And here it is!
And the question I asked in the video:
Hey, just like I said: I have something for you! You may have thought I wasn’t going to come through, but when I say I’m doing some, I try to get it to you.
Let me tell you what’s happening here. First, I just finished writing this vision and it’s almost 1900 words long. You know how long it’s been since I’ve written 1900 words in a day? A long time. And I feel the stress in my shoulders. I hope that goes away some day.
But what is this excerpt? It’s a vision Annie and Kerry will share at some point in the future. That means it’s coming in one of the future novels. Which one? I’m not telling. It should be one of the following three, but you know me: I could be lying. Because I’m like that.
So what are you going to see? Something I’ve worked out and had in my head for some time. This is really the first time I’ve ever put it down in words and to say it’s a bit of a spoiler is a bit of a spoiler itself. But you know what? It’s a nice scene.
And why not see what may lay in store for these kids.
I hope you enjoy this. I know I have.
Yeah, I know it’s been a while, but here I am in the, um, well, sorta the flesh, I guess.
It’s been a long, boring day and I think I’m going to write tonight, but I spent most of the day watching movies. The first was the Netflix original How It End, and the answer to that is “Not fucking well.” Really, a dumb, simple, slow-ass movie where little happens and the actors–Forest Whitaker among them–appear to phone it in with little or no enthusiasm. It’s getting rocked like the Casbah and if your were of a mind to watch this, don’t. Trust me on this.
After that turd I watched American Psycho, which I hadn’t seen in about ten years, and I’m sorry, but I laugh at a lot of the lines in this flick. Really, if you wanna be shocked read the book, which is a horror story mixed in with commentaries on commercialism–along with a crazed cameo by Tom Cruise–and it’s not for the faint of heart.
But enough of murders and executions. Let’s get our butts to Bulgaria.
Kerry has a hot kettle and he’s heading up to the stair to the first floor, which is Annie’s sanctuary. And what happens? Let’s find out.
(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017, 2018 by Cassidy Frazee)
Due to his work in the school’s superlab, Kerry had become somewhat proficient at negotiating spiral staircases, but this was the first time he’d had to walk up one while levitating an object. He peeked up over the side as he grew closer to the first floor and saw Annie seated at a table, her back to the stairs. He took in her posture: she was sitting upright, one hand in her lap while she sipped from the cup in the other. She looked almost regal. And it suits her…
She set down her cup and half-looked over her shoulder. “You can come up: I won’t bite.”
“I had to make sure.” He made his way to the first floor landing and looked around: it was a somewhat plain space with two large windows and two closed doors, one to his immediate right and another in the corner on his left. He approached the table at which Annie sat—the only furniture in the space. “So… this is you sitting room, I take it?” He took the only other seat, the one opposite Annie.
Back in the day when I was excerpting the first novel, a few people felt Annie came across a little cold and a bit entitled, with the word “princess” getting bantered around once in a while. Yes, Annie comes from money, but she also comes from manners, and as she points out, she’s doing something that proper ladies have done for a considerable amount of time–
She ran her finger around her cup as she seemed to examine Kerry. Much like her mother she wore silk pajamas, only hers were a dark burgundy. “Every girl should have a sitting room so she can entertain visitors.” Annie raised her right eyebrow, mimicking her mother from a little over thirty minutes earlier. “I mean, you wouldn’t expect me to entertain you in my bedroom at this time of day, would you?”
Kerry set the kettle down and removed the time spell. He sat back as a puff of steam came out of the neck. “No, I wouldn’t. That would be rude.”
“Exactly.” Annie placed a tea ball in a cup and poured in the hot water. “I know you like a breakfast blend for morning tea, so I had one made for you.” She finished pouring and levitated the saucer and cup toward him. “Take any of the snacks here: Mama made plenty.”
Now, one could argue that Annie should haul her ass downstairs and had tea with Mama at the dinning room table, because having a sitting room where you entertain visitors totally smacks of privilege. And it does, no lie there. But this is how Annie was raised, to be a proper lady. And she is. She isn’t putting on airs for people: this is something important to her.
But who else would like to imagine how many people have actually sat across from Annie who weren’t of her immediate family? The answer to that–and you know I have it–is not a lot: maybe a couple of classmates before she headed off to the Big Witch School.
And, as she points out, this isn’t something she’ll do for much longer:
While he hadn’t seen the snacks up close when he first woke, he recognized them as a combination of mekitsa and banitsa. He picked up a mekitsa and set it in a small place, after which he spooned a small amount of jelly next to it. “Your mother and you do this every morning?”
