Final Moments in the Garden of Salem: The Promise

Another chapter is down and away in the history books.  Another that just slipped over ten thousand words, making it two in a row, and leaving the story hovering around one hundred and three thousand, five hundred words total.

It was another two thousand word day, too, because I wrote about a thousand words for my Humans recap, and then almost eleven hundred for this scene, which is below.  That’s a couple of two thousand word days back-to-back, and it’s also been a while since I’ve done that.  Part of it was getting into the groove, part of it was grooving out on some good tunes, including one song that is gonna play an important part in Annie and Kerry’s relationship.  I like that, with this story, I’m starting to integrate the music more than I did in the last.  Because, comes right down to it, kids love music, so why wouldn’t it be important to the little witches of Salem?  Which makes me wonder if they crank up the jams when they’re crafting the spells?  Probably do once in a while in Wednesday’s class.

Now that the kids are in the garden, where are they going with this?  Well . . .

(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)

Kerry barley pressed the fingers of his left hand to the bottom of Annie’s chin; there were there to steady her, nothing more. As she was still in her low heels he moved closer and stretched just enough upward to kiss her, his lips lightly touching hers. He closed his eyes and waited for that sensation he’d felt so often of late, one where he felt as if he were falling into her, thought her body and into her aura. It was a wonderful feeling, and every kiss he shared with Annie he desired this sensation as much as he desired her kiss.

He broke the kiss and wrapped her up within his arms. “I love you, Anelie Victoreva.”

She loved it when he used her patronymic, and though he didn’t actually have one, she had begun addressing them that way when they found themselves in quiet, personal moments like now. “I love you, Kerrigan Davynavich.”

He chuckled. “I hate my name.”

“But it’s your name, and since it’s attached to the boy I love, I love the name.” She leaned in and kissed him on the nose. “It’s been such a special night.”

Now, a little bit about patronymics.  Where Annie lives, family names are tricky.  The reality is–as it was related to me–the family name is Kirilovi, but the name changes when you’re discussing men and women.  Annie’s dad, being a guy, drops the “i”, which is why he’s Victor Kirilov, and Kerry didn’t realize that Annie’s father was a Formula 1 driver.  Her mother, Pavlina, substitutes the “i” for an “a”, and that makes the family name Kirilova, which is the same thing Annie does.

Middle names are easy for girls:  you take your father’s name and add “eva” to it.  So, Anelie–Annie’s real given name–Victoreva–her father’s name with “eva” added.  Annie did something different with Kerry’s name, however, because when it comes to boys, their middle name is the father’s name plus “vich”, and to make it sound right you can add an “a” or “i” before the suffix if you think it’s necessary.  Kerry’s father’s name is Davyn, hence “Davynavich”, though Annie could have easily said, “Davynvich”.

If you want some real fun, when Annie gets married to Kerry–noticed I didn’t say “if”–by Bulgarian law she take take her husband’s family name, or keep her family, or use a hyphenate of the two.  So she could marry and legally end up known as Annie Malibey, or Annie Kirilova, or Annie Kirilova-Malibey, or Annie Malibey-Kirilova.  And, if you really want to crank this up to eleven, she could become so well known by her patronymic, that she’d be known as Annie Victoreva.

Now that we have that information dump out of the way, Kerry’s got something on his mind:

“It has.” They began walking along the path leading to the walkway that would take them to their tower. “Did you have a good talk with Deanna?”

Annie had begun to wonder if Kerry was going to ask her about her time alone with the seer. “Yes, I did.”

“Did you discuss our visions?”

“Yes.”

“And?”

She shrugged. “She said that since we don’t know what happened in the second vision, there’s nothing to prove that our feelings in the first vision are unwarranted.”

“Which means means we should just let things happen—” He shot her a knowing glance.

She nodded as they stepped on to the walk between the Great Hall and Cernunnos Coven tower. “Exactly.”

Kerry let the subject hang until they were almost under the covered portion of the walk. “Wanna sit for a bit before going in?”

Annie leaned against Kerry. “Yes.” She led them towards their bench and sat, snuggling against Kerry the moment he sat. “She was right about that second vision: we don’t really know what happened there.”

“And we won’t until we actually encounter that room—” He slowly placed his arm around Annie’s shoulders and slid it down to her waist. “—whenever that is.”

This is something these two have discussed, so he knows what’s on her mind.  What they know about the second vision is that they don’t know what happened, so the best thing to do is let it be:

She made herself comfortable against her soul mate. “It happens in a couple of years; I’m sure of that for some reason.”

The vision had begun to weigh on Kerry for the last couple of weeks, and this impressions of the time frame were similar. “I think so, too. It’s just—”

“How are we out flying somewhere on our own?”

“Yeah.”

She slid a few centimeters to her left so she could set her head against Kerry’s shoulder. “We’ll find out in time.”

Of course you kids could ask me, but . . . not telling.

Since spending most of his A Levels reading up on divination and visions, Kerry had begun to hate the idea of having to wait to find out where the vision he’d had would come true. There’s wasn’t just the vision they’d both had at the beginning of this year, but the one he had his first time visiting Memory’s End, and they one they eventually shared months apart. “I still think our first time will be when we get married.”

“I believe the same.” Annie sighed. “That won’t happen until after you turn eighteen—at the soonest. We should be in the last months of our real life experience that summer.”

“Nothing more real life than getting married, right?” Kerry chuckled, but the unease he felt made his voice waver. “Six years: that’s a long time.”

“As long as I’ve loved you.” Annie twisted so she could glide her fingers across his cheek. “We will make it.”

“I know we will.”

That’s a good indication of how long this relationship has lasted.  Annie said she started falling in love with Kerry when he was six, she was almost seven, which makes her time frame correct.  And they knew each other before that, so to say they’ve known each other all their lives is not a misnomer.  They’ve been together a long time, and Annie fully expects them to be together another hundred years.

