Finally Back to the Talking

It’s Video Time!  So enjoy!

 

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The Mojo Go Go

Yesterday afternoon, after arriving home from work and a quick dinner of Taco Bell, I hoped to get in a nap before going to derby practice.  That didn’t happen due to a fly who decided it was far better if it landed on my face every thirty seconds, making getting to sleep an impossibility.

So when I got up I headed over to the computer and did something I hadn’t done in a week.

I wrote.

I picked up where I’d left off last Wednesday before getting ready to hit the road for the weekend and continued onward with what’s happening up on the third floor of the Salem hospital.  It was a bit of a rough going, however, as I couldn’t remember if I’d left off with Coraline or Annie speaking, necessitating having to rewrite the first paragraph I wrote because I’d gotten something wrong.

But it was a good session and I left the scene where I know I can pick it right up without a problem, because what’s happening next is easy to figure out.  I would have continued further with the scene, but it was necessary to change and load up my gear and head out to my 9 PM practice, where I spent the next two hours skating my butt off.

(In case you may wonder what sort of shenanigans I get up to at practice, our cardio was skating 50 laps, which works out to about 1 3/4 miles.  With all the other skating we did, by the time practice was over we’d skated about two and a half miles.  I think it’s safe to say we do about two miles of skating every practice.)

It’s likely I’m heading off to practice tonight as well, so before heading out the door at 7:15 I’ll get a few hundred more words in so I can keep this train moving forward.  That means getting into the next scene–

And I realized that one of the reasons I’ve been falling off on writing is that the next scene is gonna have some things in it that are… let’s just say it may not be good for my kids.  And I always get this way when I have to do something bad to them.  Not that they’re real or anything, but–you know what I mean.  It hurts because I know it’s going to hurt them.

I’m like a bad parent in a way.

Then again, if they didn’t do these things, I wouldn’t feel bad writing about them…

The New Day: All the Things You Didn’t Expect

After long last we come to the end of Chapter Seventeen.  We’ve been through the transition, the initial freak out, and now the plans for the day–

Well, not all the plans.  We’re starting to find out what The Foundation would like so they can catalog what’s happened to Kerry, and while it doesn’t seem like a lot, we’re just getting into the day.  There’s a lot to do:

A whole lot.

 

(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017 by Cassidy Frazee)

 

Kerry took a bite of her printsessi. “I’m curious about what’s going to happen.”

“Well, you have no need to be curious any more. First we’re going to do a full internal scan of your body. This is a little more detailed than the one we normally give you in one of the first floor bays—it’s similar to what you’d receive in ICU due to your body suffering some kind of massive trauma.”

Kerry’s eyes bugged out for a moment. “Oh, boy.”

A half-grin formed on Coraline’s face. “That’s just the start. Paris wants a full external scan as well and they’d like that coupled with a three-dimensional map of your body as well.”

“How are you going to do that?”

“You’re going to stand on a raised area while about eighty Spy Eyes bullet-time your body. Whole process should take about three minutes, or so I’m told.”

“I see.” Kerry took a sip of her juice. “What will I wear? Something like a leotard?”

There was silence around the table as everyone waited for Coraline to answer the question. It was Jessica, however, who stepped in ahead of the school’s doctor. “Kerry, they want to see your body.”

Coraline nodded. “All of it.”

It took several quiet seconds before she realized the implications of the statement. “I gotta be naked?”

“For those few minutes, yes. And—” Coraline cleared her throat. “Once you transition back The Foundation will want to same for your other body.”

“Oh, geez.” Kerry rolled her eyes. “Guess I should have expected this.”

“That’s not the end of it.”

“It’s not?”

 

On one hand, Kerry’s gonna get the full Matrix treatment, with a precise 3D rendering of her body in glorious bullet-time.  On the other hand she’s gotta do it in the buff, and do it twice, because now The Foundation wants to know everything about Kerry’s development for a while.  A little embarrassing, sure, but it won’t be much worse, right.

Ummmm…  wrong:

 

“No. After the outer scan is complete I’ve been instructed—” For a moment Coraline appeared to not want to continue her statement. “I’ll need to perform a pelvic exam on you.”

She looked at Coraline then turned to Annie. “What’s that?”

Annie turned her attention to Coraline. “Is it really necessary to do that?”

For the first time Coraline seemed embarrassed. “There are things required that necessitate performing one.”

