The Final Days and Nights: PTown Bound

Better late than never, but there’s always a reason why I’m coming to you so late, an that’s because I’m keeping my mind off eating.  I intend to head out after this is posted to do a little happy hour just down the street, then come back here for a nap before I do a little more writing tonight.  I’ve also been busy getting things ready for this post and, believe it or not, fixing a mistake I found in my story.  But more on that later.

We come to Chapter Thirty-four, and this is the penultimate chapter of the novel.  There remains one more after this, but the writing’s on the wall:  another couple of weeks and B For Bewitching is finished, and with it another year of my life spend working on a novel.  Two days ago someone asked me, “What’s next?” and you probably already know the answer.  But I need a rest first; I’m in a serious state of burn out, and I need to recharge and do some editing before I can even consider getting into another original story.

But all that stuff is for later.  Right now my mind is on this:

The scenes are coming, but not for long.

The scenes are coming, but not for long.

This chapter deals with the last week at school, and the next chapter, Thirty-five, deals with the last day Annie and Kerry spend together before going their separate ways for the summer.  And with the day set forth in this scene, the last Sunday at school, there’s less than a week before they say their B Level goodbyes.

But first, there’s something on their agenda for this day–

 

This excerpt from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Two: B For Bewitching, copyright 2015, 2016 by Cassidy Frazee)

Though the day was overcast and cool—as was the case with most of this May—everyone was in great spirits. Kerry felt there was something about getting away from school and being out on your own for just a little while that instantly lightened moods and had people enjoying their surroundings.

Though he had to admit the start of this little adventure hadn’t come without issues . . .

Today was Graduation Day at Salem, and the majority of activities were geared around the students who had completed their studies and their families who were there to celebrate their children’s success. Because today’s focus was on the seventeen departing F Levels, that meant the remaining one hundred and twenty-three students moving on to their next school levels were pretty much free to do as they pleased.

And what pleased Annie and Kerry the most was the ability to leave the school grounds, with permission, on their own.

 

It was the thrid paragraph that gave me trouble and made me start looking around for twenty minutes because there was a mistake in my history.  I know:  gasp!  It happens.

What went down was this.  I know how many students there are at school:  for this year it’s one hundred and forty-nine.  Seventeen students are graduating, and with nine not doing well enough to move on to the next level, that meant I have one hundred and twenty-three students coming back next year for Annie ‘sand Kerry’s C Levels.

Only I noticed that when I added up all my F Levels from each coven I had sixteen, so I need to figure out where I was light and fix that.  After that I decided, what the hell, I’ll check all the numbers.  And what did I find?

I was missing a student.

It took me a moment to figure out the missing student was in Blodeuwedd, and it took me a few more minutes of number checking to figure out I was light one D Level n that coven.  With that know I put a maker there for a student, reran my numbers to make sure everything was good, confirming that they were.  Now that I had all my students accounted for, I could get on with my writing.

See the insanity I put myself through?  It would be so much easier to just make shit up, but noooooooo . . .

Now that we know what makes my kids happy, what are they gonna do about it?

 

During their A Levels Annie and he had taken the day and flew westward, where they spent most of the day relaxing at Pearl Hill State Park. This year, however, they had a different destination in mind, and they decided they wanted to enjoy their time in the company of friends, so earlier in the weekend they asked Penny, Alex, and Jario if they wanted to come along, and let Alex know her boyfriend Kahoku was invited as well. By the end of the day all four friend accepted the invite, and Kerry, Penny, and Alex filed their plans with Vicky the next day.

All six gathered in the Pentagram Garden right before nine-thirty, well after breakfast so they had plenty of time to return to their covens and grab a few things before leaving. The plan for reaching their destination was simple: Annie, Penny, Alex, and Kerry were going to fly while Jairo and Kahoku would ride on the backs of their girlfriend’s brooms. Alex and Kerry brought their backpacks which gave Penny and Annie a place to set their purses, and Kerry had his tablet computer mounted on the control shaft of his Espinoza so they would have music for their short trip.

