Circuit Breaker

I'm Not Holier Than Thou / But We're Trendier Than Them. (Page Twenty Six.)

by CyanidePrincess

Tags: #cw:gore #bondage #f/f #pov:bottom #scifi #sub:female #alien_invasion #bisexual_lead #dom:female #drug_play #Human_Domestication_Guide #mind_control #petplay #robots #sadomasochism #slow_burn #trans_egg #transgender_characters
See spoiler tags : #cw:protagonist_death
(Some Content Warning tags are spoilered. Click to show them) #cw:protagonist_death

Yoyoyoyoyooooo! The bar episode!! ROUGHLY 2-4 pages left before CB is done entirely. I hope y'all enjoy this silly silly page. It was pretty much just a big excuse to include some of my author buddies characters / friends I have. Its a long jokey page! How fun, right?

There's a gentle thumpthumpthump in my hand as the drill I'm holding finishes twisting in the screw to the leg of the table. I pull my hand away and take a look. Nice, looks good. With my free hand, I tap the soft bed of flowers beneath me before, with a thought, appearing on the top of the table with my legs dangling off the side and the accompanying 'boom' of displaced air. 
Taking a look around the room, Mistress seems to be putting the final touches on the chairs at the dinner table I just finished. Her mass is significantly spread out across the floor, with no centralized lump to be seen. All spread out, with many vines attentively working on the last bits and pieces of… like six chairs at once. Ah, the Affini and their need to multitask. Cute. Maybe She's trying to impress me or something.
With the final piece in place, the lovely carpet of beauty knits back together, but only a little. Just enough to form an upper body, the rest of Her is still just a jumble. I love how She does this, really. Seemingly neglecting the cultural practice of looking as human as possible to blend in with the local species. I love how inhuman She always looks. So mystic and perfect and… oh stars, I'm a plantfucker aren't I. Mistress looks at me and smirks. "Hell yeah you are, you little xenophile pervert."
I shrug, smirking back. "Your pervert. And what can I say but plampt pretty. Can't blame me when you're so…" I wave my hands around at Her. "Hot. And perfect and stuff."
She giggles, flowers blooming and thorns clicking past each other. "You're perfect and stuff too, sweetheart. I think we're done here?" She asks rhetorically, but I nod anyway. "That seems to be the last of the furniture in the house, I think. And in great time too, how much do we have left?" She looks at me expectantly. With nothing but a thought I… bring up the clock app and check the time.
"It's like eleven thirty. We have about half an hour." 
She smiles broad, and sweeps me off the table into Her arms. She gives me a little squeeze before forming Her hands together into a little bed for me to lay on while She holds me. "Great! Let's get the last of everything set up in the bar, okay? I think the last of the menu cards just got done printing." I just stare up at Her with a stupid smile on my face, not responding. Fuck, plampt really pretty. She looks down at me curiously. "You uh, you good there doll?"
"Silly girl." She snakes a vine up and around my cheek, temporarily flooding me with digitized drugs. Enough to make me drag out a 'mnhaah' when She scratches oh so blissfully under my chin before clearing my system. 
I watch Her with attention as rapt as a churchgoer to their local priestess as She like… squiggles us into the bar room, again never forming legs. Just melting Her mass of plant into a moving blob for efficient locomotion. Into the bar room we go, and She sets me down gently. "Let me see that trick you do with the lemons again, I wanna see your knife skills." Mistress tells me. I smile and obey of course, signaling to the compiler compartment beneath the edge of the bar table to make a single ripe lemon. Instead of a ding or anything usual, I can kindof just sense when the things done compiling. Tech sense is super weird but useful. The lemon is slightly cold when I pull it out and set it on the table. 
"Ummm knife please?" I ask. Mistress grumbles.
