The Ace of Pumpkins

Standard
Digital drawing. At center, a woman facing forward, seen from waist up, sitting at a table. Her face is in three-quarters profile facing right. She looks forward with right brow and the right corner of her mouth raised. Her bent right arm rests on the table in front of her. Her left hand is raised beside her, holding a fork with a piece of food on the tines. On the table in front of her is a plate full of food. In front of the food is a name card with partially visible letters that say “Ace of Pumpkins.” At left is a small hourglass and two wine glasses. At right is a folded napkin wrapped in a band and a bowl filled with liquid, and with flowers, flower petals, and a bundle of herbs floating within.

Four High Houses ruled the great city.  All the other houses were left to vie for their favor—whether the lower houses liked it or not.  The Ace of the House Pumpkins had been invited to dinner at the House of Clovers. 

It was a custom, a tradition of the house, to invite one and only one guest from among the lower houses.  And it was a custom for this guest to be the guest of honor at the dinner.

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