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 . . .

Life in Three Acts

I know what you’re thinking:  what, no writing again?  Yeah, that’s been happening of late as I’ve really been in the middle of some intense socializing for the first time in months.  Actually, it’s been kinda the perfect storm of interaction of late, with my trip back to Indiana, meeting people there, then doing things on this end–yep, that actually leaves a few holes in the writing schedule.  But I’ve needed the interaction for a while, and it’s helping me recharge a little.  Actually, I was a bit weepy for the most part yesterday, and getting together with someone for dinner helped bring me out of that funk.

It was either that or spend all my time crying while writing.

But this is a good time to get into something else that’s important to writing, or at least to my writing.  And that’s to answer the question, “Why do you lay things out the way you lay them out?”  Besides the answer, “Because I’m strange,” it’s really due in part to helping me keep action organized in a format that’s fairly well-known to writers around the world.

First off, let’s speak of something known as three act structure.  This is probably one of the most basic of all writing tools that’s used in so many stories that once you start getting heavy into reading the works of others, you’ll recognize it immediately.  Stephen King employed it to good use in most of his novels, particularly with The Stand and IT, and Joss Whedon has used this in both his Avenger movies.

The set up is easy:  the story is broken into three acts, often known as the Setup, the Confrontation and the Resolution.  The Setup is mostly exposition, where the story is set up, the character met, backgrounds laid out, and so on.  The Confrontation is just that:  the challenges are met and things start getting a little dicey.  The last act is the Resolution, where everything is tidied up and the hero–or heroes–walk off into the sunset victorious–or in a case of a couple of kids separated by the continent of Europe, they go home and get sad.

I had this structure in my last night, A For Advanced, because, really, it helped determine how I should sell the book when I sell the book.

I have the same thing in the current novel, 'cause why get rid of a good thing?

I have the same thing in the current novel, ’cause why get rid of a good thing?

The first time I used the three act structure was Kolor Ijo.  My characters meet in the first act and find out what’s happening.  In act two things ramp up, and in act three the move in together and take on the big bad.  That worked well enough that I decided to keep it for The Foundation Chronicles novels, while at the same time divided the story up even further.

In these two novels, acts are broken into parts that are basically a collection of interrelated things.  Let’s look below:

Hey, looks like there's a dance going on.

Hey, looks like there’s a dance going on.

Part Four, Under Pressure, deals with events in Annie’s and Kerry’s lives that affect them in different ways.  Those events becomes chapters, which contain the telling of those events.  Samhain Festivities is an event that’s good for Annie and Kerry together.  The Manor Called is something that affects Annie, and From Queens to Dreams affects Kerry.  The last, Restricted Dreamspace, is something that again affects them both, and sends Annie off asking questions.

And lastly I have scenes, and this seems to be the place where a lot of people look at me and go, “Huh?”  Since I think of my story in somewhat cinematic terms, a scene, to me, is a segment of a chapter relating to a particular event, like one would see in a movie or television show.  Let’s go back to the first Avengers movie.  You start out with the Tesseract acting up and Nick Fury coming to see what the hell is happening; that’s a scene.  Loki appears, gets his meat puppets, and scoots with the loot; that’s a scene.  There’s the chase out of the facility as everyone finished packing their shit and leaving before it all blows up and Loki vanishes with the goods; that’s a scene, and the end of a chapter.

I do the same above.  Kerry finds out he’s on the A Team–scene.  The A Team meets–scene.  They start the race–scene.  They end the race–scene.  Off to the dance and meet the other students–scene.  While Kerry dances, Annie talks–scene.  It’s all part of the festivities, and if I wanted to I could break those up between the Samhain Races and the Samhain Dance, and I may do just that when I get home.  This is why I like Scrivener, because it allows me that freedom, and given that I transition sharply from the race to the dance, it’s possible they could be two separate chapters.

That’s how I do thing, but more importantly, why I do it that way.  It also helps me keep things neat and organized, even if it looks like a huge mess.  Then again, this is what I used project management software to write my novels.

It helps keep the insanity to a minimum.

