Cameron's excellent foray into the Shirakiku Ramune world inspired me to unearth the small treasure-trove of acquisitions from Mitsuwa Marketplace which resides in a box under the bench in the corner of the Lab. Even as I made my way down the corridors which wind their way through the catacombs, I could hear it calling me, its voice echoing softly off the roughly-hewn walls.
"Commala-come-come, cupslinger. Ahead it awaits. Your ka, your destiny. Come."
As I knelt before the bench, I saw the labels of all of the Weird sodas which I had quaffed before before my eyes. Sweet Blossom. Oogave. Even Biotta and Kombucha Wonder Drink, as if they were new and yet unquaffed, and the miles and memories did not lie between us, as they now did.
"I remember you all. Yes, all, and I will speak your names here at the foot of the Lab bench."
As I chanted the names of the Weirdness, I heard once again the voice speak to me. Was it the voice of the Tower--Ves'ka Gan? Or perhaps the voice of the Beam?
But no, it was the voice of the Soda. Ves'ka Can.
"Welcome. But your journey is not yet done, cupslinger."
I reached the bench, and drew out the box. Indeed, there it lay, at the very back of the box. A small can, with what looked like a comic strip printed on it. In the comic, a woman raised a can (the same can? If I looked closer, would I see the same comic? Worlds within worlds within worlds, of course--this can was the linchpin of all time, space, and size, and such was to be expected) to her lips. In the next frame, her face had drawn back in a rictus of shock. A small explosion was taking place in her mouth, and the words were shown emerging.
"OH! Powerful Soda!" she exclaimed.
Of course, I thought. Powerful indeed. The source of all power, if the Canni-folk could be believed.
But as I extended my trembling hands to seize it at long last, from where it lay in the back of the box, it tipped toward the rear. And as it teetered, I felt worlds--all the worlds which whirled around its axis--tipping along with it.
It rolled, slowly at first, then with increasing speed, off the back and past the rows of boxes of ladyfingers, shortbread, and cakes which I had athered for the feast days--those confections which were to have ended the meal. I rose, moving with the utter lack of grace which had carried me shamefacedly out the door of a hundred merengue lessons, and pursued. As I had always done.
As I would always do.
The can in back fled across the dessert--and the quaffmaster followed.
Where: Purchased at Mitsuwa Marketplace
Color: Clear--perhaps ever-so-slightly cloudy, but only the tiniest bit.
Scent: Very strong citrus, but sweet. Reminiscent of lemon jelly candy, or maybe very sweet grapefruit.
Taste: *boom* OH! Powerful Soda!
Very, very tart--like a sour worm or sour Gummi Bear. Actually, tastes a lot like sour worms. Sweet, but very tart.
The Lead Assistant Tester is fond of putting lemons in the freezer, impaling them on a stick once they are cold, sprinkling them with sugar and sucking on them. I'll bet they taste a bit like this.
JAT: *eyes pop out, makes a number of interesting faces, pants* "Aaahh...huh...lemony. Sour soda!"
Fairly tasty, actually, but very very tart. Effectively liquid sour candy.
Quaff rating: 3.0. Not very subtle, but reasonably tasty.
Cough rating: 1.0. I like the tartness, but it's almost overwhelming.
Columbia Soda Works Sarsaparilla Soda
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