seven rotations

So I’ve been working on dairy farms for the past six years or so, and whenever someone asks me about my worst experience, I always think of this.

About three years ago, I worked for a really great guy named David. Pay was good, cows were excellent, and the farm was well set up. Except for this one paddock.

I still don’t know what it was about paddock No. 47, but I’d get the worst case of heeby-jeebies (that’s the best way I can describe it) every time I went in there. Only in the dark, though, being in there in the light wasn’t a problem.

It’d start off with a simple shiver, and my brain telling me, “something isn’t right here.” Usually just after I’d opened the gate and patted the first few cows heading up to the dairy. Riding into the paddock, I’d get this feeling of unspeakable dread, and the further I got, the worse it would get.

Usually, I ended up freaking out and racing around the straggling cows, moving them at a faster pace than their regular ‘we’ll get there in our own damn time human’ waddle.

I still don’t know what caused it. That paddock was past of a seven-week pasture rotation for eight months of the year so I wasn’t in there very often. But I still remember that feeling of wrongness, and I haven’t felt anything like it since.

Alright, holnnes, you win.

Be kind, because I wrote this at 1am (swiftly approaching 2am).


“Before you, the white keys represent harmonic pitches, the black being a half step above or below the pitch before or after…” Sherlock rattled on to the four year old perched on his knee, Charlotte dutifully trying to follow along with her small hands perched on top of her uncle’s much larger ones. Her small brow furrowed as she tried to remember all the steps of playing the E Flat major scale, crinkling her nose when she missed the A flat and pouting at the piano. Sherlock’s laugh rumbled behind her and he guided her hands along the keys again, reciting them off one by one, which Lottie echoed.

“I’m not very good yet, Uncle Sherluck.” Lottie pouted, huffing while trying to plunk through the scale once more. 

“Nonsense, you’re doing just fine Charlotte.”

“Lottie, Uncle Sherluck.” She corrected with a giggle as his knee bounced them through the scale. He ruffled her strawberry blonde hair, drawing her just a little bit closer to his chest.

“Bless you.”

“Music lesson going okay there, Sherlock?” Mary asked from her post at the door frame, a teasing grin playing at her lips as the detective’s ears tinged pink.

“Quite. She’s a fast learner.” He retorted as he rose from the piano bench, Lottie scrambling to her mother’s side.

“Uncle Sherluck taught me hows to do the Eflet scale.”

“How to do the E flat scale.” Sherlock corrected gently, adjusting his jacket. Lottie nodded happily before turning back to her mother with a solemn expression.

“How to do the eflet scale.” She echoed, working each word slowly glancing back to her uncle who nodded encouragingly. 

“Did he now? Well, you best give him a hug good-bye before we head home, shouldn’t you? He and your father might have a case tomorrow, so you never know when the next one will be.” Mary beamed and Charlotte needed no further prodding to launch herself on to Sherlock’s long legs.

“G'bye, Uncle! Catch the baddies tomorrow!" Charlotte said, squeezing his leg tightly as he ruffled her hair again and sent them out the door.

Lottie didn't always have music lessons with Uncle Sherlock. Sometimes he gave her beginner chemist lessons with Auntie Molly, who always smiled prettily when she was called Auntie Molly and it seemed to please Uncle Sherlock too.

"Now, see, what we have here Lottie is a chemical reaction.” Auntie Molly explained as she mixed the vinegar slowly into the dry ingredients. “Do you remember that baking soda we added in earlier? Well, it reacts with the vinegar to create air into the cake.”

“To make it fluffy?” She asked excitedly, standing on her tiptoes of the step stool and peering into the bowl.

“Exactly right, Lottie.” Sherlock replied, striding into the kitchen with the baking pans that he undoubtedly acquired from Nana Hudson downstairs. 

After pouring in the batter, Molly set the timer and Sherlock gathered the dishes, swiping a taste of the batter.

“Uncle Sherluck, no!” Lottie gasped in horror. “You could get salmo-salmoniel.” She huffed and stopped her foot. “You shouldn’t eat raw egg, Daddy said so.”

“Lottie, the average person runs into one salmonella contaminated egg every sixty years.”

“And aren’t you always saying you’re above average?” Molly laughed as he froze, giving her a withered look before dropping the dishes in the sink and ridding himself of the batter.

“Very well, I see your point, Lottie.”