"Really? You gonna command me around now? Can't you like literally teleport? " 
I just look at Her all pleading like, exerting my power as Her floret with my most useful weapon. Being very cute. She groans before whipping a quick precise vine over to the knife block at the end of the table and retrieving a small paring knife. The perfect size for the little cuts I wanna make.
"Thank you Mistress~" I sing happily.
"Yeah whatever." She says, petting my head and 'sighing' happily when I push my head up into Her hand a little further. But eventually She removes the soft and lovely hand so I can focus. 
Pinching the handle between my pointer finger and thumb, right at the end before the blade, I push the knife in to the base and rotate the lemon around in my hand to split it in half. Once halved, I cut the halves into smaller rounds, and make intricate jagged cuts along the flesh of the lemon until…! Violà! A little rose cut from a lemon. Just thin enough to- a cup full of water is placed into my hand, I quickly bend down to kiss the vine that handed it to me before placing the sliced rose onto the surface of the water with my other hand. It floats on top perfectly. Nice.
"Beautiful work, darling." Mistress compliments and I giggle a little with joy. Mmmm, yes definitely not me with a praise kink or anything. Definitely not, I swear.
"Thank you Mistress! Say, what about you? Got anything cool you wanna show off before we open?" I ask, curious about what She's been practicing for Her side of this establishment.
"Actually, yeah I do. I figured out how to replicate the taste of a slow simmered bone broth without needing to spend like five days preparing it. Here, lemme get you some, stay put." She says, and I stay put as She squiggles toward the back of the room, where the kitchen door is located. It's really dark in there, and I honestly wonder why. Isn't cooking in the dark like, kinda hard? Wait, we both have night vision, wtf am I talking about. I switch the vision on, changing over to ultraviolet and radio wave filters. Ah, now I can see Her in there. I watch through the long opening in the wall that leads into the kitchen as She grabs out a small bowl and weaves over to one of like five pots that are sitting on a stovetop. There's a ladle resting on a hook that She grabs off and scoops up some tan broth with. Then She weaves on back over to me. "Here you go!" She says with a smile, handing me the warm cup of broth.
"Thank you." I say before giving it a little sip. "Oh holy fuck, this is fantastic!" I exclaim joyfully, almost spilling it. "It's so like! Porky! And creamy smooth or something! Wow, and perfectly salted. Wow… wow. You really graduated from baking huh." 
"Not quite! I still love baking. I actually made some puff pastry myself last night for little hand pies, meat and fruit both. But it's not baked yet, I'm waiting for orders first. It's better when it's fresh."
"I hear ya. Damn, we're so cool aren't we. If I recall correctly, before the compact arrived, bar food was pretty much universally known as mostly substandard and only really there to get you to buy more drinks with your meal, where the real money's at. But here we're totally focusing on both!"
She shakes Her head. "Hey that's not quite fair, there were plenty of bars that had really fantastic food too, I'm sure of it. Did you ever even go to one?" 
I shake my head no. "I never really went outside."
"Yeah, so you can't say for certain."
I shrug. "Yeah I guess you're right….. Anyways, uh, it's just about opening time. Are you ready?" 
She smiles down at me. "I think so, are you connected up properly to the projection system and the ship?"
"Uh I don't know? I haven't really tried yet? How do I use it?"
She looks at me. "How do you think?"
"Oh, right. Just think at it hard enough, use my tech sense or whatever." She gives me a leafy thumbs up, which is fucking hilarious to me. I love how weird and quirky She is, compared to all the other Affini. Stars, I'm so gay. 
I close my eyes and reach out into the world through the signal in my chest, I feel my consciousness bounce off a few things around me, but namely, the projection system hooked up into the ceiling. I'm pretty quick to figure out how to turn the thing on, which it does with a gentle vibration to my mind, but getting it to actually project something is different. Almost as though I have to dedicate a small part of my processing just to properly convey an image file through. But, soon enough, I get it to work.
When I open my eyes, I see a flat rendition of a photo of an orange, floating haphazardly in front of me. It seems 2D. "I don't think I did it right. How do I make it 3D?"
