This is my favorite part of day.
The time when I get to step out of the house, take a deep breath of fresh country air and gaze at my crops. They’re quiet today which is just how I like ’em. When they start to scream, well now that kinda destroys the whole peaceful thing I’ve got going on.
Just me, the field, a fresh cup of joe and those damn harpies. They’re always pecking at the field which makes the crop scream even more. I suppose they all deserve it, that’s why their here. But still, I want a good yield this year, dammit.
So I set my coffee down, pick up my fork and charge out, waving and hollering like some lunatic hobgoblin. That usually does the trick and sure enough those little winged bastards take off, shitting sulphur all the way.
I hold my nose and inspect one particularly plump crop. It looks ok, thank my lords. Dust it off a bit, good to go. Thick, juicy, grey and folded. A decent, feeble minded soul which is usually preferred. Too much knowledge clogs the folds, tightens ’em up and sucks out the juices. Nobody wants a dry, withered crop. Hell, my reputation precedes me, y’know.
I give it a good yank. The roots scream, writhe and squeal but I don’t pay no mind. After all, they deserve it, right? Finally it comes loose with a squealch and I groan at the hollow husk left behind. I give one more mighty yank and pull the rest out. The root is naked of course, hairy, pale as one would expect being submerged in the dirt for so long. About 6 foot, male, probably American. Average. I give it a sniff, sling it over my shoulder and drop the crop in a worn, dented tin bucket. It’s served me well over the years, carried many a crop along
I’ll grind up the root and husk later and use it for fertilizer and feed the bone chippings to the Grimhounds out in the yard. It’s their favorite treat! As for the crop, I take it inside and prepare.
A bit of olive oil (fresh from Aegean fields) into the pan. Some ground up Brim to season, fresh cracked of course. I’m a simple guy, but I like my meals to taste good. I deserve as much, right? It’s frying up nicely, saute and simmer it lightly til the grey and pink turns a nice, crispy golden-brown. As I suspected, there’s not much here. That’s good.
It IS good. But… It could be better, I think.
Maybe a crop might plump and juice more than expected if only it KNEW more. They say insight can drive one mad, simple minds bearing witness to things most eldritch and unspeakable. Commune with those in the Cosmic Beyond long enough and see too if you don’t develop a third eye. And a fourth. A fifth… More?
Sprouting all over the crop; some might see a blemish or blight but I’m a renaissance man, y’see. I see opportunity and new horizons. Juicy pustules waiting to burst in the forked tongue and yield oh, so many new and delightful flavors. Complex and exotic.
A glimpse into Tatarus, the prison of the gods: a nice, smoky sheen.
Gazing upon those that dwell beyond the stars: sweet as as cosmic cloudburst, something for desserts well earned.
Wading into Styx, the river of the dead and communing with those long past: salty, pairs well with Brimstone. Tears and salt of the UnderEarth season quite nicely.
One more flavor profile perhaps, a journey into the Suicide Woods to see those who dwell amongst the soiled, tainted roots. Forever consigned to torment from those damned harpies (pests!)… This might yield a delightful, saucy tang.
Mmm I salivate at the prospects. I look forward to experimenting. This brain is good but it could always be better. As the chef for the Seventh Circle, I’m always looking for something new.
I just need a new subject, the freshest crop yet.
You, my friend. You’re new here, aren’t you?
Are you perchance curious to witness wonders beyond all imagining?
No, no, trust me. What I can show you will grant you insight beyond all you’d ever want to know, verifiable frenzistic knowledge of which not the most arcane scholars would have access to.know
Here, let me dry my hands, they’re a tad greasy.
Been busy in the kitchen, you see.
Take my hand, please.
I have something to show you…