“Ever since I was seven.” Annie added hot water to her cup and chose a banitsa to nibble. “Sometimes it was the only time we had to see each other during the day and we wanted to make the most of that time. We started out with tea and eventually it ended up becoming a ritual that could go on for hours if we allow that.” She sipped her tea and slowly set the cup down. “It won’t be long before I won’t have this time with Mama, so it’s important I make the most of the time we have together.”
Kerry sat back in his chair, slowly chewing a mekitasa as he glanced out the window to his right and behind Annie. While it was still dark outside, the sky was clear and gave the impression the sun was rising soon. “What time does the sun rise around here?”
“I’m surprised you don’t know.” Annie looked up from her food and laughed.”
“Yeah—” He rolled his eyes. “I should have checked.”
“It’s all right. The sun’s fully up about fifteen before eight, but the mountains to the east tend to keep our meadow in twilight until about nine. Funny this is, while this is the shortest day of the year, after this sunrise comes a little later every day until the middle of the first week of January, then they start coming earlier while sunset comes later.”
“Interesting.” He crossed his legs. “So, what’s the plan for today?”
“Oh…” Annie held her tea cup before her face and looked up over it. “I think you already know.”
Annie knows all these things she does with her family will soon come to an end and she wants to get the most out of those events–though when your mother can pretty much jaunt to just about anywhere in the world, who’s to say Annie won’t still have morning tea with Mama? I’d say the odds are pretty good.
As for what the kids are going to do once it gets light outside–I think you can guess what’s coming next…
Man, this weekend has been a busy one. If you followed my Saturday video you’ll know I recorded it early in the morning because I was going out to brunch with one of my teammates, Summer, and by the time the day was over we’d have crepes, we’d walked through the Masonic Gardens, had cooling drinks, and watched a couple of episodes of Sailor Moon Crystal. For sure a busy day.
Then yesterday… well, yesterday I was once more up at six and heading down to Lancaster to be there by eight because I was attending a derby clinic given by world champion jammer Satan’s Little Helper.
Yes, you read that right: I was hangin’ with Satan from 8:30 to 12:30. She’s a jammer with Angel City Derby Girls, the L.A. derby league, though after having won a gold at the World Cup in February, she’s sort of taking some time off and going around coaching. While I didn’t skate, I observed from the sidelines and learned a hell of a lot while a couple of my teammates got their hands dirty. Oh, and got a selfie with Satan herself.
By the time I was home from that, taking time out for lunch, and picking up a few groceries for the week, it was about four in the afternoon and I wasn’t in the mood to do anything but veg. Which was why I didn’t get a post out yesterday.
But today! Hah! It’s all a different game now. And we finish up the excerpt I began on Friday–which is finishing up Annie’s and Kerry’s time in Copenhagen. And reviles their final destination–
(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017, 2018 by Cassidy Frazee)
The area ahead of them was well lit, far better than it was on the path they’d just walked. Kerry saw the reason: just off-shore sat the statue of The Little Mermaid, perched upon a rock under the spotlights. There were quite a few people around the statue taking photos and a few of them were standing just under the bolder upon which the sculpture sat.
Kerry’s smile was wide and bright. “It’s Ariel. I knew the statue was in Copenhagen, but I wasn’t sure where.”
“Now you know.” Annie stopped them almost in front of the stairs leading down from the path to the stones below. “I’ve been here many times. This is the first time I’ve come with someone other than my parents.”
Yes, they are at the location of the statue of The Little Mermaid, which is one of the most well known statues in the world, and one of the most defiled as well, as it’s possible to go right out to the rock she’s sitting up and… do things to her. Like paint her, put jerseys on her, and saw off her head. Yep, all those things have happened: the head was actually sawed off twice and the original head–the one removed the first time–was never recovered.
In case you ever wondered–or not–this statue has been officially copies and can be found all over the world. So in case you can’t make it to the original sitting on her rock on the side of the sea, you can find her at all these locations:
Copenhagen: The Langelinie, Carlsberg Breweries, and Tivoli Gardens. (Yes, there are three versions of the statue around the city.)
Moldavia, Romania: Piata Libertatii (Liberty Square).
Madrid: Parque Europa
California: Forest Lawn Cemetery in Glendale and Denmarket Square in Solvang.
Connecticut: atop Victor Borge’s grave in Greenwich.
Utah: The International Peace Gardens, Salt Lake City.
Iowa: Mermaid Square, Kimballton.
Michigan: on the banks of the Flat River in Greenville. (Note: this is not an exact replica and some don’t consider it official.)
St. Thomas, Virgin Islands: in the town of Charlotte Amalie.
Brasilia: the Department of the Navy headquarters.
China: The Window of the Word theme park, Shenzhen.
