12 people with no shared history having lunch together makes this prompt wildly impractical, so I’m going to skew this more towards characters I’d like to have lunch with, and away from a group that might actually get on together long enough to eat (prompt, as always, is The Broke and the Bookish‘s Top Ten Tuesday).
1. Captain Angua von Überwald (Discworld series): brave, loyal and a great strategic thinker, Angua probably should have featured on the Deserted Island Top Ten. She would have some amazing stories from her work for the Ankh Morpork City Watch. Just don’t tell anyone that she’s a werewolf.
2. Jo March (Little Women – Louisa May Alcott): would be wonderful to talk to about just about everything, and I am annoyed that my first question would probably be: why not Laurie?!
3. Becky Rawdon (née Sharp) (Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray): is a renowned conversationalist, before you even start to scratch the surface of her sneaky, ambitious personality. She would con me out of everything I owned and I wouldn’t even notice.
4. Hercule Poirot (Hercule Poirot series – Agatha Christie): would also have some bizarre murder cases to talk about, although I would actually just like to watch as he straightened every book, picture, knife and fork or other moveable object in the room, therefore doing a significant portion of my tidying for me.
5. Flora Poste (Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons): would have my life organised completely within about 20 minutes. Flora also has a taste for quality, so it would be a very good lunch indeed.
6. Molly Weasley (Harry Potter series – JK Rowling): could probably do with a lunch she didn’t have to cook herself or clean up after. Would give good advice and tell you if you were doing something idiotic. Probably shouldn’t have Flora Poste and Molly in the same room.
7. Buttercup (The Princess Bride – William Goldman): I always felt there was something that we weren’t understanding about Buttercup, as she doesn’t seem particularly interesting until she defies Humperdinck, and yet Westley came back from the dead for her. Lunch would be a perfect opportunity to get her talking.
8. Moiraine Damodred (the Wheel of Time series – Robert Jordan): is a badass. I’ll admit that it’s been a very long time since I read this series (well, the first five books anyway), but Moiraine was my favourite character from the moment she turns up. One of the most together female characters I can think of.
9. Charlotte Lucas (Pride & Prejudice – Jane Austen): as long as Mr Collins is off grovelling at Lady Catherine’s and not lurking around like a bad smell. Charlotte is sensible, good at entertaining herself and probably desperate for company. Would probably also serve an amazing afternoon tea.
10. Boodie and Patsy (The Hounds of the Morrigan – Pat O’Shea): are excellent at picnics. However, as Boodie and Patsy are actually the Celtic gods Brigit and Angus Og, there will probably be a death defying quest in the offing.