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[personal profile] lb_lee
Hi everybody!  This is a leftover from Foolathon, based off prompts from [livejournal.com profile] thnidu and [livejournal.com profile] nevacaruso!  It was sponsored by cloudiah of Mammoth!  It takes place in the Magical Moonbeams series, and while all the context you need is, "Marge works at the coffee shop in every fanfiction," it'd be best if you read at least Ordinary Ever After.  Enjoy!

God Night

“Sorry, Marge, I can’t be there tonight,” James said. “My writer has me out on a jam-jar barbecue fic.”

“Change her mind!  It’s God Night.  No way am I working God Night alone.”

“No can do.  Her Aussie friend will only be on tonight.  C’mon, you can handle the gods.”

Marge (former Magical Moon Princess) just gave James a cold stare.  For sheer mayhem and ego-clashes, the gods topped even the Manly Men support group.  Plus, she just couldn’t shake the fear that the Moon Goddess or her creepy perverted unicorn would come in one night and see right through her bad haircut and gained weight and cart her off to be their tragedy Barbie again.

James came and put his hands on her shoulders.

“You’ll be fine,” he said. “They won’t come here.”

Marge swallowed. “Have fun at the barbecue.”

“I’ll bring you leftovers.”

By six o’clock, Marge was ready to moonbeam all of Homescross Coffee to the ground.  She’d been running interference on Loki’s murder attempts on Baldur for an hour, Dionysus had somehow gotten drunk on espresso, and the Flying Spaghetti Monster had made a horrific mess in the bathroom.  And God Night was just getting started; half of them hadn’t even arrived yet.

Pele had just sent her coffee back for being too cold again when the crowd really started coming in.  While Marge reboiled the water, she smiled and greeted Coyote, Anubis, and Tyl Eulenspiegel. (Coyote had an arm around each of them and had apparently gotten drunk preemptively.) They were still hanging around the chalkboard, deciding their orders, when the Sun King strode in.

“Margaret!” he cried. “I’ve been looking all over for you!”

Marge scalded her hand.  Out of panicked reflex, she gabbled out, “Welcome to Homescross Coffee, I’ll be right with you in a second.”

She should have seen this coming.  She should have known.  Unlike Aunt Edna or Uncle Ron, the Sun King had always adored his characterization and the grand narrative unfolding around him.

“Don’t you know what state you left our book in?  I thought you’d been kidnapped, raped, tortured, and you’re…” He looked around the coffee shop incredulously, and his lip curled. “Ordinary.”

The Sun King, despite being a Chosen One rather than an actual god, had a radiating glow and a heroic voice that carried.  All around, gods and goddesses were turning to watch.  Marge sighed.

“Ryan,” Marge said, running cool water over her hand, “you’re holding up the line.”

“Yeah!  Shit or get off the pot!” cried Coyote.

“Don’t mock me,” the Sun King boomed. “You can’t just leave.  Your replacement is that movie girl, and she’s just not the same.  She’s impure.  You can’t expect me to…”

Marge let him rattle on.  She had no interest in making a scene, and anyway, her Moon Goddess-bestowed powers didn’t include a booming battle voice.  She calmly iced her hand, gave the still-bubbling coffee to Pele with an apology for the delay, and wiped up the spilled water.

When he finally paused to take a breath, she called, “I can take the next order.”

“You’re not even listening to me!” the Sun King complained, but Coyote shoved him out of the way and flopped his elbows on the counter, giving Marge a winning smile.  He gave her a sly wink, and Marge felt a part of her relax.  She was a barista surrounded by gods.  Serve them.

“I’ll have a tall non-fat latte, 2 percent foam, 200 degree, no ice, 20 pump, extra caramel drizzle…”

It was a nonsense order, but Marge nodded along with a straight face and acted like she was actually paying attention, while Coyote rattled off a list of increasingly improbable ingredients, including matcha, hibiscus, and barbecue sauce.  After the first minute or two, when the Sun King started turning red, Marge asked Coyote sweetly, “Hold the elephant?”

“The hell with the elephant!” Coyote declared, throwing out his arms. “I want a whale!”

Tyl Eulenspiegel and Anubis snickered.

The Sun King went puce.  He grabbed Coyote’s shoulder. “Do you mind?”

Coyote looked down at the hand, and suddenly he looked stone cold sober, with eyes that held ancient galaxies, uncountable civilizations, and very sharp teeth.  He smiled.

The Sun King jumped back as though he’d been burned.

Coyote turned to give Marge a pitying look. “Not too bright, is he?”

Marge was never so glad that the customer was always right. “Not at all.”

“Now, excuse me if I’m wrong, but I understand that you and he were emissaries of fictional gods, invented just two years ago.  No worshippers.”

“Actually, they’re developing a cult following in North Carolina,” said Thoth. “Check the Akashic Records.”

“Nevertheless,” Coyote continued, “you’re emissaries.  Now, I’m nothing but an old geezer god, but,” and there were those great and terrible eyes again, and he was smiling and putting an arm around the Sun King, who looked like he wanted to be anywhere else, “I hate emissaries who bother my favorite barista.”

And suddenly, all the gods’ attention were on the Sun King.  He began to sweat.

“She gets my order right,” said Hecate.

“She looks out for me,” Baldur said.

“She reheated my coffee!” said Pele. “Twice!”

“We’re egotistical pains in the ass,” Coyote said, waving an arm at all the gods, “and she pours our drinks and libations.”

The Sun King was actively trying to get away from Coyote now, but the old man didn’t seem to notice and his casual arm never shifted.

“Your coffee, sir,” Marge said, putting a mug in front of him.

Coyote was a good sport. “Right on time.”

“We aims to please, sir.”

Still keeping one arm around the struggling Sun King, Coyote took a gulp—and promptly spat it out again when he saw the small plastic whale floating in the cup.  He burst out cackling.

“Just right, just right!” he declared, then gave the Sun King a world-devouring grin. “I’m in a good mood, boy.  Go home.”

He let his arm slip off the Sun King, who bolted out the door, then turned back to Marge.

“But seriously now,” he said. “Flat white.  Medium.”

By the time Marge closed, the gods had broken a chair, turned the toilet water into wine, and given her a couple hundred dollars’ worth in tips, made up of gems, flowers, and gold.  Also, Coyote had told her not to worry about the Sun King, the Moon Goddess, or the creepy unicorn anymore.

Marge didn’t.  And she never worried about God Night again either.

Date: 2014-09-14 10:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rolodexaspirin.livejournal.com
Do not ever fuck with a deity's favorite coffee-slinger. It is a bad idea.

Date: 2014-09-15 09:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lb-lee.livejournal.com
Even gods need a good barista!

Date: 2014-09-15 03:18 am (UTC)
ext_12246: (yay)
From: [identity profile] thnidu.livejournal.com
Oh, really, really good!!! Thankyou thankyou thankyou!!!³

Date: 2014-09-15 09:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lb-lee.livejournal.com
I'm glad you finally got to see it, five months later!

--Rogan

Date: 2014-09-16 11:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] natalief.livejournal.com
I loved this!

Date: 2014-09-17 02:47 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lb-lee.livejournal.com
I'm glad! I loved writing it!

Date: 2014-09-22 04:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] natalief.livejournal.com
We aims to please, sir.

I spotted this on the second reading - I think it should be "aim".

Date: 2014-09-22 05:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lb-lee.livejournal.com
Marge is actually quoting the Silver Streak (http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Silver_Streak_%281976_film%29), which involves the same line and an offer of coffee. If it's too clunky, though, I can change it.

--Rogan

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