The penultimate chapter has officially begun, because the first scene of that chapter is over and done. One down, seven to go–
Which does bring up an interesting point. As I get more into the plot, I begin thinking about scenes that don’t exist on the page, but are starting to form in my head. When they get a little more solid I’ll set the scene up, and I may actually find myself adding something to Act One if I believe it’s in need of a new scene.
Also, the novel just passed sixty-five thousand words, and if these remaining chapters are like the previous ones, I’ll add another ten thousand words before getting to the “End of Act One” notice. This would put Act One at around seventy-five thousand words, and benchmark the novel at just under a quarter of a million words. I love how I say that–“Just under a quarter of a million words.” It’s like, oh, only that much? You’re slacking, girl.
Last night I finished the scene with just under six hundred and fifty words. It was my intention to start the next scene, but . . . I started writing after my latest electrolysis session–
I also had to do my HRT shot, number twenty-three out of twenty-four that represent my first year of being on hormone replacement, and it was the first “gusher” I’ve experienced, where a bit more than a little blood came out. Nothing major, but it is one of the reasons you always keep a cotton pad at the ready, just in case you need to stop the flow.
It was after all those thing that I finally managed to sit down and finished the scene–with a little help from someone else . . .
(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)
“Shush, you.” She closed the book and pressed it against her chest. “My darling, this is perfect.”
A wide smile slowly emerged upon Kerry’s face. “Really?”
“Yes.” Annie felt her emotions coming back under control, but her love for her ginger soul mate grew greater by the second. “You knew what this book represents, and what that means to me. I can’t . . .” She sighed long, then threw her arms around Kerry and presented him with a long, tender kiss. “Thank you, my love. Once again, you touched my heart.”
He hugged her tight. “I figured you should have the book of your dreams. It brought us together, didn’t it?”
I will be honest: the above line came out of yesterday’s blog post. I wrote that, got the post out, and then sort of kicked back, sort of thinking, “Yeah, good post, Cassie.” A reader commented on that line–the last of the post–and I thought, “Yeah, it’s a lot like something Kerry would say,” so . . . he said it. Like I’ve said before, just because the novel is plotted out, it doesn’t mean it’s written.
And I do love that Kerry is a heart toucher. It’s not the cost of the gift, it’s the feeling behind said gift. And he knows those feelings . . .
“It did.” She kissed him again, longer and with more love. “It’s one of the things that made me fall in love with you.” She rested against him as she examined the cover. “Where did you get this?”
“It wasn’t all me—” Kerry slipped his arm around Annie. “I had help.”
“Yeah. I emailed Mr. Parkman around the end of June and ask if he could help me track down a first edition hardback.” He lightly tapped the cover. “A week and a half later he told me found a copy, and that he bring it to school and I could pay him here.”
Now, let’s play a little Devil’s Advocate here. Kerry contacted Trevor Parkman, School Librarian and Archivist, and ask for help tracking down a first edition book just over sixty years old that’s in good condition. He does, and tell Kerry to pay him when he gets to school. Now, we also know that Deanna spent time with Trevor during the summer holiday, so it stands to reason that she probably knew about the gift as well–which means while Annie and Kerry were going through their latest vision in Memory’s End on the first full day back at school, she could have been sitting there thinking, “Oh, Annie, just wait until you see what Kerry is giving you!”
Then again, the woman is good at keeping secrets, and probably knows what Kerry is getting Annie for the next several years. Possibly. Maybe. Perhaps? I’m not telling.
Someone, however, is really surprised by her sweetheart’s actions–
“End of June?” She felt her emotions swelling once again. “You planed this then?”
“I was actually thinking about it . . .” He slowly dropped his gaze towards the ground. “Since we got back from, you know—” He lowered his voice to a near-whisper. “—Kansas City.”
She closed her eyes and slowly exhaled. Five months: he’s planed this for five months. She was keenly aware that Kerry didn’t think he was special—other than being a witch—but Annie always thought different, and as she held the book close, as she leaned against her soul mate, feeling his arm around her . . . Annie knew he was the most special person in the world—
And she’d make certain to remind him of that every day.
She slipped her leg arm around him and kissed him a third time. “I love you.”
He press his face against her cheek, then kissed her back. “Chestit rozhden den, Annie. Obicham te.”
Her fingers glided over his cheek. “How long have you practiced saying that?”
“About a week.” He chuckled. “I had to trust the computer translation; I couldn’t ask you how to say it.”
“You could have asked Professor Semplen.”
“You were always around when I saw him.” They chucked together, then Kerry rested his head against hers. “Since we have the afternoon free . . .”
Annie could sense his question: there wasn’t any need for him to ask. “Come.” She switched the book to her left hand and took his hand in her right. She led them to a tree close to where their brooms rested, one that was perfect: the bark wasn’t too rough, the ground looked soft, and there was plenty of shade.
Kerry released Annie’s hand and sat back against the trunk. Once he was comfortable he motioned for her to sit next to him, holding out his left arm. She snuggled into the crook of his shoulder and lay her head against him. He reached over and softly stroked her cheek. “You gonna hold the book?”
“I’ll do better than that.” Annie levitated the book and positioned it about half an arms length from his face. “I can turn the pages, too.”
“I never doubted.” He adjusted his glasses then held Annie tight against him as he began reading much the same way he’d done in their dream a little more than six years before. “’To be the skipper of the only boat on the Moon was a distinction that Pat Harris enjoyed. As the passengers filed aboard Selene, jockeying for window seats, he wondered what sort of trip it would be this time . . .’”
Those last two lines are not written by me, but by Sir Arthur himself, way back in 1960–
It’s strange that a story I enjoyed greatly when I was about same age as Kerry when he not only began enjoying it, but passed that enjoyment along to a girl whom he believed was only a figment of that dream, would become an important part of my own novel. It really is the cornerstone of their relations, that dream reading under a tree in California, because even though Annie was falling in love with Kerry then, their moment together in that dream cemented that love. Which means it’s probably not a coincidence that Annie told Kerry that when they’re apart he should always look to the Moon and know that she’s seeing the seeing it as well.
Also makes one wonder if Annie things it’s some strange twist of nature that the name of their moon boat is also the call sign of a certain ginger hair girl from another coven . . .