The Bite Before Christmas (Open RP)

Gemini was busy reading in her apartment when she was startled was by an unusual clatter downstairs. There hadn't been any noise down there for months since the restaurant below closed. She glanced at the calendar on the wall to double check that it was only the 22nd, “Well, it can't be Santa.”

 

Of course she had to investigate. Since the restaurant closed she had been using the outside staircase on the side of the building to get down. The Agent shivered s bit, since she had rushed outside in her casual t-shirt with no jacket.

 

Gemini wiped some fog of the the closed restaurant front window and peered inside. What she saw looked like the dinner spread in a Norman Roverwell painting. The main course wasn't  on the table yet but plates and silverware was set on a wine red tablecloth and white lace placemats. There was serving bowls of cold sides already on the table. There was a heaping bowls of ambrosia salad, potato salad, and regular salad.

 

Gemini was clearly bewildered as to what was going on until she saw a familiar face bring a large orange jello mold to the table. She rushed over to the front door to find it open.

 

“Joaquin! What the hell!?” she exclaimed in a cheerful tone, happy to see her old coworker. She found the restaurant to be warm with the smell of cooking food and a strong waft of hot chocolate.

 

“Ha, I told Tablita you’d hear us before we could surprise you,” the brown male beagle said as he placed the jello mold on the table. He was dressed like the stereotypical Dad during a ‘fancy’ holiday. He had navy suit pants and a dark green tie with a light mint shirt. He sported a ‘I might soon be having a midlife crisis’ ponytail, “I'm actually surprised it took you this long. Don't tell me you were already asleep. SHUSH must be running you ragged, huh?”

 

“Hardly. I wish they would,” Gemini replied as she walked up to give Joaquin a short hug. He returned a hearty pat on the back like she was one of his own kids. She heard more noises from the kitchen, “I take it the whole fam is here?”

 

“Naw. The eldest is back in Arizona with protectorate duty. We're actually on our way up to see Yamka and Waki on the holiday. They both were accepted to the ranger job in Canada earlier this year.”

 

“Oh wow! That's so cool. I know they were working has towards that. I guess that means the three other trouble makers are here,” Gemini then looked a bit sheepish, “Sorry I haven't been keeping good contact. I will after the new year!”

 

“Hey, don't worry about it. We know you are busy. Part of the reason we're here is because Tablita felt you were going to be lonely during the holidays, based on that e-mail you sent asking for some of your recipes,” chuckled the beagle.

 

“Well. Okay,” Gemini was a little surprised by that, “Sorry if a bled too much emotion in asking how she made that bread with the creamed corn in it.”

 

“It's  fine. It's fine,” Joaquin still smiled. A gray female wolf stepped out of the back kitchen and called out. She was wearing a mint green dress that matched Joaquin’s shirt and wore it with a dark green wide belt.

 

“Jo- Do you know where Junior went? He was supposed to help with the- oh you're here! Well, now you have to help with your own surprise,” Tablita let out a short nasaled laugh.

 

“I don’t know about that,” Gemini started in a joking tone, “I'm not sure this place is up to code. We're not positive why it closed. I hope no one notices its temporarily reopened.”

 

“I highly doubt anyone will. They're busy dealing with real criminals, yes?” the wolf replied, “Now, why don't you let your friends know they can come over for dinner tonight. You already have a little gaggle of friends by now, right?”

 

“Well, kinda. Yeah,” Gemini answered slightly unsure. She was picking up Tablita’s mothering vibe. The wolf mom's style was demanding but honestly meaning well.

 

“Go ahead and ask them over before I show you how I make that cream corn bread,” Tablita smiled as she walked up to Gemma, giving her a tight hug, “You're going to have such a good time. And you deserve it. It has been you you that's been emailing me, right?”

 

“Yeah… so uh, let me text some if my friends and see if they can come,” Gemini said as she pulled out her phone. She sent a few quick texts to co-workers to and friends she had already fought beside in the city. It was just an average text saying friends of hers were in town and they were having a huge dinner if anyone wanted to come. The address of the restaurant was attached.

 

((Anyone who has had contact with Gemini is invited. I know there is ongoing posts not finished with her and other characters but let's ignore any details that may happen in those since we don't know the conclusions of those. Characters can be invited by other characters second handedly as well. If a plot happens just know that characters that drink the hot cocoa are gonna be a part of the problem. Ones that don't drink it can help solve the problem- heh. Have fun!))

