her? "I'm so glad I could help," he simply said, smiling gently. "You've already helped us all out so much. This is the least we can do for you, right?" He wasn't as strong as Alicia, or talented as Alicia, or capable of doing great things like Alicia. After all, he was just 13! However, he could still try and help with words, even when that was all he could do. As seen by today, sometimes words could be way bigger than they originally seemed.
Alicia's plan sounded really fun! Except for one gaping issue, of course. Isaac guiltily looked down at his food, not wanting Alicia to start drawing up plans that would fall through before they were even properly made. This would have to be a really, really near future if it was going to include both the real brothers and the surrogate brothers. He wondered how to best break the news to avoid killing the high-flying spirits of the day, before eventually just deciding to come clean with his worries. "I don't know how much longer we're going to have to be here for, sadly," Isaac said. "We only have like three more days left." There was even a little bit of pain in his voice. Seeing how excited Alicia was made the idea of leaving even more painful than it already was.
Post by Alicia Westfield on Apr 16, 2016 6:33:35 GMT
Alicia blinked a bit and tilted her head. Yeah... Yeah that was a problem. That was definitely a problem. "Oh..." She began neutrally. Seemed the admission had- "So? If we can plan it out, I can make this happen one way or another. If that means paying your plane tickets for you or even making the round trip as Mercurialdramon personally, I will make this get together happen! One way or another I will have both my blood related older brothers and my surrogate little brothers meet up!"
Alicia laughed aloud at that, and apparently had a lot of confidence that, as long as things could be smoothed over on their end, she could pull it off. Her optimism might even be a little infectious if the two brothers had allowed themselves to get lost in her declaration. "But really, I care about you guys. If we all put our heads together, then even if you guys go back to California I'm sure we can pull something together out of this. But we'll dwell on that later. For those of us who haven't finished yet, let us get back to this delicious meal."
Well... that was one way to turn what would have been a depressing bomb drop into something at least neutral in effect. Alicia was still smiling all the way through so that had to mean something, right?
Post by Elliot and Isaac Sunderland on Apr 16, 2016 6:45:51 GMT
Isaac shook his head. She was crazy. Absolutely crazy. And he couldn't help but love it. Her optimism was pretty infectious after all, and while Isaac had a million and one reasons to doubt it he found himself going along with her train of thought. Shelling out tons of money for their tickets? Flying across the entire freaking Pacific Ocean on her own? Why was this coming off as reassuring instead of nuts? Despite everything, he found himself smiling slightly at Alicia in response. "You know what? Sure. Let's give this a shot," he said. "I'll be damned if I ended up never seeing you again, after all. That'd be no way to treat my surrogate big sis."
He couldn't help but find his grin widening at that statement. As weird as it was, it just plain sounded right. How had he been becoming so much better at meeting people since coming here? In less than two weeks he went from feeling rather alone, to being surrounded by people he cared deeply for. Okay, two people. But that was still significant!
Right! Food! Isaac turned to his plate, eagerly devouring the rest of the scampi and marveling at how great it was. Elliot, who had been done for a few minutes now, was just drifting half-in and half-out of a food coma while listening to Isaac and Alicia talk. "That was amazing," he muttered, still in a bit of a deep daze. He didn't expect him to ever be able to make food this good, but maybe if he could keep observing Alicia he'd at least be able to pick up a few tricks of the trade. "Today really turned out to be a wonderful day, didn't it?"
Post by Alicia Westfield on Apr 16, 2016 14:30:24 GMT
"Anything's worth trying to make dreams a reality, eh?" Alicia quipped with a smile, before laughing at how Elliot seemed to not really be there any more from eating so well this evening. He looked like he was about to pass out right then and there and it was just so adorable to the Steel Spirit User. Alicia chuckled a bit, though, as she did understand just how such a thing felt. She was just better able to hide it.
"I'm glad you both enjoyed it. And yes, it really did turn out to be a lovely day. I'm glad we got to share it together. You think you guys will need a ride home or will you be alright?" Stacking everyone up again might be a bit harder this time what with food coma shenanigans coming on, but Alicia was pretty sure she could do it if need be. The only question would be how to explain it the kids' parents. Or drop them off early so they don't know she was with them.