“No! I’ve got it!" Charlotte insisted, filling the pan with the batter that she’d mixed together herself. "I’ve done it before, daddy! I promise!” John watched on with an amused grin as Charlotte focused scraping out the batter, giving an impressed hum when most of it actually ended up in the pan instead of on the floor.

“See! I told you Uncle Sherluck was giving me chemistry lessons!” She grinned, wiggling one of her loose teeth. “Daddy, will you put this in the oven.”

He opened the door. “Middle rack.”

Placed it on the middle rack. “Center it, it needs to be centered, Daddy.”

Moved it ever so slightly to the right. “Okay, now we set the timer for-” Lottie checked the recipe card Molly had given her. “Seven and a half minutes, rotate the cake, and continue to bake for another seven and a half.”

“Rotate the cake?” John asked, giving her a disbelieving look and gazing at the card she held out to him. “And why is that?”

“So it cooks evenly! Even in con-” Lottie muttered the word to herself before trying again. “Even in convection ovens, sometimes the fan doesn’t move the air right.”

John raised his eyebrows, but didn’t question it further, only rotating the pan when the little timer went off and then bringing it out of the oven when the final timer sounded.

“Now we wait for it to cool.” He said, placing the pan on the stove top.

“Do we have to?” Lottie sighed dramatically and pulled herself into one of the tall kitchen chairs.

“Yes, and I swear, you’re getting worse than your uncle.” John teased, tickling this sides of her stomach and keeping her occupied until the cake had cooled completely. 

As soon has he’d removed it from the pan and placed the icing bags in her hands, John had been kicked out of his kitchen.

“Er, John, what are you-?” Mary made a motion to the kitchen.

“She’s frosting. I was kicked out of my own kitchen by my four year old daughter.” John huffed a little but gave her a wink “Get’s that from you." 

"Uh-huh, sure she does.” Mary grinned, dropping a kiss on his cheek before entering the battle field. “What have you got there, Lottie?”

“I’m makin’ uncle Sherluck’s birthday cake!” Charlotte responded, her brow deeply knit in concentration as she piped out her letters.

“H-H-haa-happy,” She paused, licking her lips. “B-bi-r-bir…” Another pause.“B-I-R-F-day.” She finished joyously and added a hand full of purple sprinkles to the top of the cake. “Think he’ll like it? I- It is chemistry.”

“Oh sweets, you know he’ll love it.”

One short cab ride, and a flight of stairs later, Sherlock was prying the lid off of the little pink and flowered tin. He smiled fondly as the hastily decorated cake with mismatched blue and red frosting and purple sprinkles. 

“I made it all by myself!” Charlotte boasted with a grin. “Well, daddy put it in the over and stuff. Just like you an’ auntie Molly told me to.” She rotated the tin and bounced nervously on his knee. “A-and I rotated the cake to make sure the air stuff was good. Do you like it?” Her green eyes sparkled with glee.

“O-” Sherlock’s voice cracked a little as he hugged her close. “Of course, Lottie. It is the most beautiful cake I’ve ever been given. Thank you.”

tonkola  asked:


This is all human cause there are children involved.

When Rebekah had come to him at sixteen, pregnant and kicked out of the family home, Klaus had known there wasn’t much else for him to do but step up and become the brother that she needed. He had made it clear though that he expected her to finish school, to be an active parent and to make sure that her priorities were straight once she had told him she wanted to keep the baby. It wasn’t just to prove to their parents that they could make it just fine out in the world without them but the giant fuck you that the two of them being successful in business and family life was something neither of the siblings could pass up.

Rebekah had graduated high school and was currently in her second year of community college. Usually she was the one who participated in Luke’s preschool functions but it was finals week and there was no way she could make it to the annual field day that the school was having. Thankfully all Klaus had to do was ensure Luke had the required towel and was sufficiently dressed and sunscreened when he dropped him off in the morning and then pick him back up three hours later when the event was over. THAT he could do. He had no plans to stay and be a volunteer, Rebekah had done enough of that over the school year that they weren’t going to be expecting him to.

Which was why he showed up in his business attire with Luke in tow at the front of the school with the other ninety or so parents and children waiting to be signed in for the day. It was double the usual amount of children being there at the time but Klaus was impressed with the way that the teachers and aides seemed to be checking to make sure kids had everything they needed, got the kids signed in, put the volunteers to work and had the kids parcelled into groups for the day. It went far smoother than anything he remembered from his school days or even business functions he’d attended.