And now she gets into the really touchy-feely part of the discussion:

Since becoming aware of their wedding night vision they’d tried not to speak of the event, mostly due to not wanting to do or say something that might color how they’d handle the event when they were older. Annie knew this was for the best, but there was this single issue that remained important to her. “Tonight I told Deanna that I knew I would be your first, and that you would be my first.” She settled in against his body again. “I want to wait until we’re married, darling.”

He pulled her tighter against him. “I know; we should.”

“Dealing with that in our relationship . . .” She shook her head. “It brings another level of complexity I’m not ready to handle. You aren’t either: neither of us are.”

Kerry wouldn’t argue because there wasn’t any need. It was one thing to have the relation they shared now—one that was loving and caring and even, in the eyes of some, mature—but neither of them were that mature that they could handle the one thing that would bind them together in a way that nothing else would. “You’re right: we’re not ready. Not for many years.” He chuckled. “Probably not until we marry. There is one thing you’re right about, though—”

“Which is?”

“You will be my first. I promise.”

Annie leaned back just enough to see Kerry’s face. “Would you do a Sorceress’ Bargain with me to ensure that happens?”

He didn’t hesitate with his answer. “Yes.”

She kissed his cheek. “There’s no need for that; I believe you. And you can believe me when I say there will be no other boy.” Annie pressed her cheek against his. “I will be yours completely, my love.”

The light around them extinguished at that moment, plunging the Pentagram Garden into darkness. Annie pressed her arms tightly against her body, holding in the warmth that was slowly dispersing. “I think it’s time for bed.”

Kerry stood and helped Annie to her feet. “Wish we weren’t going to separate rooms.”

She walked slowly alongside her boyfriend. “Tonight we sleep apart; tomorrow—who knows?” She swung their arms. “Maybe the headmistress will give us a room of our own.”

“That would be nice, but . . .” He laughed at the idea of sharing a room in the coven tower. “I don’t see it happening any time soon.”

“Neither do I.” She kissed the back of his hand. “We will always have our dreams, though. We will share those when we can, my love, and live in them where we can’t here.” She let her sight draw out for many seconds. “For now, it is the best we have.”

One could argue that if they sit around and think about sex all the time, it’s gonna happy because they’re thinking about it all the time.  But they are convinced they will be the first for each other, and Kerry making the offer of a Sorceress’ Bargain is his way of making sure they stay together and stay, well, unsullied.  It’s a quaint idea, but Annie doesn’t want to trip off into the minefield that has destroyed other relationships, and Kerry is being supportive.  As pointed out by others at the school, their relationship is so mature it’s not like you’re looking at a couple of kids–then again, they have known each other for about a decade, so they’ve had time to understand each other.

Samhain is over:  it’s time to get into November, and I’m about to do it in a big way–

By hanging out in a manor?

By hanging out in a manor?

Final Moments in the Garden of Salem: The Entry

Where are we?  Back to the last Samhain scene, that’s where.  I promised I was going to write, and yesterday I did.  I actually stayed in all day Sunday and didn’t put on any makeup for the first time since I’ve started wearing the stuff, and between naps and watching The Walking Dead Season 2, I wrote.  I actually wrote a lot, because besides doing my notes for my recap of Humans, Episode 6–where I wrote about a thousand words–I wrote eleven hundred words for this scene, most of which is below.

A two thousand word day.  Not bad at all.

The dance is over and the kids are winding down, but there’s a few things they needed to do before getting to their current location:

 

(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)

They’d sat on their sofa for nearly an hour snuggling and chatting. Several people had come back to chat as well, including Wednesday and Isis, who were dressed respectively—according to Kerry—as Chell from the Portal video game and Samus Aran from the Metroid video games. She also managed to discover who Coraline was portraying: Ygritte from the A Song of Ice and Fire series of novels. When she asked if he was sure she wasn’t Merida from Brave, he smile and told her she knew nothing.

They spent the next hour and a half dancing. Fast dances, medium, slow: they were there for them all. The year before they’d spent most of the night sitting, and usually danced when the song tempo was slow. This year he didn’t care how he looked on the floor: as he said while they were on the sofa after dancing to her dedication song, he didn’t care if people thought he looked ridiculous, he wanted to dance with her.

After that it was back to the sofa for some rest before they made their way to Selena’s Meadow and the huge lit bonfires there. As they’d done the year before they walked between the majestic fires and paused in the middle to allow the heat to wash over them. She heard Kerry sigh amid the sounds and scents of the bonfire, and felt his hand tighten around hers. As they emerged from the other side she wondered if Kerry had felt the same sense of renewal as had she.

 

So now you know what was worn by Wednesday:

I wonder if Wednesday went the whole evening not saying anything?

Did she go the whole evening not saying anything?

Isis:

I can see a Chief of Security wearing something like this.

I can see a Chief of Security wearing something like this.

And Coraline:

Wonder if Coraline was dreaming of lots of snow?

Wonder she was dreaming of lots of snow?

And let me tell you, coming up with customs for twenty characters–I found my notes in one of the posts and counted–was not an easy task, but I not only came up with the outfits, I showed them!  Ha!  Take that.

But we’re still not in the garden–what happened before that?

 

After that it was back to the sofa for some rest before they made their way to Selena’s Meadow and the huge lit bonfires there. As they’d done the year before they walked between the majestic fires and paused in the middle to allow the heat to wash over them. She heard Kerry sigh amid the sounds and scents of the bonfire, and felt his hand tighten around hers. As they emerged from the other side she wondered if Kerry had felt the same sense of renewal as had she.