Frank and Forward

All the tunnel visiting and writing is out of the way, and the shopping is done, and the writing . . . well, it started.  In a way, that is, because yesterday I was tired.  Hiking and visiting and just generally spending the whole day doing something had a strange way of taking things out of me, and for most of Sunday I was sort of out of it.  Plus, I’m going in for electrolysis this morning–I actually leave about seven-fifteen AM to go to my appointment at about eight-thirty–and when I’m through with that horror show it’s back here and off to work, and then dinner with a friend tonight–

Suddenly I’m such the social butterfly.

Also, The Walking Dead Season 1 was on, and I was snaking like crazy.

Also, The Walking Dead Season 1 was on, and I was snaking like crazy.

But I did write last night, though my mind was elsewhere most of the time, and it was tricky trying to get my thoughts together.  I managed six hundred and sixty-eight words, but if you saw the cutting and pasting I needed to bring the scene into line with what I’d heard in my head–oh, man, such a strange thing.  This is why writing on a computer is good, ’cause I would have went through a whole buttload of paper if I were typing this out.

It was a good thing I figured out where these scenes were supposed to go ahead of time.

It was a good thing I figured out where these scenes were supposed to go ahead of time.

What follows is Annie and Deanna have a talk to discuss what’s on Annie’s mind, because by now Deanna is emphatic to Annie’s feelings, and she can tell when Annie wants to talk.  Or did Deanna see this conversation coming ahead of time and knew they were going to talk before they spoke?  That’s the crazy thing with seer:  you can never tell if they’re listening to you because they want to know what you’re going to say, or they already know what you’ve said and they’re being polite.

Anyway . . .

 

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

Annie reached the furniture setting where Kerry and she spent their time during the Midnight Madness. She waited for Deanna to settle herself on the love seat before she sat down on the sofa—their sofa. They’d started to think of this setting as theirs—their chair, their tables, their love seat—but it was their sofa they loved the most. So much love has transpired upon this sofa. She ran her right hand in a small, slow circle against the leather next to her. There is so much more that will happen here as well . . .

Deanna set her sword and shield on the coffee table, then set back and crossed her legs. “There is something on your mind.”

Annie wasn’t surprised that Deanna’s words came out as a statement and not a question. After a year Deanna knew Annie, knew her moods, and was aware of when she wanted to speak privately. “I’ve thought a great deal about our visions of late; the visions Kerry and I have experienced.”

Deanna folded her hands into her lap. “I can see how you would. I would think it almost impossible not to give it much thought.” She set her right elbow against the love seat arm and held her chin with her thumb and finger. “Is there something in those vision that bothers you?”

“Not so much bothers me as . . .” Annie pressed her lips against the back of her fingers while she paused in thought. “Is it possible for part of one vision to be overridden by something that happens in another?”

While Deanna was Salem’s expert on visions, she wanted more information before giving her educated opinion. “You’re referring to something changing in first vision?”

Annie didn’t acknowledge the seer’s question, though she appeared to remain in thought for a few seconds more. “Last year when Kerry and I spoke to Coraline and you about the specifics of our first vision, we mentioned that we knew our wedding night would be our first time . . .” She took a quick, short breath. “Doing that.”

Denna nodded once. “Having sexual relations.”

“Well—” A strange smile spread across Annie’s face. “I like to think of the act that lay ahead of us that night as engaging in physical love.”

“I see what you mean—or I believe I do. Can you elaborate?”

 

Doing that.  The thing that Annie has said they–Kerry and her–shouldn’t talk about.  But Annie knows what she’s talking about, and what she’s bending Deanna’s ear about is, you know, getting down with hubby-to-be-who’ll-was-actually-hubby-then.  But there’s something fairly specific she wants to discuss–

 

“I wonder if what we saw in our second vision—”

Deanna thought this might be the reason for her trepidation. “You feel that what could have transpired in the second vision may affect the first?”

Annie sighed. “You said you watched us pantomime our vision—”

“I heard you speaking, and . . .” Deanna’s right eyebrow shot up as she remembered the last thing that happened before Annie and Kerry came out of their vision. “And saw what you did at the end.”

She didn’t want to keep dancing about: Annie got right to the point. “I believe Kerry and I were going to have have sex.”

Hum.” Deanna rubber her lips. “There are all kinds of sex, and it’s possible—”

Annie shook here head. “The one we’re discussing—the one that Kerry and I will perform on our wedding night—” She looked Deanna in the eyes with an unwavering gaze. “That’s the most intimate, the most important. That’s what I imagine when I think of sex. As for the others . . .” She chuckled. “They’re just fun.”