Post by Elliot and Isaac Sunderland on Apr 16, 2016 14:58:39 GMT
"I know you can do this!" Elliot chirped merrily as Alicia mentioned her dreams coming true. It was such an inspirational image, and one Elliot was incredibly glad to be here for. Alicia was so kind and hardworking. He couldn't imagine anyone deserving to sort out their life more. "Can I help out more before Isaac and I go back to California? I'm really going to miss you," he admitted. Whereas Isaac admitting stuff like that tended to be sheepish and withdrawn, Elliot was earnest to the point of bluntness. Moving away from Alicia was going to suck, and that was the bottom line.
Isaac considered Alicia's offer. Their mom probably wouldn't be jazzed about them showing up on the lap of a strange, older woman. Sure, she seemed very out if it in general, but that one night they had to stay in the Digital World probably got her back to her old, vigilant self. Besides, they could probably walk home easily from this point. It wasn't the distant expanse of the Valley of Dragons, for example. On the other jand, it'd be fun to spend more time with Alicia, and he'd hate to seem ungrateful for all of the help that they had already gotten from her. "We could walk it from here, buy if you don't mind it would be pretty fun catching up with you mo-"
And then there was a loud thud, coming from the living room. Or perhaps an upstairs attic. Regardless, a small vlice whined "Ugh, my back. SantaAg- uh, Pere Noel makes it look so easy!"
Post by Alicia Westfield on Apr 16, 2016 15:23:10 GMT
Alicia had just been about to respond to the brothers, too. Then she had to flinch from the odd thud coming from her living room. "Oh for... Looks like I have some trash to take out..." The Spirit User mused, clearly upset by the interruption. "I'll be back in a bit." She told them as she got up. going over to 'greet' the intruder in her home.
As she anticipated, it was the EbiBurgemon Isaac had been choking out earlier. "Hey!" she snapped at him angrily, folding her arms and tapping her fingers along the upper arm in plain irritation. "What do you think you're doing, barging into my home uninvited like this? For that matter, why? What's a little shrimp Digimon like you got to gain from coming to the Human World?"
Post by Elliot and Isaac Sunderland on Apr 17, 2016 2:19:19 GMT
The EbiBurgemon propped himself back on his feet, dusting himself off and coughing up soot. He tried to look as prim and proper as possible by the time he recovered, but he had already done a great job of making himself look stupid through his clumsy accident. How unfortunate. However, by the time Alicia spoke, he found himself caring less about what she sounded like and more about what she smelled like. Or, rather, what the food in her kitchen smelled like. His nose sniffed, then wrinkled up slightly. Up close and personal, he had no clue if he liked what the Alicia was cooking or not. It didn't outright revolt him like most of the human world's food had, but it still lacked that certain je nais se quoi he was looking for. He shifted to match her pose, figuring it to be how chefs in this world looked. She didn't really sound French enough, though. It'd never work!
"I am EbiBurgemon!" he declared, letting out another overly-French laugh. "Those other Burgemon from the village seem content with mere patties. Yet I! I have cast my eye toward greatness, toward the gourmet! While honing my abilities I found a portal to your world, and decided to see what you humans considered dishes.
And you have all disappointed! When my companions lack vision, and you humans seem to have no clue, where could I possibly learn? Oh, zee wandering star, left without any means of truly testing himself!" He made an exaggerated stagefall, landing safely on his bun hat to avoid smashing his head into the floor. As he landed he squeezed an eye open, to see if Alicia was suitably amused.
Post by Alicia Westfield on Apr 17, 2016 2:39:52 GMT
Alicia narrowed her eyes at the EbiBurgemon. She wasn't sure anymore if she was looking an an insufferable know-it-all or a sham that got himself kicked out and is puffing himself up to look better then he actually was. And frankly she wasn't sure what would be more frustrating. The first one was the kind you could never please no matter how good you were. The second was the kind that didn't actually know what he was doing.
His over dramatic act wasn't helping him one way or another. Alicia had just been interrupted on the tail end of what she felt was a mouth-watering meal with precious little brothers, and this little, literal, shrimp was barging in on what time she had left. To say she was aggrivated by his presence was a bit of an understatement.
"So, in summary," Alicia began. "What I'm getting from you is that your one of two things. One, you're an insufferable jerk who eats for all the wrong reasons. The other, you're a big shot faker who doesn't actually know the first thing about cooking. I'm not sure what it is and at this point I don't care."
