Here I am, back to the writing, and a little upset because I broke a nail last night while writing. I guess that’s one of the hazards I’m going to have to deal with now, snapping off nails every now and then because I’m pounding away on the keyboard. Or I’m going to have to toughen them up a lot more than they already are.
I’ve waited all this time to grow them out and . . . sigh. It’ll grow back.
Operation Spying On Maybe Aware Girl has begun, and believe it or not, it’s boring. No, really: they’re standing in a park across the street from the house where Tanith lives, and it’s cold, it’s windy–just generally not a pleasant time. I know the weather because I looked it up, and I know the place because I’ve even got a picture of where Helena is standing when all this goes down–
I have something similar set up for the next scene, which is Annie and Kerry, who are elsewhere at this time. Where? You’ll find out.
In fact, let’s get to that right now . . .
All excerpts, this page, from The Foundation Chronicles, Book One: A For Advanced, copyright 2013, 2014, by Cassidy Frazee)
Helena turned up the color of here long, leather jacket against the strong gusts coming out of the north. During the night the mild weather that greeted them when they arrived in Kansas City departed and turned chilly and windy. She didn’t mind the sudden change, though: she grew up on the north island of New Zealand, and the weather went from one extreme to another all the time. And this is a normal spring day for Erywin—
She turned sideways so she didn’t take the gust straight in the face. It doesn’t help that we’re more or less standing out in the open with only a since tree to break the wind. And speaking of Erywin . . .
Her partner walked up the sidewalk from the corner and turned into the park, joining her under the lone tree situated in a perfect location that allowed them to observe while affording them some shelter from the elements. She placed her hand in the pockets of her jacket and rocked back and forth on her flat boot heels. “Nothing unusual going on in the back.”
“You watched for twenty minutes?”
Erywin nodded. The house they were observing was on a street corner lot, so observing the rear area wasn’t difficult. “Started the timer on my mobile the moment you told me she was out the front door.” She patted the device out of habit. “No one sneaking in or out.”
Helena nodded. “Were you able to get a scan of the inside from back there?”
Erywin shook her head. “No. The shielding was as strong back there as anywhere else. Maybe if we jaunted up onto the roof—”
“I’m not that eager—yet.” Upon arriving outside the house after their early breakfast, Helena attempted a scan on the Granstrom Home and discovered there was a heavy shield preventing any internal scans of the domicile. Helena wasn’t disturbed by shielding being there; most members of The Foundation had shielding of one form or another around their homes, but this was well beyond what she’d seen around most places.
Not to mention that she didn’t know Kaden could throw up shielding that powerful.
Right off the bad Helena’s Black Magic Senses are tingling, and that’s never a good sign. She’s a suspicious person, and they are aroused. Also, there’s another detail . . .
Erywin felt the anger radiating off the person who meant the most to her. “What’s bothering you, my pretty girl?”
Helena turned away from the house and began walking past the playground equipment towards the shelter in the distance. “The amount of shielding around the house concerns me.”
“It just seems excessive. It’s not as if we have that much around our house—”
“Yes, we do.” She took hold of Helena’s right arm. “But then, you have a reason for that. I’m certain he does as well.”
Helena slowly dropped the light bending spell, allowing them to turn visible slowly. “True; he is a paranoid Sideliner.” She shook her head. “The reports the Guardians supplied didn’t mention it was that extensive.”
Erywin was the first to admit that this operation spooked her, but based upon everything she’d read about Kaden, he was worried about being observed, so she didn’t find his measures all that unusual. “Perhaps we don’t need to see inside the house.”
“It would be nice to know what he’s up to in there.” The approached the open, modern shelter—somewhat like the pavilions back at Salem—and walked inside. Helena threw up a spell to help block out the north wind and sat. “I’d like to know if Tanith is in there doing . . . things.”
Erywin sat as well. “Or if he is.”
“Of if they both are.” She shrugged. “Let’s hope the kids are having a better time of things.”
Things, huh? Like . . . stuff? Magical stuff? Which is possible: maybe the Guardians suspect he’s starting to show his little girl how to do magic, but, again, he doesn’t want people snooping around–like Helena and Erywin are doing. Oh, and where are the kids? You’ll find out next scene.
In the mean time:
“It’s all right.” Erywin gave Helena’s hand a gentle squeeze. “What’s next?”
“Stick to the plan: you’ll go back to the hotel for now and take what we have and transfer it to our off-site storage, and I’ll head up to where Kaden’s works and observe him for a bit. When I’m done I’ll come back to the hotel.”
Erywin nodded. “And the kids stay on site all day?”
“Yes: that doesn’t change.”
“Understood.” Erywin looked about the park and took in the chilly, blustery day. “Not how I would have expected things to start. But . . .” She patted Helena’s hand. “Could be snowing.”
“I’ve had that happen.” Helena stared across the park at the Granstrom house. Though she knew Erywin was correct—that he was probably doing what he could to keep out unwanted observation from The Foundation—she was still bothered that she couldn’t get a look inside. What are you doing in there, Kaden? What are you hiding? Do you know what’s happening to your daughter, and you’re afraid some nice Foundation people are going to find out as well? Well, too late for that—
She shook her head. “Let’s move on.” She stood and wrapped her coat around her. “We’re done here for the day.”
They’re done here for the day, and so am I. And what the kids will talk about tomorrow–
It’s not really operation related.
What a surprise, huh?