“Ms. Caroline!” Luke called out, waving frantically at someone and Klaus turned his attention toward where his nephew was looking. 

Thank god he was wearing sunglasses because there was no way he could stop himself from looking the young woman over who was currently bent down, adding some more water bottles into a cooler. It had to be illegal to wear those shorts with those legs because Klaus couldn’t seem to stop staring at them until she turned around at the mention of her name and he noted the fact that she was wearing one of the school’s t-shirts designating her as either one of the teachers or assistants. Was it his fault that she seemed to fill that out really well too?

“Hi Luke,” Caroline greeted with a bright smile and then a hug as the little boy practically crashed into her arms. “You must be the infamous uncle that we’re always hearing about.”

“Klaus Mikaelson.” He offered his hand, wanting nothing more than to be able to touch her, to feel her skin and considering the situation they were currently in a handshake was going to have to do. For the moment anyway.

“Caroline Forbes. Luke’s teacher.” Klaus didn’t think he had ever seen someone smile quite like she did before though the one she had offered him was nothing like the one she had directed toward his nephew. The genuineness wasn’t quite there that time, it was more polite than anything, and he felt himself wanting to earn one of the other ones. “I hope Rebekah isn’t stressing too much. I remember finals week but she’s been working hard all year. She’s got this.”

“It’s her last one today but I am sure she’ll be delighted to hear that you’ve said that.” Klaus followed her over to the clipboard sign in, Luke skipping at his side.

“She’ll do great. You just need to sign him in here,” Caroline handed him the board and took Luke’s towel from him. “And you guys have already written his name on it so you’re ahead of the game. And I see you’ve brought a Baymax one.”

“Oooh! Oooh! Watch what we can do, Ms. Caroline!” Luke pulled on Klaus’ shirt and the two proceeded to do the handshake from the movie, earning another of those coveted smiles from her.

“You can go join Max’s group for today, Luke,” Caroline told the little boy who happily took off toward his best friend, leaving the two adults to finish up. “Pick up is at 11 and I’ll have him and a few of the others at the gate ready to go.”

“I’ll be volunteering, love,” Klaus told her, trying not to show his shock when he realized what he’d just said.

“Are you sure?” Caroline looked him over, no doubt noting the suit he was wearing that really wasn’t field day attire.

“There’s absolutely nothing else that I’d like to do today,” Klaus told her, even more surprised at how much he meant it.

Caroline handed him another clipboard and had him sign up on it as well before the gate was finally closed. “I’ll show you to your station then.”

“How long have you been teaching?” Klaus asked, as they headed toward the field that was already set up for the day, the children sitting in rows and eager to start the day.

“It’s my first year,” Caroline told him before stopping at the slip’n’slide. “So this will be yours to monitor. Do I have to explain how it works to you?”

“I remember this from my childhood, sweetheart, but thank you.” Klaus removed his jacket and hung it up on the fence behind him, noting that she had been watching him rather intently do that before looking away.

“There’s water in the white ice chest and popsicles in the green one. The kids will be going to those as stations but feel free to get one whenever you need one. We’re doing seven minute rotations and you won’t have kids for two of them,” Caroline told him. “Just wave one of us down if you need help but me and the other teachers plus the assistants will be moving around to oversee everything.”

Klaus nodded and watched her walk away, still grateful for the sunglasses he was wearing.

The first group of kids arrived at his station and stared at the slip’n’slide before looking at him. “What do we gotta do?” one of the boys asked and Klaus tried to explain it but they simply stared at him, not really understanding.

He didn’t think his instructions were all that difficult but he could see Caroline watching and figured that this was definitely a way to make a decent impression on her. Even if his dignity might be taking a nose dive.

“Like this,” Klaus told them and proceeded to run and then slide across the grass on the wet slip’n’slide, completely wetting his suit. He stood up at the end, the children were laughing and lining up to do the same, but it was Caroline’s reaction that he was focused on the most.

She was smiling, one of those genuine, beautiful ones that had been directed at Luke and Klaus felt his heart squeeze tightly at that, wanting more of them.

Three hours later and Klaus was thoroughly exhausted. His suit was definitely ruined from how often he’d needed to show the damn station but when Caroline slid her number over to him on a scrap of paper when he signed Luke out it was definitely worth it.