Her voice was starting to get higher now, a reflection of the cold anger in her heart that was starting to burn bright. "We are a dissappointment? I will be the first to admit, I'm not a master of the culinary arts! There are people out in the world who can make my meals look like a cheap burger and fries! People who are so skilled they can successfully incorporate strange ingredients and make something amazing out of them, and all under tight time constraints as well! But most of all, I don't cook to impress the best of the best!"
The Steel Spirit user stamped her foot down with enough force to shake the EbiBurgemon a slight bit, given the size difference between the two. "That is a path to misery and ruined dreams! I cook for the sake of cooking itself, to see friends and family gather around to enjoy what has been created without harsh judgement! Mastery of the culinary arts is an ideal to strive for, not a hurdle to be crossed and then tested time and again! People compete against one another because they've already proven their skill to the one who really matters in that, themselves!"
Alicia started to close on the EbiBurgemon, raising her foot up behind her. Her door opened outward, and she knew that hitting it with enough force would make it fling open. "So! If you will not respect how I cook, then i have only two words for you. Get. Out!" The redhead swung her leg, aiming to literally kick the EbiBurgemon out. She'd had enough of his ranting already.
Post by Elliot and Isaac Sunderland on Apr 17, 2016 2:55:29 GMT
"Moi? Know nothing about cooking? Ridiculous!" the Ebiburgemon protested, but it seemed Alicia was far too set off by his antics to even care about listening. He had awoken the sleeping dragon, and she was not happy with what she saw. Her stomps of rage shook him to the core, and her words had an icy fury to them that left him frostburned through merely listening to her. Was she right about misery? His single-minded pursuit of the great gourmet had left him isolated from his own village, forced to live the life of the wandering short-order chef. Meanwhile, here she stood with friends and defenders who would fight for her happiness and for her cooking. Would his road simply lead him to self-destruction?
And yet, it burned so brightly in front of him. He could feel raw talent coursing through his veins. His sharp mind dreamed of ingredients as he slept, and cataloged recipes as he marched from one urban center to the next. Success was so close he could almost taste it. Everything he did in life, every sacrifice he made, every silly accent he adopted, was all for finally achieving culinary mastery. He would reap what he had sewn, and recoup what was once lost. Living for mediocrity, for mere satiation, for making others happy instead of easing that burning feeling inside; would he really be happy with those? The fact that Alicia's words made him feel doubt were indication that perhaps, his resolve was not as strong as he had thought.
Or perhaps it simply needed to be tested in fire.
He ducked the kick, his hat sailing off into the distance as Alicia made contact with it. As he rose, there was a fearful look in his eye. "Perhaps I misjudged you," the Digimon frantically said, hoping to appease the girl another boot came. "Zis spark within you. It burns as bright as the spark in my own soul! I have yet to find human cuisine zat has met my taste, but yours does not smell completely irredeemable." Was that supposed to be a compliment? EbiBurgemon's tone sure seemed to be aiming for that, even if his words were way off the mark. "Perhaps we can have a duel, from one chef to another! You would like to see how that fire of yours can sear food, non?"
Post by Alicia Westfield on Apr 17, 2016 4:18:39 GMT
Pouting a bit as all she hit was his burger bun hat, Alicia fumed silently. Why couldn't getting rid of this nuisance be easy? Without a really care for the cord she struck in the little shrimp Digimon, she was about to go for another kick until the little mon spoke up. Had he turned over a new leaf? Or at least leave her alone now? No, it wasn't anything quite so simple. And then she was basically challenged to a cook off. Here? Now? Really?
The back handed compliment more or less was ignored, as Alicia took mental stock of what she had available in her kitchen. Was it even a good idea to fight this digimon on his 'home field' as it were? He at least claimed to be a master chef, and was quite upset to hear her assumption that he had no actual experience. Though, in the name of fairness, she couldn't accept, she had an advantage here.
"Perhaps at a later date, EbiBurgemon. Were we to duel at this time, the odds would be weighted too heavily in my favor. For one, competitors obviously cannot serve as judges as well. Secondly, of those readily available, Elliot and Isaac have both already dined on a full, and admittedly rather large meal. They are both in no condition to properly judge two more dishes and furthermore we have no Digimon representative. It would be an unfair match from the start and if I win, I want it to be a win based on what skill I have, not simple circumstances conspiring in my favor..."