Kerry was concerned that her question wasn’t answered. She stared Coraline down. “What is it?”

 

What’s a pelvic exam?  Oh, Kerry:  you’re about to find out–

 

“It’s a three-step process.” Coraline took a sip of her coffee before explaining. “The first step requires I do a visual inspection of your genitals. That means I’ll have you in a hospital gown with your feet up in stirrups—”

“Wait—” Kerry shook her head. “Are you talking about a gynecological exam?”

“Yes.” Coraline nodded. “That’s exactly what I’m talking about.

Kerry turned back to Annie. “Have you had one?”

“No, I haven’t.” Annie looked to Coraline. “Most girls don’t need these until they are older teens. Why does Kerry need one now?”

“Because I have to get a pap smear.” Though Coraline didn’t like delivering this news, she knew there wasn’t any way she’d get out of these actions. “Paris needs to see if there is anything out of the ordinary due to the transition.” She addressed Kerry. “Red, that means I’m gonna have to put a speculum inside you and dilate your vagina.”

While this was another of those things Kerry had yet to experience, she knew enough from reading what was involved in what Coraline needed to do. “Is there anything else?”

“Yes. I need to put my fingers inside you, too, so I can feel your uterus.” Seeing the slightly pained look on Kerry’s face, Coraline reached over and patted her hand. “Kerry, I’m going to try and make this as easy as possible for you. It’s only gonna be you, me—” She looked down the table to the girl sitting to Kerry’s left. “—and Annie, who I’m certain is gonna hold your hand the entire time.”

Annie took Kerry’s left hand. “I will: you needn’t worry.”

“I can offer one good piece of news: you’ll only need this once a year.” Coraline sat back, wrapping her hand around her coffee mug. “So you won’t have to worry about this again until around this time a year from now.”

 

So, Kerry is getting the dreaded pelvic exam, which is usually reserved for older girls and young women.  For sure she’s gonna need Annie sitting next to her holding her hand ’cause the odds are she’ll not feel all the comfortable.  And the chances are good that she’d gonna have an annual one for the rest of her life, or maybe 60 years, which ever comes first.

Yeah Kerry: this girl stuff can be a pain a lot of times.

There is one question that hasn’t been asked or answered, so Annie’s gonna jump in on that:

 

Kerry gave Annie’s hand a squeeze before releasing a loud sign. “Well, I knew there was gonna be a lot of crap I’d have to deal with once this happened, so I shouldn’t be surprised by this. Is that all?”

“In a way. After all the scanning and prodding we’ll need to fill-out a medical history form.” Coraline shrugged. “It’s not that big of a deal: we should be through it in about a half an hour.”

“Good.” Kerry blew out a sigh of relief. “That should be easy.”

Coraline gave a slight nod. “It will.”

Though all the questions and explanations Annie had remained quiet, as everything discussed revolved around Kerry’s transition. There was one thing that hadn’t been discussed, however… “Excuse me?”

Coraline looked up. “Yes, Annie?”

“When does Kerry try to transition back into a boy?” She glanced around the table. “After all, isn’t that part of the things planed for today?”

“Yes, that’s an important part of today’s schedule.” Coraline raise the coffee mug to her lips. “And we’ll get to that right after breakfast.”

 

Now you know how Chapter Eighteen begins: we’re go through the process of seeing if Kerry can transition back, which would mean she has control of her new Gift.

Yeah, that should roll in here about Wednesday…

The New Day: All On the Low

A lot of things have happened in the last day.  For one, I had my massage yesterday and heard some good news from my massage therapist.  Since she’s had a bit of experience touching my body and feeling my muscles, she told me that she felt the muscles in my legs were more defined and that I’d perhaps gained between 15 to 17 percent more muscle, most of it in my legs, of course.

You always want to hear that your body is improving and this was as bit of news I needed. I feel a bit stronger and I can tell when I walk that I’m not getting as winded as I once did.  More muscles in the legs means stronger push-offs, and that means more speed.  Just gotta get that form down…

Speaking of walking I did the Out of the Darkness walk for suicide prevention yesterday as well and ended up walking three miles.  I didn’t do it to raise money–though I did give $150 myself–but I did it because I’ve struggled with mental health issues and had a few attempts as well.  I was surprised to encounter a few people I know, but then Harrisburg isn’t that big a place and I’m not the only one here with issues.