Right at the bottom of the hour they lifted off from the garden. Rather than use a broom, Annie rose into the air under her own Gift, wearing her new flying jacket for the first time. They ascended to three hundred meters, put their light bending spells in place, and headed off towards their destination: Provincetown, Massachusetts, at the tip of Cape Cod.

Though Jairo and Kahoku knew where they were going, the four fliers thought it best not to tell their passengers all the details of their flight there. They headed south towards Bass Rocks, but instead of turning right and to the west, the flight turned slightly to the left and sailed out over the Atlantic, picking up speed until they were cruising along as a comfortable one hundred eighty kilometers an hour. Annie and Kerry took the lead while Alex and Penny pulled into position behind them, and both seemed to enjoy having their boyfriends clutching on to them for fear they were going to be lost at sea.

 

Unlike last time they are not going out on their graduation flight alone but with friends, and rather than go to a park they’re heading to a town. Provincetown, MA, is one of the nicest places I’ve ever visited, and one of these days I’m going to find a way to attend a writer’s retreat there.  That’s why this scene is labeled Party of Six, for the Cernunnos Five, plus Alex’s boyfriend, make for six.  I also find it a bit funny that other than Kerry the two boyfriends have to ride on the backs of their girlfriend’s brooms, because those boys should have stuck to flying if they wanted to ride along side their ladies.

Here’s their quick trip across the ocean, though we’re being very liberal with the term ocean here.  Still, if you don’t like being over open water, you’re probably not going to be happy out here.

It's ocean if you only look at it that way.

It’s ocean if you only look at it that way.

The total distance is only about seventy-seven km/forty-eight mi, which is why at the speed they were going they were able to make the trip in about thirty minutes.  It would have taken them a lot longer to hug the shore and make the trip that way, and at some point flying across open water was the only way to get there without being crazy about thing.

And once they arrive at their destination, the rest is simple.

 

Kerry would glance over at Annie every minute or so as she kept about a four meter separation between them. This was her first flight since her last solo flight, and her flight helmet and goggles couldn’t hide the pleasure she felt being airborne once more. Nearly every time he looked to see how she was doing she’d look back and smile, letting him know she felt wonderful. There wasn’t a need to talk during the flight: there was no mistaking her joy.

Twenty-five minutes after leaving land behind they rapidly closed on the tip of Cape Cod, passing directly over the center of the Provincetown Airport runway as they approached their landing area: a grove of trees near the Pilgrim Monument on a hill overlooking the main town. They set down and remained invisible until they were certain they were alone before unmasking. After that it was a simple matter to leave the park, head down High Pole Hill Road to Bradford Street before strolling down to the main part of the town, where they would wander around window shopping before stopping for lunch at the Coffee Pot Restaurant in Lopes Square.

 

I would seem that both Annie and Kerry don’t mind flying out over the water now, probably because they know they could be back over land in about five minutes if they really wanted to turn on the speed.  I checked and most of the flight is never more than thirty kilometers from the shore.  I don’t know if the two boys would enjoy zipping into shore at three hundred kilometers and hour, however.

This is the area where they landed:

Well, near here, anyway.

Well, near here, anyway.

The area where they landed, the Pilgrim Monument, is just out of sight in the upper left hand corner, and the street the kids walk down is right there disappearing toward that direction.  Their eventual lunchtime destination is right in the center of the picture:  the Coffee Pot, where one can get things other than coffee.  And the area around there looks nice, too.

A nice street view which obviously wasn't take on the day my kids were there.

A nice street view which obviously wasn’t take on the day my kids were there.

This is where the rest of the scene takes place.  Which I’ll get to tonight and tomorrow.

Assuming I don’t find any more mistakes.

The Quey to the Square

As a beginning writing weekend, it’s been pretty successful.  I finished the scene I started in yesterday’s blog post, and wrote, and finished, the one that followed.  I ended up writing a little over sixteen hundred words, and the novel is about five thousand words into the first chapter.  One more scene and Chapter One is done and I move onto Chapter Two.

So I pick up where I left off, where Erywin asks . . .

 

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

The chuckle returned. “A good witch never reveals her sources.” She cleared her throat as she took a step back. “Speaking of your better half, how is Annie?”

