Penultimate scene for Chapter Twenty-Seven is finished, and I’m almost ready to move on to the next. That won’t happen until tonight, and already I’m started the dread at what’s coming. But now is not the place to get worked up over things that haven’t yet occurred: concentrate on the now.
I did have an enjoyable time writing during the last evening. I got into a bit of a grove while grooving out on The Four Tops’ Baby I Need Your Loving, because it brought back a great memory of a flight to Hong Kong, where this same song brought back great memories. How’s that for getting meta on the meta? Doesn’t get much more than that.
As I closed out the scene and recorded my word count for the day, I picked up on this unusual situation:
Words: 02/21/2016: 401
Words: 02/22/2016: 861
Words: 02/23/2016: 651
Words: 02/24/2016: 691
Every night I ended the count on a “1”. Now I’ve done some strange things before and noticed some strange coincidences, but this was the first time I believe this has happened. Maybe something is playing with me? Naw, no spirits keeping an eye on me.
Speaking of those last six hundred and ninety-one words, here’s what they look like:
All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015, 2016 by Cassidy Frazee)
Within the confines of the hospital ward the astral plain appeared even brighter than the library. It was because this area was associated with life and healing, and even the deaths that had occurred here over the decades couldn’t dampen the brightness left behind by so many lives made better. Deanna looked to her right and saw Nurse Gretchen sitting in Coraline’s office. She didn’t have an aura because Gretchen, like all artificial people, wasn’t a living being, but the dark shape of her body sprinkled with the few bright points of astral light produced by the enchanted implants that allowed her to perform various kinds of magic.
Deanna wasn’t bothered that any of the alarms used to tell Coraline and her staff that someone was inside the ward would detect her. There were two separate systems to tell if someone were trying to open the Curtain on any of the hospital floors, but there weren’t any enchantments looking for people physically walking this realm, for they weren’t required. First they’d have to make their way inside the school walls— She made her way towards the first floor ward corridor. And then they’d have to make their way past our Guardian and Protector—
Though the privacy curtain to Bay #1 was visible as an astral mist, it wasn’t necessary for Deanna to make it insubstantial so she could see the glowing auras on the other side. They were together in Bed #2 and the low, steady glow of their auras told her they were asleep. But she needed a better, closer look, and there wasn’t any possibly she’d get that standing here in the ward corridor—
She passed through the curtain and stood between the beds as she gazed down upon the children. Standing this close Deanna could just make our their physical forms—Kerry on his back with Annie on his right side, tucked away in the crook of his arm—on the other side of the Curtain, but it was their astral aspect that intrigued her more. Like seen in the video recorded at Memory’s End, their auras were as one with no sign of a separation boundary, possessing identical colors and hues.
In the astral plain it’s just possible to make out a person’s physical aspect, and now you know that artificial people like Nurse Gretchen are just dark outlines with little bright spots where implanted enchantments allow them to do magic. That’s how the nurses are able to teleport and do that thing where they whip the clothes off one’s body. Pretty much all of them get that treatment, but the ones who work at the school–and unlike house elves, the school’s APs are actually paid for their service–tend to get a few more magical doodads implanted inside their bodies because it’s necessary.
As we’ve already seen the kids are asleep next to each other–
–and Deanna’s seeing the crazy aura mingling she’s seen before. There are also the colors, and they get her to wondering:
The pink she understood: it represented love and affection, and the brightness of that primary color showed their feelings for each other. It was the other colors that she found puzzling, because the lights of bright yellow indicated a fear of losing control, while violet pertained to magic, particularly visions. She moved around the bed, taking in the merged aura from other angles and confirmed there weren’t variations in the colors and brightness between Annie and Kerry.
They share everything, even the emotional charges that flow through their bodies out to their auras. She made her way to the end of the and examined the couple. Why the yellow and violet? Why do they both express the same compassion, ideas, and fears? She crossed her arms and sighed. When they are like this I see how Annie might feel the terror Kerry felt in his dream if they were like this, but in the coven their auras don’t reach that far. What allowed her to hear him? What am I missing?
After ten seconds of silent contemplation the epiphany Deanna hoped for struck her hard. There was something missing.
She moved around to Annie’s side of the bed and leaned over the astral forms looking for the part of their aspect that should be easily visible. After making certain that what she sought wasn’t stuck under their bodies she examined the spaces between them. Annie was turned slightly towards Kerry which made a direct examination of the front of her body difficult, but there wasn’t any possibility Deanna would bother the sleeping girl.
There was nothing under her chin, nothing at her neck, nothing—
“There.” She pinched her fingers around the found object, confirmed where it started and started following it away—
“What?” Deanna leaned even closer, almost setting her face against the children’s auras while tugging gently upon the object. “So that’s how it happens.” She straightened and smiled while slowly shaking her head. “Makes complete sense now.”
How what happens? And what makes sense? Sure, I’m not telling you right now what Deanna found, because that would be cheating. But she figured out something, and it’s going to play an important part in a later scene, and even in a later chapter.
But first, I gotta get the Brain Trust together and see what they figure out. While I may dread writing that part, it’s also gonna be fun. And when I consider I’ve had this scene inside me for about three years, it’s about time for it to come out and see the light of day–