    • Sans the Skeleduck
      Sans the Skeleduck

      Almost just a few seconds after she sent the text, there was a flurry of excited knocking on the door. When answered, a huge mass of wet, bloody wiggling noodles greeted them.

      THE FLYING SPAGHETTI MONSTER. IT'S HERE. TAKE YOUR CHILDREN, TAKE YOUR CHILDREN AMD RUN- oh there was someone standing behind it. Wow that was a lot of Transylvanian spaghetti.

      "THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR INVITING US, GEMINI!!" 

      • Agent Gemini
        Agent Gemini

        Gemini was unfazed by the unusual spaghetti. The confused look on her face was concerning something else, “Wha- How did you get here so fast? Do you live nearby here? I can take your dish to the table for you. ”

         

        She stepped aside to let Papyrus come in. Joaquin smiled came over to the other side of the table to greet the newcomer, “Hello there! I'm Joaquin. Go ahead and make yourself at home. Can I get you anything to drink? We have hot cider and hot cocoa.”

        • DarkwingPsycho
          DarkwingPsycho

          It wasn't long before another knock sounded at the door, and Jacob Mallard stood there, dressed formally but with a charismatic smile on his aged face.  "Hello Miss Gemma.  A pleasure to see you again.  I was in the area when I received your gracious invitation."

          • Sans the Skeleduck
            Sans the Skeleduck

            "THANK YOU, BUT I CAN MANAGE!! I WAS ABOUT TO SEND YOU AN INVITE MYSELF!" Papyrus grinned as he walked in with the mass of spaghetti. "IT WAS... GETTING A BIT LONELY. THIS IS OUR FIRST AMERICAN CHRISTMAS! ONCE I GOT YOUR TEXT, I GRABBED SANS, MY SPAGHETTI, AND TELEPORTED!" 

            Sans yawned and scratched his neckbone as he walked in. It was obvioys he was just roused from sleep. He had on an ugly Christmas sweater that said "Up To Snow Good" but aside from that, he looked the same, with his black shorts and pink fuzzy slippers. 

            "COCOA DOUNDS GREAT! WE'LL HAVE ONE EACH!" Papyrus smiled. "I'M PAPYRUS, AND THIS IS MY BROTHER SANS! NICE TO MEET YOU MISS JOAQUIN! MERRY CHRISTMAS!" 

            Sans grinned and waved. "hey." 

            When another visitor arrived, Papyrus got up to greet the newcomer, after Gemini answered first. "HELLO, NEW FRIEND! I AM PAPYRUS! NICE TO MEET YOU!" 

            "ooh, you're here too? now it feels like friday," Sans remarked with a wink at Jacob. 

            "SANS, DON'T BE SILLY, IT'S SATURDAY!" 

            • Agent Gemini
              Agent Gemini

              Gemini gave a small chuckle at Papyrus.

               

              “Well, it's technically our first X-Mas in St. Canard. I'm glad you two could join us. Ah yeah- Us,” she gave both the skeleton bros a smile, “I'll go get my sister in a moment. She'll probably take her time getting ready.”

               

              “Alright. I'll go grab two hot cocoas. My son is supposed to be helping serving drinks but you know teenagers. The rest of dinner should be done soon,” Joaquin replied to the the skeletons as he got up to go to the kitchen.

               

              Tablita came out of the kitchen at around the same time Joaquin entered. She had a large basket of warm bread rolls with a cloth on top to keep in the warmth. A little canine child followed Tablita with her own little smaller bowl of rolls.

               

              “Oh! Hello Jacob!” Gemini greeted him a bit surprised he was there. She had invited almost everyone in her phone without a second thought. There was a mix of normals and others on that phone. Though, when Sans knew him she let out a sigh in relief, “Ah! You know each other.  From work? I guess I need to get out of my office more often.”

              • DarkwingPsycho
                DarkwingPsycho

                He stepped inside and took off his overcoat, then hung it on the wall.  "Ah, hello Papyrus," he said with an amicable smile.

                The agent did not seem to be in the mood for jokes and ignored Sans' as he looked back at Gemini.  "Yes, he...doesn't he work in your division?  You definitely should endeavor to survey the rest of SHUSH should you find an opportunity."  He paused, then added, "I apologize I brought nothing with me for the festivities."

                • Sans the Skeleduck
                  Sans the Skeleduck

                  "yeah, it's a small office, we speak sometimes, although we had fun giving each other demonstrations on our powers a while ago," Sans affirmed for Gemini with a wink. "ooh, faustina's here? i got some puns i wanna share." 

