[Monday, April 13, 2015]
Emilia Colling watched
her youngest daughter Mila
scamper around the patio,
running up and down steps,
then jumping up to run along
the edge of the planters.
Behind her, a trail of footprints
glittered pink and blue and purple
before fading slowly away.
It could have been much worse.
As it was, Emilia had only suffered
spots and visual distortions for
a few days, while Mila had
gained the ability to change
the color of objects around her.
The two of them had attended
a birthday party hosted by
Emilia's friend Rogette, who
worked in product development.
Rogette had put out facepaint and
candy sprinkles for fairy bread with
her company's new "animated glitter"
that turned out to be metagenic.
Some people had gotten sick
or developed rashes, so Emilia
felt that she and Mila had
gotten off rather lightly.
Still, Emilia found herself
shying away from new things,
which would quickly become
a disaster for a computer engineer.
Mila seemed happy with the results,
though, so Emilia kept quiet about
her fears and her guilt at not
protecting Mila well enough.
Now the girl pattered over to her
and said, "Mummy, what good are
my superpowers? I've been trying
to imagine how I could stop bad guys
with them, but I can't think of anything."
"Well, Color Control isn't really
a combat superpower, but that's
okay," said Emilia. "There are lots
of other things you could do with it.
You could become a fashion designer
like your sister Elsie, or a gardener
like your sister Lily. It's up to you."
"Those are boring," Mila protested.
"Then you can find something else to do,"
Emilia said. "Don't let your power stop you
from becoming a superhera if that's what
you really want. Plenty of people fight
supervillains with no powers at all."
"Yay!" Mila said. She twirled
in place, leaving a riot of color
underneath her dancing feet.
"I wanna be called Fairybread!"
Emilia chuckled. "That sounds
like a very cheerful cape name."
"Uh huh, and when people hear it,
they'll think of birthday parties and
won't be scared anymore," Mila said.
"Plus it fits the colors I can do."
"Have you been practicing
with that like your soup mentor
told you to?" Emilia asked.
"Yes, Mummy. Look, I learned
a new trick!" Mila replied.
"I'm watching," Emilia said.
Mila flung out a hand, and
a rainbow of colors spattered
across the pale flagstones as if she
had shaken a handful of paintbrushes.
"That's beautiful," Emilia said as she
applauded softly. "Perhaps you'll
grow up to become an artist."
That had been last month's wish,
though, and before that Mila had
wanted to become a firefighter,
and before that an astronaut.
Emilia didn't know how long
the superhera phase would last
compared to those, but that was okay.
Mila could be whatever she wanted.
* * *
Fairybread (Mila Colling) -- She has tawny-fair skin, gray-brown eyes, and wavy blonde hair to her shoulders. She is 6 years old. She is the daughter of Emilia, younger sister of Lucas (18), Elsie (16), Bastiaan (13), Dainen (11), and Lily (8). They live in Sydney, Australia. Adventurous and cheerful, Mila dives into whatever life offers. She has trouble sitting still, though.
Origin: Mila and her mother Emilia attended a birthday party hosted by Emilia's friend Rogette, who works in product development. Rogette had put out facepaint and candy sprinkles for fairy bread with her company's new "animated glitter" that turned out to be metagenic. Some people got sick, some developed rashes, and some saw spots or other visual distortions for days. Emilia saw spots, and Mila developed superpowers.
Uniform: Durable play clothes.
Qualities: Good (+2) Adventurous, Good (+2) Cheerful
Poor (-2) Sitting Still
Powers: Average (0) Color Control
She can change the color of things, so far just for a few minutes, although that's likely to extend with practice.
Motivation: To explore.
Fairy bread began as a simple recipe which has since spawned many variations like this one with coconut and cream cheese. It has also spawned some fierce debates.
Emilia Colling -- She has pinkish-fair skin, gray-brown eyes, and wavy red hair to her shoulders. She is the mother of Lucas (18), Elsie (16), Bastiaan (13), Dainen (11), Lily (8), and Mila (6). They live in Sydney, Australia. Emilia's husband is an architect, she is a computer engineer, and they work together to build smart homes. Emilia feels guilty about taking Mila to the party where she got her superpowers, not because superpowers are bad but because the zetetic goodies turned out to be unsafe. It's making Emilia leery of trying new things, which is a disaster for a computer engineer.
Qualities: Good (+2) Computer Engineer, Good (+2) Logical-mathematical Intelligence, Good (+2) Mother
Poor (-2) Maternal Guilt
* * *
Fairybread's home is a smart house in Sydney. The parking lift in the garage lets it store up to four cars. The balcony has views of several golf courses and the Pacific Ocean.
The basement includes a home gym, a full bathroom, a home theater, and a wine cellar.
A mahogany door opens into the foyer, which has a display of historic artifacts from Europe. The master bedroom looks out over the yard. The master bathroom includes a tub, sink, walk-in shower, and toilet. This bedroom belongs to Fairybread's older sister Elsie, who is 16 and studying fashion design. They have another brother, Lucas, who is 18 and attending college. This bedroom is shared by Fairybread's brothers Bastiaan (13 years old) and Dainen (11 years old). Fairybread shares her bedroom with her sister Lily (8).
An elevator connects the floors.
The kitchen is on the second floor. The smart house uses control panels that handle lighting, kitchen equipment, motorized blinds, heating and cooling. Sliding glass doors separate the balcony from the living area. The home office includes a desk, chair, and built-in shelves.
The nearest beach is less than a 5-minute walk from the house.
Some superpowers are generally considered useless -- but it's all about what you want to do with them.