A moment passed as Kerry’s thoughts turned to his soul mate. “She’s good.”

“I take it that item you have to post is for her?”

“Yeah.”

“How often are you exchanging letters?” Erywin was aware from discussions before the end of the last school year that Annie didn’t have immediate access to a computer or phone.

“I’m writing two, three letters a week.”

“Writing, or—?”

“Writing.” He made a motion with his left hand, as if he were holding a pen and jotting something down. “Just like she asked.”

“That must be quite the task for someone who was used to doing everything on a computer.”

“At first it was, now . . .” He shrugged. “Not so bad.”

“Good to hear.” There was one question that Erywin had wanted to ask the moment she met Kerry, but could do so in front of his month. “Have you seen each other in your dreamspace since the holiday started?”

He nodded. “A little over a week after we got home we had dream time together. Annie said something about how she was trying to dreamwalk me—she’d read about it and wanted to try making it happen—”

“That sounds like something one of you would try.”

“She wasn’t certain if it was a dream walk, or if we were dreaming together like we did in Kansas City.” Kerry smiled. “It was—nice. Being with her is always nice.”

She didn’t need to ask how nice: Erywin saw the experience written all over Kerry’s mooning face. “Is that the only time it’s happened?”

 

Yeah, being in a dream with Annie is . . . nice.  And Erywin asks if this is the only time if they meet in dreams, and Kerry confirms this.  Is he doing something that’s keeping them apart, since they used to do this automatically all the time, and now–nada.  Maybe their favorite Seer can help there.

But Kerry goes on a little further in his discussion of summer with Erywin, and that’s when he comes to this:

 

“I suppose.” There were times when Kerry didn’t know if he would make it, however. He wasn’t about to tell Erywin of the moments when he grew sad and depressed over Annie’s non-presence. “It’s just—”

“Yes?”

“She was always there at the school. I saw her first thing in the morning, and she was the last thing I saw at night.” He let his gaze drop towards the ground once again. “The morning after I arrived home I came out of my room and half-expected here to be standing outside my door waiting to go to breakfast. It took a couple of more days before I realized I wasn’t going to see her again for three months.” He sighed. “The first Monday I cried for about ten minutes because I was eating lunch alone, and there was no one to talk to.” When he looked up and turned his face towards Erywin, his eyes were misting over with tears. “I miss her more than anything, Erywin. Even all the stuff I told you I miss? It’s nothing compared to her.”

“I’ve been there, Kerry.” She gave his shoulder another squeeze. “I was there for most of my school summers when I was dating Helena, and there were a few moments after we left school where I wondered when I would see her again.” She slipped her arm around her young friend and gave him a hug.

Kerry turned and hugged her back. “Does it ever get better?”

“No.” Erywin released him. “But you get better at dealing with the sadness. And who knows? By this time next year you both might be dreamwalkers.” The mobile in her purse beeped. “I think that’s my pretty girl.” She checked the display. “Yes. She’s finished up and ready for us.”

 

Make no mistakes:  Kerry missing Annie terribly.  Before Salem he took being alone in stride, and figured that he’d see Annie at some point in his dreams.  Now he doesn’t even have the dreams, and he’s feeling the loneliness.  He wants Annie by him, but he can’t have that.  Ergo, this summer really sucks.

And then it comes time to leave–Helena sends a message saying she’d finished–and Kerry asks if they’re going to eat at nearby Mermaid Quey, which is pronounced “key”, which is how you say today’s titles, “The Key to the Square.”  I’m sure some of your knew that, but now there is full disclosure.

Anyway, they jaunt off–

 

The moment they completed their teleportation Kerry suspected they weren’t in Cardiff. The weather felt the same, and the park where they appeared could have been any number of parks in and around his home city. Still, something felt off . . .

He looked down and immediately realized the difference. “It’s rained here.”

Erywin released his hand. “You are clever, you know that?”

“So I’ve been told.” He slowly dropped the light bending spell, allowing them to reappear as they stepped out of a small collection of trees. Erywin got her bearings. “This way.” She turned to her left and began walking; Kerry was alongside in seconds.