The Kiss and Cry (an elsanna fluff)

Anna wanders through the castle, looking up at the walls, adorned with the paintings she became all too familiar with as a younger girl. She had been trying to find her older sister for hours.
“I wonder where she got to.” Anna says aloud as she steps outside. She looks over and sees Olaf pushing at his flurry, and leaning in the opposite direction as if reaching for something. The redhead’s brow comes together as she walks in his direction. “Olaf,” she addresses him as she approaches, “What are you doing?”
“Oh!” Olaf shouts, whipping his head to face her, his tone pleasantly surprised, “Hi, Anna! See, I was walking around out here, and I saw this flower, and it looks like it might be really thirsty, so I figured, you know, I’m MADE of solid water, so….”
“Oh, Olaf…” Anna smiles a little. It warms her heart when he does things like this, “Do you even know how much water that flower really needs?” His entire brain devotes itself to the task of trying to find the information for a few seconds, leaving his expression blank. “Nope.” He looks up to Anna, stating the results, “But I figure I’ll see it get better, right?”
“That’s not quite how it works.” Anna says, bending her knees to bring herself to almost a sitting position at the snowman’s height, and gently lowers his arm so his flurry could rush to it’s place over the center of his head. He looks up at her in confusion, silently asking her to tell him how it does work.
She would never tell Elsa, but Anna sometimes considers Olaf to be their child, in a weird, magicy way. So when Olaf gives her that face, all she can think of is him saying Why, Mommy? How does it work? She smiles warmly at the thought.
“It’s great that you have good intentions, Olaf. I’m sure that flower is very grateful of the gift you gave it. But sometimes, you can’t tell until later. Be careful not to give too much of yourself away, sometimes people just need some time to let your kindness sink in.”
“….. I thought we were talking about flowers.” Olaf says, staring at her. Anna’s gaze seems a little distant, but snaps back in an instant.
“We are.” She replies.
“You said people.” He points out.
“I…” she stops and laughs a little, “I did, didn’t I.”
“It works with people like that too?” Olaf asks.
“Yes,” Anna answers, “Sometimes it does.”
“Elsa’s like that, isn’t she?” Olaf observes. Anna is almost taken aback by his insight.
“Yes,” she answers slowly, “She is. But that’s because she… hasn’t seen kindness in a long time.”
“She’s not comfortable around a lot of people like you are.” Olaf prods, “Why is that?” Anna sighs a bit pensively.
“I think she gets scared.” Anna offers.
“Scared?” Olaf continues, “Why?”
“Because she spent most of her life without them. When you go without something for a long time, it takes a while to get used to having it. She’s still working out being around so many people at once, she doesn’t know how to really handle it yet.” Anna pauses thoughtfully, “I suppose you could say, having spending most of her life in her room, having a lot of people in one space is hard to adjust to.”
“Ohhh… So that’s why she wanted me to keep her skating rink a secret….” Olaf mutters.
“What? Is that where she is now?” Anna asks.
“Oh, no! No you don’t, that’s a secret!” Olaf says sternly turning his head, then adding, “She is an amazing skater though.”
“Oh yeah?” Anna asks, standing up, looking to the sky and shuffling her feet a little, “I wish I could see….”
“You do?” Olaf asks excitedly, “She’s probably skating right now! Come on, this way!” he reaches up and grabs her finger, pulling her along as he runs out the gates and into the surrounding woods. He finally slows his pace as Anna sees a glint of light shimmer and dance in the distance though the trees.
“Over there, but be quiet okay?” Olaf says, pointing to the light, “Elsa might get mad if she knows we’re here.” Anna nods and moves silently through the trees, stopping a little farther away than she would have liked, but she doesn’t want to alarm the queen. She peeks around a tree as she watches Elsa glide across the frozen pond (which should not be frozen this time of year,) with a grace that was almost beyond Anna’s comprehension. She could have been watching for minutes, or hours, or even years, as the considerable shorter but no less flattering ice garment her sister was wearing shimmered as she moved across the ice like a snow fairy, light and fluid in every motion. A voice begins wafting into her ear as her other senses begin to come back.
“Counter turn,” it says from her feet as Elsa skates, “Ina Bauer, I spin position….” Anna looks down and sees that Olaf is the one speaking, “Ooo~ Nice toe step, I love toe steps… Abaresque, camel spin… not bad…. Pretty standard stuff today….”
“This…” Anna’s words slip from her mouth in awe, “this is standard?”
“Oh yeah! You should see when she gets serious! It’s amazing!” Olaf shouts, then covers his mouth.
“This already is amazing….” Anna comments, her eyes on the ice queen once more. Olaf goes back to naming the moves he can recognize.
“Cute little three turn… double axel, not bad…. she’s going really fast…” After he said double axel, Anna gathered that one was a spin jump of so many rotations and one half, because Elsa had started front and landed going backwards.
“I’m surprised at how much of this is backwards….” Anna says, just as her sister leaps into the air, spinning really really fast and landing backwards again, and immediately after jumping and spinning again, but a little slower.
“Anna… do you know what we just witnessed?” Anna looks down to see him staring at Elsa in absolute awe, “That was the legendary quad spin jump, followed by a triple toe! That was seven rotations!”
They both turned back to the ice, and Elsa had built up speed. She is still backwards, and leaps high, performing a midair backwards somersault, and landing perfectly.
“A backflip! Right after a quad? AMAZING!” Olaf shouts, running out to the ice as Elsa slows and bring herself to the middle of the rink. “That was so good, Elsa! I wish I could skate like that!” She looks out to him, and Anna quickly ducks behind the tree.
“Olaf! I haven’t seen you all day!” Elsa calls to him. “Having a good one though, I hope?”
“Of course! Anna taught me about flower people today!” he says, stopping at her feet, grinning ear to ear.
“Flower… people?” Elsa asks, slightly entertained.
“Yeah! She said you’re one Mo-” he stops himself. Anna blinks, still hiding behind the tree.
“Did he really almost call her…?” Anna whispers to herself.
“What’s wrong? You know it’s okay when we’re alone.” Elsa inquires. Anna blushes.
“This is so cute it feels like an invasion of privacy.”Anna whispers aloud again.
“Yeah… well… about that….” Olaf sounds like he’s looking around and holding his hands in front of him, “We’re… not really alone right now.”
“What?” Elsa blurts, “Who else is here then?”

