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School Sport
The Elf
I wrote this in response to jeriendhal's prompt "Skiing in Australia". This happens after Gideon's Work and Niceties and runs to 452 words.

“Why is our son doing cross country skiing for summer sport?”  Jack Anderson was sitting at the kitchen table looking at his children’s school notices.  “Is it something to do with all that political stuff that happened while I was away?  Would you believe Hong Kong actually offered me an extended visa in case it wasn’t safe to return home?”

“That was probably nice of them,” replied his wife, Katharine.  “And yes, all the local schools are doing snowshoeing and cross country skiing.  The Elf’s people have got a park that’s under permanent under snow and ice where they take the kids to do all that.  Something about cold terrain survival skills.”  She didn’t look up from the newspaper and kept drinking her coffee.

Her husband demanded, “And that doesn’t strike you as at strange?”

She looked up at.  “Jack, this city is now controlled by someone who can make it snow at will.  Elves, giants and trolls walk the streets.  I’ve seen flying reindeer with my own eyes in broad daylight and I can buy things in the shops made out of something called ‘forged ice.’  Our children doing snow sports with their school in summer isn’t as strange as most of that.  Besides, when I see boys from that private school your grandparents couldn’t get the boys into, I can’t help but laugh.”

“Why?  I would have thought that place would have had the best gear money can buy?”  Jack grimaced, “I mean they charge a fortune, there are the dodgy government subsidies, all their specialised facilities, and the waiting lists….”

Katharine smiled, “Oh, they do have the best gear you can buy and the school insisted on using their own equipment when this program started because they do ski trips and all that so they did have it, but you can’t buy the stuff our kids get to use.  Now the advanced classes are moving into ‘special’ equipment, I expect the private school will be changing their tune very quickly.”

“Why? I can’t imagine those parents being happy for their kids to share sports gear with the hoi polloi,” remarked Jack.  “I mean, they pay for superiority and swank.”

“If you were the kid who didn’t get to use the magical skis or skates because your parents only wanted you to use name brands, then you’d probably start trying to talk your parents around too,” replied his wife.

“Magical,” said Jack sceptically.

“Flying reindeer and snow on demand,” Katharine reminded him.  “Why not skates that freeze the water in front of you or skis that always have enough snow under them?”

“Because,” Jack paused, “because it means maybe I should have paid more attention to dragons in Hong Kong.”

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Yes, yes you should have. :)

Thank you, Rix!!

Thank you.

I'm glad you liked it.

My familiar Loiosh (see icon) says YEAH!!!!!

*bows politely to the dragon in the room*

LOL so very true. :D I love this.

I never commented on this! Bad me!

Yes, Jack, clearly you should have and... well, I like the idea that now the posh schools are looking for something they don't have!

Too be fair to Jack, it's not like he actually saw or met a dragon....

But the posh schools, yes - there is a whole level of expertise out there that they have no experience of.

I'm kind of surprised that magic is considered higher status than name-brand, even with better performance. The marketing departments of the name-brand stuff will be appalled. I wonder if the research divisions of the commercial gear will be able to incorporate any of the magic into their name brand and keep it, or if the Elf will tell them to go stick their heads in a snowbank.

The dragons in Hong Kong were certainly worth paying attention to. Then again, I'd probably be in Jack's shoes -- I'm bad at keeping up with current events when I'm busy.

It wasn't considered higher status, they didn't even know it existed, but now the kids have seen what it can do....

The big brand names would have to hire people to do the enchanting....

And just think what the magical equivalent of a patent or trademark might be like.

Worse, consider what might happen if you *violate* one. :-)

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