They walked hand-in-hand from the meadow to the path leading back to The Pentagram. They didn’t speak the entire time during their walk, preferring to enjoy the silence while surrounded by darkness. The met no one on the way, but Annie didn’t find that surprising: with it growing cooler many of the students took The Chunnel back to their towers, while those who could often flew or jaunted. She was aware they could have flown to the bonfire and then returned the same way, but Annie knew Kerry loved this walk, as did she. It wasn’t the same as finding a quiet place in the coven commons and snuggling, but she savored these moments alone with her soul mate as much as their times alone on a sofa.

They finally came to the end of the path and entered the clearing between the small parking lot and Founder’s Oak. There weren’t any vehicle in the lot; there never were, save for the first night they arrived in the bus from the train station. The people who come to the school don’t drive. Annie brought Kerry’s hand up and kissed the back. Even for Ostara people jaunt in to watch the program

 

Since everyone jaunts in to see the Ostara performances and show, that means the parents and relatives know their kids are witchy witches.  And that means unless you come from Legacy families, A and B Level kids will not have their folks and friends in for a show.  So Kerry is performing only to the school–or, I should say, one student in particular.  That means the only people who come into the school are jaunting, or perhaps they’re flying in on a PAV.  The parking lot is just for show; go jaunt or stay home.

Finally they’re in the garden–or, really, just right outside the walls . . .

 

Kerry looked around and sighed. “So quiet.”

“It’s late.” Annie leaned against Kerry as they walked. “It’s after midnight, my love.”

“I know.” They reached the path leading to Founder’s Gate and began heading up the slight incline. “I don’t feel tired at all, though.”

“Nor to do. I could stay up all night were it not that we have class in the morning.”

“I know; I feel the same way, Sweetie.” Kerry released Annie’s hand and placed his arm around her shoulders. “Though we have to get up in a few hours. That Advanced Self Defense class really puts a crimp in the weekend.”

“Well, we didn’t have to take it: we could have said no and slept in on Sundays.”

He chuckled. “Like we did last year?”

She sighed. “I know, my love. I know.”

They reached Founder’s Gate and stopped a couple of meters inside the immense archway bisecting the Pentagram Wall. Kerry wrapped his arms around Annie and pulled her close. “You cold, Sweetie?”

“No, I’m fine.” She rested her head upon Kerry’s shoulder. “This shawl is keeping me warm—and you’re doing a good job as well.” Annie kissed Kerry. “Ti si moyata vechna lyubov.”

He smiled shone through the darkness inside the gate. “I hope that was good.”

“It was.”

“Then the same for you, my darling.” He took her hand and led her the rest of the way through the gate and into the garden.

 

What does Annie say there?  I’m not saying.  Ha!  I’m being mean, but only because what she says is oh, so personal.

Finally they entered the interior of The Pentagram and head into the huge garden there.  And there are thoughts–

 

The Great Hall stood before them, blanked in shadows by the dim indirect light that remained on until one in the morning. Since it was still on, Annie knew it wasn’t yet one, though she guessed it wouldn’t remain on for much longer. I want to see them go out. She directed Kerry towards the path they’d taken many times on late-night walks through the garden before heading to their home away from their homes. I want to walk with Kerry through the darkness to our home, to our floor, to our beds— Another thought entered her head and Annie couldn’t keep her giggle suppressed.

Kerry glanced over. “What’s so funny?”

“I was wondering . . .” She pulled them into a slower walk. “It didn’t bother you at all that you were wearing girl’s clothes tonight?”

 

Um, Annie?  Are you trying to kill the mood?  No, it’s just how she is, and she knows she’ll get a response from Kerry:

 

He turned a half-smirk on his girlfriend. “I wasn’t wearing girl’s clothes.”

“Oh?” Annie raised an eyebrow. “Didn’t you show me pictures of how she was dressed in the cartoon?”

“Anime.”

“Anime, then. Isn’t your outfit—” She nodded towards him. “—what she wore?”

“Yeah.”

“Then they’re girl’s clothes.”

Kerry laughed softly. “I guess you’re right.”

Annie chuckled. “Aren’t I always?”

“Hummm—” He kissed her on the cheek. “Pretty much always.”

“Maybe next year we can wear those other outfits that Pang mentioned—” She playfully tugged against his arm. “What did he call them?”

Kerry gave a low sigh. “Fukus.”

Annie wasn’t trying to embarrass Kerry, but she loved the light flush that appeared upon his cheeks. So much like he was last year. “And what are those?”

“You should know: you wear one.” He laughed longer this time. “School girl’s uniforms, but more stylized because, you know, they’re magical girls.” He shook his head. “I don’t think I’m ready to wear one of those.” Kerry tugged on his jacket lapel with his free hand. “This is about as much crossplaying as I want to do right now.”

“Well—” Annie released Kerry’s hand and ran it along his back and shoulders. “I wouldn’t mind seeing you in a girl’s uniform one Samhain, my love.”

 

Yes, Annie is always right, and Annie–would like to see Kerry in a girl’s uniform for one Samhain?  Humm . . . his Bulgarian Buttercup has some interesting notions.  Then again, with transformation magic–of which he and she are learning the advanced versions–it’s likely that he may be able to grant her that wish one day.

They move on from them, with Kerry giving Annie a response and then . . . bringing up something old.

 

“Really? Maybe next year. You never know, Sweetie.” He came to a stop and checked their surroundings. “This was the place—”

“Which one is that, love?” Annie knew where they were: she couldn’t erase this moment from her memories if she’d wanted. But she left it for Kerry recall the time . . .

“This is where I almost said what I wanted to say.” He lightly touched her shoulders, moving them upward slowly to cradle her face. “This is where I was going to tell you that I loved you. And I would have—”

“Were it not for déjà vu.” A year ago they’d arrived at the dance, journeyed to the bonfires, walked between the fires, and returned to the garden. Annie remembered feeling then that something important was likely to happen, because that night Kerry had been all about showing her extra attention, only wanting to be with her—and a dedicating a dance that left her emotionally drained and light-headed.