Japan: corner of the Scandia Restaurant, Yokohama
Seoul: Yeouido Hangang Park.
That’s a lot of places to see this girl.
While I never saw The Little Mermaid when I worked in the Shenzhen SEZ, I did see this one: the statue of Nuwa, one of the main Chinese goddess. She created mankind and fixed a rift in Heaven, so she’s a big deal. She’s also one of the largest mermaid statues in the world, if not the largest: about forty foot tall and twenty-two feet wide.
This statue wasn’t far from the hotel where I’d stay in Shekou and I could see it out of my window.
Now that you’ve gotten all the Little Mermaid information you never asked for, what does Kerry think of this statue?
“I’m honored.” He glanced at Annie. “Are we gonna go down and get pictures?”
“Let’s wait for some of the people to clear out.” She noticed how excited Kerry seemed. “You’re enjoying this.”
“Oh, yeah. I like mermaids.”
“You like mermaids?” She eyed him suspiciously. “I didn’t know that.”
“Oh, there’s a lot about me you don’t know.” He smirked. “Not really, but liking mermaids was one of those things that didn’t pop up until—”
Kerry not only loves the statue of Ariel, but he loves mermaids. Wow, it’s almost like he got that from someone…
Of course, something comes to mind and Annie brings it up:
“That’s understandable.” Annie slowly raised one eyebrow. “You know, with transformation magic—”
“I already know.” Kerry turned to Annie, chuckling. “Realized that a couple of years ago.”
Annie watched Kerry out of the corner of her eyes. “And now that you can—”
He interrupted, speaking out of the corner of his mouth. “Ixnay ethay irlgay uffstay.”
Even though she didn’t know pig latin, Annie understood enough. “Still a touchy subject, I see.”
“I went in your room and finished your packing. That’s enough for now.” Kerry turned to face her. “I’m a ways away from becoming the Ginger Girl of the Sea.”
“Fair enough.” Annie pulled him close for a kiss. “By the way, your other night clothes are in your bag, aren’t they?”
He nodded. “Didn’t have time to head back to my room to drop them off.” He shrugged. “No big deal.”
Annie looked over his shoulder. “Crowd is thinning out, my love. Would you like to get a picture with Ariel?”
He turned to look at the statue. “You know, I can’t be this.”
Kerry turned back to Annie. “I’ve been with your family for about eight hours and already I’m jaunting to different parts of Europe for dinner like it’s no big deal.”
“It isn’t.” She pulled him close. “You once told me I had a far different life than yours, that I went to places you only dreamed of visiting. Understand this, my love: one day we will visit all those places you dreamed of visiting and we’ll do it together. That will be our life.” She kissed him deeply before turning him towards the stairs. “Let’s hurry get a picture: we don’t want Ariel to get cold waiting for us, do we?”
What Kerry says in Pig Latin is “Nix the girl stuff.” What he really means is “Don’t remember me I can become Ariel’s twin sister,” because, yeah, bruh, you can totally do that. Maybe not this year, but give it time and you know you’ll have it down.
Now that the evening in Copenhagen is over, it’s time to move on to the next day–and is Kerry in for a bit of an awakening…
And by that I mean, we’re ready to talk on, um, tape!
While I’ve yet to write today, it will happen later this evening. That’s exactly what I did last night and I ended up writing just over two thousand words. Not bad, huh? And it’s an important scene because it’s not only the First Day of Winter, 2013, but Kerry learns about Annie’s morning tea and how she likes it handled. Also, you learn something interesting about Victor in that scene, too, but it’s probably not what you think.
But this scene–this is the same day that Kerry arrives in Pamporovo, but after Annie and he adjust, which is to say it’s dinner time. Or really, after-dinner.
(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017, 2018 by Cassidy Frazee)
Kerry strolled down the Langelinie hand-in-hand with Annie, enjoying the cool night air next to the waters of the harbor. They’d spent about ten minutes at the Gefionspringvandet getting photos before walking a couple of hundred meters to the Langelinie Pavilion. There paused there long enough to get a quick snuggle and kiss before continuing onward.
When Annie’s parents said they were going out for dinner, Kerry expected they’d probably jaunt into Sofia, but instead they jaunted to Copenhagen, where they dined at a semi-casual restaurant on Esplanaden. Kerry was even more surprised when he was told her could order anything he liked, so he started with fried scallops and chose the duck confit as his entree.
It was an enjoyable evening, going on for about two and a half hours before Pavlina and Victor decided it was time to leave. But they didn’t go home: standing on the corner of Esplanaden and Bredgade, Pavlina took Victor’s hand and told Annie they were going for a walk and that she should take Kerry down to the Langelinie, telling her that they’d catch up with them at the statue. Victor said they should enjoy their walk before heading off across the street with Pavlina, his arm around his wife’s shoulders as they vanished into the evening crowd.