“…Me.” Anna calls out, stepping out from behind the tree, “Please don’t get mad, I promise I’ll never come here again, but… I tricked Olaf into showing me, and I saw you skating and it was amazing, Elsa!”

“…Really?” Elsa blushes lightly at seeing her sister gushing. Elsa and Anna meet at the edge of the pond.
“YES!” Anna answers, “Elsa, it was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen!”
Elsa isn’t sure what to say, or how to react, so she just stands there, staring at Anna, her face growing redder by the second.
“And this is where we wait for it to sink in, right?” Olaf asks Anna, looking up at her cutely.
“Yes. That’s exactly right.” Anna says, smiling at Elsa.
“Oh! I get it now!” Olaf exclaims, flailing excitedly.
“Is this about you telling him that I’m a…” Elsa squints and smirks a little, “flower person?”
“Well, that wasn’t what I said, exactly….” Anna replies, “But more or less… yeah. That’s exactly what this is.”
“Oh really?” Elsa questions Anna, “Then what DID you say to him?”
“I told him that flowers are like people, in that sometimes when you do something for them, you have to wait to see the results.” Anna says, gently, her eyes locked on her sister’s. Elsa’s heart races in her chest, as a warmth begins to grow. The older girl smiles a little.
“How long are you willing to wait?” Elsa asks, not totally sure why she needed to know.
“Forever, if I have to,” Anna answers without hesitation, taking Elsa’s hands in her own without breaking the gaze, “I love you.”
Elsa’s heart skips a beat on top of it’s already fast rate, and she wonders if she might be about to swoon. She doesn’t, which is good. For Elsa, mostly. A lump is caught in her throat as she smiles lovingly, trying to think of anything she could say. When she fails to, she simply throws her arms around the redhead, squeezing her as tightly as possible.
Maybe one day, she’ll realize…. Anna thinks to herself. The thought is accompanied by a small pang of guilt, of shame, which she brushes to the side.
For now, she lets Elsa crush her spine, grinning widely.
This is okay too.
“In the kiss and cry, waiting for the score….” Olaf mutters to himself from a small distance away, smiling knowingly at the two of them. He turns and begins to walk in the other direction, when he stops and looks back for a moment, and then turns again and continues on his way, chuckling to himself. “My mommies are so cute~”

That’s the end, but if you’re interested, I have more~