• Solo • When a Cat is More than a Cat

115th of Ashan 721

Seated on the shores of Lake Lovalus, Rharne serves as the home of the Lighting Knights, the Thunder Priestesses, and the Merchant's guild. This beautiful trade city is filled with a happy and contented people who rarely need an excuse to party.

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Seira Shiryu
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When a Cat is More than a Cat

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115th Ashan, 721


Lemon balm is an herb that can be used for both herbal remedies, and in cooking. It is one of many different varieties of mint. This herb can be used to treat colds, the flu, and insomnia. It can also be used to ease some allergies.

"Did you find anything interesting in that book?"

Seira paused in her reading, and looked over at her twin.

"I think so. I'm reading a section about lemon balm at the moment. It can be used in herbal remedies, and it can be used as an ingredient when cooking as well. I just started the section, so I don't know much yet, but it looks like among other things, it can help with colds and the flu. That makes me think that it will be especially useful this time of arc."

Seri nodded.

"I'll want to read about it when you're done then."

"Okay. What about you? Have you found anything interesting yet?"

Seri shook her head.

"Not yet. All I've found in this book is information about herbal remedies that we've already learned how to make. I think I'm going to switch to a different book."

"Let me know if you do find anything interesting."

"I will."

Seira carefully took notes on what she had just read. She knew how to write, of course, but her handwriting was horrible, and she had to write very slowly if she wanted to actually be able to read what she had written later. When she had finished with her notes, she went back to her reading.

Lemon balm has a calming effect and therefore it can be used to help remove fatigue, exhaustion, dizziness, anxiety, nervousness, and tension.

Seira paused to take notes on this as well. It seemed to her as if lemon balm could be used for several common ailments. That meant that it would be a useful herb to have a supply of. Although she didn't think that she wanted to be a healer, medicine was something she was very interested in. She liked the idea of having a personal supply of herbs and being able to make some herbal remedies if she or one of her family members needed them. She also thought she would enjoy making herbal remedies and giving them to the Order if that was something that they would allow. And she was still very interested in the idea of finding herbs that could be used as a weapon. Even though she wasn't a Knight Initiate anymore, she was still determined to help the Knights in some way.

When used in cooking, it can be used as a garnish for drinks and tangy dishes to add a delicate lemon flavor. It is especially good when used with fish.

When she read that, Seira realized that she might have eaten something that had been flavored with lemon balm before.

"Seri, do you remember when we ate dinner with Taria shortly before we graduated from school, and her mother made that really amazing fish for us?"

Seri nodded.

"It tasted a little like lemon, but when I asked, her mother insisted that she hadn't used lemons or lemon juice when she made it."

It was Seira's turn to nod.

"Well, according to what I just read, I think she might have used lemon balm. This book says that it has a delicate lemon flavor, and that it is especially good when used with fish."

"You might be right, then. Do you think she would give us the recipe for that fish dish if we asked?"

Seira shook her head.

"I doubt it. Taria's mother is really proud of her family recipes. I don't think she'd share them with anyone outside her family. But...we should probably learn how to cook for ourselves some trial. Maybe when we do, we can learn how to make something similar if we look for fish recipes that use lemon balm."

"Maybe. We should add that to our list of things to do."

Seira grinned at her twin. The "list" would be many pages long if they ever wrote it out. There were so many things that they "should" do or that they wanted to do that it would probably take them more arcs than they would be alive to do it all.

"Yeah. We should do that."

Seri grinned back at her. Then they started laughing. It took them several bits to calm down once more and get back to work.



Last edited by Seira Shiryu on Tue May 18, 2021 6:26 pm, edited 1 time in total. word count: 763
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Seira Shiryu
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Re: When a Cat is More than a Cat

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They read in an amiable silence for a few breaks. Every once in a while one or the other would pause to take some notes on something they had read. When Seira finished with the book she had been working with, she offered it to her twin. Seri offered her a book she had been reading in exchange.

"This one has several herbs that looked interesting. You might want to start with water mint."

Seira nodded.

"Thanks." she said as she took the book.

Water mint is a strongly scented herb that smells similar to peppermint. It requires a lot of moisture in order to thrive, and is known for its sphere shaped lavender flowers.

So that's three different types of mint that can be used to make herbal remedies. Seira mused to herself as she carefully took notes on what she had just read.

When we volunteered with the Order before we signed up for the Lightning Knights, we learned how to make a remedy that used peppermint. I'm not sure what it was used for, but it was an herbal remedy. Then there's lemon balm, and now water mint. I wonder if other types of mint can be used for herbal remedies too?

She liked the fact that this book told her about the plant itself as well as what it could be used for. If she ever wanted to try and grow her own herbs, that sort of information would be useful to know.

Water mint leaves can be dried and used in teas that will help with digestive problems, fevers, and headaches. It can also be used as a gargle to ease sore throats.

"It sounds like water mint is a useful herb to have around this time of arc too. Fevers and sore throats are pretty common in Cylus."

Seri nodded. Seira took notes on what she had just read before going back to her reading.

When fresh, it can be used in salads.

"I wonder what water mint tastes like? Do you think we've ever eaten it before and never known it?"

Seri shrugged.

"Maybe. I'm more interested in whether it has any benefits if you eat it in salads or if it only helps you when used in herbal remedies. I wonder the same thing about lemon balm...and any other herb that can be used for cooking as well as in herbal remedies for that matter."

"That's a good question. We should..."

