Writing Revisited: Last Year’s Harvest Festival

Closing out Thanksgiving 2022 by revisiting Thanksgiving 2021.

And, because this requires very little effort (what with being a repost and all), here’s another Thanksgiving-related scene.

As is tradition in Realmgard, Kat Darkstone spends the day of the Harvest Festival being thankful.

Mostly, she’s thankful to not have to do anything today.

The Guild Authority’s office is closed for the day and most people are too busy eating turkeys and spending time with their families to need the services of a freelance adventurer.

She’s thankful for her beloved plaid couch. Thankful for the chance to sprawl out across its cushions and stay there all day. Thankful not to have a reason to have to get up.

There’s a knock on the door. Kat raises her head and glares at the door, hoping that someone else — anybody else — in the family is around to answer the door.

“Kat, honey, could you get the door?” Estelle calls to her daughter. “That’s probably Amara.”

Kat hauls herself up from her beloved couch. As she trudges to the door of Darkstone Manor, she hopes that Amara is thankful to have such a magnanimous, selfless best friend who would so readily sacrifice her own leisure time for her best friend’s benefit.

As Kat opens the door, Amara leaps on her. “Happy Harvest Festival, Katherine!”

She does that rich people thing where they kiss your cheeks to say hello. Which will never not be weird for Kat.

“Yeah. Uh, you too,” Kat mutters.

“I hope you don’t mind, but I brought Isla,” Amara says, pointing to the young maid standing beside her. “It is a holiday. It didn’t seem fair to make her work today.”

“Uh, hi,” Isla says bashfully and bowing politely. “Thank you for having me. I made a pie.”

Estelle appears in the doorway behind her daughter. She greets Amara with that same rich people cheek-kissing thing

“Hello, Amara,” Estelle says. “Happy Harvest Festival. And hello to you, Isla. We’re happy to have you. Welcome to Darkstone Manor.”

Isla bows again. “Thank you.”

Soon, the Darkstones and their guests are seated around the table in Darkstone Manor’s dining room. The Harvest Festival meal begins with everyone around the table declaring what they have been most thankful for in the past year.

Dorian speaks first. “I am thankful to be married to the best beautiful woman in Realmgard,” he declares, kissing Estelle on the cheek.

“Awww,” say Amara and Isla.

Ugh,” says Kat. It’s almost enough to make her lose her appetite.

Dunstana says nothing, continuing to hungrily eye the mashed potatoes.

“I,” Estelle says, “am thankful to see my daughters growing up into such fine young women.”

“I’m just thankful to be here,” Isla says when her turn comes. “Thank you again for having me.”

“I am thankful to be sharing this day and this lovely meal with my best friend and a family that I consider to be my own family,” Amara says.

Mashed potatoes!” Dunstana exclaims.

“Just potatoes?” Estelle asks her daughter. “There’s nothing else you want to be thankful for, Dunstana? Not your family? Not your friends? Not your health? Not everything you’ve done as a pirate?”

“Pfft,” Dunstana scoffs. “Mom, you can’t eat that.”

“I’m thankful that there’s a turkey in here other than Dunstana for once,” Kat says.

Hey!” Dunstana calls across the table.

Also, I am being 12 000% honest and truthful and accurate when I say pointing at the younger sibling and going “The turkey’s over there.” is in no wise based on my own relationship with my little brother…


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