Beneath the Hardened Child

This is All About Annie.  Really, we are in that place where she’s being asked about stuff–you know, things–that that stuff happens to pertain to a certain Ginger Hair Boy from Wales.  It’s a given that her mother knows a bit about the boy, but Daddy?  If there was a Nopesville, Bulgaria, Annie’s father would be mayor.  But isn’t that how it is?

This means that, now, in the space after coming home and going to dinner, Papa gets a little me time with his lovely little witch.  Annie knows what he wants–he’s just taking his time getting there.


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

“We’re also thrilled with all the advanced classes you’ve been invited into. Although . . .” Victor rubbed his right index finger just under his lower lip. “Why didn’t you take Advanced Transformation and Advanced Flight One?”

Annie had expected these questions as well, and had her answers ready. “I’m auditing Advanced Transformation: Professor Kishna is letting me study the advanced spells with someone else—” She left the question of with whom she was studying and moved to the next answer. “—and as far as Advanced Flight One: everyone knows if I need additional flight training, I know where to turn.” She turned raised eyebrows and slight grin towards here father. “Is that not so?”

Victor couldn’t keep from chuckling. “That is true.” He sipped his tea for the first time. “I’m certain I could do as well as any of your instructors.”

They sat quietly looking at each other across the small table. Annie kept expecting her father to continue speaking, but he said nothing as his eyes darted from point to point around the siting room. After thirty seconds she decided to make things easy for him. “Papa?”

He sat up attentively. “Yes, Nini?”

She grinned partially due to what she was about to say, and partially due to her father calling her by the nickname they’d used for years. “You can ask the question you really want to ask—” She raised her tea mug to her lips. “I don’t mind.”


First off, Annie’s tired of beating about the bush:  if you wanna ask about my boyfriend–of which said terms has yet to come up–go ahead.  And second–Nini!  Annie has a nickname!  One that Kerry doesn’t know about.  And in case anyone’s wondering:  Kerry’s nickname is “Hey, You.”

Now that you have permission, ask away, Papa–


Victor set his tea upon the table and wrapped both hands around the mug. “How is Kerry?”

Finally. “He’s good, Papa.”

“And how is your time with him?”

“I enjoy being with him.”

He cleared his throat as quietly as possible. “Yes, but . . .” He raised his gaze and met Annie’s soft stare. “How is he to you?”

Annie set her mug aside and lightly placed her folded hands on the table before her. “He’s always nice to me: he never gets angry or mean, and he’s never raised his voice except when he’s frustrated with himself. He’s kind and always keeps me in this thoughts. He greets me every day with ‘Good morning’ and says ‘Good night’ before we go to our rooms to sleep.” She allowed her gaze slip slightly to the right. “He’s always there with a sweet word or affectation—” She looked back at her father. “He makes me feel wonderful, Papa.”

Wonderful Annie is a good witch filled with sunshine. Make her unhappy, and . . .

Wonderful Annie is a good witch filled with sunshine and unicorns. Make her unhappy, and . . .


Annie is a complex girl.  You could say, “Oh, but she’s a teenager:  of course she’s complex,” but there’s more to it than that.  Some might say that any girl who starts planning her wedding at around the age of seven with a boy who may be nothing more than a dream figment is probably a little obsessive/crazy, but there’s far more to her than just a stalker mentality.  She is in love, and she’s getting to the point where she doesn’t care who knows.  That little look off to the side–that’s her love remembrance.  And to tell one’s father that a boy they just met for about five minutes makes you feel wonderful . . . that’s heavy.  So much so that her father is a bit taken aback:


Victor regarded his daughter for fifteen seconds, his face a combination of calm interest. “You weren’t like this when you came home after your A Levels—”

“That’s because I missed him, Papa.” She glanced off to her right once more. “I was sad to leave him at the airport that day.”

He nodded slowly. “You were holding hands when you arrived in Vienna.”

Annie kept her head turned slightly to the right while her eyes turned back towards her father. “We were, yes. We hold hands nearly everywhere we go.” Her right eyebrow rose as she gave her father a quizzical look. “Didn’t Mama and you hold hands when you were at school?”

“Yes, we did.” Victor returned his daughter’s look. “But we never did that in front of our parents.”

She shrugged. “I’m different: you know that.”


