For my first of eight plot bunnies, I decided I need to do one about food. Do you understand how difficult it is to love to cook delicious food and to be in a place where no facilities exist for the preparation of such food? In this case, the next best thing must be to write about food.
And for any of you who have been around for any length of time, you know that I love writing brother-sister duos. There is something about the brother-sister relationship that I love, probably because I am so well-versed in them.
So, without any further ado, here is my first plot bunny.
Paul and Elissa Maragos can't imagine a life without food. They have spent their whole lives at their father's restaurant in Chalcis. Either one can mix up tsaziki or whip up halvah faster than a fish can blink. But things start simmering when their older brother marries Nicola, an Italian girl with a domineering personality and a complete belief in the superiority of Italian food. As she tries to turn the restaurant into something more Italian, Paul and Elissa decide that this means war. And what better way to war against an Italian than to sabotage her food?
With the help of American tourist Caleb, Paul and Elissa start an all-out war against Nicola, little dreaming that their big plans might backfire in the worst possible way.
"What's her name?"
"Her name is Nicola. We've only heard it fifty thousand times in the past five days."
"Hmmmm. What's he doing marrying an Italian, anyway? What's wrong with our own girls?"
"Yes, nice like spaghetti sauce and i̱líthios ciabatta. I'm going to be sick."
"Elissa, you be nice to her."
They turned to see Aloeus in the doorway to the kitchen, his dark arms gripping a large container of goat's milk and his eyes glowering at his sister from beneath his shock of black hair.
"Hi, Aloeus," said Paul, grinning foolishly. "How's Nicola?"
"She's well. Don't make fun of her."
"Fun? Of her? We wouldn't dream of it!" Elissa widened her eyes and gave her own dark hair a toss. "Papa would never approve. I think he likes her too."
"More power to him," muttered Paul from the sink, where he had begun scrubbing cucumbers in preparation for the evening diners at Estiatório Maragos. Most of them were American tourists who thought authentic Greek food was gyros and saginaki and therefore marveled at the "rustic" food served in Estiatório Maragos. Aloeus hated American tourists. Paul and Elissa loved them. They spent as much time as they could around the wide-eyed strangers that came to eat food and see ruins and the Sea. Hence, Paul began picking up expressions like "More power to him."
Aloeus grunted as he deposited the container on the counter. "This restaurant needs a makeover," he said.
"Not on your life!" squealed Elissa, flinging a towel at Aloeus, who laughed and tossed the towel back at his sister.
"Go make some cheese," Paul told him.
"Don't tell me what to do, little brother," Aloeus retorted.
Paul raised his eyebrows. "When I graduate from college, you'll sing a different tune."
"Who needs college?" asked Aloeus.
Paul shrugged. He was close to receiving his culinary degree, and then he would be able to take over the restaurant someday. Papa would never give it over to a wuss like Aloeus. Aloeus who went around marrying Italian girls. More power to him.
"When are we going to meet this wonder woman?" asked Elissa. She always knew when to change the subject, although she was usually pretty abrupt about it.
"Soon. Soon," said Aloeus.
"He finally found someone who will marry him," said Paul. "Good for you, brother."
"As opposed to you, who never even tries," retorted Aloeus.
"Girls. Who needs 'em?" said Paul. "Except for the beautiful Elissa, of course." He waved his hand dramatically at his sister.
"Thank you, brother dear," said Elissa, twirling her hand as she bowed in Paul's direction.
"Stop flinging water everywhere," said Aloeus.
"What a racket!"
It was Mama, back from the shopping. "You, children, I could hear your voices all the way down the street. You sound like fishwives. Yes, fishwives. Go! Shoo! I don't want any dirty fishwives in my kitchen. I have cheese to make!" Mama grabbed a towel and swatted at Aloeus' legs. "Out! Out of my kitchen! Come back when you can be civilized. This lady has food to make!"
"More power to you!" laughed Paul as he followed close on his brother's heels.
Thanks for reading, and God bless,