Acceptance Into a Dream: Separates Together

To get all the personal stuff out of the way immediately, yesterday’s spa day was a lot of fun.  I needed to sit and get some pampering in, and to be with a friend who doesn’t mind talking about any and everything, and just be ourselves.  There was a lot of laughing going on, and when I arrived back home ten hours after I left, the first thought that popped into my head was, “It was a good day.”

Smiling long before I get my feet encased in melted wax.

Smiling long before I get my feet encased in melted wax.

In only two days nearly thirteen hundred words are written, and the penultimate scene is complete.  Not only did I put this scene to bed, but I passed two hundred and eighty thousand words in the process.  Only one short scene remains and this chapter and part are complete–

And I can most away from Kerry being tortured by Girls From the Id.

And I can then move away from Kerry being tortured by Girls From the Id.

Yesterday morning was the set up of the final dream, and as I mentioned there I needed to bring one other person to bring into this mix to make the scene complete.  And I don’t disappoint:

 

(All excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015, 2016 by Cassidy Frazee)

Annie took his hand and gave it a squeeze. “I’m right here, my love. I’ll not say anything, but remember I support you.”

He turned and smiled. “I know.” He returned the squeeze. “Not like we’re going anywhere, are we, Darling?”

“Not at all, my love.”

Kerry straightened slightly and stared at the door. “Here we go.” He walked to his computer station and stood facing the entrance to his room. “Come on in.”

Annie saw the door open but didn’t see the girl as she continued standing in the hallway. Annie did, however, hear her soft, lilting voice. “I’m surprised you’re greeting me.”

“It’s not like I don’t know you’re coming.” He motioned his other dream self forward. “Don’t stand in the hall.”

 

And just like, the final player appears:

 

The girl entered the room and Annie immediately noticed that she was dressed for sleeping though her attire was slightly different than Kerry’s, as she wore leggings and a cami top. Annie pursed her lips as her mind as she began imagining see this scene while awake. I wonder if Kerry will wear something like this to bed one night soon . . .

The girl gasped the moment she spotted Annie and Kerry rushed between the two girls to forestall any problems. “It’s okay: she was brought in here. You have to know that happens sometimes.”

The girl nodded. “Yes. I remember you both share dreams. I guess that’s why this one feels strange—”

“We must be in our shared dreamspace.” Annie held her hands in front of her. “We both think I’m supposed to be here.”

“Because you’re linked.”

“You know that?”

The girl nodded towards Kerry. “I know what he knows.”

Annie chuckled. “And a few things he didn’t.”

The girl’s cheeks blushed bright red, made even more obvious by the cascading ginger locks framing her face. “I was affected a bit by his block, but I did remember you. Only—” She sighed. “I couldn’t say everything ‘cause—”

“It’s okay: it all worked out eventually.” Annie looked the girl up and down. “What should I call you?”

“I know this will sound strange, but—” The girl’s vision shifted slightly to the left. “Kerry. I mean, that’s the name I was given when I was born, though no one knew that.”

“Because no one knew you.”

Kerry cleared his throat. “That’s gonna sound strange later on when this, um, you know—” He pointed between him and he girl self. “When people finally see you for real.”

Girl Kerry nodded. “I see how it could confuse people.” She glanced down for a moment. “So you are going to let me live.”

 

The thing Kerry’s been told from the start is that he holds this person’s life in his hands.  We now know what she meant with that simple phrase, and her it comes one last time:  “You are going to let me live.”

I should also point out something that may not be obvious:  Kerry’s given name is, as stated a few times, Kerrigan, and that is a gender-neutral name that is used by both girls and boys.  Is there a reason I’m bringing this up now?  No, not really . . .

Now that all the introductions are out of the way, only one thing remains for these two kids–

 

Kerry tossed his head to one side. “The way I understand things I don’t think I can stop you. But I’m not as scared now: I was told what this means and what to expect.” He reached out to Annie. “And I have support.”

Annie took his hand. “Always, my love.”

Girl Kerry smiled at Annie. “And will I have your support as well?”

She nodded back. “No matter how either of you look, you’ll be the same person—the one I love.”

“Well—” Girl Kerry chuckled. “I hope I don’t screw things up.”

“You won’t.”

Kerry released Annie’s hand and took a step towards his female half. “I, um, guess we should do this.”

Girl Kerry nodded. “We should.”

Annie moved back closer to the bed. “What are you going to do?”

Kerry had the technical answer. “We have to integrate our auras, so—”

Girl Kerry finished the thought. “We hug.”

Annie glanced between the two. “That’s all?”

Kerry spoke first. “There’s really more than that going on—”

And Girl Kerry completed the sentence once more. “But that’s how it’ll look here.”

