SC.2023.18. Schupla Frog Soup
"I'll let the local recipe book speak for itself."
- Mix three parts schupla frog leg meat
- Three parts schupla fern leaves
- One part volcanic ash
Mix until the meat of the frog changes from yellow to yellow-pinkish brown, then simmer over low heat for ten minutes. Addto taste.
"Certainly an unexpectedly tasty recipe, mixing in a toxic plant, a toxic frog, and toxic volcanic ash, to make a delicious, totally non-toxic, and good for you dish! Since it's the only plant on the atoll, eating it is a pretty important thing!"
The volcanic ash, or puzzolani, is obtained from sea-cooled lava only, air-cooled lava seems to lack the elements that neutralize the toxins, indicating that the sea salt might act as a catalyst for some of the reactions.
"Hey bro, you ok? You look like you've been on a longer trip than expected?"
"Yeah, you could say that, 13 days from Lai Dang City to here..."
"I said I was sorry!" Shibué stomped off.
"Give me a moment, I need to apologize."
"It wasn't your fault, but... it did take us thirteen days instead of three, your boss might have wanted to know that..."
"Look, I call Amarat Bro a lot, but it's never far from my mind that he's the next Meihomei, and we both have responsibilities to him..."
Shibué paled. "Oh, yeah..." She then started typing on her phone. Linni returned to Amarat."
"Yeah, I even brought us a local delicacy for a country that will no longer exist in about a month..."
"Wow, ok, and you know how to prepare it?"
"Yup, I put all the ingredients in the trunk..." He opened it, and received a double-faceful of spores, the only parts of the schupla leaves still intact. The puzzolani having degraded in the lower pressure of the altitude they'd been flying, and the frog legs were definitely unsafe to eat without the other two. "Err, no, sorry, seems the ingredients went bad on the way here..."
"Where were you, exactly?"
"Undana-Re Atoll, north by north-east from Lai Dang."
"So you took a detour?" Amarat was smiling, although he'd been very worried for them both.
"Kinda, I suspect we'll have to do a full report, anyways, navigational error, and we're halfway to Minao. Get queried by some Tsou fast-movers, land on this atoll that wasn't on the map. Turns out the atoll is new land, wasn't there before."
Shibué walked in, held up her phone, as if to hand an official document to Amarat, he held his phone's back to hers, then looked at the title of the document. "What's this?"
"My resignation, active immediately."
"Refused, you can't get rid of me that easily, but seriously, the after action report can wait, Linni, why don't you both do what my nose is screaming is a necessity, and get a shower. Come on in the house, Shibué, you know where..."
"If I have to make it an order and make you call me Zim, I'm deducting points from your eval, you shouldn't argue with me when I speak sense, you know better."
"You'll borrow Flora's since she's at Number twelve today."
"You have two showers?"
"Four bathrooms, four showers. One per floor, given this place can house twenty some of the time, if anything it's not enough."
"How come one's assigned to Flora?"
"Because I'm a, and living with my wife and three daughters, I borrow any of theirs when needed, any more silly questions?"
"Sorry about the disappointment of missing the exotic food." Linni interjected.
"Well, if it's where you say, and claimed by Lai Dang, we'll invite a chef over when they're signing up to the treaties. Or maybe go visit. You made it by aircar, although, I'll probably insist on using my hyper..."
"No landing strip for even a skycutter on the island. You're better off sending a fleet."
"Hmm, well not a fleet, but I imagine EMS Analecta Kagome can serve. It is after all, the family yacht."
Linni hid his guffaw at the 'yacht', 38000 ton missile cruisers were only yachts by the broadest of definitions.
"Anyways, you NEED a shower bro, hop to it."