As they walked down the promenade Kerry was silent, taking in the cool night air. There wasn’t any snow on the ground and the temperature hovered around 5 C. If it weren’t for the light drizzle, he would have found it a perfect evening.
Annie wrapped her arm around his. “What are you thinking about, my love?”
“Dinner, what else?” He smiled as he looked straight ahead. “When I visited my grandparents two years for Yule I got leftover pizza; last year I got take away. This year it’s scallops and duck.” He looked at Annie as he chuckled. “Quite a departure.”
“It is.” She leaned against him, snuggling into his body. “Plus you ate in Copenhagen for the first time.”
“That I didn’t expect at all. Why come here?”
It’s been pointed out in other excerpts that Kerry is developing quite a taste for the sort of food Annie has enjoyed growing up, and this is just a continuation of that. It may not be a restaurant in the Eiffel Tower, but jaunting off to Copenhagen, Denmark, to grab a bite isn’t something he does on a regular basis. As he pointed out, his last two “Welcome Home” Yule dinners were leftover pizza and takeaway curry. Now, dining out with the Family Kirilovi, he’s getting fried scallops and duck confit. Gotta admit, it’s a big step up.
We get to see Pavlina and Victor head off on their own little night walk, first holding hands and then Victor wrapping his arm around his wife as they stroll across a street. It wasn’t so much they wanted the kids to be alone as it was they wanted to be alone, and Annie probably knows this. So Kerry and she walk down to the Langelinie, which is a major park in the city. And they enter the Langelinie by passing the Gefionspringvandet, which is Danish for the Gefion Fountain, dedicated to the Norse goddess of plowing, foreknowledge, and virginity. The statue itself depicts a story from the Ynglinga saga, where King Gylfi promised her all the land she could plow in a day and a night. So she turned her four sons she’d had with a giant into oxen and chewed up so much land that it split away from Sweden and became Zealand. Because of course.
Now that the history lesson is out of the way, the question remains: why come here? Well–
Annie slowed her pace slightly as she took Kerry’s hand. “Mama and Papa own a house here, so they know the city rather well.”
This was news to Kerry. He’d never heard Annie mention that her parents owned property elsewhere. “I wasn’t aware.”
“I don’t talk about it, but tonight there’s no reason to keep it secret.” She tightened her grip on Kerry’s hand. “The bought the house here five years ago: at the time Papa used it as a place to stay when he was racing in this part of Europe. Three years ago they bought another house in Feldafing, Germany, about thirty kilometers from downtown Munich. Last year they bought a farm outside San Sebastián, Spain. I’ve yet to see that one, but I figure I’ll get to spend some time there in the coming summer.”
“Wow.” He found the news extremely interesting. “Why the buying jag all of a sudden?”
“Mama says they’re getting ready for retirement. Papa is probably going to stop racing full-time not long after I graduate and he may become a part-owner of his race team. If he does that, they’ll likely spend most of their time either here or in Germany.
“But Mama told me the properties in Germany and Spain were bought through The Foundation using fake identities. I think those places are meant for when my parents are in their eighties and nineties and people are wondering why they still look like they’re in their fifties.” She glanced over at Kerry. “They can’t stay in Pamporovo once that happens.”
Kerry understood the matter perfectly. Once he’d learned that witches age far more slowly than Normals, he came to the understanding that it wasn’t possible to remain in one place for more than twenty or thirty years, least neighbors begin wondering why you didn’t appear the age. He knew Annie’s parents were edging into their late 30s, but it wasn’t hard to confuse either of them for people ten years younger. He was also aware they’d go through this as well and the lack of visible aging was one of the reasons they were unable to pin down just how far in the future some of their visions occurred.
He sighed. “I guess we’ll have to do the same one day.”
“So once your parents move out of Pamporovo, what happens to the property?”
“I get it. I’ll always have the lake house, but I was told I’d get the main house as well.” She pointed to something ahead. “Look. We’re here.”
As we now know, witches don’t age like us Normal folk and when Pavlina and Victor are in their eighties people will probably think they are in the late forties, early fifties, and if they’re still in Pampovoro that sure as shit won’t do ’cause too many people will know them. But fall out of the public eye for a while, move to another part of the country, and before you know it The Foundation has set you up with a new identity and you have another sixty, seventy years to kick it. Annie suspects that’s why her parent have other properties in Europe under different names, ’cause when the time comes Pavlina and Victor are gonna take it on the run and disappear, but not, if you know what I mean.