Mistress ruffles my silvery hair a bit. "Try thinking about it in a 3D way, you're thinking too flat when you conjure up the image in your head."
"Hmmnn" I hum audibly, giving a shot at imagining the orange in a 3D way, with depth and roundness and detail. Sure enough, it kinda widens out into a fully realistic version of a floating orange. "Yes! I think I got it!"
Mistress melts down a little further, enough to give me a kiss on my temple. "I'm so proud of you! Now, can you do sound? Same concept, but instead, try to form an audio file." 
With a bit of focus and creativity, a realistic looking mouth forms on the side of the orange, which opens to let out a shrill "hey!!" That's a bit too loud for my liking.
"Oh, I don't like that." I say, letting go of  my grasp on the projection system, which blinks out the orange. "That sound was terrible."
"Yeah." Mistress says. "Definitely an annoying orange.
"Five minutes till!" I call out, setting down the glass I was using for practice, and quickly washing it out in the sink in the bar table. 
"Can you check if there's anyone lined up outside? There should be cameras portside! Give a shot at connecting to them!" Mistress calls out from the kitchen room, accompanied by a clink clank of pots and pans or something, hell if I know.
"Kayyy!" I call back, reaching out once more and infiltrating the external equipment systems on the outside of the ship. It takes me a moment but I find the proper directory for what seems to be the visual feed of cameras. I connect into it just fine, replacing my vision with a single lens feed of the outside of the ship. There doesn't seem to be anyone at all honestly. "It doesn't look like there's-" I switch feeds, over to the side where the entrance is, still closed. "Oh shit! There's gotta be like thirty people or more out there, and at least four Affini! But it's hard to tell!" 
"Woah, really?" Mistress' voice says, suddenly appearing on my left. 
"Gah!" I jump, my attention falls away from the camera system suddenly as my vision comes back to my own two eyes. "Oh, hi. Holy hell, you startled me." I say to Aether, who's standing just to my left, holding a big tray. 
"Ya, I was using my angel hunting skills." She says smugly.
"Your what-the-fuck?"
"Angel hunting skills, Sera, angel hunting skills. And for the love of nature, please at least try to refrain from cursing so much while we're in business."
I stick out my tongue. "F@#&1ng make me… oh s+#¥. What the f£∆¢!?" Strange bleep sounds emanate from my mouth every time I try to curse. Aether laughs and bops me on the head with the underside of the tray she's holding.
"Thought you might say that. I wasn't kidding about it girly, I'm gonna leave that command-line on for the duration of the day now, silly pet. Now come on, get your uniform on, we don't have much time left!" Aether says, scampering on her two feet out of the room before coming back with the uniform set for me in one hand. She sets down the tray and quickly helps me out of my fuzzy floret pajamas and into the uniform, easily fitting my wings through the holes in the back. "Remember, teeth out while serving, gotta keep up appearances, yeah?" She says, showing me her own two sharp fangs. Wow, I want them in my neck. She raises an eyebrow. "Later. Guests now." 
"Right, okay." I bare my teeth and fluff out my wings all proper like, getting into my formal poses. "I'm ready."
"Great. Let's do this." She takes my hand and leads me over to the big doors at the entrance. We stand just in front of where the podium will be once opening is finished. I can feel Aether shaking a little bit in my hand. I quickly turn and pull her into a hug. Thirty seconds left.
"Are you nervous?" I whisper quietly into her ear.
"Yeah, a little." She whispers back.
I hug her a little tighter. "You can do this."
"Yeah, I know." She takes a deep breath, and gently pushes me away with a nod and sturdy look. Firm, confident, even if it's just for show.
I nod back, and the doors open as we link arms. The small crowd outside goes quiet and we start our little dance. 
A deep red digital mist simulation projects all around us, filling the bar room with blood red smoke that fades away at the threshold of the bar. We speak in unison.
