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Hortense Montgomery, Zombie Hunter, Gets Spiced [partial draft]

Because I’m lazy/working on getting my site fully moved over to my new host/working on a longer, More Serious post (which nevertheless involves a cartoon), I’m pulling a post that has been languishing in my draft folder for over six months. Maybe eventually I’ll come back to it and do the whole story and recipe with photos bit, but such an event is likely far enough in the future that we’ll all forget about this and it’ll feel new with just a vague hint of deja vu. And so, I present to you, dear readers, a partial draft of

Hortense Montgomery, Zombie Hunter, Gets Spiced”*

Hortense sighed a little as she poured the last of her cardamom seeds into the mortar. She sighed more deeply as she proceeded to grind them. Her sighs turned to grunts and her visage darkened into a grimace as her movements, once meticulous, degenerated into frenzied pounding, as if she had just had a close call with a zombie and was rushing to cave in its brain case right now right now before you can even think to bite me, you hideous, unholy fiend.

She would have to brave the town and head into the spice shop, if she wished to have any more cardamom. If it were another spice, say cinnamon, she would not dare risk it.

Oh, who was she kidding? She would make the risk for cinnamon. But as she had wisely bought three pounds of ground and two of sticks shortly before the start of the apocalypse, when the spice shop had had an overstock sale, she was well-kept in cinnamon.

Tarragon, then. Or cilantro. She would not have considered the trip for one of those.

Ahh, but cardamom. Spice of the Indies. Beloved component of all things chai-flavored, such as her delightful chai-spiced kettle corn. It was a treat that had the added benefit of being cook-able over a fire. Once she had mastered the technique, anyway.

Cardamom sufficiently pulverized, Hortense tilted the mortar over a small bowl, adding the spice to the small mixture of cinnamon, ginger, allspice, and pepper. Her mind was only partially on the task, for she was already envisioning her trip to the spice shop. Best to wear the riot gear, of course–and had she ever written that nice young police officer a thank you note? She ought to do that, assuming he wasn’t dead–and naturally she’d want her trusty meat cleaver. The backpack, too, provided she could get it to fit over the riot gear. It was a ghastly thing, not fashionable at all. She much preferred the aesthetics of a classic handbag. Alas, fashion had also fallen victim to the zombie hordes.


*See, the color makes it extra-special.

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