They emerged from the park and stepped out into a busy intersection. A prominent sign on the opposite side of the intersection told him their location. “We’re in London.” He pointed at the sign. “We’re close to an Underground station.” He turned around and saw the name of the park they’d just left. “Russell Square?”

They began crossing the street. “You know this place?”

“This is where Annie and I came for lunch when we had our free day before going to Amsterdam last year.” He smiled as he looked around. “We didn’t get down to this section, though, but—” He pointed to her right down Bernard Street as they crossed. “I believe the station is down that way.”

“Which is a coincidence—” Erywin turned right the moment she set foot upon the sidewalk. “That’s where we’re headed.”

They didn’t speak as they walked eastward down the street. As they approached the end of the block Kerry spotted another familiar figure: Salem’s Mistress of All Things Dark, Helena Lovecraft, the school’s Head Sorceress. Kerry was a little taken back, because of what Helena wore: a light blue tee shirt, jeans, and sneakers. If it wasn’t for the addition of her ever-present long leather jacket, Kerry might not have recognized the instructor.

He waved as they grew closer. “Hi, Helena.”

“Hello, Kerry; welcome back, Darling.” She took a moment to give her partner a kiss before stepping over to Kerry’s right side as they continued walking slowly. “Erywin been keeping you company?”

“Yeah, we been having a nice chat.” He looked down and across the street. “There’s the tube station.”

Erywin turned her head so she could see Helena. “Kerry informed me that he’s been to Russell Square before.”

Helena turned to Kerry. “Is that so?”

“Yeah. When Annie and I were doing our walking tour of London last year, we stopped here for lunch.”

“Oh? Where?”

“At a Pret a Manger.” Kerry stopped and took in the street, remembering that moment almost a year earlier when Annie and he were allowed to leave the hotel where they were staying, and she showed him around the city. “It was right across from the tube station, so if it’s there—” He turned to his left towards Helena. “—then the restaurant is right behind—”

Helena took a single step to her left, giving Kerry an unobstructed view of the Pret a Manger behind her—

Annie sat alone inside the restaurant at a table next to the window. As her eyes met Kerry’s, a smile etched across her face as she raised her right hand and waved.

Kerry froze, unable to react. He finally turned back towards the two women who were now standing side-by-side. Helena took Erywin’s hand. “As clueless as ever.”

Kerry finally found his voice. “You guys—”

“I told you mother I was taking you to lunch—” Erywin leaned into Helena. “I didn’t say you were dining with us.”

Kerry threw his arms around both women and hugged them. “Thank you.”

They hugged them back. “I got your number from Ms. Rutherford—” Helena stepped back as soon as they finished the hug. “I’ll message you when we’re ready to met up again. Until then, you’re both on your own.”

“Okay.”

Helena nodded towards the restaurant—and the waiting girl—behind him. “You better get going; she’s been waiting almost five minutes.”

Kerry didn’t offer his goodbyes: he nodded, then turned and hurried into the Pret a Manger. The moment he was inside, Annie was out of her chair and standing with open arms next to the table. He rushed into her embrace and lost himself in her long, gentle, loving kiss.

 

As the scene was just over seven hundred words, I presented it all, because, well, it’s a nice scene.  And I’ve had the image of Annie sitting alone, waiting for Kerry, for some time now.

Though I doubt she's begun working on her wine drinking yet.

Though I doubt she’s begun working on her wine drinking just yet.

When I wrote the line about Annie sitting and waiving at Kerry, I began getting weepy, because it’s a lovely image.  I’ve missed something like that in my life for a long time, and, well, I wanted my kids to have this time together.  They deserve their happiness.

As we all do.

The View Beyond The Foundation Window

Where was I last night?  Actually I had to run out and pick up a couple of things, and by the time that was over I was back at the apartment somewhere around seven-thirty.  After I got back onto the computer and started working . . . nothing was really coming.  It’s interesting how that happens, you know.  Eleven hundred words the night before, less than four hundred last night.