So I walked.  It was my first time, but it won’t be my last.

Near the halfway point of the Out of the Darkness walk.

A post shared by Cassidy Frazee (@cassidyfrazee) on

 

I should also point out that my derby team was one of the sponsors of the walk and I let a few organizers know I marched not only for me, but for my teammates as well.

Finished the Out of the Darkness walk. It was a great experience.

A post shared by Cassidy Frazee (@cassidyfrazee) on

 

Now, Kerry isn’t having her mental health checked–not yet–but we’re still addressing the question of who at the school should be in the know.  She wants to bring in all the coven leaders and get them up to speed–and it seem there’s some president for this–

 

(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017 by Cassidy Frazee)

 

Erywin nodded. “Right. And the reality is, whenever we’ve had to deal with a transgender student, all coven leaders and all members of the administrative staff are told before the information is passed along to the other instructors.” She looked across the table at the two girls. “While Kerry isn’t transgender, she can be considered gender fluid—”

Kerry chuckled. “That for sure.”

“—which means she falls the same protections we give to any LGBTQIA student and is treated in the same manner as those students.”

“Of course.” Mathilde ran her thumb and index finger over her lips, something she did when she was thinking. “We can have a meeting in the main conference room over lunch. Kerry, would you consent to doing a live video chat from here? Maybe for ten minutes to answer questions and allow Maddie and Holoč to see you?”

“Sure, no problem.” She leaned forward a little so she could see the headmistress better. “You’ll want Professor Salomon there as well.”

The headmistress’ right eyebrow arched quickly. “Why her?”

Erywin answered this. “For the same reason Holoč needs to know: accessibility. If Kerry races as a girl she’ll need access to the locker rooms as well as gear to fit her new form.”

 

It’s been mentioned that the school has had trans students and as such they’ve needed to take steps to accommodate them.  Like it or not, Kerry falls into that same accommodation area, though in this case he accommodation issue isn’t permanent, which means while certain people at the school are being let in on her secret, it’ll stay with them until such time she decides to “come out” fully at school.

And since Kerry was all these instructors and staff included, do that mean someone else could benefit from learning about the new Kerry?

 

Mathilde’s eyes shifted from her coven leaders to her students and back. “Then should we get Wednesday involved as well?”

Deanna cleared her voice. “While she wouldn’t need to adjust the gender enchantment for Kerry, it might not be a bad idea to include her for additional input on—” She shrugged. “Something we may have missed.”

“And it would prevent Isis from having to keep another secret from her.” Jessica turned to the seer. “Isn’t that right?”

Deanna shrugged. “There is that matter as well.”

Mathilde held up her hand. “All right, then.” She looked across the table to Coraline. “We’ll get these people together for a meeting while you remain here with Kerry. Is that all right?”

Coraline nodded. “That makes the most sense, Headmistress. And given we’ll have a live video feed I can answer any question they have.”

“That will work well.”

“Good.” Coraline sat back and turned to Kerry. “Now… let’s discuss what we’re going to do today.”

Kerry took a bite of her printsessi. “I’m curious about what’s going to happen.”

 

So all the players are getting together for a chat and video presentation from Coraline and Kerry.  She gonna feel a bit like a star speaking from the secret third floor of the hospital, right?  Probably not.  We don’t even know if she’s enjoying being the center of attention yet.

I guess we’ll find out as we began discussing what sort of medical stuff is in store for her:

 

“Well, you have no need to be curious any more. First we’re going to do a full internal scan of your body. This is a little more detailed than the one we normally give you in one of the first floor bays—it’s similar to what you’d receive in ICU due to your body suffering some kind of massive trauma.”

Kerry’s eyes bugged out for a moment. “Oh, boy.”

A half-grin formed on Coraline’s face. “That’s just the start. Paris wants a full external scan as well and they’d like that coupled with a three dimensional map of your body as well.”

“How are you doing to do that?”

 

We’ll find out about the “do that?” tomorrow.  Until then we have other things to discuss–

Like the fact I completed Chapter Seventeen this morning.  I probably could have finished it last night, but that three mile walk took a bit out of me and I stopped right after getting in five hundred words.  So I settled for getting it done today.

Done is done as long as it’s, um, done.