                  "I'D RATHER YOU DIDN'T," Papyrus grumbled, rolling his eyes. Then, reminded of something, he snapped his fingers and out of the air he pulled... a solid gold bone, decorated with a nice red ribbon in the middle. And presented it to Gemini. 

                  "THIS ISN'T REALLY A CHRISTMAS PRESENT, BUT DAD ALWAYS SPOKE OF AN ANCIENT SKELETON TRADITION OF GIFTING GOLDEN BONES WHENEVER YOU VISIT A FRIEND'S HOUSE, AND I REALLY WANTED TO DO IT. I HOPE YOU LIKE YOUR NOT-CHRISTMAS-PRESENT!" 

                  Seeing Tablita, he waved again happily and started to enthusiastically introduce himself again. 

                  • Agent Gemini
                    Agent Gemini

                    “Yes! He does. I meant that I'm stuck at my desk most the time. Haven't been assigned any field work yet. So, just focused on organizing all the files. And going through boxes of artifacts just stored there and writing details for them all. Some really interesting stuff,” Gemini explained to Jacob, “You didn't need to bring anything. We're going to have plenty of food as it is.”

                     

                    “Our apartment is right above here. I'll get my sis in a minute. I'm sure she'll have some jokes to share too,” Gemini returned a chuckle to Sans. She then looked surprised at Papyrus’ sudden gift. She looked a little perplexed like she was taking a second to tell if it was real gold or not, “Oh! Thank you! You didn't have to… but thank you. I really appreciate it…”

                     

                    The black haired duck then headed up some stairs inside the restaurant. She pulled her keys out from her pocket while holding the gold bone on the other.

                     

                    Tablita smiled at the enthusiastic Papyrus that greeted her. The young child following her giggled.

                     

                    Joaquin came out of the kitchen carrying two hot cocoas to hand off to the skeletons. A canine teenager that looked like a perfect combination of Joaquin and Tabita peaked out from the kitchen.

                     

                    “Comon Junior, help out. Ask everyone what drink they'll like,” Joaquin was trying to encourage the teen to come out.

                    • DarkwingPsycho
                      DarkwingPsycho

                      "Ah, paperwork.  I'm sorry you're being put through such torture.  Anything in particular that you've found so interesting in all of the artifacts?" he asked amicably.

                      He watched Gemini disappear up the staircase, then listened carefully while the others talked.  So many new names and faces.  Approaching the only woman left in the area, he extended a polite hand and flashed her a charming smile.  "Mallard.  Jacob Mallard.  Please to meet you, miss...?"

                      • Sans the Skeleduck
                        Sans the Skeleduck

                        It took Papyrus a second to register the child next to Tablita. What followed next was a long gasp of excitement as Papyrus pressed his gloved hands to his cheeks, his eyes literally glowing with a soft green light. A happy colour in skeletons. 

                        "SANS!!" 

                        "what?" 

                        "SANS, LOOK!!" 

                        "hmm?" Sans propped himself up on the sofa higher to get a better look. 

                        "SANS, IT'S A TINY HUMAN!!" The tall skeleton got down on his knees to look at the child properly. "JUST LIKE OUR NEIGHBOUR! MAY I HOLD THEM, PLEASE?" he gazed at Tablita with puppy-dog eyes, completely ignoring the cocoa in favour of the "tiny human". 

                        "heya," Sans grinned at the child and waved. Seeing the cocoa, he brightened and thanked Joaquin. "say, you don't happen to have any ketchup, do you?" 

                        • Agent Gemini
                          Agent Gemini

                          “I guess the most interesting things are the ones I still haven't been to identify yet. There is this amulet thats this large pink teardrop stone with swirly silver setting. Seems to be a protection from curses but may do more. Haven't been able to figure out the origin though. I'm leaning towards fae magic, which is a whole can of worms. I can't safely test its abilities if its faeish,” Gemini explained to Jacob. She gave a little shrug, “I mean, I know places I could take it to test it but I don't think they'd let me check it out of the SHUSH building.”

                           

                          Gemini then disappeared upstairs to get her sister. A bit of clattering was heard but nothing to cause concern.

                           

                          Tablita gave Jacob a smile in return. The wolf took his hand to shake it, “Mrs. Guerrero.  You can call me Tablita. Thank you so much for coming. Would you like something to drink? We have hot chocolate and apple cider, among other things.”

                           

                          The teen canine-wolf hybrid that originally had been hiding out in the kitchen came out with a tray carrying several mugs. When he put the tray down on the table it was clearly all hot chocolate.

