Well, this is interesting, isn’t it? Yesterday was the first day of NaNo, and I really came very close to actually getting a Day One total of sixteen sixty-six. Not that I was trying for that, but I came within about seven hundred and fifty words.
Unlike the last four years, I’m not doing NaNoWriMo this year. Given that this coming Saturday I’m heading back to Indiana for a few days, and that, of late, I’ve been crazy nutty busy and left with so little energy at the end of the day that I consider eight hundred words a good finish to the evening, I thought that NaNo would be a complete fail for me. Know your limitation, folks, and stick to what you know is possible.
However . . . last night I also did this:
With this scene I passed one hundred and seventy-five thousand words. Took me three weeks to get the last twenty-five thousand, but I did it. That said, let’s look at numbers: I started The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: A For Advanced for NaNo 2013, so by reaching my goal last night on the start of NaNo 2015, I’ve written six hundred thousand words for this series in twenty-four months. That’s a steady twenty-five thousand words a month for two years, but more importantly, that’s the equivalent of twelve NaNo Win–and two of those wins did happy during NaNos 2013 an 2014.
Really, I can take a break. I think I’m hard at work on my novels.
So I left Coraline and Deanna standing outside the magically closed-off lounge area at the back of the first floor ward getting ready to go in. You may as well see how that turned out, as I’ve already showed you the first eight hundred and forty words–
(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015 by Cassidy Frazee)
Annie and Kerry were still in their pajamas, sitting at the round table in the back enjoying a Bulgarian breakfast of mekitsa and ayran. Deanna was a big amazed at how quickly Kerry had assimilated into part of Annie’s culture by partaking in the food she enjoyed. One could say she’s getting to him through his stomach, but she always approaches Kerry through his heart . . . “How are you this morning?”
Annie nodded with her mouth full, so Kerry spoke first. “Fine, professor.”
“Oh, please—” Deanna sat as Coraline re-sealed the black privacy spell. “It’s morning and school won’t begin until tomorrow. It’s Deanna.”
Coraline took a seat next to the seer. “And I hope you know my name, too.”
Swallowing as soon as she could, Annie took over for her slightly chagrined boyfriend. “We do, Coraline. And good morning to you. Good morning, Deanna.”
“Good morning, Annie.”
Kerry took a quick sip of his yogurt drink. “Good morning, Deanna; good morning, Coraline.”
“Morning, Annie; Kerry.” Coraline set the tablet before her. “Okay, I’ve read Gretchen’s report and Deanna’s had a chance to go over what I know as well.”
“Yes, and I have a few things I want to say before we get into specifics.” Deanna turned to Annie. “I do not want you dreamwalking again, not until you have a better understanding of what’s involved, and you learn how to defend yourself against . . .” She searched for the proper phrase. “Issues similar to the one you encountered last night.
“I know what it means to you to be able to see Kerry in his dreams whenever you can—” She reached out to the visibly crestfallen girl. “I don’t want you getting hurt, Annie. I know over-achieving is the norm for you, but dream magic is astral magic, and that’s an area unlike what you’re most comfortable doing.”
“I know.” Annie refused to look at Deanna—at anyone in the room—and her tone told everyone exactly what she felt.
At this point telling Annie not to try doing magic years before she should is like asking her not to breathe, and she’s not a happy girl. For those dreams are the way she stays in touch with Kerry, and now that it looks like she’d gonna have to make their shared dreams work through dreamwalking, she’s a bit heartbroken to be told not to do this. Deanna, however, is not cold hearted . . .
Deanna gave Annie’s hand a squeeze. “I’ll do this for you: if you refrain from dreamwalking, I’ll do a special study for you next school year. Normally I won’t teach anyone dreamwalking until their
D Levels, but you already understand how it’s done, since you’re so advanced in all other fields, you’re safe to for these studies.”
She pulled her hand away as she sat back. “But I mean it when I say no dreamwalked—even over the summer.” She nodded towards Kerry. “You ran into something you couldn’t handle in his head—imagine if you were to encounter something more dangerous.”
Kerry found Deanna’s statement surprising. “What’s in a dream that can hurt you?”
Deanna turned to him. “A lot of things.”
“Stuff, too?” He smiled at his own in-joke—
—That Deanna didn’t get. “That, too.” She sighed. “I should probably teach you as well, since I’m certain that someone—” She glanced at Annie. “—will show you how to walk as soon as she more confident about what she’d doing.” Since he everything Deanna said was true, Kerry simply nodded his agreement.
Poor Geeky Kerry: trying to get off jokes that only he gets. But it has to leave people wondering: what sort of stuff and things are there in dreams that can hurt you? Don’t worry: one day I’ll tell you.
“With that out of the way—” Deanna slid Coraline’s tablet in front of her and set up a file to enter notes. “Tell me what you can of this dream. Or, based upon what Annie said, series of dreams.”
“Okay.” He took another sip of his drink before clearing his throat. He’d told Annie parts of this story as it had happened, but this was the first time he’d needed to recount everything to strangers.
“I’ve had five dreams so far—”
Annie cut him off. “You’ve only had four.”
“There’s one I didn’t tell you about.”
“Annie.” Deanna placed her hand closed to Annie’s. “We’ll get to it in time. Please let Kerry explain this his own way.” Annie nodded and turned her attention back to Kerry.
He waited a few more seconds before continuing. “The first dream was the night I got my travel package—that was the fourteenth of August, ‘cause that’s when I woke up—” He mentioned the next two dreams—the second one on the flight over from Berlin two and a half weeks later, and at the end of November, when he spent the night in the hospital after being wrecked by Emma—and then mentioned the following dream . . . “The fourth one came the week before I left on the overnight flight—”
“What?” Annie couldn’t keep her surprise hidden. “Are you sure?”
Yes, Annie, he’s sure, and you’ll find this out tomorrow. It’s going to take a while to get all of Annie’s and Kerry’s Dream Adventures out of the way, and we’ll start with finding out just what happened in that dream that Kerry never told Annie about–
Though you’ve already see it.