"Welcome To Cyberia, We Will Be Your Hosts Eternal. Won't You Join Us In This Life's After-Party" our unison breaks, and Aether speaks.
"I am Aether."
"I am Seraphim."
“Our Offer Is For You. Oh, Won't You Join?" Our arms interlock a little tighter and we both bow our heads down together. 
There's a gentle uproar from the crowd outside, not too spectacular or anything but at least somebody whistles. We unlink our arms, and step away from each other, posting up at either side of the entranceway, holding out our hands in invitation. My wings fluff out as well, beckoning the group inside.
"Welcome, welcome. Find a resting place anywhere you wish, the bar and booths are open. Welcome welcome…" we repeat for every group and guest together as everyone files inside.
Some human-adjacent sophont with blueish skin and pointed ears stops at the entrance and looks at me. "You know, I love checking out all the new restaurants that open up round' here, but I definitely wasn't expecting such a spectacle! This is so hype!" They say to me with a great big smile, pumping their fists in the air.
I giggle happily, making a show of my sharp teeth. "Well I'm glad you think so, seat yourself inside and we'll be with you shortly~" They nod and walk inside over to one of the single seats at the bar. Once everyone is properly filed in, we only have maybe one or two tables that aren't filled up, though there seems to be a few other sophonts still wandering into the hanger bay at the back, looking around all confused like before spotting the ship and wandering over. I look to Aether with a big smile. "I think I'd call this a success!"
She nods and beams, looking as proud and joyful of us as… robotly possible. "I would sure say so! Now, would you please help me with taking the first round of orders before you go and girl the bar?"
"Haha, girl the bar? What the heck does that mean?" I make a point of not cursing. Aether giggles and walks over to me, pulling out a little booklet with a cross on the front and hands it to me.
"Well I'm definitely not gonna say that you'll man the bar now, am I?" She pokes me lightly in the side of the boob, making me beep before walking off to grab another booklet notepad and start taking orders. I'm a little embarrassed that she did that, but honestly really happy so I don't mind at all, and take up a spot at the first table I see, ready to take orders. 
"Hello again and welcome to Cyberia, I'm Seraphim, can I get you started with some drinks, or do you need a little more time with the menu?" I ask, bowing slightly at the edge of the table and tucking in my wings neatly. 
"Ummm yeah! Can I get a… blood-punch please?" A bubbly looking floret with curly yellow hair and a nice black collar asks me before looking over at the Affini on the other side of the table for approval. 
I crack open the little booklet to the first page and… I don't have a pen or anything so I just pretend to write with my finger, overlaying a projection of a pen into my hand, and ink on the page before looking back at the lovely couple. "Don't you know it's improper etiquette to order before your owner?" I say, winking at the floret with a smile. They flush and look a little embarrassed, but smile back.
"Oops, umm, sorry!" They say, leaning back in their chair. A teal blue, rubbery looking vine snakes across the table from the other seat and scratches the floret under their chin, making them whimper quietly. I turn to the offending Affini.
"And anything for you?" I ask with a smile.
"Yes, absolutely little one. The menu here says there are… special drinks for Affini guests, is this true?" They ask me, taking their vine away from their pet and returning it to their mass. I nod with a smile.
"Yep! Got some ‘cerisellum’ on tap just for situations like this. There's three different drink options so far." 
"Hummm… how lovely, little one. I'll take the Ambrosia Mule."
"Great! That will be just a little bit. Can I get your names?"
"I'm Keriuonus, Barrijum, sixth bloom, and this is my floret Zenna. We both use She and Her pronouns. Thank you, flowerling."
"Alrighty, thank you! I'll be right back with your drinks. It might take a bit though since there's only two servers, and we just got all these guests, I hope you don't mind?"
"Not at all, little one. Take your time." The Affini says with a smile before I 'jot everything down on the page' and wander over to the next table for the same routine. 