                           

                          “Thank you sweetheart, but not everyone is going to want hot cocoa,” Tablita replied to the teen. He looked like the average little rebel with a black hoodie and large headphones resting around his neck. Some music could be heard currently playing out of them, “and this is Hania. And my little shadow here is Una.”

                           

                          “I prefer Junior now,” the teen muttered.

                           

                          Una was amused at the skeleton's sudden delight in her being there. She let out another giggle.

                           

                          “Sorry dear! It's just you and all your siblings have special meaning to your names and your my last little boy left at the house since Toho got his ranger job,” Tablita said to Junior while straightening out his sweatshirt hood so it wasn't a jumbled mess on his back. She then gave his cheek a pinch. The teen groaned but put up with the grooming.

                           

                          The wolf mother then gave Papyrus her attention. None of this family seemed surprised the the presence of skeletons. Though, since one of them formally worked with Gemini it was easy to assume they had been around paranormal things as well, “Well, that will be up yo my little Una. She's been in a very social mood. We're glad she's been liking her first long car trip.

                           

                          The canine child giggled at Sans and waved back. She then reached up her arms in a motion of wanting to be picked up by Papyrus.

                           

                          Joaquin nodded at Sans’ request, “I'll go grab a bottle. But word to the wise, my wife gets a little insulted if you put it on the potatoes she already added her own flavorings to when making.”

                           

                          “I can get it!” Junior volunteered in an obvious attempted to go back hiding in the kitchen at least for a moment.

                          • DarkwingPsycho
                            DarkwingPsycho

                            Jacob nodded at Tablita.  "Miss Tablita.  Thank you for having me, cocoa is fine."

                            He took one of the mugs and stuck out his hand toward the teen as well.  "Nice to meet you, Junior," he said.  "What grade are you in?"

                            He smiled out of the corner of his eyes at Una.  He might not admit it outwardly, but Jacob was very fond of children.

                            • Sans the Skeleduck
                              Sans the Skeleduck

                              Happy, Papyrus lifted Una in his arms gently and nuzzled her with his bony cheek, then swung her to and fro gently. So adorable! She was so small and fluffy. He felt like a big brother! 

                              Of course, with Sans... feeling that way wasn't very hard. Even if they were twins. 

                              "i won't," Sans promised Joaquin. "i'm putting it in my cocoa." 

                              "SANS! WHAT DID I TELL YOU ABOUT YOUR EATING HABITS??" 

                              • Agent Gemini
                                Agent Gemini

                                “You're welcome,” Tablita replied to Jacob, “Dinner will be out shortly.”

                                 

                                “Ninth grade…,” Junior muttered like the average disgruntled young teen. He took one of the mugs of hot cocoa off the tray he brought and put it in front of Jacob, “You know, the worst time, I've been told.”

                                 

                                Una giggled, amused by Papyrus. The child didn't seem to have any fear of the skeleton, technically a monster. She reacted as though he was any normal person. Una giggled more at Papyrus complaining at Sans.  

                                 

                                “That's new,” Joaquin gave a shrug to Sans’ request for ketchup for hot cocoa. He had seen people eat much stranger things so he wasn't going to judge.

                                 

                                “Oh, right,” Junior scurried away to the kitchen to get the ketchup he offered to get.

                                 

                                Gemma came back down the stairs she had disappeared up moments ago. Her hair looked a bit of a mess, which she did her best to pat down unruly curves, “So uh, Faustina will be down in a second. She has to put her face on, or whatnot.”

                                • DarkwingPsycho
                                  DarkwingPsycho

                                  Jacob shrugged.  "Oh, I don't know.  My ninth grade experience was pretty memorable, in a good way.  Although perhaps those aren't the best memories to be reminiscing about with your parents present."  He grinned boyishly.  He waited until no one was looking and poured a shot of bourbon into his cocoa from the flask he carried in his pocket.

                                  "Sounds good," he commented to Gemma.  "I didn't realize you had a sister.  Is she older or younger?"

                                  • Sans the Skeleduck
                                    Sans the Skeleduck

                                    "OH, OKAY! I HOPE IT'S HER HAPPY FACE!" Papyrus smiled at Gemini and gently put Una down. "HANG ON, YOUR HAIR IS A MESS! LET ME FIX THAT!" 

                                    He drew up a bone-shaped comb and very helpfully combed away the tangles for Gemini. Then he gave her the entire comb. 

                                    Sans straightened his hoodie and glanced up the stairs eagerly, memes and puns at the ready. 