Whenever Deanna thought Annie couldn’t surprise her, she’d come up with something that would. “I wouldn’t look at it that way—”

“It’s not important: it’s not relevant to what concerns me.” Annie didn’t want to get sidetracked into a discussion on her views on sexual activities and actions. “The second vision felt like Kerry and I were going to do something that would invalidate part of our first vision.” She looked away for a moment and sighed. “Is that possible? Can it happen?”

“That you can Kerry won’t be virgins when you marry?”

“Yes.”

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

 

And, hummmmm.  So now you know:  when Annie thinks of sex, she thinks of it as a particular act, while the rest–eh, it’s for fun!  Okay.

Now, you may says, “She’s only thirteen,” and yes, that’s true, she is.  We’ve already seen, however, that Annie doesn’t appear to have issues with nudity–remember, she’s already discussed dancing around the bonfires with Kerry in front of other people, and told him she’s not that bothered that people will see her–and given this is a girl who’s been thinking about her wedding since like, oh, forever, it doesn’t come as a huge surprise that she’s quite nonchalant about sex.  Annie’s a worldly girl and quite mature for her age, and to try and put her in the same light as other thirteen year old girls would be difficult.

Remember, when it came to actually just sleeping with Kerry in the same bed, she didn’t get all red in the face or jump up and down like she was at a Taylor Swift concert.  She was like, “Kerry, make sure you put your clothes in that dresser.”  Because sharing a bed with the one she loves is natural . . .

Let’s, for a moment, look at Deanna’s reaction as well.  She’s not all shocked, though she is a bit surprised, which is understandable.  Now, imagine if Annie were speaking with Kerry’s mother–ai, yi yi!  Mama Malibey lost her shit over nocturnal emissions and Kerry having the sex talk with a doctor without her permission first, so how is she ever gonna handle Ms. Annie “Those Are Just Fun” Kirilova?  I know exactly when that moment happens, and trust me, it’s gonna be good times all around.

But there is a whole quantum leap of understanding here.  Deanna doesn’t get crazy on Annie:  no, she falls into a frank discussion with the girl.  She treats Annie like an adult, and that may have something to do with her being a coven leader and a counselor, or it could have something to do with maybe Deanna knowing exactly what Annie has done with her magic up to this point.  Or . . . as they were getting ready to return to Europe after the end of the kid’s A Level, Deanna told Erywin Annie and Kerry were still virgins.  As Erywin asked, how did she know?  Probably don’t want to know . . .

But how’s that last for a cliffhanger?  I’m such a bad girl . . .

The Samhain Dance: The Final Reveals

Well, here I am with the late night edition!  Seriously, though, it’s been a long day, but way back fourteen hours ago, I promised this part of the scene, and here it comes.

There was a lot of crazy writing last night to get the last twelve hundred and fifty, and there was a lot of good music, too.  But the important thing was figuring out how to get my characters on stage, so to speak.  Like the one who’s about to show . . .

 

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

Annie watched Sutou Takara from Advanced Flight One join their group. Right behind her was Chunghee Pang—one of Takara’s covenmate and another of their Advanced Spells classmates—and a girl Annie knew as Amitee Jaramillo, Pang’s girlfriend from Chile and the only other D Level in his coven. Rivânia Suassuna, also from their Advanced Spells class, followed close behind Pang and Amitee.

She had no idea what each of them was wearing. Takara’s costume was like a military uniform—black pants and a red jacket—supplemented with a sword and two small metal boxes hanging from a belt around her hips

Rivânia’s outfit also seemed to be some kind of military-style uniform: a green, black, and gold suit under a matching sleeveless long coat, allowing her to wear forearm gauntlets. The biggest difference between her costume and Deanna’s was the gold helmet with large, forward facing horns, making it impossible not to notice Rivânia

By comparison Pang and Amitee didn’t appear that much different than she’d seen him in class, or either of them wandering around the school on the weekends: they wore jeans, tee shirts, and heavy boots. What set them apart was that their clothes was splattered with dried blood, and both carried knives and machetes secured in scabbards attached to their belts.

Kerry positioned Annie in front of him, keeping his arms wrapped around her waist. “If there’s anyone who can—” He nodded in Takara’s direction. “—it’s probably you.”