"Hey, welcome to Cyberia, I'll be your host, and my name is Seraphim. What can I get started for ya?" I ask the puppygirl looking sophont at the next table over. She has curly and fluffy brown hair with lighter highlights at the ends, these little black horns that I think are just AWESOME and a pair of brown puppy ears on top of her head, right behind the horns. There's a quiet 'fwap fwap' from under the table as her lazy tail bumps into the leg of the chair. She's also wearing a nice dark shirt with two little hearts sewn into it, and a kinda skirt kinda pants bottom with a cool floral design. "I love your fashion choices by the way" I say to her before she has a chance to respond.
"Thanks, I'm Zelda by the way! And…hummm…I think I'll have your Limoncello 'to the heart' cocktail and the… it says you have gumbo here, what kind of gumbo is it?"
I fold the booklet closed for a minute to mime out some crab hands, pulling a projection of various shellfish around me as a little visual aid. "Seafood!" But all the projections are flat because I can't do more than like two 3D things at once without getting confused.
She puts her hands up, and one of her ears flaps softly. "Fuck yeah, shellfish!" She says with this huge smile.
I put my hands up too "F@#& yeah shellfish!"  I quickly jot down all the notes on the next page before turning to see what seems to be a red haired digitized sophont with these absolutely awesome like antennas. Hell yeah, robot solidarity. 
"Hey there robo-buddy! Interested in anything on the menu? If you're not down for like regular food and stuff I got a really awesome thing to show ya."
They seem very shy, and a bit put off by my forward nature, so I make a mental note to tone it down a little bit. "Oh, um, what's the thing?" 
"Gooohoh, okay so this" I pull out a little flashdrive "is a little somethin somethin I cooked up myself, it's an executable program that mimics an alcohol buzz for the more metal among us. Originally I just made it for myself, but I put in a little dial feature so you can choose how RAMmered you wanna get. How's that sound?" I say, trying but failing a little at being less excited.
"Oh um, yeah I'll have that."
"Awesome, I'll be back with your orders in a while!"
Alright, onto the next table, just two more to go!! "Hello hello, I'm Seraphim and welcome to Cyberia, we're happy you chose this resting place, what can I get started for ya?" 
"Hello Seraphim." Says this cool looking girl with light lavender purple hair, golden glasses, these big brown eyes, and a cute lil sweater. "I think I'll start with just a glass of red wine please."
"For sure! Big glassa’ blood comin’ right up! It's good for the heart! Can I get anything started for your main course, or do you think you'll need more time?"
"No, I think I'm ready to order. Your freshly made squid ink pasta sounds wonderful, I think I'll have a plate of that."
"Heck yeah, house made by the awesome and wonderful chef at the back. Hey by the way, do you happen to be into spicy things?"
"Yeah, I actually do like spicy things… Why do you ask?"
"Well you see, I've been testing out this new recipe right, it's like these fried chips with some chili powder, salt, and dehydrated lime juice as a powder on em. I think they're really good but I haven't had anyone test them yet, think you'd be interested? I've been calling em tokis."
"Like the language?"
"YesLikeTheLanguage. Think you'll be interested?"
"Sure, I suppose. I don't see why not."
"That's really great and I'm so excited for you to try em! Can I get your name?"
"Oh, yes. My name is Cephei"
"Stars! That's a really cool name! It really reminds me of something!" I say with a sincere smile.
"Uh okay?" 
I turn around and head to the next table.
"Hello hello hello, that's three hellos to you! I'm Seraphim and I'll be your evil host for the night!" I greet the next table, bowing just slightly, and projecting a little blast of confetti around me that quickly disappears. This is the last table, let's go!
"Hello! I'm Cleo!" Says the girl on the left, whose gender is definitely cat related. Stark contrast to the puppy girl I waited on a few tables ago. She's got long brown hair with these red highlights around the edges, a nice red dress to match, and these awesome brown cat ears and tail. But she's got this look to her that I can't quite place, like I'd just suddenly explode if she looked at me hard enough or something. "Can I have a nutrient bar please? Just the one though, don't need any more than that." She says with a straight face, absolutely seriously.