They’d come here, and she’d call him moyata polovinka—my mate—for the first time, though at the time she’d told him it meant “My soul mate”, because she wasn’t certain if he’d understand. But she found out moment later, when his mood turned quiet and serious—

When he tried to speak—while they were kissing, actually—he complained of headaches. While he didn’t know what was happening to him, Annie believed, correctly, that he was suffering from déjà vu, from pain brought about by suppresses memories that wanted to come out, but were being held back due to magic. It turned out that was exactly what had happened to him, but at the time it was only a suspicion . . .

 

Yes, the scene of the big Déjà Vu Headache, brought about by Annie’s kissing and his desire to say that he loved her.  We know it didn’t happen that night, and it took near death before he overcame the Big Déjà and spit the words she wanted to hear out.

But they aren’t finished yet.  Oh, no.  There is something else on their minds . . .

Changes Amid the Darkness

It’s a late morning for me, with a lot of slow writing last night and this morning.  I’ve been taking my time with the current scene, probably because the words aren’t flowing from me as they once did.  Seven hundred fifty words written yesterday; four hundred twenty this morning.  After burning up the pages for a while, I’m still getting out the plot, just not the way I have since–how long have I been working on this?

Wow.  I started on B For Bewitching on 11 April, 2015.  Today is 2 August, 2015.  According to the date calculator on the Time and Date website, tomorrow will mark one hundred and fifteen days since I started working on this novel, which means I’ve been writing, with just a couple of days off, for three months and three weeks:

Numbers never lie--well, almost.

Numbers never lie–well, almost.

If I calculate my word count right, by tomorrow I’ll have averaged eight hundred and eighty-seven words a day, which isn’t a bad average when I consider I’m mostly doing this in the evening after work, and finding the time on the weekend, when I’m not running around getting things done.

Just keep writing, as they say.  Just keep writing.

Last night I sat down and did something I’ve mentioned a couple of times during the last few blog posts:  I separated Chapter Ten into two chapters, and then began renumbering the old chapters.  It took some time, and I still have to do the chapters in Act Three, but now that it’s done the segregation makes sense.  Racing is in one chapter, dancing is in another.  All is right in my Bewitching World . . .

It also looks prettier.  Sort of.

It also looks prettier. Sort of.

I did this a few time with A For Advanced, and I sometimes find myself wondering why I put myself through this craziness.  The answer is simple:  because I’m always trying to do what I think is right.  I think about how this will look if and when published, and part of my mind is saying, “You know your readers will like it when things are formatted correctly.”  So you pull things apart and set them up correctly.

It’s easy to do when you have project management software.  Of course you then have to go through and change numbers and that sort of thing, but it’s something you do.  Laying things out four months ago is when I created the road map, but it’s only once I began the journey that I started seeing the route.  And I figure the route is gonna change some more as time goes on, so it if does, I just keep making changes where they are needed.

I’ll finish up Samhain today and start on the next chapter, which is pretty much Annie-centric.  You know how I say you don’t want to make Annie mad?  Well, you’ll see what happens when that happens.  In the meantime it’s nighttime in the Pentagram Garden, and a couple of kids are about the finish a discussion that Annie started some hours before–

They've been here before, and believe it when I say they'll be her during a few more Samhains.

They’ve been here before, and believe it when I say they’ll be her during a few more Samhains.

We’ll see where their route goes, that much I know.

Dedicated to the One I Love: How About a Song?

Here we are, at last, with the end of the dance upon us and another milestone reached.  As I expected I reached one hundred thousand words and then some during last night’s write.  I even managed a picture:

Because if you don't capture the moment it didn't really happen, right?

Because if you don’t capture the moment it didn’t really happen, right?

I like how the word count on the scene was one thousand, seven hundred and one words when I finished for the evening and snapped last night’s photo, because 1701–the registration number of the Enterprise from Star Trek–is a good number for me.  Looking at this I also realized just how big this chapter has become.  After this morning’s write–oh, yes:  I finished the scene this morning–it’s fairly obvious Chapter Ten is gonna finish up at something close to twenty thousand words.  I went and looked, and the next biggest chapter is only eleven thousand, six hundred words, which is why I think I should probably put all the racing in one chapter and the dancing in another.

Yeah, I think that way.  ‘Cause I’m a writer, yeah?

But the chapter’s finished, and so is the dancing.  And it only took about fourteen hundred words to get there.  Why so many?  Well . . . take a look.

 

(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)

They reached the floor and Kerry escorted Annie out to a slightly open space where they could moving without running into people. Given the size of the dance area and the fact there were only one hundred and seventy people in attendance, Annie thought they could dance anywhere they liked and not worry about bumping into anyone. But like with so many other things in the Dining Hall, this seemed to be their area for dancing. It was here they danced last year for most of the evening, and she recalled they’d just stepped onto the floor and finished the song when Erywin spoke as soon as the music faded . . .

The song ended and people began milling about waiting for the next. A few seconds later Erywin took her place on the raised dais where announcements were normally made. “Your attention, please.” She waited for the hush to spread over the students before continuing. “At this time I’d like the dance floor cleared as we have a dedication—”

Annie walked with Kerry to the edge of the floor, but she felt the eyes of nearly everyone in the room on them. They know this is for us . . . She turned and waited, along with every other student in the room, for Erywin to give the dedication.