 

I did some date checking and discovered twenty-four days have passed since I started Chapter Seventeen: that’s three and a half weeks if you’re keeping score.  A total of 9,494 words were written for this chapter, so when I do a little bit of simple division I discover that my daily word count works out to 395 words a day.

When I look at that I think, well, that’s not really that good.  But that date range is deceptive.  That’s how many days were spent from the start of this chapter to the end, but that’s not how many days I spent writing.  When I went back and checked that, I discover a total of eighteen days were spent putting down the words on the page.  And that works out to a more satisfying 527 words a day.

Whatever I’m doing it’s obvious I’m still writing.  Maybe I’m not burning up the page right now, but know–

I haven’t stopped.

And I have no intention of stopping.

Falling Down to Get Up

What is going on?  Why am I falling?  Well, there’s a reason…

The New Day: About the Excluded

The week is almost over and it’s one I want to get behind me.  It’s been mentally, emotionally, and physically trying, and when it comes to dealing with it all I haven’t always done my best.  I’m hoping I can get some of this behind me this weekend, so I’m doing a massage tomorrow before I do the Out of the Darkness Walk tomorrow night, my first.

I also get my shot tonight, which I hope does help a bit.

You know who doesn’t need a shot for their girly hormones?  Kerry.  I know, I shouldn’t joke about that.  But someone else has the jokes going–

 

(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017 by Cassidy Frazee)

 

Nurse Thebe entered the floor with a large, floating tray full of drinks and plates of food and stopped just behind Coraline. As everyone—the headmistress include—left their chairs to retrieve their breakfast, Nurse Thebe placed dishes in front of the two students. “I hope you don’t mind I ordered this.” Coraline pointed at the food before them as Thebe retrieved their drinks. “I knew you both likes these Printesses—”

“Printsessi.” Annie grinned madly at Coraline’s mispronunciation of the Bulgarian dish.

“Right; sorry.” Coraline collected her plate and continued speaking after re-taking her seat. “I knew you both liked tomato juice as well, so I went with that.”

“It’s quite all right.” Kerry gave a slight smile before picking up one of the baked bread slices and taking a tiny bite. “Um, so good.” She turned to Annie. “I was getting pretty hungry.”

“Well, you are a growing girl.” Annie looked down at her own food so she could hide her wide smile.

Kerry rolled her eyes. “I walked into that, didn’t I?”

“A little, my love.”

“Yeah, well: you’d know about this sort of thing.”

“It’s good you’re keeping your sense of humor about you.” Erywin set down her cup of tea. “It shows a healthy attitude.”

“What else am I gonna do? Jokes are gonna happen.” Kerry shrugged. “I’m likely to be stuck this way for another few hours, so getting upset about it won’t do me any good, right?”

Erywin looked down for a moment. “Yes, of course.”

Kerry looked up and down the table before turning to Mathilde. “May I ask a question?”

Mathilde was a bit surprised Kerry decided to address her. “You may.”

“Why isn’t Professor Semplen here? Or for that matter, Professor Palmescoff?” She looked up and down the table. “I get it that all of you figured this out and that the Headmistress is here because she runs the school—” Kerry looked down for a moment. “Who else besides Helena knows outside of us?”

 

So Annie is joking about Kerry being a growing girl.  Everyone is asking Kerry how he feels, but so far no one has asked, “Annie, how are you dealing with the fact your boyfriend now has a vagina?” I guess they assume she’s gonna deal with it since, well, she’s also known this was going to happen since the beginning.  And there’s nothing she can do as she knows her husband is also her wife.  And–

Well, maybe what happens below is an indication Annie is thinking ahead…

 

Mathilde lay her hands upon the table, her right over her left. “Isis knows. She had to know so she could make adjustments to the security system.”

“Because this morning it would have seen we were missing a male student but had suddenly gained a female student.” Kerry figured out the reason before being told. “Is that right?”

“It is.”

Kerry looked down. “Professor Semplen needs to know because—” She drew in a breath as she’d already considered the reasons why. “If I decided to—stay this way for a while, I’d need a place to stay in the coven tower. And he’d be responsible for me.” She turned to Coraline. “I wouldn’t be able to stay in the hospital the whole time: that doesn’t make sense.”