"Hey! Bad kitty, you're not allowed to have those!" I put my hands on my hips in a mock chide. "But we've got extra nutrient ice cream! I'll put that down for you as dessert. Now, what can I really get for you." 
"Ugh, fine fine. Hmmm, yes I'll have the pasta Alfredo and… do you have lemonade?"
"We do, I'm actually really good at cutting lemons!"
"I'll have that then, thank you."
I feel suddenly compelled to say "No, thank you!" When she looks at me after ordering. "Oh, by the way, you have a really nice dress, it's sharp and it really goes with your eyes, which are really cool by the way. Definitely got a cold feeling to them, like you could command a whole planet with them or something! My eyes are cool too, not nearly as yours, but check it out." I lean forward a little bit and put some extra oomph into the glowing parts of my eyes, overlaying a nearly invisible slow flame projection just to give some extra cool factor. This seems to make the cat girl really uncomfortable though so I just back away. "I'll be back with your order soon, and your ice cream of course, can't forget that!" I pocket my book, turn on my heel, and briskly walk away. I feel awkward as shit, I seem to have said something weird and now I feel kinda bad but… well, can't change time I guess!  Finally time to get onto these orders!
The moment I turn around, I see Aether back into someone who had just stood up, and she starts to spill the order she's serving, the glass in her hand topples over, and I match the same rate of falling with a crouch and wa-pam! I warp crouched and my wing extended, catching the glass on the end of my wing like a badass. And hey, only a little bit spilled. The room goes completely silent, and at least one floret yelps at the sudden loud noise. I slowly rise to my feet, and Aether plucks the glass from my wing with a frown.
"Showoff." She says, grumpily.
"You know it." I say back.
"You scared the florets, you should apologize." She says like a command. My brain goes 'whimper' and I immediately stand back from the tables.
"Ummm… sorry for the loud sound everybody, it was just the crack of suddenly displaced air when I used my crushed space warp drive. I'll try not to do it again so suddenly everyone. Ummm I'm really sorry." I say, blushing and unbelievably embarrassed.
"Hold on just a moment, I thought it was very cool!" Says a very familiar voice at the back. I turn and grin, throwing my hands up into the air.
He throws his hands up in the air too, letting out a few stray flat leaves. "Seraphim!!!" I rush on over to him.
"Hey librarian, how are you doing!"
"I'm doing quite well, Seraphim. How are you doing, bartender?"
"I'm doing great but I have like a billion orders to get to so I'll be right back okay? Do you mind?"
"Get to it, little one~" They say, ushering me back to my work. Though another random patron stops me while I'm walking to tell me it was 'really awesome' when I did that 'teleport thingy' and 'cought that cup for that girl.' And I said thanks and that I might do it again later just to help with orders and they said 'cool!!'
"Chhk chhk!" I crack knuckles when I get back to the bar, ready to do this thang. I grab out my strangely biblical looking booklet and flip open the first page to see… it's blank. Because of course it's blank. Because I never had a F@#$&1ng pen to begin with!!!! But it's fine!! It's fine it's fine it's fine! I have recording software, I'll just play back each and every one of the orders in chronological order.
Okay first up… the floret with the red blood punch, got it! I punch in an assortment of commands for the compiler as I spin around and grab a thick bottomed mug. Behind it, I lean forward and grab off the bottle of daiquiri from the Terran liquor shelf. When I spin back around, I pull out the little box of stemless strawberries from the compiler and pop them into the mug. With another lean, I grab the muddler and get to crushing. Throw in some of that daquiri, some watermelon juice, a little bit of cherry juice for the color, cream of coconut, and lastly a tiny splash of coconut rum. There's one strawberry left, so I take my little paring knife and slice it up into little hearts, placing them on top, skewered with a toothpick. 