He nodded. “You ready?”

She nodded back. “I am.”

“Well, then—” He spread his arms wide. “Come here.”

Annie watched silently as the two came together and embraced each other slowly, with Kerry’s smaller female version of himself enveloped by the taller male version. For a few moments all seemed the same, then she felt a lightness about her body, as if gravity were slipping away. The light in the room changed, growing dimmer and most defused, and Annie realized it was because gray astral mist was slipping into their space and filling in around the hugging couple.

While both halves of Kerry became obscured by the mist Annie felt herself being slowly pulled backwards and away from the room, and her last sight of her soul mate was a sudden flash of violet-purple light from within the cocoon of astral mist—

 

And there you go.  All that remains now is for–well, something–and then I can get to the business of closing out the school year–

Three parts, six chapters, and probably a couple of dozen scenes.  That’s all that remains.

The Moment of Clarity: Small Talk

This what comes from not being able to sleep and having something on your mind from the scene you wrote the night before:  you’re up early and you’re adding a hundred words before you forgot something.  And the killer is, I think I forgot something else, so maybe it’ll come to me later.  Or not.  If not, I’m happy with how it is now, because it addressed an important point that needed to get covered.

Five-thirty in the morning and it's not like I have anything better to do.

Five-thirty in the morning and it’s not like I have anything better to do.

Here we are with Annie and Kerry alone at last–really alone, not just sleeping on a sofa or deck chair somewhere, but totally alone–and doing–what?  Snogging away?  Well . . . you’d be surprised.

 

All excerpts, this page, from The Foundation Chronicles, Book One: A For Advanced, copyright 2013, 2014, by Cassidy Frazee)

Annie emerged from the bathroom with her folded clothes in her hands, her favorite towel wrapped around her head drying her hair, and her favorite long blue robe wrapped around matching silk pajamas. She quickly surveyed the room: television on but sound turned down low; Kerry in his lounging pajamas sitting on the bed right side of the bed, head turned to the left as he stared out the window; his hands folded in his lap and his legs crossed at the ankles.

She stopped and open the drawer where she’d placed her unpacked clothes. He’s thinking. He has something on his mind and he’s wondering how he should tell me. She noticed the tee shirt and jeans he wore from Salem laying across his luggage. Annie half turned and looked over her shoulder. “Dear, are you going to put your clothes away?”

He snapped out of wherever he was and returned to reality. “Oh, yeah: sure.” He hopped off the bed, quickly folded his jeans and shirt, and placed them in the drawers where he was keeping his clothing. “Sorry about that.  I can be a bit of a slob sometimes.”

“It’s okay. It’s just . . .” Annie turned and walked slowly towards him. “I’m used to doing things a certain way, and this is the first time in my life I’ve had to share a living space with someone who’s not my family.” She turned her head slightly to the right and grinned. “Not that I’m complaining.”

“I’m not either.” Kerry crawled back onto the bed and rested against the headboard. “You just need to . . . teach me. Is that it?”

“I don’t know that I would have to do a lot of teaching.” Annie almost jokingly said, “train you,” but realized that would probably come across as sounding too mean. “But we would have to get use to living with each other at some point . . .” She glanced at the television. “Are you watching this?”

 

It’s already been mentioned that it looks like Annie will “wear the pants in the family,” and she certainly isn’t gonna deal with Kerry leaving his clothes laying around.  Like she says she’s not used to being around someone who’s not here family, and it’s even more difficult considering she has no siblings.  But she has Kerry, and . . . she’s certainly not gonna let him mess up her living space!  Sure, she called him “Dear,” but you can almost hear the tone in her voice when she said it . . .

And since she’s asking if he’s watching TV, that means she has other ideas . . .

 

He shook his head. “Not really. I just wanted something on for background noise.”

“Would you mind if I put on some music?”

“Not at all.” Kerry held his left hand over the remote on the nightstand next to him and levitated it to Annie. “Put on whatever you like.”

Annie plucked the remote out of the air and brought up the cable guide. She found a music channel and brought it up before levitating the remote to a spot next to the television. She stepped back as she listened to the song that was finishing. “Can I turn it up a little?”

Kerry nodded. “Go ahead.”

 

Given Kerry’s musical tastes, one has to wonder if he’s inwardly grimacing at the thought of what Annie’s gonna put on.  Probably not, because by now he’d know what she likes, and he’d also know their tastes are wildly different.

Annie does find something she likes, and we get to see her doing something that hasn’t happened all that much in the story:  we get to see her acting like a twelve year old girl . . .

 

Annie waved at the television: the sound bar illuminated and went up five point. A new song began, and Annie bounced with joy. “Oh, I love this.” She moved into the open space between the bed and the bathroom and began dancing as she removed her bathrobe and set it on a nearby chair, humming and singing along with the tune the whole time.