 

Yeah, it would seem at this point when Erywin says, “We have a dedication,” it’s probably because those crazy kids over in the Coven of the Horned God are gonna shake it again.  And they wouldn’t be wrong–

 

Their friend looked directly at them as she spoke. “This comes from the B Level of the Cernunnos Coven, and the song is dedicated to Miss Annie Kirilova. The dedication reads: ‘Dear Annie. A year’s has pasted and we are here once more. Then I knew nothing, but I know so much more now—all due to you. All my love, Kerry’.” She pointed in their direction and waved them on to the floor with a smile. “Your dance, you two.”

Kerry took a step, turned, and held out his hand for Annie. “Shall we dance, Sweetie?”

Annie lightly placed her hand in his. “As you wish, my love.” They made their way to the center as the intro of the song began with a twanging guitar echoing throughout the entirety of the Dining Hall. As a synthesizer set a minor tone before the drums and bass set the rhythm, Kerry placed his right hand around Annie’s waist and held her right hand in his slightly extended left. He smiled. “Comfortable?”

Annie smiled back, and though there wasn’t any surprise this time, she felt the customary light handedness brought on by intense emotions beginning. “I’m always comfortable in your arms, my love.”

“That’s ‘cause it’s where I want you.” They began dancing the moment the singing started. Annie didn’t know the words—nor, as was usual with Kerry’s music, didn’t even know the song, but that wasn’t in any way important. What mattered is that once more she was in Kerry’s arms, her head slowly settling towards his shoulder, her body starting its slow press against his body as she held her tight to prevent her from slipping and falling.

The song flowed into the second refrain, and Kerry softly sang one line of lyrics—”Like dream in the night/Who can say where we’re going.”—followed by a soft kiss on Annie’s cheek. “It reminds me of our dreams.”

“And our visions.” Annie breathed deeply of Kerry, of his passion and love. “I knew you were going to do this.”

“I knew you knew I would.” He slid his hand up her back and held it against her shoulder blades. “It didn’t matter: I was giving you a dedication no matter what.”

And the song wound down and headed into an instrumental finish, Annie peeked over Kerry’s shoulder at the crowd ringing the dance floor. “I believe everyone else expected this as well.”

“Yeah, well . . .” He chuckled as the song faded, then segued into a soft, ethereal coda. “They should get used to that.” The song finished and Kerry gave Annie a final hug and kiss. “I love you.”

“Obicham te.” She kissed him on the lips for a few seconds, then on the tip of his nose, giggling. “Vie vinagi shte bŭde moĭ.”

He started to pull away. “What was that?”

“You’ll find out.” Annie’s smile was wide and her auburn eyes bright under her aqua hair. “Where you going?”

“I’m, um—” Kerry looked around and noticed no one else was stepping on to the floor—

 

Kerry’s dedication, far smoother than the year before, but no less tender.  But what song did he request?  Why, More Than This by Roxy Music.

That Annie and her tender Bulgarian words.  She enjoyed the dance, because as mentioned she started growing light headed once more.  But what is with his no one else stepping on to the dance floor once his song is over?  Well . . .

 

“We have another dedication.” He jerked his head up and spotted Erywin back on the podium. She was nearly laughing as she locked her eyes upon his. “Kerry. Basically, um . . . end of the world. But before the Toclafane arrive, someone who loves you wants to share a dance.”

At first Kerry wasn’t sure what was going on, then the first chords of Elvis Costello’s Pump it Up began playing—only it was muted and didn’t sound right. Annie began moving towards him, almost shimmying as she drew closer. He could hear her singing along with a woman—”Baby, baby, baby, you are my voodoo child, my voodoo.”

Then Annie whooped and spun around as the Dining Hall erupted with the sound of bass-heavy dance music.

It was only then, as he found his feet and began to moving with her, that he realized with a start that this was her dedication to him. As she danced around him, much in the way he’d seen her do before in private and here during some songs, he broke into a smile as he realized where he’d heard this song . . .

Kerry broke into a dance, moving back and forth, swaying his hips and upper body in time to the pace of the song. He watched Annie dance with wild abandon, which was her style when they were alone and something she liked came down the stream. She danced with her arms up and her eyes closed; she kicked out her legs and shuffled from side to side; she spun in circles, whipping her aqua hair around wildly. In their other dances tonight Annie had remained more restrained: now she danced like it was the end of the world—and given that Kerry knew where this song was used, he smiled knowing that last year, at this time, the end of the world was on its way—

She took his hand and swung them back and forth as the beat dropped off. She also sang along with the song—”You’re like Voodoo baby, your kisses are cold/Feel your poison running through me, let me never grow old.” Annie blew a kiss and released him, going up on one foot and spinning twice, her right arm straight overhead, laughing the whole time. She moved closer to Kerry, arms moving right and left as the beat returned.

Kerry waited for the arrival of the chorus and stopped moving so he could thrust his left arm straight up overhead, yelling out the trademark line—”Here come the drums!” He tried his own slow spin and almost fell, something seen by a laughing Annie. “Smooth, huh?”

She threw back her head, getting her hair from her face. “I have never seen you move like this.”

“You either. Where did you get this song?”

“It’s one of my favorites. Blame Erywin for telling me how you knew this.”

He shook his head. “I’m not blaming her for anything.”

The song headed into a final repeat of the chorus, then began to literally slow as the sound, rhythm, and beat faded away into nothingness in a matter of seconds. Kerry fell into Annie’s arms and let her envelop him in her embrace. He kissed her, his arms slowly wrapping around her torso. “I love you so much.”

“I love you.” She pressed her cheek against his as the dance floor began to fill once more. “You are my voodoo child.”

He giggled as he pulled her tight. “I’ll make sure you never grow old.”

Annie turned and looked deep into this bright green eyes. “I know you will, my love. I know you’ll do that your whole life . . .” She kissed him one more time. “And I will be there doing the same for you. I promise.”

