Well, there’s some good news to go along with this post. I’ve written almost 1100 words this morning, and in doing so made it almost two-thirds of the way through Annie’s and Kerry’s Kali test. And let me tell you, it is a bloody mess. Given that they’re being tested and a somewhat public situation, anyone who decides to call either of these kids out after this has either got to be really good at what they do, or a complete idiot–or maybe a little of both. Honestly, I can’t wait until I get to this point in the story so you can see my kids unleash hell.
It’s going to be glorious.
Once more, however, I’m sort of making up for the fact that I haven’t written in the last two days. Both Friday and Saturday night I was out listening to live music at the coffee shop down the street. It was kind of a nice break, but at the same time there was something I should’ve written and I won’t be able to get to it until tonight. That’s on me and I should know better. But sometimes you need to just step back and recharge, and that’s what I’ve been doing of late.
I can’t quite get to that fight yet because I’m still in the process of setting up the rules. We know Ramona is one of those helping set up the rules; but who is it who’s come to visit her? Well, who do you think?
(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017 by Cassidy Frazee)
Ramona looked up and found Helena Lovecraft standing in her doorway, a tablet in her left hand. It was rare Helena carried her tablet with her and it usually indicated she wanted to conduct some important business with you. “No, not at all.” She waved the sorceress inside and waved the door shut. “What’s on your mind?”
Helena sat and made herself comfortable. “Got a request from my friends in San Francisco.” She placed the tablet on remote his desk and pushed it towards her. “It’s a cook order.”
A “cook order” was Guardian slang for the creation of homunculi, as they needed to be created in molds, prepared from materials they gave them a human-like appearance and feeling. She tapped Helena’s tablet to hers, transferring the document to her machine, then performed a quick scan. Her eyebrows shot up as she looked up. “They want a dozen by tomorrow night? What for?”
Helena retrieved her tablet. “Scroll a little further down; you’ll see the Guardians want to conduct a self-defense test during the Sunday class. The email indicates they want them to go up against a dozen homunculi.” She shut the tablet off and set it aside, leaving it floating in the air next to her. “It shouldn’t be that big of a deal.”
Never let it be said that the instructors at Salem didn’t have their own little territories marked out, and when someone from outside their territory decides to come in and start rearranging things a bit, people get testy. Ramona is well aware that Helena is only passing along what the Guardians are asking, but that doesn’t mean she has to like it.
And this goes double when someone else tries to put her at ease–
Ramona snorted. “Allow me to be the judge of what is and isn’t a ‘big deal’ around here.” She sat back in her large, plush chair. “And why do they want to conduct this test during my class? I could easily hold it Sunday afternoon.”
“Except they don’t want it Sunday afternoon, they wanted Sunday morning.” Helena shrugged. “Who the hell knows why San Francisco asks for these things? When they want something, we deliver.” She slowly crossed her legs and rested her hands against her knee. “Remember, it was the same way when we set up the puppeteering rigs. They told us they wanted to test them, but they leaked out the details little by little, so that we were still scrambling around right up until a few hours before Annie and Kerry showed up.”
Ramona couldn’t fault Helena’s logic. While not a member of the Guardians herself, as the person in charge of helping develop the fighting skills of students at Salem, she was often asked to evaluate students and, as in the case with teaching Annie and Kerry how to Marionette, she sometimes work directly with them to carry out their instructions.
But that didn’t mean she liked having to cater to every whim that came out of the Guardian’s North American headquarters in San Francisco. She felt that often they were too secretive for their own good and there were times when it seems as if the secrecy involved keeping members on their end from understanding the purpose of a test.
The interesting thing to take away from this exchange is that Ramona doesn’t seem all that surprised by all this BS Helena is pushing her way. We know she knows Annie and Kerry are doing things for the Guardians because she was involved in the puppeteer tests and there wasn’t any way Helena could spin that off as anything but. If anything, if seems she’s been called upon to do their bidding once in a while, because if you’re gonna get kids ready for the battles ahead, who better to do so than the Mistress of Ass Kicking?
Now we know the Guardians can be an annoying group of shits. How annoying?
I think you’re about to find out.