She nodded back. “Who am I?” She adjusted the heavy scarf around her neck. “Do either of you know?”

Annie looked up and back at Kerry, who shook his head. “Neither of us know.”

Hai.” Takara pumped her fist in a rare show of excitement. “You were the only ones outside East Asia who would recognize this outfit.”

Kerry rested his head against Annie’s shoulder. “Since I know Amitee and Pang are Maggie Greene and Gleen Rhee and Maggie Greene—”

Pang threw up his hands. “Obvious, huh?”

“A little. And Riv there—” Kerry chuckled. “She’s Lady Loki—”

Rivânia chuckled. “Or just Loki. Makes it easier to say when telling people to bow to me.”

“But you—” He smiled softly. “You gotta tell me.”

“Mikasa Ackerman.” Takara grabbed the straps holding the boxes to her belt and gave them a good yank. “You know Attack on Titan?”

“I’ve heard of it, but that’s all.”

“She’s one of the main characters.”

Kerry said nothing, instead snuggling his head up against Annie’s. “I think our secret is about to be unveiled.”

Annie turned slightly to the right. “You said she might know.”

“Well—” Takara stood with her feet slightly apart and her hands positioned before her stomach. “I do.”

Almost everyone in the group perked up when they heard this. Nadine was the one who spoke for them all. “Who are they?”

 

So we have another Marvel deity–probably looking for people to get to bow to her–a couple of zombie killers, and a character from an manga/anime.  It’s likely that, even as geeky as Kerry is, at that time in 2012 he would not have known Attack on Titan, and therefore would not have known the story of the last Asian girl in the world, even if she really was only half-Asian.

But given she's an manga/anime character, she still looks like every other girl in the world.

But given she’s an manga/anime character, she still looks like every other girl in the world.

Now, the argument could be made that Rivânia is cross playing her character like Penny is doing, but given that Loki does return as a woman at one point in the comics, she’s probably not–

And given the continuing state of Tom Hiddleston's hair, he'll be able to play her in the next movie.

And given the continuing state of Tom Hiddleston’s hair, he’ll be able to play her in the next movie.

But it’s now time for Takara to spill what she knows.  And she doesn’t disappoint–

 

“She—” Takara pointed at Annie. “—is Kaioh Michiru and, um, he’s—” She pointed at Kerry. “—Tenou Haruka.”

Annie dramatically brushed back here aqua hair and smoothed down her light blue a-line dress and did a slow, single twirl on the low heeled aqua pumps with matching ribbons that wound twice around her ankles. She laughed as she flipped her arms outward. “Finally. It was growing tiring not being able to say anything.”

Kerry tugged the lapels of the cream-colored jacket that matched the light slacks he wore with the dark blue button-down tee shirt. “You can blame me for that. I asked her not to say anything.”

Though Takara was able to identify Annie’s and Kerry’s identity, the others remained puzzled. Erywin asked the question that remained unanswered. “Who?”

“Oh, yeah—” Takara turned a bit to her left and right. “Annie’s Sailor Neptune and Kerry’s Sailor Uranus.”

Nadine finally figured the connection. “Oh. From Sailor Moon?”

“Yes.”

 

There you have it.  They came as characters from another manga/anime, which explains Annie’s aqua hair.  This also makes them Plant Guardians and members of the Outer Senshi, which given their magical powers is something they can probably do now–just like any other magical manga/anime character.

Though Kerry isn't that much taller than  Annie, and he's certainly not a better dresser than Haruka,

Though Kerry isn’t that much taller than Annie, and he’s certainly not a better dresser than Haruka.

An interesting point is brought up, however . . .

 

“Yeah, but—” Nadine looked at Kerry with a puzzled look. “Isn’t Sailor Uranus a girl?”

“I’m cross playing.” Kerry crossed his arms. “Besides, I prefer to think of Haruka as gender fluid.”

Pang chuckled. “You got that right. How come you guys didn’t come wearing fukus?”

Annie took her soul mate’s arm and pulled him close as his face grew red. “It will be a while more before I can convince my love to wear a costume like that.”

He stared down at the floor, still slightly embarrassed. “Probably a long while more.”

Helena appeared out of the shadows and joined Erywin. “Hello, everyone.”

Kerry looked up and waved. “Hey, Xena.”

Erwyin gave her companion an appraising stare. “You should let Kerry find a new costume for you next year; you’re wearing out the warrior princess, my dear.”