                                    • Agent Gemini
                                      Agent Gemini

                                      “Twin actually,” Gemma went to answer Jacob, “fractional though. I mean, we have the same eyes and kinda same bill. I'm a teeny bit taller…”

                                       

                                      Una giggled as Papyrus combed Gemma's hair. Gemma herself seemed a little flustered by the action but was not upset. Her beak looked a little flushed as she took the comb Papyrus handed to her, “T-thank you.”

                                       

                                      Junior came out of the the restaurant’s kitchen with the ketchup for San's. He quickly handed it over before going back to Jacob, “So, were you a jock in high school? I'm only good at baseball and thats not getting any attention.”

                                       

                                      Tablita was already back in the kitchen again and called Joaquin for help, “Ah the roast is done. I better go help with that. Gemma, Catori is here too. She's actually been wanting to pick your brain about big city life. She's been thinking about moving out to one. Just so you know.”

                                       

                                      Gemma gave a nod acknowledging what Joaquin said before he disappeared into the kitchen. There was a bit of clatter upstairs. It sounded like the normal sound of someone in an above apartment quickly walking around. Gemma's sister was obviously still getting ready.

                                      • DarkwingPsycho
                                        DarkwingPsycho

                                        Jacob raised his brows, intrigued.  A fractional twin?  Was that different than fraternal?  He was very interested to find out.

                                        He smiled when Junior returned.  "A jock?  Nah, I did my own thing, mostly, although I guess you could say I was somewhat popular."  That was downplaying it dramatically.  "I ran track and got pretty good, but not good enough for a scholarship.  I suppose I spent too much time dating and partying.  It was fun, though.  The bonfires, especially."  He eyed Junior out of the corner of his eye.  "Whose attention is it that you want?"

                                        • Sans the Skeleduck
                                          Sans the Skeleduck

                                          "WOULD YOU LIKE A COMB TOO, TINY HUMAN?" he asked Una. "WATCH!" 

                                          He pinched his fingers in the air and drew it down, revealing another bone-comb, this time smaller and child sized. He then handed it to her with a smile. 

                                          "hey, paps, show her your familiar," Sans suddenly urged with a grin, after thanking Junior for the ketchup and squeezing it into his cocoa. "she'll love it. and he'd enjoy the attention." 

                                          "WH-WHAT?" Papyrus spluttered and blushed. "I'M NOT- IT'S TOO SCARY FOR HUMANS!" 

                                          "i donno, gemini and faustina already saw, and they don't mind." 

                                          "YOU SHOW THEM YOURS THEN!" 

                                          "it was just a suggestion," Sans chuckled, sipping the ketchup-contaminated cocoa. 

                                          • Agent Gemini
                                            Agent Gemini

                                            “I donno. There's this girl I was in band with but.. we live in a really small town so she's known me since we were kids,” Junior didn't see the irony that, since he was technically still a kid, “She knows I was a huge dork back then. So I donno. I mean, we used to talk a lot but….”

                                             

                                            Una was memorized by the appearing bone comb and took it when it was handed to her. She added with an adorable lisp, “Thax!”

                                             

                                            “Ah, if you show your familiars off I'd suggest outside in the back. After dinner,” Gemma interjected. She then put the comb Papyrus had given her shirt pocket. Una's bounced excitedly in place at the mention of familiars.

                                             

                                            “Oh oh like Ant Feastina's birb?” Una asked excitedly.

                                             

                                            “Kinda. Different familiars do different jobs. Porkrind’s  focus is life support,” Gemma explained to the child. She then looked up to Papyrus to confirm, “Yours and Sans’ are combat focused, right?”

                                             

                                            Faustina came down the stairs and looked pleased at the quite a few familiar faces down in the previously abandoned restaurant. She looked like how Gemma described along with having long blonde hair. Faustina was dressed in a 1990’s style Christmas dress. Her sleeves were short but poofy round shape with a green, red, and black plaid pattern. The skirt of her dress shared the same pattern while the torso was a solid dark green velvet. She had a gold sash around her waist tied in a bow in the back.

                                             

                                            Faustina gave a wider smile at seeing Sans before looking back to the group as a whole to give a cheerful greeting, “Hello everyone! So when are we going to eat all this grub?”

                                            • DarkwingPsycho
                                              DarkwingPsycho

                                              "But what?" Jacob prompted gently.

                                              His attention was momentarily diverted as the sister made her appearance.  She was lovely.

                                              At her question, he chuckled.  "I was wondering the same thing, myself."