hi do you wanna cry about two pairs of dnd blonde elven wizard class siblings that are almost identical except some defining features and grew up in absent homes?
hi dimension 20 fans! wanna meet adaine and aelwyn but they're twins who love each other very much and an absolute dynamic duo? welcome to the adventure zone. taako, star of his former cooking show and married to the grim reaper. lup, was briefly an umbrella and proof that trans women are just better. with these two you'll get just as much angst, but the good kind this time!
hi the adventure zone fans! wanna meet taako and lup but categorically worse in every way possible? welcome to dimension 20. adaine, has a pet frog and tried to punch her sister in the face on the first day of school. aelwyn, started a war by accident and will play knifey fingers with you. they grew up in an abusive household and hate each other, but hey at least they remember the other <3
art by @kimostv and @rebelsafoot
delightful taz:b concept based on a story my dad just told me: The Apartment.
what the fresh everloving FUCK is The Apartment, you might ask. well. let me just tell you. only a few people actually live in it at once- maybe it started out with just barry and lup, for example. but you wouldn't know that they were the only legal inhabitants because Everyone is Always there. taako comes over at least every weekend, and sometimes for a month at a time- and obviously he brings kravitz and angus. sometimes davenport and merle come over specifically to play five player chess with barry, lup, and kravitz. other times it's simply to hear stories of the sea from davenport or visit with merle and his kids. magnus has no schedule other than INCREDIBLY frequent, he needs his hugs. he always brings a variety of new carvings, some practical and some just for fun, for everyone there to pick from. angus visits often even without taako and kravitz, and barry and lup get just as excited every time to spend time with their nephew. lucretia and quite a few other friends from the b.o.b. come over sometimes, though visits are often short because they still have plenty of work to do. every year the week before candlenights is set aside for everyone to come over and help with the year's canning, besides preparing food for candlenights itself. it's a HUGE deal, and with good reason- everyone goes home with plenty of broth and canned fruits and vegetables and a new jar of vanilla extract and more than likely at least a little alcohol. now, candlenights is an even HUGER deal. in all everyone is there for about two weeks, not counting people who stay longer just because (it's usually most of them). right then okay thats it. i just really like found family. and i think they should be happy.
For @taz-channukah-event night one, prompt Flames/Light. Yes, I know it’s night three now. I’m a mess. Enjoy some sad modern-AU baby twins!
Taako raised his head from where it was buried in a blanket. They couldn’t figure out how to turn the heater on in this (perpetually absent on business trips) cousin’s house, so it was just always freezing cold here. “What?”
Lup was standing in the doorway with her own blanket wrapped around her shoulders. “I think it’s the first night of Channukah.”
He frowned, and started counting on his fingers. “No, it starts...on a Wednesday this year. Today is…” It was impossible to know what day it was during winter break, without school to keep track of the days.
“It’s Wednesday,” Lup replied.
“Okay, but it is.”
Taako buried his head back in the blanket. “So what?” he muttered.
“So we should light candles.”
He didn’t answer. Their aunt Penelope (Lupita to her friends) had always led them in lighting candles, despite not being Jewish herself. She’d always said that it wasn’t fair to deprive the twins of their mother’s culture just because she had abandoned them. Tía Penelope had learned how to fry latkes, had wrapped her tongue around the unfamiliar sounds in the bruchas, and had bought the Herschel and the Channukah Goblins book and read it to them every year (though she didn’t like it as much as Mrs. Katz and Tush, which always made her cry).
And now Tía Penelope was dead.
Taako had never really cared for the candle-lighting or the prayers. The food was nice, and the chocolate gelt was great. He’d learned to cheat at dreidel when he was six years old. But Channukah had never meant much to him besides being time to spend with their aunt and each other. He didn’t know if he even wanted to celebrate it this year, their first year without her.
“Light them yourself.”
He heard Lup sniffle quietly. “There’s no point in doing it by myself,” she murmured.
“I don’t want to.”
“Do we even have candles?” he deflected.
“...I can make something work.”
“Don’t light the house on fire,” Taako said flatly.
“I won’t! I think I know where the birthday candles are, anyway.” Lup came over and nudged Taako’s shoulder through the blanket. “Taako, please.”
Taako was glad that he was underneath a blanket, because his eyes were full of tears. “I just don’t want to do it without her,” he whispered, so quietly that he wasn’t sure if she could even hear him.
She could. “Me neither. But I think--” Her voice wavered. “I think she would want us to keep doing it. Sh-she always said she wanted us to know our culture, from both sides, and...and I think she’d be really sad if we gave it up because she wasn’t here.”
“It doesn’t matter what she would want. She’s dead,” Taako said, and regretted it when he heard Lup burst into tears. He poked his head up from the blankets again in time to see her collapse to the ground and start sobbing. “No--I’m sorry, I didn’t mean--”
“I miss her every day,” Lup wailed. “A-and I wanted...I just w-wanted…”
He rolled off the couch and put his arms around her.
“I just wanted to k-keep her m-memory alive!”
“Fine, okay. Okay. I’ll light candles with you,” Taako told her.
Lup looked at him through her tears. "Really?"
He glanced away. He could never stand it when she cried. It always made him want to cry, too, and he hated that. "Yeah, if you find candles and something to stick them in."
She wiped her eyes quickly and swallowed her sobs. "I took the menorah from Tía's house when...when they said to pack up our stuff. I know it wasn't mine to take, but I don't care." Lup stood up, still sniffling. "Meet me in the kitchen in ten minutes?"
"Sure." Taako stared out the window as she went to get the menorah. Snow had fallen last night. A dusting of powder still clung to the ground in the fading afternoon light. He didn't like the snow. It was too cold, and it made the world too quiet. The world was quiet enough these days.
He made his way into the kitchen a little while later. Lup was standing at the counter with a box of birthday candles, a silver menorah, and a lighter. She passed the bottom end of one candle over the lighter flame to melt it and stuck it quickly in the right-most candle holder, which was built for much thicker candles. Then she placed the second candle precariously in the middle holder, glanced over her shoulder at Taako, and flicked the lighter on. "Will you hold it with me?" she asked quietly before she lit the shamash.
He nodded and stepped up behind her.
The shamash was lit. "Baruch atah Adonai, Eloheinu melech ha-Olam," Lup began to sing. Her voice faltered as she forgot the rest of the prayer. Taako didn't remember it either, but he hummed the tune along with her as they reached the end of the first prayer, began the second one, and took hold of the shamash together to light the lonely candle on the right.
"There's a special one for the first night," Lup whispered, holding the bottom of the shamash over the other candle's flame so it could be stuck securely in the menorah as well. "The shehekyanu. But I don't know any of it."
Taako shrugged and hummed the tune again with her as she put the shamash back into its holder. He stood there silently. The pink and yellow and white striped birthday candles seemed so tiny and out of place in the stately silver chanukiah, with its ornate details and delicate Star of David on the shamash holder. It was an...unconventional look. But then again, Taako and Lup had never been very conventional.
The flames on the birthday candles were defiant. They had been lit in spite of circumstance and grief and despair, and they flickered on in the cold air, two little flames against the world.