But since I was asked, “Who is Kerry gonna speak with at lunch?” it’s only fair I show you.  And Kerry is a mess right now.  He is Mr. Mopie Sadsack right now, because his sweetie is off in Bulgaria–probably walking up after whatever magic The Foundation slipped into her Readjustment Mixture works its magic and got her on the proper local time–and he doesn’t even feel like eating, which is a first for him.  However, someone comes a callin’:

 

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

It hasn’t even been three hours— Kerry poked the Italian sausage on the right side of his plate. And I’ve gotta stay here for like another nine hours—or ten—maybe longer . . .

“Now here’s a young man with something on his mind.” Kerry looked up from his plate to find Professor Sladen standing across the table from him. She regarded him with a studied eye. “Ah, he is conscious, and not in some self-imposed trance.”

He chuckled as he set his fork to the side. “Hi, Professor Sladen.”

Erywin waved dismissively at him. “Oh, please: school’s out for the year. You can called me Erywin.”

“I don’t know if I can get used to calling you all by your first names.”

“’You all’?”

“You know: instructors.”

“Well–” She placed her hands upon her hips. “You have no problem addressing Wednesday by her first name—what does she have that I haven’t got?” She chuckled as his face turned a bright red. “May I join you?”

Kerry calmed himself and nodded. “Please do . . . Erywin.”

 

All this calling instructors by their given name and stuff–really, it’s going to drive a kid crazy.  And what has she comes to talk about?  I’ll have to write that tonight.

It’s interesting that now that the novel is moving towards the end of Act Two and a few truths are going to emerge, not just with Kerry but with Annie as well.  And in Act Three we finally get out of the school and wander about the land beyond the walls.  I was asked recently about the world beyond the walls of Salem and what it was like, and my answer was simple:  it’s the world of 2011 as we knew it–because we are in 2014, and we’re looking back–and there isn’t much of a change other than one discovers during this story that there’s a shadow organization that spans the entire globe and not only gathers children from all over the world, but brings them to a school that no one can see save for those known as The Aware.

I mean, take a look.  There’s the Salem Institute of Greater Education and Learning (SIGEL) right in the middle of the picture, just to the north of Gloucester and to the east of Rockport.

It's right there.  Don't you see it?

It’s right there. Don’t you see it?

I see it, because I know the layout in my head, but that huge green area in the middle of Cape Ann, where one would find a large forest and quarries and even the remains of Dogtown, there is instead a huge, walled school that normal people live next to and have no idea exist.  That’s where your smoke and mirrors and magic all come into play, convincing everyone that all is right in the world and there’s nothing to worry about, because should you wander into that area, everything you think you’re gonna find you will.

Annie and Kerry get to venture into the old world–well, old to Kerry; Annie’s always been used to living in her Foundation World while dealing with the Other World–and they’ll travel into Salem, maybe even by train.  I can’t tell you what they’re doing there, because spoilers and River would come after me, but it’s not something anyone would probably believe at this point.  Needless to day, being outside in the world is going to have an affect on both my kids.

And Annie will be haunted by one of her deepest fears right in front of this statue in Salem.  Probably because Samantha Stevens has that effect on young witches.

And Annie will be haunted by one of her deepest fears right in front of this statue in Salem. Probably because Samantha Stevens has that effect on young witches.

The later stories (yes, there are more stories) get out into the real world even more, and if I ever get the second novel written you’ll see Kerry out and about, though the third, forth, and fifth novels would actually see them outside the walls of Salem a lot more.  Right now they’re innocent A Levels and I can’t let them leave the safety of the school.

Which is why Kerry’s already been in a coma.  Because safety.

A Roundabout History

It didn’t take a lot of words:  all together about one hundred and eighty.  There was a bit of deleting, and some moving of things here and there, but after an hour of writing, I managed to finish the scene I’ve worked on for almost a week.  And ended it off this way:

 

(Excerpt from The Foundation Chronicles, Book One: A For Advanced, copyright 2013, 2014, by Cassidy Frazee)

“You know: we can get our picture taken at one of the most famous departure points of one of the most famous schools in literature—and tomorrow we’re leaving for Amsterdam to get ready to leave for our own strange school.” He wiggled his eyebrows. “Kind of a coincidence, don’t you think?”