She may as well said, “I’m not like the other girls,” and she’d have been right.  Oh, you saw us holding hands?  Ha!  I’m Annie:  I do what I want!  And to show she means business, this short little passage happens–


“I most certainly do know that.” He twisted slight in his seat so he could cross his legs. “I only want to know that you’re happy, and that this boy isn’t—”

“His name is Kerry, Papa.” Annie’s face froze into impassiveness as one thought entered her mind: I won’t allow him be spoken of in the same way Kerry’s mother tried to speak of me. I won’t. “Please don’t call him ‘the boy’. He’s more than that.”

There were a couple of slow, measured breaths from across the table before Victor spoke. “I apologize, Nini. I didn’t mean any disrespect.”


She knows about being “The Girl Who Writes” and she’s aware Kerry lost his shit on me mom for saying that, so you know Annie isn’t going to give either parental member a lot of slack when it comes to using a term like “the boy”.  And to say “He’s more than that”–yeah, she’s leaving little doubt where Kerry stands with her.

All this said, I figure to finish this scene tonight, and with this scene goes the chapter.  Not a big chapter, but one that seems to be taking a long time.

Don’t worry:  everything’s going to start going to hell here soon.

Fumblings Before the Questions

When writing you some times discover that things aren’t going to come as easy as you want–particularly when you’re tired and stressed out.  I know this is gonna sound crazy, but that’s been me the last couple of weeks.  A lot of it is work related:  some of it is due to needing to pay my quarterly taxes and discovering I might fall just a little short of where I wanted to be payment-wise.  (Just so you know, I won’t end up short.)

I actually fell asleep twice during the afternoon yesterday for about forty-five minutes at a time.  It’s my body telling me, “You need rest,” and I was trying to get it.  I also ate a lot of chili, which can’t have been good for my waistline, and I was paying for it a little last night.

So when I finally did get around to writing It wasn’t a lot–about seven hundred sixty total, and I pushed the scene up over a thousand words.  However, I did hit my mark of one hundred and sixty thousand words in the novel–at which point I called it a night.

It was also a good point to end the story.

It was also a good point to end the story.

What was the gist of what was written?  We know Annie’s dad was somewhere he shouldn’t have been, and that’s where the action picks up–


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

Victor Kirilov appeared humbled by his daughter’s remarks. “I didn’t think you’d mind. I apologize.”

“Well, now that you’re here—” She motioned for her father to remain sitting. “I’ll be out in a moment.” She entered her bathroom and used the toilet, thinking all the while about her father. There was little conversation about school: the proceeded directly to the public jaunt stations so they could return home, then she went straight to her room, changed into her night clothes, took her adjustment mixture, and was asleep in minutes.

It didn’t require a huge stretch of the imagination to understand why her father was there. She was fully aware he wanted to have a short talk—and to discuss a matter that didn’t require her mother. Annie finished and washed her hands, preparing for what would come next.

She returned to her sitting room: her father was at the table with two steaming mugs before him. He pushed one across the table as Annie took the empty chair. “I brought tea. I though you might enjoy some when you woke up.”

Annie wrapped her hands around the mug. “Thank you, Papa.” She waited a moment, warming her fingers against the ceramic, then stood next to the table with her arms spread.
Victor stood and gave him daughter a hug. “Welcome home, Anelie.”

“Thank you, Papa.” The last time Annie hugged her father was the first day she left for Salem. As she’d grown older she’d found it less necessary to have physical contact with her parents, but now she felt a hug was needed—if for no other reason than to show her father she still loved and cared for him. “I’ve missed you and Mama.”

“And we’ve missed you as well.” He waited for her to sit before taking his seat. “It will be good to have you home for these next two weeks. And your grandparents are looking forward to seeing you.”

She finally took a sip of tea. “I’ve been waiting for that since Mama wrote and said we were getting together.”

“Yes, but we’re meeting on Christmas Eve instead of Christmas.” He slowly tilted his head a little to the right. “We all agreed it would be easier to get a room, and that everyone could spend more time together.”

“I agree.” Annie lightly tapped the rim of her mug. “That also gives us more time to spend together on Christmas.”

“That’s what our parents thought: as much as they want to see you, they thought the three of us should spend Christmas together as a family.” Victor waited a few seconds before staring across the table. “How is school?”

Annie stared at the surface of her drink. Now it begins— “It has been good. I can’t believe a year and a half is already over.”