As the song segued into the chorus Annie faced Kerry and sang along. “Hey I just met you/And this is crazy/But here’s my number/So call me maybe.” She performed a quick spin and pointed at him. “It’s hard to look/Right at you baby/But here’s my number/So call me maybe.” She laughed as she sprinted and leapt at the bad, turning in mid-air so that when she landed, she fell backwards against Kerry’s right side. She pushed herself straight back into the space between his right arm and torso and got comfortable. “Are you gonna call me?”

He laughed along. “Do I have a choice? I’ve never seen you dance around like that before.”

“You’ve never seem me at the lake house when I’m alone and the music is on.” She twisted her feet back and forth. “I would bet anything you’ve never heard that song before, either.”

“I’ve heard of it, but . . .” He nodded. “That’s the first time I’ve heard it played.”

 

So there you have it:  Annie likes popular pop music, and she’ll even dance and sing to it when she’s alone.  And, I have it on good authority from someone who knows Annie probably even better than me that were she to have a theme song, it would be Call Me Maybe.  After all, it is about love at first sight, and Annie’s all about that.

But I loved having her sing and dance and getting her hand motions down, and in the end launching herself onto the bed, laughing the whole while.  She’s relaxed and happy, and she’s finally cutting loose a little.  And both kids are noticing things . . .

 

Annie reached up and ran her fingers through his hair. “I like that you changed the color back.”

He chuckled. “I was getting tired of seeing blond all the time.”

“So was I. I love my Ginger Hair Boy.”

“I figured as longer as I change it to blond before going out I’m okay.” Kerry focused on Annie’s feet. “Is that a new polish?”

“Yes, it is.” Annie always liked that Kerry took notice of her nail polish. She’d started doing her fingernails last year, and this summer before coming to Salem—mostly because she wanted something to take her mind off not seeing Kerry in her dreams and the upcoming school year—she started giving herself pedicures. Since then she’d been doing her nails a couple of times a month, and always made sure to show Kerry because he seemed to like them polished. “My mother gave it to me for Yule.”

“That’s a—what? Metallic gray?”

“Yes. It’s from Butter London. It’s called Chimney Sweep.” She flashed her fingers. “See? I match.”

“I saw you did them this morning.” Kerry noticed that Annie always found time in the morning or at night to do her nails—more than likely using some kind of localized time spell to dry them quickly. Since he’d been with her last night and hadn’t noticed the polish, he figured she did them early in the morning. “I like it.”

“I like it, too.” She crossed her arms across here waist and settled back into Kerry’s arms. “What’s on your mind?”

 

She notices his hair, and he notices her polish.  We learn for the first time that Annie does her nails, going the mani-pedi route, and Kerry likes seeing them painted.  Oh, and the polish Annie’s wearing?  It’s real.  Maybe not then, but it is now.  I’m sure there was something similar to it if it wasn’t around, but allowed a little authoritative licence, okay?

This gets to the last order of business:  what’s on Kerry’s mind.  And he tells her–

 

Kerry loved feeling Annie in his arms, and given that there was no possibility of anyone walking in on them, or overhearing what they were discussing, he felt more relaxed that normal. “I was thinking—”

“Yes?”

“I’m the only eleven year old boy in the world sitting in a hotel room alone with the twelve year old girl who could end up being his wife.”

“Could be?” The grin on Annie’s face was huge as she looked upward so she could see Kerry. “And this doesn’t bother you?”

“Nope.”

“Not at all?”

He kissed her on the cheek. “I wouldn’t have thought about it if it was.”

 

Pretty strange thing to think about:  Hey, I’m sitting on a bed with the girl who could be my wife.  Yeah, his mind is getting wrapped around that idea, and he’s getting comfortable with the notion, and Annie’s happy that he’s comfortable.  Nothing to hide there any longer, so just go with it.

But that’s not the real thing–

 

Though she was happy to hear this news, it wasn’t what Kerry had been considering earlier. “But that’s not all that’s on your mind—what were you thinking when entered the room?”

“Oh—that.” He pulled Annie tighter. “I figured out our last dream.”

 

And that’s where I ended everything off, last night and this morning, with Kerry saying he figured out their last shared dream.  Did he?

Well . . . you’ll find out.

Last Night in Mister Moon’s Drive

I was out last night.  It was another in a long line of visits where I go out, have pizza, chat, and watch shows that either invite snarky commentary about plot holes (Prisoner of Azkaban, why walk back to Hogwatts when someone could have apparated Peter back?  Why not have someone go back and get Dumbledore?  Why not just take Peter to Hogsmeade, which was right next door?  Why did Lupin conveniently forget there was a full moon that night?  Why was the story plot hammered like it was being run by a bad GM?) or something more interesting (like two episodes of Season Two of Sherlock).