“No, it doesn’t.” Erywin leaned forward and turned to Mathilde. “If, for whatever reason, Kerry decided to stay in a female form for an extended period of time, she’d need a room in her tower.” She smiled the moment she saw how Annie’s face lit up at the thought of what her significant other might stay. “As senior coven leader, I think Holoč should be made aware of what’s happened—”

“And if we are bringing Holoč into the fold—” Jessica looked from Erywin to Mathilde. “We need to tell Maddie as well, as she’d end up being the only coven leader not to know.”

 

After months of keeping this among the Brain Trust, Kerry is asking that not only should her coven leader know about the, um, Change of Life, but they may as well bring Maddie into the fold as she’s a coven leaders, too, and they should all know.

So, it’s agreed they’ll bring in these two.  Is that all that will happen?

Well…

The New Day: A Little History

So, yeah:  post is late again, mostly because I was busy today.  As in a lot of busy.  But here it is.  And let’s get into what this place is–

 

(The following excerpts from The Foundation Chronicles, Book Three: C For Continuing, copyright 2016, 2017 by Cassidy Frazee)

 

“If you don’t mind—” Coraline’s voice boomed out throughout the room. “Let’s get ready for the events ahead. Breakfast is on the way up and I’m sure Annie and Kerry would like to start the day on a full stomach.”

Annie nodded. “That sounds like a fantastic idea.” She was concerned that too many questions would make Kerry moody and unreceptive to anything that would follow. She gave Kerry’s arm a slight tug. “Come, love. Let’s sit.”

“Yes, Sweetie.” As Kerry took her seat she looked to Coraline on her right. “What is this place?”

Coraline tried to play coy. “The third floor.”

“Yeah, but what is it here for.” She tried to slide herself forward. “Damn.”

Annie quickly glanced over. “What is it?”

“My feet: I can’t hardly touch the floor.” After a few seconds of trying to manually slide the chair closer to the table, Kerry used a bit of levitation to accomplish the feat. She returned to Coraline. “The question still remains.”

 

Given that we’re seen a bit of the third floor before this, it’s interesting to see the original intention of the place.  And that intention was..?

 

Knowing she couldn’t avoid the question, Coraline sat and decided to give Kerry a history lesson. “The third floor was designed to be the isolation area for the hospital and school. The original intent was to use this as a place to put students who’d contracted infectious diseases and illnesses and allow them to heal without subjecting others to their presence. However—”

Annie jumped into the pause. “That wasn’t the only intent.”

“No, it wasn’t. This was also meant to be used as the mental health ward as well, so we could isolate students and instructors who we felt had become a danger to themselves and to others.” Coraline signed. “It’s no coincidence that it was constructed almost exactly seventy years after the disappearance and death of Astria Blomqvist.”

After over two full years at school, Annie and Kerry were intimately aware of the history of, Astria Blomqvist, the school’s first Mistress of the Sky Arts and the founder of Cernunnos Coven. Not only did their know of her life, but they also knew about how she slowly withdrew from the students and instructors of Salem and ended up becoming a hermit in the first Astronomy Tower, Astria Portal, and eventually jaunted off to a remote family cabin in Sweden to finish the task of starving herself to death.

While in her time one would say she was “touched”, today everyone recognized Astria suffered from mental health issues and that allowed her mind to deteriorate to the point where she no longer cared if she lived or died. Over the long history of the school Astria’s mental health issues weren’t the only ones: Annie was aware of the suicides of a few Divination instructors, and both students were aware of enchantments in place around the current Astronomy and Clock Towers to prevent students from leaping to their deaths.

Kerry signed and looked around. “So this is where you were brought if you were deemed ‘unstable’.”

Coraline nodded. “Yeah. At least they did until about sixty years ago. These days if someone is suffering from depression or bi-polar disorder we try to get them into counseling ASAP, and if they don’t go right away we keep an eye on them in case they—try something.” She glanced towards the the lift area. “Anyone who attempts suicide is kept in the ICU these days—ah, here’s breakfast.”

 

Not much has been discussed about Astria Blomqvi, Annie’s and Kerry’s coven founder, but there has been a few discussions about how she sealed herself up in Astria Portal for many years before vanishing from the school.  Now you know: she jaunted back to Sweden and starved herself to death, all due to her deteriorating mental health.  So a mental health ward was created, though at the time it was called the “isolation ward” and probably more often “The Insane Asylum”.

Now it’s a place just used for testing.

And sometimes eating breakfast…