Not to mention such an obviously weighted match would merely lead the EbiBurgemon to be infuriated with her instead of, hopefully, graciously accepting defeat.
Post by Elliot and Isaac Sunderland on Apr 17, 2016 4:29:44 GMT
"Bah. You may be right," the EbiBurgemon muttered. She was right that the situation was heavily weighted in her own favor. Also that they couldn't exactly force the taste testers to eat beyond their stomach capacities. It would be way too late to ask for a retroactive taste test, too. Maybe this really wasn't a great time for a taste test, and as much as the EbiBurgemon's heart blazed he knew he would get his just desserts later. "No matter! Zee day shall come when you all know my talent. Zen we shall see what the human world truly has to offer!" The EbiBurgemon posed dramatically, pointing toward Alicia. He then about-faced and pointed toward the door, where he would be heading soon. "Until then, mademoiselle, I bit you aideu!" The EbiBurgemon was gone as soon as he had arrived, surprisingly content with accepting this delay.
"What the heck was his deal?" Isaac asked, watching as the small shrimp chef laughed Frenchly into the night. "Did he try to break into your house just to talk up his food?" Desperation much? Isaac already knew Digimon were strange creatures, but this was new even to him. They never really seemed this, for lack of a better term, petty. He kind of wondered if he should have just scared the Digimon off again. At least then, the EbiBurgemon wouldn't have interrupted their meal to go on some long ramble. Still, he made sure to keep a more vigilant eye out in the future. A startled Digimon was also often a canny, crafty Digimon. If something as dumb as this chef could sneak up on them, who knew what sorts of actual dangerous Digimon could silently make their way into the human world?
Post by Alicia Westfield on Apr 17, 2016 5:15:30 GMT
"... His French is terrible..." Alicia finally commented, certain that the EbiBurgemon was out of ear shot. "And more or less yeah. That his singular purpose for trying to barge in while Elliot and I were cooking and then breaking into my house just now. That and be the insufferable jerk who eats food specifically so he can complain about it. I hate those types of people." Shaking her head, Alicia sighed.
"Do take care to be careful come the time you two actually have your cook off, should it ever come to pass. I wouldn't put it past him to be petty enough as to sabotage your cooking to unbalance an even playing field in his favor." Sol commented, sighing as well.
"Really, he calls himself a chef and has no respect for another's work? That's the lowest of the low right there. Someone should revoke whatever license to cook professionally he has, because he most certainly did not act like a professional just now!" Kisara added in, obviously angered as well by the EbiBurgemon's conduct.
"And my spirits are kind of peeved at him too, actually." Alicia commented to Isaac, summing up what the two had said more or less completely in that one line. Oh well, back to what was left of the meal, and then it was time to clean up.
Post by Elliot and Isaac Sunderland on Apr 17, 2016 6:11:21 GMT
"Seriously?" Isaac shook his head, a mixture of disbelief and aggravation crossing his features. "What does anyone gain from doing that crud? Oh well, his loss. Bet if he knew what he was missing out on he'd think twice before talking crap about your food." What could he even say? Alicia's cooking was wonderful! He almost wished that they had gone through with the cook-off just so he could've had a chance at eating more. His stomach would've likely popped, but it would have been so worth it. Then again, if he proved to be a sore loser and stronger than they thought, the trio were all exhausted from travel and training. Maybe it was a wise idea to send it on its way with the promise of future challenges after all.
When it came time to clean, Elliot brought his and Isaac's dishes to the sink and began diligently scrubbing them. It was like he was on duty before Alicia could even say a word about it. "Do you cook for others often, or is it usually yourself?" he asked curiously, taking another good, appreciative look around the kitchen. The idea of completely immersing yourself in something you loved was very appealing to Elliot. Whether video games, drawing, or eating, he liked nothing more than to dive headfirst into distracting activities of his choice. Sports used to fill that role, until-
Elliot didn't like thinking about that very much. Besides, virtual sports were almost as good as the real thing, right? Right? He sighed wistfully as he got back to work, not wanting to let his wandering mind distract him too much. In the grand scheme of things he knew he was actually rather lucky. His Digimon forms let him walk and move fully again, which was far more than he could say for most in his position. The fact that he could get perfect legs at any time was a blessing he wouldn't forget, even if it was the negatives that his mind tended to most heavily weigh on. The weight on his shoulders was somewhat visible as he cleaned, no matter how much he tried to push it back.