 

Yes, surprise, surprise:  Annie sneaked in here own dedication!  No one knew this but me, ‘because I’ve thought of her doing this their second time at this dance from–oh, maybe a year ago?  And since I thought it was a good idea, I put it in the story.  So what is this song that Annie picked for her soul mate and her to shake their groove thing?  Voodoo Child by Rouge Trader.

Yes, Annie has far different tastes in music, but Kerry understands that–and, hey, he’s letting her use his computer to stream it now and then, so it must be love, right?

Since it seems that Kerry does know this song, the question begs, from where?  The answer is in what Erywin said during the dedication, for Voodoo Child was used in the Doctor Who episode, The Sound of Drums, and played diegetically during the scene where six billion Toclafane arrive from a hundred trillion years in the future to 2007 so The Master can use them to subjugate humanity–which he does by promptly ordering the Toclafane to kill off one tenth of the Earth’s population.  The first part of Erywin’s statement was taken right from the show, though “Kerry” was substituted for “Humans”.  And since she is nearly a big of a geek as Kerry, she knew where the song was from–as Annie confirmed–and that was why she was laughing.

And there we have it.  Up at five-thirty this morning to put the finishing touches on the scene, and then into the post so I can bring it too you.

This is how my screen looks when I'm going from story to blog, complete with notes, including what Annie said to Kerry.

This is how my screen looks when I’m going from story to blog, complete with notes, including what Annie said to Kerry.

The dance is over–but there are words remaining between my kids.  That means it’s time to move this conversation to the garden . . .

Dedicated to the One I Love: Get Out On the Floor

I was checking stats last night, and while it may seem hard to believe, I’ve been working on this chapter for three weeks as of 29 July.  It would appear that I began writing the first scene on 8 July, and posted that the following day.  In that time I’ve written close to seventeen thousand words and brought the story to within kicking distance of one hundred thousand words–

And I’m still going.

If you haven’t guessed what’s coming now based upon the title of this post, it’s time to have a special moment.  And, as you’ll see, it’s not unexpected:

 

(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)

Kerry came to the sofa with a smile on his face. He stopped on the other side of the coffee table and cooled himself by flapping his jacket. “Ah, much better.” He turned to Deanna. “How are you, Deanna?” He eyed Annie. “You need me to go somewhere for a few minutes?”

Deanna shook here head. “No, Kerry, you’re fine. Please sit.” She waved for someone in the crowd to come over. “I think we were just about finished.”

“Okay.” He came around the other end of the table and took his place at Annie’s right. He took her hand and gave it a squeeze. “Everything okay?”

“It is.” She turned on a quick smile and kissed him. “Enjoy your dance?”

“Yeah, it was good.”

“I could tell.”

Trevor Parkman joined them, stopping where Kerry stood only seconds before and facing Deanna. “You called?”

“Yes. I think we need to attend to official duties.”

“Of course.” Trevor helped her feet before addressing Annie and Kerry. He gripped the sides of his open jacket. “Either of you care to venture a guess?”

Annie turned to Kerry with her gaze case towards the library. “Do you know?”

Kerry chuckled. “Eighth Doctor. Haven’t seen you since the first time you were in San Francisco.” He shrugged. “Then again, I didn’t see you, per say. that was before my time, but then time—”

“—Is relative.” He held out his arm for Deanna. “Shall we?”

“Just one minute—” The seer turned her gaze upon Annie. “Concerning our discussion, my advice is, as with all things seen, to let events simply happen. Actually—” She slipped her arm into Trevor’s. “That’s all we can ever do with visions.”

Annie suspected that Deanna would offer this advice, but it felt better to speak her concerns and hear the instructor’s words. Sometimes all one needs is to have someone you respect to confirm your own beliefs . . . “Thank you, Deanna. I’ll do just that.”

“Good. Both of you: have a good dance. We’ll be around, so I expect to see you again before the evening’s over.” She looked to Trevor. “Lead on, please.”

He nodded at the children. “Have a good evening.”

“See you around, Lady Sif and Doctor.” Once the two adults departed Kerry wrapped his arm around Annie and pulled her close. “Miss me, Sweetie?”

 

And there we go:  Mr. Parkman, aka Trevor the Librarian, aka The Guy Who Looks Like He’s Becoming Deanna’s Squeeze, is running around dressed like the Eighth Doctor in one of his only two visual performances:

He gets a lot more bad ass right before he dies.

He gets a lot more bad ass looking right before he dies.

And he escorts Lady Sif off to do, um, Siffy Things, I suppose.  Actually, Deanna is one of the two coven leaders who help out with the Samhain Dance, the other being Erywin, as it’s her coven that it responsible for putting on this shindig.  And speaking of Erywin . . .

 

“Of course I did, my love.” She kissed him again, slowly and sweeter than when he’d first joined her. “But I needed to speak with Deanna, and you being out on the dance floor made it easier.”

“I’m glad you could speak without having to tell me to find something to do.” He half turned where he sat so he could better hold Annie.

Annie snuggled back and against Kerry, a position that allowed her to keep her smile hidden from him. As he turned to hold her, she saw his eyes flick to his left, towards the area where Erywin and Deanna stood when making an announcement to the students in the hall. While Annie hadn’t any idea of what he’d planed for last year’s dance, this year she fully suspected something to happen. He’s probably waiting for Erywin to return, and that’s when he’s going to ask me to dance

They sat in silence for nearly five minutes, Annie leaning against Kerry, who gently held her. It was much like the Midnight Madness, only this time there was music to go along with conversation and snacks. She felt him move behind her. “Would you like to dance, Sweetie?” He gave her a squeeze. “I feel like getting up.”

She spied the front of the room and saw Erywin speaking with Deanna. She twisted her head so she could see him out of the corner of her eye. “Of course, love.” She grinned as Kerry helped her to her feet. “I feel like getting up as well.”