Then came the drive back after midnight.  For some reason there was almost no traffic, and my drive home was one of just letting the cruise control do its thing just point the car down the road.  There wasn’t a need to touch the brakes, so I drove and thought . . .

I had a waxing gibbous moon on my left shoulder for most of the drive, and it struck me that this would be my last moonlit drive for 2012.  And it was strange because on so many moonlit drives, I’ve been with characters who have made my stories shine, with ideas that drive me on to produce good stories, and plots that I hope work out once I put them to paper.

I had none of that last night.  It was just me, and a few of my thoughts.  Not that there was anything wrong with that, but as perfect as the night seemed, I really wanted to have someone alongside, sharing the experience.

This is has been a long year, with plenty of ups and downs, things to be remembered and forgotten.  There has been exhilaration and doubt.  Particularly the doubt, which has seemed to increase in the last few weeks.  Don’t ask why, because I don’t know myself.  It’s the way my mind works, and it’s not ways a good thing, that.

The thing about being a writer is there is always doubt.  Is this story good?  Are the characters believable?  Does any of this make sense?  Is the cover nice?  Is this damn thing going to sell?  It’s the nature of the beast, these doubts, because creative people are like that.  Nothing is ever good enough for them; everything is “okay”.  Or, if they are really down on themselves, “not so good”.

Quite honestly, we’re all seconds away from an Admiral Ackbar moment, and it will drive you crazy when all the thoughts of everything bad that could happen to you come knocking.  I had a touch of that last night, then kicked them out of the car because I realize the more negativity you embrace, the longer it stays with you.  That was the problem with my last job:  it was a negative environment, and very little made me happy.

I don’t want negative:  I want happy.

It seemed that once I pushed the bad stuff out of the car, a couple of characters who I hadn’t thought of in some time entered my mind, as if to put me at easy and tell me, “It’s okay, love.  We all go thought this:  you’re no different.”  It was comforting that even someone fictional could bring a smile to my face . . .

Perhaps they needed someone to ride with as well.

The Coming Change

Doing some serious digging here . . . hold on . . .  Yeah, it’s what I thought.  Just did a check on the word count for Diners at the Memory’s End, and it’s just a couple of hundred words shy of ten thousand.

So lets do some math.  I’m on Part Five.  There are sixteen total.  Say I add another fifteen hundred word to this part–which isn’t all that crazy–that would take this part to about 11,300 words.  That would put me at 2,260 words per part on average.  So, multiply that by sixteen, and . . . about thirty six thousand and change for the total word count.

I’ve almost got another short novel on my hands.

And the thing is, I know there are a couple of chapters that are probably going to run longer than twenty-two hundred words.  I know Part Eight will likely run a little long.  I know Part Twelve is going to run long, because there’ll be a long stretch there explaining Meredith’s motivations.  Fourteen will also run a little long, me thinks, because it’s a long, detailed section which tells Meredith just what it is that Albert does.  And the last part, Sixteen, will be a good wrap up.

So with that . . . I might have a short novel on my hands, maybe around fifty thousand words.

Not another one of those!

Despite that fact that I’ve written shorter stories–if by “short”, you mean, “Stories the length of which most writers tend to do in two or three, or four, stories”–I believe I’ve always known I’m a novelist.  I know some people will say it’s because I can’t get to the point, but most of the time I feel like “telling the story”, and when I do that, I get–as my ex-wife used to say–wordy.  I don’t consider that to be a bad thing, as I used to tell her all the time.  Some people–like her–think this is a bad thing, but I could think of worse things to happen to a writer–

Like not get read.

Diners got off to a bit of a slow start, but I’ve had a ton of other things going on while I’ve begun writing it in earnest.  The thing is, right now, with two novels out on the Submission Trail–where I hope they don’t die of dysentery, as they would if this was the game Oregon Trail–I need to keep the pipeline going.  I gotta produce zee tomes if I want to get zee readers, and zee readers, they make the penmonkey dance, no?

As I told someone last night, I want to finish Diners at the Memory’s End, then I want to do a little hop back into erotica with one of two stories, one of which I might be able to turn into a series.  Then, after that, I need to do a massive edit on Book One of Transporting, and see if I can not only find a buyer for that sucker, but see if they’re interested in the other two books in that series.

Getting Transporting sold is important, because that’s a lead-in to both Echoes and Diners.  Sell the first, and the rest will follow.

I said almost six months back that 2012 was going to be a year of change for me, that a huge number of things were going to happen to me.

Trust me–

It’s coming so fast, I don’t know if I can keep myself in check.