I have an unusual kind of temper. Little things will send me into a cursing, maniacal rage, while things that should make me blood-boilingly angry make me quiet and patient and determined.
Last night, the meal I was cooking dripped oil onto the bottom of the oven and filled the house up with smoke, and I wasn’t mildly annoyed about having to open the windows and fan it out, I was livid. How dare the pan drip oil? How dare that oil burn and smoke? How dare such things impede my dinner?
(I had to stop and clean the oven midway through cooking and, somehow, the meal came out better than if I had simply cooked it normally. Still angry about it, though.)
People who don’t know me well tend to think that I’m quiet and nice and never swear. In fact, I’m chatty, I enjoy swearing enough to blister your ears, and I’m at least ninety percent powered by rage. I’m a volatile mixture in a misleading package, and my god do I have emotions to spare.
So, here’s a drabble.
STORM IN A CUP
(Idiom: Cicero used a similar phrase in Latin—in De Legibus, he wrote, “Excitabat enim fluctus in simpulo ut dicitur Gratidius,” or: “For Gratidius raised a tempest in a ladle, as the saying is.”)
Worry, anger, or other strong emotions about an unimportant matter.
Eleanor glared into her teacup. Lightning crackled at its lip, storm clouds condensing from steam wisps. The longer she glared, the more the storm grew—soon, rain pelted down from the clouds’ heavy bellies, sending the surface into a mess of ripples that swelled into inch-high waves.
She swirled a finger and the air began to spin, pulling itself into a tight brown teaspout. A tiny boom of thunder set the cup to rattling on its saucer.
Isadora threw herself down into the chair opposite Eleanor’s. “Is something wrong?”
Eleanor looked languidly up at her. “We’re out of milk.”