Annie nodded slowly. “Yes, that is rather remarkable.” She sipped the last of the Lemon Aid—not so much to quench her thirst but to hide the smile that had begun to form . . . Oh, Kerry: if only I could tell you about how strange things are at our new school.

 

Oh, Annie, you little minx.  You could tell him, but you’d probably have to leave his body in an alley somewhere afterwords, right?  No, she’s not like that.  Not at all.

Five thousand, two hundred and sixty-three words, which turned two scenes that were about three thousand words total into one scene about eighty percent bigger.  But a lot gets done in this scene, and I feel it’s far better than what had come before.  And I am finished–

See the little hash marks at the bottom?  That means "I'm Finished!"

See the little hash marks at the bottom? That means “I’m Finished!”

This time around.  Later comes the edits and the additional grief, but for now–done.

It’s also a little strange for me as a writer as well, because today is an important day in the history of my make-believe school.  Really, tomorrow is when all the hell breaks loose, but the 29th of April is when the school suffered a massacre during the last full school year of the 20th Century.  Instructors and students died–a lot of them pretty horribly–and when it was all over a few of the people who are in my current story did what they could back then to hold everything together and keep the school from falling apart.  After all, when thirty-plus students and a good portion of your staff and instructors die at the hands of crazy infiltrators, it tends to make the returning student body feel like maybe they should find another place to practice their mad skills.

Come for the Magic, Leave in a bodybag because someone ripped your heart from your chest.

Come for the Magic, Leave in a Body Bag because a bad person ripped your heart from your chest.

Interesting story, and one I have to fix up and publish.  Also the first one where I had to deal with a nutty beta reader who would not read past the third page because it was “slow”, and told me to remove the first two parts (which she didn’t read) while at the same time refusing to read the third part until I made the changes she demanded.  Um . . . yeah.  I’ll get right on that, because I’m all about dancing to the tune of crazy readers.

Maybe I could find a way to send them off to my school for a weekend . . .

Harboring Sleep Within the Test

The last couple of days my energy has really been at a low ebb.  Now only has work taken its toll of late, but I’ve not been sleeping well–again.  There can be any number of reasons for being tired–though I think a large part is due to my hormone replacement therapy–but the sleep thing?  Damn, that’s been with me forever.

Now, something interesting came up in a conversation yesterday.  Never mind the umpteenth requests I received to get some sleep–I know I’m tired, you don’t need to tell me I need sleep–but this comment that caught my attention:  “Your novel is keeping you awake.  It’s on your mind all the time, and it won’t let you rest.”

Now there’s a secret that isn’t unknown.  I do get caught up in what I’m writing.  I get caught up in the characters.  Sometimes it driver me a little crazy, but I consider that par for the course.  But keeping me awake?  Well, now, that’s something that hasn’t happened before too many times.

Maybe there is some truth here.  I know I slept well last night, so maybe I’ll finish up this enormous scene tonight before Cosmos comes on.  In the meantime–Kerry asked Annie a question, which was, “Don’t you think we did a lot of goofy crap yesterday, and now . . .”  And now here’s the end of that question . . .

 

(Excerpt from The Foundation Chronicles, Book One: A For Advanced, copyright 2013, 2014, by Cassidy Frazee)

After her chat this morning, Annie had more insight into why she was sent off with the others without waiting for Kerry. Not that I can tell him— “I can agree with everything you said, but why do you think today is a test?”

“I just do.” He tapped his fingers on the table for a few seconds. “What time did she tell you she was called in?”

“She didn’t say—just that she’d been called in for a meeting.”

“But you both talked early, and she already had the debit cards. They could have been sent over, but even so, The Foundation would have made those last night. Which mean they knew this was going to happen.” He glanced out the window, something Annie noticed he did quite often. “There was a card for each of us—our names were on them. Someone went through all this trouble last night so we’d get them this morning.”

“And you think Ms. Rutherford planed this?”