Annie followed Kerry onto the floor and began dancing, feeling the music around her. Kerry wasn’t a good dancer, but he did his best not to look too clumsy as he moved in rhythm with her. She didn’t consider herself a good dancer, either: until last year’s Samhain dance she’d only danced alone, usually in the privacy of her lake house.

But this was more her music; this is what she liked to hear when she was alone, and that gave here an advantage when it came to letting herself go and enjoy the song. Kerry was listening to more of her music, though: when they were down in their lab she’d use his computer to find music to stream, and he was starting to remember the lyrics to a few. It won’t be long before he’s singing along as we are crafting spells together.

 

Now, if you may remember, Erywin was the one who announced Kerry’s last dedication to Annie, so it only makes sense she’d announce this one.  I do believe it’s interesting that Annie is expecting Kerry to do a dedication to her this time, and it appears she’s waiting for the moment to happen.  And it’s not like it won’t, because Kerry’s not the sort of kid to disappoint his soul mate . . .

Where does it leave the story?

Right here, just short of a hundred thousand.

Right here, just short of a hundred thousand.

And the reason I didn’t finish up last night is because this dedication dance is special . . .

Would I lie?

The End of the Ice Princess

Eighteen twelve.  Not only an overture which we can get behind, but how many words my scene finally came to when I ended it last night.  I figured that after eighteen hundred words I’d said what needed to be said, and wrapped it up.  Why did I do that?  Because you don’t stretch out a scene any further than what needs stretching, and I’d reached the right point to move onto what comes next.

Before that, however, here are my word counts for the last three nights of writing:

 

Words 07/26/2015: 688
Words 07/28/2015: 503
Words 07/29/2015: 621

 

As you can see I skipped a day there because of electrolysis, work, and a dinner engagement exactly in that order, but I stayed pretty steady throughout the whole process, average six hundred words a night.  Oh, and last night I didn’t get home until about six-thirty because I stopped off for drinks and chat, my first time to do that in a long time, which means by the time I was out of the shower and feeling human again, it was close to eight before I began writing.

Oh, an one other milestone:

It's just one more, it's eleven . . . hundred.

It’s just one more, it’s eleven . . . hundred.

Yes, I’m only about eleven hundred words from reached one hundred thousand, and if my writing skills hold up tonight as they have this week, I’ll likely hit that mark Friday night.  I will try, however, to get closer to a thousand words tonight, and if I manage that, then I’m going to try and push it over the top.  I don’t know, but I do know there is dancing in the next scene.

As for this scene?  Well, Annie mentions a few things about herself . . .

 

(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)

Almost five seconds passed before Annie nodded slowly. “This last summer was far more difficult than I expected.”

Deanna said nothing; not asking questions at this moment was the key to getting her to open up. “Please tell me.”

A moment of hesitancy crossed Annie’s face as she leaned into the arm of the sofa before she relaxed. “You told me last year that being with Kerry in person was different than it had been when we’d met in our dreams—”

“I remember that discussion.”

“I didn’t believe it at the time, and I right up until I arrived home I thought getting through the summer would be a strange, but that it wouldn’t be hard.” She shook her head. “I was wrong; I missed him horribly. I’d wake up in the morning and expect to find him outside my door: I’d go to bed at night wishing he was there to kiss me goodnight and tell me he loves me.” Annie stared at her hand in her lap. “We wrote to each other constantly and managed to meet in our dreams twice, but it wasn’t enough. I wanted to be able to touch him, and I couldn’t.

“Then we met in London for those few hours, and . . .” Her voice caught in her throat. “I know Helena and Erywin meant well, but being with Kerry for those few hours, and then leaving him behind for at least another month—it was maddening. I just—” She sighed softly. “That was when I discovered . . .”

Though Deanna’s sight was well developed, she didn’t need it to anticipate where the conversation was headed. “You were like any other girl in love?”

“Yes.” Annie chuckled. “I always knew I was, but there was more. Until that time we spent in London, I didn’t realize I had—” A touch of redness came to her cheeks as she said the word. “Urges.”

Deanna tilted her head slightly. “Really?”

“Yes. Not often, but there was one time, I was sleeping in the main house, and before I got up I—” She gave a little smile as she shrugged. “When I went out to my sitting room my mother was there with breakfast. I think she may have heard me.”

After a few years of being a coven leader and a counselor, of dealing with the drama of tweens and teens growing up in her coven, of listening to students who’d fallen into and out of love, of giving guidance and comfort to those who found themselves in their first sexual encounters—she’d learned to keep her emotions off her face—except this time she couldn’t. Deanna’s smile was wide and bright. “Annie. I’m . . .” She patted Annie’s hand. “You are definitely growing up. I’m pleasantly surprised.”

“That I’m not an ice princess as others have said?” She was well aware of the things others in her level had said of her during the last school year, and not all of them were as complementary as “lovey dovey”.

“I’ve always known you were passionate; all you’ve done is confirm your passion.” Deanna nodded towards a group of people off to Annie’s right. “Maybe you’d like to speak with someone else about this?”

She turned and saw a group of students speaking with Headmistress Laventure and Coraline. She’d overheard Helena saying that the headmistress was coming as Madam Marie Curie, but she was unsure of Coraline’s costume. She thought she might be Merida from the Brave movie that came out over the summer—what with the bow and quiver of arrows Coraline had strapped to her back—but she looked like she was dressed for winter, and as far as she knew the movie didn’t take place in that season. She made a note to ask Kerry when he was finished and returned to her talk. “I would rather not speak with her right now.” Annie glanced over her shoulder and saw Kerry coming off the dance floor. “Especially right now . . .”