He sat back in his chair and folded his hands across his stomach. “It was like that for your mother and me: one day we were walking through Founder’s Gate on our way to our E and As, and then you’re finishing your C Levels and half your schooling is over.” His sigh was soft. “Time seems to pass differently there at times.”

“It does.” She nodded. “It does indeed.”


The questions are about to start, and we actually see Annie giving her father a hug, which is something that she doesn’t do much.  Annie and her father have had . . . let’s say issues, and they don’t always see eye-to-eye on a lot of things.  And now she will have to deal with Daddy finally meeting the boyfriend and having questions.  It should be fun.

And that should be tonight.

Adjusting For Home

I said I’d have another post, didn’t I?  Sure I did.  Now, the writing’s been a bit slow this morning, ’cause I’ve had shopping, and I’m cooking a big pot of chili in my crockpot, and I’ve washed all my clothes as well.  Between running out and running up and down, and snacking and trying to stay awake, it’s been a busy morning.

Let’s not forget the other blog post, too.

Anyhow, a few things have popped up.  For one, I’ve had a discussion about Annie dreamwalking Kerry, and I brought up something that I’ve thought about for a while:  once Annie figures out how to do that, she can spend all her time with Kerry while they’re awake, and then, once they’re asleep, she can come and visit him in his dreams.  It means that if she’s in the mood, she can spend all her time with Kerry, and he with her.  This could make her a bit like a Magically Overly Attached Girlfriend, and that means she needs a meme:

"You wouldn't want other girls sneaking in here, would you?  That could be . . . bad."

“You wouldn’t want other girls sneaking into your dreams, would you? That might be bad.”

Annie will keep you safe, Kerry.  Don’t worry.  Ever.

Yesterday was also saw the road leading up to Kerry’s house, so why not look at the road leading up to Annie’s.  Well . . .

And it looks this way right now in the novel.  Sort of.

And it looks this way right now in the novel. Sort of.

That area heading off into the woods on the right is the route heading into the mountains and going right to the Kirilovi Home.  It doesn’t look that way, but it is.  And while Annie’s parents have cars–and they even take them out for a drive when they want to maintain appearances–most of their visitors don’t drive, if you know what I mean.  You can be if or when Kerry comes to visit, it won’t be via this road.  Doesn’t mean he may not take the car into town, but a visit to Annie won’t involve ground travel.

But right now Annie’s home, and if Kerry is home thinking about her, that probably means Annie is thinking about him . . .


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

Annie’s eyes gradually opened and took in the darkness of her room. There was some ambient light, most of which came from the glow of her digital clock. She locked her gaze upon the readout: 19:15. It’s seventeen-fifteen in Cardiff— She rose up on her right elbow and brushed the hair from her face. He’s probably home and finally getting the opportunity to relax.

She slipped her legs from under the covers and sat on the side of the bed as she wriggled her feet into here slipper. Annie brushed her hair back over her shoulders and brought the lights in her room to their lowest level; only then did she make perpetrations to rise and face the rest of her first day home for Yule Holiday.

Her necklace and charm bracelet were on the jewelry tree sitting upon her dressing table. She’d considered wearing the necklace to bed, since he’d left it on when she’d Adjusted on the flight from Berlin to Boston with nothing happening. Adjustment sleep was so deep and full that a person almost never moved—almost.

Annie let the locket dangle inside her night shirt, where it felt cool against the bare skin over her heart. She slipped the charm bracelet on after that, smiling as she thought back to only a few hours before when they arrived home and she removed her jacket, both parents caught side of Kerry’s gift dangling around her left wrist. Her mother finally made the inquiry, and she nearly laughed when she saw the look they exchanged upon her saying it was as gift Kerry gave her during their first day in Berlin. While her father wasn’t certain what to make of this gift, Annie saw her mother realized the significance immediately—

The robe floated off the back of the chair where Annie set it after unpacking and hung in the air. She stepped up and backed into it, slipping her arms into the outstretched sleeves. She’d begun practicing this move a few months before after watching Helena doing this with one of her leather coats, and seeing her get into her coat that way brought back the memory of her mother sometimes do this same thing with her winter coats. It was necessary, then, for her to try the same thing, and since her skill with the Levitation spell was excellent, she crafted this action in a matter of a couple of days.

Walking towards the door she wrapped her robe around her and tied the sash. I imagine I’ll be able to slip this onto my shoulders with another month of practice. She waited until she was right in front of the door before waiving it open. I wonder if I’ll be able to actually dress myself that way? Mostly likely it would be easy with a dress—

“Ah, you’re finally up.”