“Not her: this Foundation. Though she probably knew about this and the stuff yesterday.” Kerry finished his sandwich and slowly pushed his plate to the side.

If only I could tell him what I know. Annie had heard about these things from her mother a few days before leaving home, and found none of Kerry’s suspicions shocking. She was also fairly aware of why Ms Rutherford was telling her about what she thought the other students would do today . . . “If it is a test—” Annie rested her head against her right hand and twirled her hair. “—I’m glad I passed.”

Kerry looked downward as he grinned. “I don’t know if it’s one we were expected to pass, but I do think Ms. Rutherford is keeping an eye on us.”

Annie didn’t what to hear Kerry go on about different ways The Foundation could follow them—she knew nearly all of them—so she moved the conversation in another direction. “I’m only asking because I’m curious, but . . . would you have left the hotel if I hadn’t asked you out?”

“I . . .” Kerry chuckled, then pursed his lips as he pushed air through them. “I don’t know. Yesterday wasn’t that bad because I didn’t have to go that far, and we were suppose to be doing things for school.” His sigh was loud, even against the background noise. “I’m glad I didn’t stay in the hotel.”

 

It’s not the sort of test you’re expected to pass?  Oh, Kerry, you poor sap, you’re being tested right now.  Only by someone different and for different reasons . . .

Now I should think about the sort of damage one little girl can do with access to a library full of deadly arcane knowledge.

Not that I don’t already know.

"Yes, I could use my shadows to follow Kerry everywhere--technically the shadows are the ones stalking him . . ."

“Draught of Truthful Submission?  That’s much better than a love potion–“

Break Down in Russel Square

Hacking and Slashing (now there’s a term I haven’t used in a while) was hot and heavy last night.  I finally had my kids off their feet, out of the Tube, and into the restaurant, and the cutting and adding of words was underway.  By the time I finished for the evening, I had no idea what I’d written.  That’s because with all the deleting that was underway my total words written check was way off.  There are ways to figure this out, however–like copying the area you were working in and pasting it to another text form.  That way you discover you wrote and edited nine hundred and six words.  Easy as Pi, right?

With all my old scenes deleted–goodbye, you first draft messes–my corkboard looks like this now:

All my scenes lined up, sorta neat because they never go anywhere.

All my scenes lined up, sorta neat because they never go anywhere.

 

While my outline shows me where my word counts are:

The numbers keep going up.

The numbers keep going up.

The word count for my current scene is just under three thousand, but that’ll change.  Then I have to rewrite the trip through the Chunnel, which takes on an air of confusion for Kerry due to things happening in this current scene, and then I can move on and rewrite a few other things–

Then I can get back to Act Two.  Maybe.

So what did my kids do last night?  A little of this:

 

(Excerpt from The Foundation Chronicles, Book One: A For Advanced, copyright 2013, 2014, by Cassidy Frazee)

A light rain was falling upon Russel Square when Annie and Kerry stepped from the Underground station and made their away across the street to the Pret a Manger cafe. The place was busy but not overwhelmed with people, so they found a table and ordered food. Since the lunch rush was coming to an end their orders were ready in under ten minutes. Kerry’s was first: a club sandwich with avocado and a mango smoothie. Annie’s came moments later: a chicken salad and a Lemon Aid. She returned to their table to find Kerry’s computer unpacked and powered up.

“What are you doing?” She sat across from him, twisting her neck to see if she could follow what he was doing with his phone.

He didn’t look up. “Bluetoothing the pictures over to the hard drive; I wanna make sure I get all the pictures we took.” He tapped tapped something on his phone. “This way I have plenty of room for more, and everything’s saved.” He lay the phone next to the computer. “That should finish in a few minutes.”

It was difficult for Annie to keep from chuckling: he always seemed so serious when it came to his technological toys. She wanted to talk about something else . . . “You said you’d been to London once before?”

 

Yeah, bluetooth those pictures, Kerry, and free up some space on your phone.  You never know how many more you’re gotta get with that little octopus hangin’ on to you.  This is where I wish I could draw, because there were some great photos they good that I could include.

As if I didn’t have enough to work with at the moment.