And we hear here, for the first time, that Annie gets the property at some point in her life. Not just the Lake House, which is always hers, but the main house and her mother’s greenhouse/lab as well. Sure, she wants to live in France–and Kerry will bring this up later–but she’s also gonna keep her roots in the mountains of Bulgaria.
Until then, they have a watery guest to entertain soon…
Today has been another good day of writing. I’ve finished off another scene in the current chapter, adding another twelve hundred and sixty-six words to the story.
As you can see, scene three has the kids going to Copenhagen, and if you know a little about the city you’ll understand the scene title. If not, a picture of me at my computer might have it make more sense.
Yep, there are little mermaids in this story–sort of. You’ll find out when the time comes.
That means that today we get to finish off the first scene here. And we will. Because, as you’ll see, there’s a problem:
“There’s only one thing.” Coraline thought for a moment before throwing up an additional privacy screen. “I don’t want her climbing the stairs to your floor in the tower. Now, I know she has to go up and down stairs at home, but it’s not as far as having to climb the ones in the coven—”
Annie cleared her throat. “What she’s trying to say is I haven’t finished packing and I can’t get up to my room to do the rest.”
Kerry looked down at his soul mate. “One of the nurses could jaunt you up there.” He turned to Coraline. “Couldn’t they?”
“They could—if they were here.” Coraline cocked her head slightly to the right for just a second. “You probably aren’t aware of this since neither of you have been up here the day everyone leaves for Yule, but as soon as Gretchen is off-duty, that’s it, it’s just me running this place. And as soon as the last student is out, I shut it all down until 4 January.” She lightly touched her mouth with her closed right fist, bouncing it off her lips a few times. “There is another way, however—”
Kerry felt that wasn’t this other way was, he wasn’t going to like it much. “Yeah?”
“You can do it.” Annie tried to sit up and eventually quit and raised the head of her bed slightly. “I can tell you what I need, which isn’t a lot. Then you go back to the tower, finish your packing, then go to my room and finish packing my things.”
So, Annie planed on finishing her packing tonight. And she needs it done. And she’s certain Kerry can do it for her. They even got it worked out–
Coraline smiled. “Then you can call Gretchen, she jaunts in and gathers you and the bags up in Annie’s room, and jaunts you back her. Or I can come and get you. Easy peasy either way.”
Kerry was silent for almost ten seconds before he pointed out the obvious. “Yeah, about that… There’s only one way I can get into Annie’s room and—” He looked down as he sighed. “I don’t want anyone to see me.”
Yeah, about that…
We know there is a way for Kerry to get into Annie’s room, because it’s been done before. However, Kerry’s not eager to do it again and certainly doesn’t want to be seen by people in the tower, which is to say Kerry doesn’t want to be seen by any nosy B Levels.
Coraline has it figured out, however, which means she probably spoke to Annie before helping out with this idea:
“Good point.” Coraline tapped her chin. “Did I mention you’ll do this after lights out?”
“No, you didn’t.”
“That’s when it’s going to happen. And you know how lights out is the night before going home at Yule—” A big smile appeared on Coraline’s face. “Everyone’s in their bed with visions of getting the hell out of here as soon as possible.”
“It makes sense, my love.” Annie reached out and took Kerry’s hand. “I know it won’t take you long to pack and I know what I need—” She closed her eyes for a second. “At least I think I can tell you everything.”
“It’s okay: I’m pretty sure I can fill in the blanks so I don’t miss anything.” He gave Annie’s had a squeeze as he turned to Coraline. “Okay, I’ll do it. Do you have something I can wear after I transition over?”
Coraline gave Kerry a strange look. “Don’t you have night clothes for the other—you?”
“You can put them on in your room then change out of them when you’re back here.” Coraline shrugged. “It’s not that hard, is it?”
Kerry realized he was making a big deal out of nothing. He’d already walked around his floor in the middle of the night as other half and there hadn’t been a problem—which was how this would go tonight.
He brought Annie’s hand to his lips and planted a kiss upon the back. “It’s not a problem, Sweetie.”
Annie gave Kerry her best medicated grin. “Thank you, my love.”
He smiled down at his injured soul mate. “Hey, who else is gonna change genders for you, huh?”
So the problem of getting Annie packed for the trip home for the holidays is over and Kerry is willing to do something that he last did about seven weeks before so it’s done. You know it’s true love when someone changes apparent genders for you so you don’t have to worry about not being packed.
Like it or not you’ve just read the last scene in the novel to take place in the school during the year 2013. The next time we’re back here it’ll be 2014.
And that means tomorrow we start traveling to Bulgaria…