Annie instinctively clutched her robe and held it tightly around her neck when she saw the visitor sitting in her sitting room. “Papa. You’re not supposed to come up unannounced.”


While Annie doesn’t mind a little tea with her mother in her sitting room, it seems as if having her father pop up without making an announcement first is a big social no-no.  And it probably doesn’t take a genius to figure out why he’s there–

You only have to wait until I write that part so you can see if you’re right.

Homecomings and Heart Feels

So much happening today; so much has happened already this morning.  For one, I awoke at four AM, and it’s been a tiring morning.  Needless to say there’s been a bit of stress in my life of late, and a bit of the stress pulled me out of slumbers.  It happened; you just go with it.  At least I can take a nap this afternoon and try to catch up on sleep this weekend.

This morning the story inched over the one hundred and fifty-nine thousand word line.  Eighty-one words to the one sixty mark–onward and upward.  I probably won’t make notice of the milestone until I hit one seventy-five, and then again at two hundred thousand.  Looking at where I am, this likely means I’ll go upwards close to three hundred thousand words–does this sound familiar?

We’ll get to that later, but right now . . . Ginger Hair Boy is almost home.  He’s been told to just be himself when he’s with Annie and her parents, and they’ll see just how good a person he is.  And guess what?  Kerry likes that idea.


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

He couldn’t find anything wrong with Ms. Rutherford’s assessment of the what happened in Vienna, or what might happen in the future. She was right: it didn’t matter what her father thought of him, Annie loved him, wanted to married him, wanted to have—well, what came next in that progression, but there wasn’t any need to bring that up now. It’s not something I should worry about now: it’s going to be a while before I spend any time with her family—maybe not until our D Levels—and since we know we marry . . .

They were on Newport Road and clear of the main part of downtown, and it wouldn’t be long before they made the left-hand turn on to the Albany Road. “Almost there.”

Just a quick left up ahead and it's home sweet home time.

Just a quick left up ahead and it’s home sweet home time.

“Yes, we are.” Bernice scrutinized him carefully. “You’re handling this separation better than last year.”

“Kinda.” He glanced out the passenger window. “It still hurts, but I remember what Erywin told me about hurt—the good and bad kinds. Right now I have the good kind—”

“Which is what?”

“It’s what you have when you know you’re going to see the person you love again.” He turned away from the window with a huge smile on his face. “Just two weeks, right?”

“Fifteen days.” She smiled back as they turned left off Newport and drove up Albany. “Pick you up in the afternoon and get you dinner.” She nodded towards the front of the car. “Unless you want to eat at home.”

“We’ll eat out—” The car turned off Albany and entered Timbers Square. “Something light, though: Annie and I will have dinner that night after we Adjust.”

“I love a good plan.” The driver pulled the car to the curb in front of Kerry’s home and shut off the engine. Kerry gripped the door handle as he started up at the front of the entrance of his house. “Well . . .” He smirked. “I’m guessing Indian takeaway awaits.”

“You’ll only find out if you go inside.” Bernice cracked open her door. “Shall we?”

“You bet.” Kerry was out of the car and had his backpack and luggage in-hand about a half a minute later. He was half way up the walk when the front door opened and his mother framed the entrance.


Now we’re home–well, Kerry is, we’re just watching as readers.  Kerry’s already thinking about what’s ahead two weeks in the future, and all of the fine dining that awaits him as Casa Malibey.  We’ve already seen that Kerry has become spoiled by the fine dining that is a trademark of the School at Salem, and when he returns home for the various holidays, he’s not happy with the home fare, but hey:  that’s what happens when you’re now having your food cooked for you by artificial people working with time spells.

Was he right?


“There you are.” She opened the outer door. “Welcome home, Kerry.”

“Hi, Mom.” He walked into the entrance hallway.with Ms. Rutherford right behind him. “Hey, Dad.”

“Hello, Kerry.” His father waved from the lounge entryway. “How was the flight over?”

“Good, good.”

“He got into Heathrow on-time.” Ms. Rutherford adjusted her purse on her shoulder. “Miracles do happen, even today.”

“Yeah—” He turned half-way back towards Ms. Rutherford. “It was just like magic.” He was afraid she wouldn’t get the little in-joke, but she smiled and gave him a little nod to let him know she understood.