Up next is the ambrosia mule. For this it's gonna be basically the same as the Terran 'Moscow mule' even though I don't know what the hell a Moscow is. Or a mule. Is that some kinda horse? Anyways, out the compiler comes an atomically perfect can of ginger beer, which I open and pour into a silvery cup made of some sort of metal that I picked hanging off a hook where the cups are. Lime next, sliced in half, one half juiced, the other half cut into super thin lime wheels and last but not least, a bit of vodka as a solvent for the final ingredient. A little packet of somethin called 'cerisellum' which, when I pour it into the cup, it almost looks like little yeast particles. Tan little bits that quickly fizz and dissolve in the liquid when I mix it, changing the color of the drink from a mostly clear, slightly tan drink, to a strangely green liquid. Well, Aether liked it at least. Ok on to it! 
I grab up the two cups, making a calculated jump straight up and slightly over to land on the bar tables edge before another light hop, with my wings out as air brakes, off onto the other side. Didn't even spill a drop this time. I quickly slide the two drinks over to table one before scampering off to make the next ones.
Grabbing up a wine glass on my way back around the table, the Limoncello (to the heart) is actually really easy to make, just a cup of mostly Limoncello wine, cut with some straight lemon juice and seltzer water to tone down the harsh sweetness of the lemon wine, then stick a little piece of wood in it that looks like a stake. (Careful there, Seraphim, that's how you kill a vampire! Just kidding, I'm literally unkillable.) On my way over, I pull out the USB and place the two drinks down, then run all the way back to the bar table. This can't be efficient.
[How are those orders coming! We don't want anyone getting impatient!] The chat bubble pops up in my periphery.
{I'm goin I'm goin! Just a lot of orders at once, you know?}
[I know, just move quick!]
Turning up the speed to eleven, I yank down a hanging wine glass and fill it with some fantastic aged wine from some pre compact wine cellar some crazy terran corpo guy had before he got domesticated and gave up alcohol for good. Making sure to grab a little baggie of the spicy fried chips I realize… there's a lot of space in between me and that table. Oh fuck it. Just try not to spill!
"I'm gonna teleport again!" I yell across the room. One or two people look at me before I press forward through a tiny pinhole and spit out next to the edge of the table, startling the violet haired girl enough that her glasses fall into her lap. "Sorry!! Here's your wine and your chips, hope you like em, bye!" I spin, mark my exit point, and WHAM back into real-space behind the bar table, already grabbing a long glass, a lemon from the compiler, and the little thing of sugar to make some bomb fresh lemonade. A few squeezes later and I've got the last order done. Let's get it!
I make it to the table, pulling the same stunt of warp, set the glass down, apologize, and warp away before they have a moment to react. (I swear that shadow just moved though! Maybe I'm just imagining things.)
Back behind the table, there's a few guests that have lined up bar-side to give orders right to me. So I begin to work on that. And it's a long couple hours until I'm done. All the while, Raynor goes through the motions of ordering from Aether, getting his food and drink, eating it, and sitting back to watch me tirelessly mix drinks non stop for the next hour. But at least I'm efficient! (Did you know I can shake a cocktail shake really really fast. Only takes a second!) And then I, hair a bit frizzled, uniform a bit messy, and feathers totally ruffled, turn to the last person sitting at the table. "Can I get for you,,, what?" They look at me funny. Was it something I said?
"Uh, I already got my drink"
"Oh" I say as the weight of three entire moons lifts off my metal shoulders and I sink into a slump on the edge of the table.
The next time I look up, most of the patrons have given their thanks to Aether and filed out of the bar. A successful first shift! Definitely exciting though, that's for sure. But I think… even if every shift was like this… My cheeks perk up alongside my smile…
I think I could handle it. In fact, I had a lot of fun.