Helena pifted. “I’m a bloody Kiwi: what else am I gonna come as?” She turned and pointed a warning finger at Jairo, who appeared about to speak. “Say hobbit at your own risk, dear.”

 

So we have two cross players this year:  Penny as a male character and Kerry as a female character.  And as far as that fuku goes (that’s a Japanese girl’s school uniform, by the way, which is a lot like the uniform Annie wears at Salem), it likely will be a long time before Kerry ever works up the nerve to wear one to a dance.

It’s at this point that people start filtering away, most of them off to watch the Åsgårdsreia and Mórrígan girls beat the shit out of each other because why not?  This leaves just four people and one purple dragon standing in the group, and that quickly whittled down even more . . .

 

Within seconds all that remained were Annie, Kerry, Nadine, and Deanna. Annie appeared as if she were about to say something when Nadine moved next to her. “Um, can I ask a favor?”

She was surprised to hear Nadine be so formal with her. “Certainly.”

“Would you mind if I danced with your boyfriend?” She nodded in Kerry’s direction. “You know, a, um, ‘Welcome to the A Team, good race’ sort of congratulatory dance?”

Annie cocked her head to one side as she looked in Nadine’s direction, then turned slowly towards Kerry. Her grin was wide and warm. “I think that’s a great idea.” She squeezed Kerry’s hand. “Go enjoy yourself, my love.”

Nadine showed her dragon off her shoulder. “Go fly around the rafters; I’ll call when I need you.” She grabbed Kerry by the arm before he could speak. “Come on, Starbuck: let’s rock.”

Annie moved next to Deanna and watched Nadine drag Kerry to the dance floor, but she had something else on her mind . . . “Can we speak?”

Deanna glanced at the aqua-haired girl. “I saw you look in my direction before telling Nadine she could dance with Kerry.”

“That’s because I hoped you would noticed.” Annie glanced across the Dining Hall. “I see our sofa’s unoccupied—” She turned to the coven leader. “Shall we?”

Deanna motioned towards the other side of the hall. “Lead on—”

 

Annie wants to speak with Deanna?  Hummm . . . usually that means she’s got something soul mate related on her mind, and if you remember last year, her conversation with Deanna was about discovering that someone was worthy of love, and that if a certain boy asks you to do, say yes!

There you have it.  No writing tonight as I’ve been uploading video, which mean–get ready for a travel post tomorrow.

An Short Yet Annoying Interlude

I know you’re here looking for what a promised I’d have right now, but guess what?  It ain’t here.  And it’s not because I didn’t finish the scene last night, because I totally did.

I even put in other scenes to blabber on about as well.

I even put in other scenes to blabber on about as well.

Yes, I wrote twelve hundred and fifty words exactly last night and put the main Dance Away scene to bed–along with me, because it was close to eleven-thirty when I finally went to sleep.  I showed the rest of the children who are in the notes, what they were wearing, identified them, and then . . . we found out who Annie and Kerry had come as for the dance.  Oh, yeah.  Great times.

However . . . I have a special assignment for this morning, and because it take some time to put together everything with the proper images and accompanying snark, and because I’m supposed to be on the road in, let me check the clock, fifty minutes at six-forty in the AM, I figured I’d work on that post when I return from my travails.

Yes, you get two posts today!  Aren’t you the lucky ones?

In the mean time you can guess away all you like about my kid’s costumes, and you can wonder at whatever I’m implying with the titles of the sub-scenes shown in the image above.  Needless to say, I think the one between Annie and Deanna will likely generate the most comments, because . . . well, they’re talking about love, aren’t they?

But with me you never know what you’re getting:  I say one thing, and in my mind I’m thinking something completely different.  It’s one of the advantages of being the writer:  you are supposed to know what’s going on, and you leave the readers guess right up until the moment when you give them what you want.

I’m looking forward to writing that next scene, because it’s one that’s come to me over the course of the last week, and what would the school year be without Annie and Deanna having a heart-to-heart.  Actually, they have a couple of heart-to-hearts, because Deanna likes to listen, and Annie . . . give her the chance and she loves to talk.  And it must be something about which she can’t talk to Kerry about.

It must be serious.

It’s six on the nose and I’m ending the post now.  I’ll see you all later in the evening.

Play nice, kids.