Things have almost gotten back to normal here at Casa Indiana. Spent a lot of time running around yesterday, and even managed to get the writing in after Orphan Black showed. But this morning was a nice time for me, because I did something I haven’t in a long time: I lay in bed with the window open and listened to the rain falling. I’ve written about doing this before, but this morning was the first time I’ve experienced this sensation in over a year. Living in a city you almost never open your windows at night, not if you want to sleep. And there’s no soft patter of rain on stone and grass when you live twelve stories above the street.
Nope. You get stuff like this when you can, and I might not get it again for a year. Or more.
And this morning I realized that, with all the years I’ve worked on this blog, I’ve spoken of my library, my private writing space, that I’ve never really shown it. Not to friends, not to enemies, not to various passersby who might be curious about what’s going on inside my hovel. So, here: a panorama of my library of two thousand plus books. Mind the mess:
And just so they don’t feel left out, here is my last book case of nothing but role playing games that hides behind the door . . .
So that be that, people. My writing space in The Burg isn’t quite as cluttered and messy, but then when I’m there I don’t have my favorite books right at hand, allowing me to look up quotes or passages when the urge strikes me. Of all the things I leave behind, this is one of the things I miss the most.
But enough of that: on with what’s important, right? Like writing.
I’d promised one person that I would finish the scene in the spell cell last night, and I kept my promise. It took about five hundred and sixty words, but I put the cap on that scene in more ways than one. And since I had a little energy left over after that–I was feeling sleep coming on in a big way, because I was still catching up from my Friday adventure–I started the next scene.
Since I’m in a good mood, and since I expect to do a little running around today before finishing this next scene, I though, what the hell, let me show you what I wrote last night, pretty much as it would look in the book. The first paragraph I wrote a few days ago: the next five paragraphs were written Friday night before collapsing. The rest was written last night after I watched my beloved Clone Club.
Without further ado . . .
(All excerpts, this page, from The Foundation Chronicles, Book One: A For Advanced, copyright 2013, 2014, by Cassidy Frazee)
Kerry turned to Annie, his head slightly cocked to one side, and spoke with an over-enunciated English accent. “My dear, you are speaking to Mr. Timey Wimey. Trust me: if I can’t do it, it’s can’t be done.” He straightened up and shook his head a couple of time. “With that said . . .”
One of the problems with making charcoal the old fashion way was the time involved: even a small batch like they were going to make could take ten to twelve hours to prepare properly. That was why Kerry thought about using a time spell—they could speed up the process instead of having to watch wood slowly burn for half a day.
He realized the easiest way to do this was to set up a spell field where a minute outside the field would equal an hour inside the field. The hardest thing about doing this was how to create a field where minutes outside meant hours inside. Though he’d come up with an idea for that . . .
He imagined the field like a large analog clock face, with the numbers and the hash marks in between. In this vision he saw the numbers—the hours representation—vanish, leaving only the hash marks—the minutes representation. Then he replaced each hash mark with a number, all the way to sixty at the stop of the clock—each minute now turned to an hour.
With the visualization firmly in place, now all that was required was energy and willpower.
He brought the components together, imagining the oblate sphere he was about to create being slightly larger than the ball of cold fire and the wood it would soon rest upon and burn, a light grey mass of twisting, convulsing power. Kerry held out his left hand, pointing two fingers at the floating cold fire and felt the magic course down his arm and outward towards the glowing blue ball.
The grey sphere appeared around the cold fire, making it shimmer strangely. Kerry could only think of one reason why—
Annie noticed the effect as well. “I think you managed the effect.” She reached for the new sphere, almost touching the surface. “It’s flickering—”
“—Because one second out here is one minute in there.” Kerry hurried over to where his computer and phone were left. “Now to do a proof of concept.” He punched up something on his tablet before handing it to Annie. “Need just a second here . . .” He pulled hand grabber he’d taken from the greenhouse from his backpack and unfolded it before using it to hold his phone. He turned and approached their assembled spell work. “I’ve got a stopwatch program up on that—” Kerry pointed at the table Annie held, “—and I’m going to start the stopwatch app on my phone, and hold it inside the field.”
Annie nodded: they’d gone over this part earlier in the week, and once more in the library here. “And when I reach a minute, you’ll remove your phone and check the time.”
“Yeah.” He held his finger over the start button on his phone’s stop watch. “Ready?”
“And . . . go.” Kerry immediately press his button and thrust the phone inside the field. He didn’t ask for updates: he knew as soon as the stop watch on the table reached a minute on his table, Annie would call—
Kerry pulled the gripping back and hit the stop button on his app the moment the phone was completely clear of the time field. He stared at the screen for almost five seconds without saying a word, then turned the display for Annie to read—
She, too, stared at the screen for a few second—only because she couldn’t believe what it told her. “Fifty-nine minutes, twenty-four seconds.”
Kerry found it hard to stop grinning. “Yeah.” He gave a short fist pump. “Yeah. That’s right about where I want it.”
“Oh, that’s great.” Annie set Kerry’s tablet aside, then went over an hugged him. “That’s close enough to be perfect.”
“Means a twelve hour burn will take about fifteen minutes.” He wrapped both arms around his sweetie. “We did it.” He kissed her cheek. “We really did it.”
Annie looked at the bucket. “We’ve almost done it—” She barely moved her right hand and more water flowed from the container and formed a thick plug, half as long as the first container, and with a wide cap. It was formed in a matter of seconds with Kerry’s help; Annie froze it with little more than a stare.
She waved her hand and the plug sank towards the top of the encasement, pushing the time accelerated cold fire inside. It stopped upon making contact with the wood: Annie figured it was beginning to burn and char.
Annie leaned her head into Kerry’s shoulder. “And now we’re finished.”
“Except for the wood to burn with what little oxygen there is in the encasement, getting nice and charred while that plug pushes the fire down to burn what’s below.” He held her tight. “Should take about . . . fifteen minutes.”
She looked around the room. “Do we wait here? There’s no place to sit.”
Kerry slowly rocked back and forth. “I’m good right here.”
Annie nuzzled Kerry’s face and neck with her cheek. “I am too, love. I am too.”
The moment Wednesday heard the fire alarm sound she teleported from her office to the top of the stairs leading to the lower levels, then hurried down the steps. She was in a hurry not just because there was a fire in one of the spell cells, but because it was Spell Cell #3, the one in use by Kirilova and Malibey. I should have sent someone down there to be with them. Wednesday turned right at the bottom of the stairs and sprinted towards the cell. The enchantments will protect them for now.
Upon reaching Spell Cell #3, Wednesday’s worry turned to puzzlement. The light indicating an active fire was slowly flashing, but the indicator next to the door showing the presence of active enchantments was dark. The puzzlement slowly turned to bother, because she knew it was impossible for the fire alarm to go off while the enchantments that threw status spells on anyone inside before draining the fire of energy remained inactive. She knew this because she’d created the enchantments inside the cell.
Since the active enchantment light wasn’t on, that meant the fire door was unlocked. Which means I have no idea what I’ve going to find on the other side. Wednesday threw the door open with a flick of her wrist and stepped inside—
Kirilova and Malibey were wearing work gloves while loading what appeared to be charred wood into a couple of large canvas totes. They looked up as Wednesday stopped about a meter from them. She looked about the room before locking her gaze upon them. “What’s going on here?”
So there I left it with Wednesday coming in after what she perceives as an emergency, and finds the kids–loading wood? No, nothing out of the ordinary there . . .
I’ll do what I can this afternoon and evening, but I’m going to try and finish the current scene. Then . . . that’s when things change for my kids in a big way. You’ll see.