 [Dawww I'm so glad!] A soft, wiggly vine snakes out of the darkness of the kitchen window, all along until it reaches my head, in which it starts rapidly fluffing me up. 
I giggle and uselessly bat the vine away for a moment before relenting to the sweet sweet love and affection.
"Now that's just the cutest scene I've laid my eyes on all day, flower!" Raynor says, having sat down in one of the bigger chairs in front of me, without me noticing. What the hell! Do they have angel hunting skills too!?
"Hiiii ^-^" I wave rapidly at him. He waves back and laughs. It rumbles in low baritones in my chest and makes me feel kinda fuzzy.
"Hi there, little fighter girl. Did you enjoy your shift?"
I nod happily. "Yes, I did! Did you enjoy the service?" He smiles and nods back. "What have you been up to since we last met?" I ask, leaning forward on the table.
"Oh just helping my darling floret adjust to his new dynamic and all that. A fantastic little cat boy, a lovely addition to my library~" they say wistfully, wiggling a vine around for emphasis.
"Floret! OMG! You got a Floret?? That's awesome, what's his name?" I ask excitedly, my wings fluffing out a little bit in second hand joy.
"Callico Wellium, first floret. Cal for short. I would have loved to bring my darling here today but, ah, he's a bit nervous around big crowds. And a little hesitant to rely on class-E's even though I've told him pleeenty of times that they're perfectly safe and reliable. Alas, horrors and traumas of the Accord." He spits the last word. 
"Man, you're telling me. F&$# those B1+-#3$." 
He snorts, several orange flowers blooming, a few dropping some pollen on the table, which I quickly wipe up. "What was that!"
"What was what?"
"The beeping you did, it was adorable!" 
"Guuuuuhhhh" I groan. "Mistress says I curse too much in public, so she made it so I can't anymore."
"Not quite!" Aether says, bumping up next to me and setting down an empty tray on the table. "If I took it away completely, you'd be all messed up, so I allowed you to get the point across while not upsetting anyone."
I blush a little, a faint blue dotting my cheeks. "Well thanks, I guess."
"Hey, no attitude, missy!" She says, batting my arm playfully.
"Hey! I almost beat you in a fight, I get to be a little bratty!"
"But you didn't~" she says, booping me on the nose with a finger before giggling and twirling away. Down into the dark kitchen, out of sight and shortly replaced with… Mistress! Who sweeps me off my feet like I weigh nothing, and cradles me into Her arms. I instinctively lay my head down on Her arm. I receive (1) pat on the head for being a docile pet.
{Just one? 🥺} 
I receive another pat on the head, and a blissful rub across my cheek.
"Oh you two just have the most adorable little dynamic. I love it so much!" Raynor comments, watching us do our thing like a Terran would watch a kitten. "How has everything been for the both of you?"
"Good, the test run today went wonderfully I think. A little bit hectic, a little bit chaotic, but all's well. We'll be packing up to leave for Violacase tomorrow afternoon." Mistress says, taking the conversational initiative and letting me rest.
"Ahhh, right." Raynor says. "When's the marriage, when should I plan on arriving? Do you mind if I bring my Floret?"
"Of course, all pets allowed. Anyone who wants to join us for the wedding is perfectly allowed~. We'll just need a week or so beforehand to finish up what we're really coming there for."
Raynor nods solemnly. "Mmnh… so, two weeks from now?"
"Hmmm…" Mistress thinks for a moment. "How about three? Meet us on the 45th of the calendar?"
"Absolutely. Works for me."
"Great to hear it, really. We're so glad you'll be attending. Now, show us photos of your new pet!" Mistress says, curling an enthusiastic few vines through Raynor's hand. 
"I'd be honored to."

(End Of Page Twenty Six.)

Major shoutout to Zelda, Mu, and Exhausted Ambition for letting me gay all over them and put them/their characters in the story. I love y'all so much (sobs) [But its a happy sob, a good sob]

Musical reference is of Trendy, by drain gang.

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