"Add researching that to our list of things to do." the twins said in unison.

They looked at each other and started laughing again.


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Seira Shiryu
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Re: When a Cat is More than a Cat

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Seira was about to go back to her reading when Lyra and her three kittens entered the room. Hikari promptly sprawled in a sunny spot on the floor and started purring contentedly. Sirena watched her for a few trills before she started stalking her tail. When she pounced, Hikari gave a startled yowl, and batted her sister in the head with a sheathed paw. This quickly dissolved into a tussle that had the two kittens tumbling around the room much to Seira's and Seri's amusement.

Seirei ignored her litter mates in favor of chewing on Seira's shoe.

"Hey!" Seira protested laughingly.

She was wearing her favorite pair of shoes, but it was impossible to get angry at Seirei's insistence that any shoe she saw was a chew toy. She and the other kittens were just too cute to ever get mad at. Seira tried to move her foot out of the way, but Seirei persisted in stalking it the way Sirena had been stalking Hikari's tail a few bits earlier.

"I know what will distract her." Seri said after a short while.

She got up and left the room. When she returned a few bits later, she was carrying a large ball of brightly colored yarn. Seira watched as she dangled the end in front of Seirei. Sure enough, Seira's shoe was forgotten in the pursuit of more interesting "prey." The kitten caught the end of the yarn, and began playing with it. Seri dropped the ball of yarn, and let Seirei have it. Before long, Hikari and Sirena had noticed what their sister was up to, and they gave up their play fighting in favor of the fun that was to be had with the ball of yarn.

"It's amazing how much energy those kittens have." Seri said as she watched them play.

Seira nodded.

"It's a lot of fun to watch them, but we're going to have to come up with more ways to keep them amused." she said as she made the realization out loud.

"Otherwise, they'll get into all kinds of mischief. And no shoe in the house will be safe from Seirei."

Seri laughed as she agreed.

"Yarn makes a good distraction...but it also makes a big mess for us to clean up when they're done with it. Maybe we could get some small balls, or a stuffed toy and see if we could interest the kittens in those. Do they make cat toys the way they make toys for kids?"

"I don't know, but we should probably find out."

Seira watched the kittens for a while longer before deciding it was time to get back to work. When she turned back to her book, she laughed when she saw Lyra sprawled all over it.

"So you've decided that it was time that I stopped paying attention to that book and started paying attention to you instead, have you?" she asked as she gave the mother cat a good belly rub.

Lyra purred, and batted at Seira's hand playfully. After a while, she turned and captured Seira's hand with her paws so she could lick Seira's fingers. Then she looked up at Seira.

You always give the best belly rubs.

Seira's eyes widened as she stared at Lyra in shock. Had she just heard that? Had Lyra really just...talked to her?

"Are you okay?" Seri asked in concern.

Seira started. After a few trills, she turned to her twin and looked at her carefully.

"Did you just hear that?" she asked carefully.

Even as she asked, Seira didn't think that Seri would say yes. The voice had sounded different somehow than ones she normally heard. It was almost as if she had heard it in her head somehow. Was she going crazy? Would she know if she was? Hearing voices in your head...if that was what had actually happened...couldn't be a good thing, could it? Especially when that "voice" was coming from a cat...

Lyra butted her head against Seira's hand, demanding attention. Seira began stroking her belly absently.

"Hear what?"

Seri's response was what Seira had expected, so she hesitated before answering.

"Maybe nothing. Probably nothing. But...but it sounded like Lyra just talked to me. And that's impossible...isn't it? Only, it sounded like she was talking in my head..."

Seri's eyes widened as she stared at her twin. Lyra continued purring.

It's not impossible. I really can talk, but you're the only human that can hear me. And I'm not a cat.

"What are you then?" Seira asked, still thinking that she was either imagining things, or going crazy.

Seri simply stared at her in growing concern.

I'm a Nekosani. When we bond to someone, we can talk to them after a while once the bond settles. You and I bonded last Zi'da. You felt it, didn't you?

Seira thought back to when she had first found Lyra and her kittens. She had felt a strong connection to Lyra that trial. It was if she and Lyra had claimed each other that trial. And since then, she had always felt a strong connection to her. Lyra was her cat, and she was Lyra's human. Or so she had thought.

"I felt something, yes..." Seira said slowly.

That was the bond beginning to form. It took a full cycle for that to happen, so until now, I wasn't able to talk to you.

"And...and did you know what was happening when we first...err...bonded?"

No. Not really. Without the bond, I was...different. But the bond goes both ways. As it formed, I became...smarter. More like you.

"Okay. Okay. And..."

And what exactly? She was talking to a cat! Or a Nekosani if Lyra was to believed. If she was even actually having this conversation at all, and not imagining that her cat was talking in her head...

"Umm...Seira?"

Seira turned to her twin.

"I think...I think we need to talk to Mom. If you're hearing voices in your head...real or not...then I think she needs to know."

Seira simply nodded in agreement. Then she got an idea.

"If this is real, and you can really understand what I'm saying now...can you tap your paw on the ground five times? Please? I need some kind of proof that this is real."

Lyra did as Seira asked her to. She and Seri both stared at Lyra.

"Okay..." Seri said slowly.

"I might not be able to hear Lyra talking to you, but I definitely saw her do exactly what you asked her too...so either this is real, and she's really talking in your head, or we're both crazy. Either way, I think we need to tell Mom."

Seira simply nodded in agreement.

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