 

Urges?  Annie has urges?  Yep, big time.  Must be hormones.  I mean, why should the boys have all the fun?  If anything it’s probably noted more at Salem because there are so many girls.  But Annie maybe getting caught by her mom?  That is probably something that Mama Kirilova has never had to deal with, and I imagine that Annie probably had to whistle up all her willpower to keep from sporting Guilty Face when she came out of her bedroom to use the bathroom.

So what does an Ice Princess say when her mom gives her that “Were you doing something in there?” look?

"Morning, Mama.  I was, um . . . defrosting."

“Morning, Mama. I was, um . . . defrosting.”

At least Frozen won’t come out for a few years in story time, so Annie doesn’t have to worry about coming to the Samhain Dance as Elsa–yet.

Tonight, it’s time to get some dancing on . . .

The Only Ones

Well, now, it was writing time, but I wouldn’t say it was one of my finest moments.  It’s so difficult to get back into the swing of things when you’re tired and you know you have a few thousand words ahead of you to get done before you get into your personal stuff.  Yeah, busy weekends mean it’s busy catch up time on the novel front.

This means I was able to get just a few words over five hundred into the bank before I decided they weren’t coming any more and it was time for bed.  That’s not a lot, but I think–think, mind you–that things will go better tonight.  Besides, I have a goal to shoot towards–

Probably the only "close to six figures" I'll ever see.

Probably the only “close to six figures” I’ll ever see.

Yes, I’m one thousand, seven hundred, and fifty-five words away from hitting one hundred thousand words for the third time, and I’d like to hit this by Friday night, because that will stay with my current rate of cranking out about five thousand words a week.  As if it, it looks as if I’ll reach that milestone in the next scene, because this one is just about over.

So . . . Annie talking about sex–you know, that sex.  When I was last here I left off with a question by Deanna that, to me, feels like a good place to start up once again–

 

(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)

Deanna chose her next words carefully, because she didn’t want to make Annie overwrought. “Do you think it’s possible that either you or Kerry will have—sex with someone else before your marriage?”

Annie’s calm expression never changed. “No.”

Deanna leaned towards her. “I can understand you knowing your feelings, but Kerry—”

“No.”

“You don’t think he would?”

This time Annie’s calm began to shift into one of slight disbelief. “I said no, Deanna.” Before the seer could query the matter further, Annie shifted around so she was looking over the back of the sofa. “Do you see Kerry out there?”

Deanna spotted him right away, dancing in his own clumsy, flapping about with the rhythm way with Nadine. “Yes.”

“You noticed how Nadine asked me if she could dance with Kerry?”

“How could I not?”

“She did that because she respects our relationship, because she respects us both—” Annie turned back to her normal seated position so she was once again facing Deanna. “She did that because she respects me, because she didn’t want to impose herself by violating our personal boundaries.

“But did you notice what Kerry did? He waited to see what I would say. If I’d have said no, he’d have been as good with that answer as he was when I said yes. He did that because he not only loves me, but he respects me.” She slipped her hands together and rested them against her thighs as she now leaned towards the seer. “There is only one girl Kerry will lose his virginity to, and I am that girl. There are no others.”

 

I know what you’re saying:  “She’s only thirteen, how the hell does she know that?”  Because, I know, hormones and all that, Kerry has them, and they’ve been known to lead even the strongest willed boy astray.

But Annie is a different kind of thirteen year old girl.  There is something I know that you don’t–which is my normal mantra, “I know something you don’t”–and this very adult understanding of her soul mate might seem strange in other girls her age–who are often losing their shit over the fact that some guy they like was seen hanging out with another girl–it’s not strange for Annie.

And in case you’re wondering, “When will we learn why Annie is so different from other thirteen year old girls?” I can tell you:  sometime in the beginning of the D Level novel.  Say . . . four hundred thousand words from now?  Hang in their, kids.

This last statement has Deanna asking another question . . .

 

She appreciated Annie’s conviction in feeling that Kerry will be her first, and he hers, but Deanna knew there were other pressures at school that could skew that dream. “You don’t believe there’s anyone here that could tempt him?”

Annie glanced over her right shoulder towards where Emma stood speaking with a group of girls. “There are no other distractions—” She turned back to Deanna and deftly crossed her legs. “—worth mentioning.”

 

Ding, Ding, Ding.  What’s that, Emma?  Oh, that’s the elevator, ’cause you’re not on the same level as Annie.  In short, she just laid a bit of, “Bitch can suck it,” smack on her, and that’s that.  She gives zero shits about The Ginger From Bolder and doesn’t consider her a concern.  And in case anyone has any questions–and I know they’ll come–watch Chapter Twelve.  It’s coming.  Yes, it is.

Where does this leave us?

 

Deanne decided not to press the issue further because she knew the discussion would return to the same point each time, and now that Annie’s beliefs were out in the open, there was little point in continuing to examine them. “If that is true, then we’re back at the beginning: you’re afraid you’ll both falter and give into weakness.”

Annie cast her sight downward for a moment. “Yes. That second vision seemed to indicate the possibility exists.”

“But you’re forgetting something—” Deanna held up her finger for emphases. “The second vision could be wrong. You weren’t far enough along in that vision to witness the outcome, so it is entirely possible that you weren’t going to engage in . . .” She cleared her throat. “That act.” Deanna expected the girl to respond, but saw something in her body language that indicated that whatever she was going to saw, it wouldn’t come without prodding. “You felt something, didn’t you?”

Almost five seconds passed before Annie nodded slowly. “This last summer was far more difficult than I expected.”

Deanna said nothing; not asking questions at this moment was the key to getting her to open up. “Please tell me.”

 

Yeah, tell us, Annie; tell us how difficult this last summer was.  Because it sounds like The Chestnut Girl isn’t completely immune to her own feelings, which is why she’s having this conversation.

Looks like I have a summer to recollect ahead of me . . .