“I’m glad you didn’t have any problems getting here.” His mother turned towards Kerry’s case working. “How long is Kerry with us?”

“Until 5 January. I told him I’ll be by to pick him up that afternoon, then it’s off to London and a late-night flight back to the States.” Bernice glanced towards the boy. “We went over this in the car just before we arrived.”

“Yeah, I got it all, Mom.” He gripped the handle of his luggage. “Then you don’t see me for five months.”

His mother chuckled. “I’m sure we’ll find a way to get by.”

Bernice felt it was time to go. Kerry needed no further information, and any additional updates would come too him through email and texts. “With that said . . .” She faced Kerry’s parents. “Mr. Malibey, Mrs. Malibey: Have a good holiday and a wonderful Christmas.”

Louise Malibey answered for them both. “You, too, Ms. Rutherford. Have a wonderful holiday.”

“I will, thank you.” She faced Kerry. “Enjoy the Yule holiday, Kerry.” A slight smile played across her face. “You’ll be back at school in no time at all.”

“I know.” He grinned back. “Have a good Yule, Ms. Rutherford.”

“Take care, Kerry.” She bid everyone a good evening and returned to the car.


Yeah, totally right.  Though he gets points for zipping off a inside joke that only Ms. Rutherford and he could get–for now.  Give that another five months we’ll see if mom and dad get the joke.

Speaking of mom and dad–


Louise locked the inner door before speaking to her son. “We didn’t know if you’d eaten on the flight or picked up something on the train—”

“I had a little something before getting on the train.” He fidgeted next to his luggage. “Nothing big, just enough to to hold me over.”

“Okay, well . . .” Louise seemed a bit embarrassed. “I had nothing planed tonight; we thought we’d just get some take away—”

Kerry resisted the urge to smirk. “That’s fine, Mom.”

Davyn Malibey spoke finally spoke up. “How do you feel about fish and chips?”

“That would be great, Dad.”

“That’ll work.” His father looked at his wife. “I’ll call Albany. We can have them deliver.”


By the way, the Albany Fish Bar is the place of which his father is referring, and it’s a real place, only about a kilometer from their house, and it gets a lot of good reviews.  Hard to say if this is the same place that Kerry said has fish and chips that don’t measures up to Salem’s, but–we already know he’s getting spoiled, and he better learn to Cook the Salem Way if he doesn’t want to spend the next hundred years going, “The pizza at Salem is better than this crap.”  Don’t disappoint yourself, kid:  take that step.

There’s a little more back and forth with his mother–who wants to know if Kerry is gonna have issues with jet lag–and then it’s off to his first floor room:


Kerry headed up the stairs to the first floor, taking the left from the landing directly to his room. He pushed the door shut with his foot—he was careful not to use magic to swing it shut from a meter or more away—and set his backpack on his bed. He wasn’t concerned about putting his clothes up at this moment, but he did want his computer set up right away.

He pulled the tablet computer and keyboard from his backpack, set them upon his computer nook between the northeast wall and his wardrobe, and powered up the system as he retrieved the power adapter. The system was up almost instantly due to the upgrades Isis had performed on his system for his birthday. He waited until his tablet was hooked into the house grid before taking time to admire his desktop wallpaper: a selfie of Annie and him snapped at the Starbucks the day Alex invited them to come in, sit, and chat. He’d considered changing the wallpaper before coming home, but decided to leave it as is: he figured if his mom or dad had questions about the girl in the picture, he’d tell them. After all they knew Annie was in his “dorm”, and that she shared classes with him—

And she’s already planning our wedding and I’ve met her parents and she’s said she’s carrying our kids— He sat on the corner of his bed, his eyes locked on the image of his Chestnut Girl, the girl of his dreams that he loved so dearly. I wonder what mom would say about that?

He lay back on his bed, placing his hands behind his head as he stared up at the ceiling. Annie was going to do her Adjustment when she got home. He sighed softly. She should be getting up right about now . . .


Right now, I would give anything to be able to draw a picture of the selfie serving as Kerry’s tablet wallpaper.  I can imagine Annie holding her Frappuccino so it’s seen–or maybe Kerry had Alex or Penny take the picture with his phone, and they’re both holding their Starbucks drinks up while they sit, cheek-to-cheek, smiling like crazy and as happy as two kids in love can be.  It’s the one thing I love about their world being rooted in ours:  kids are still doing kids things, and once again stuffy witch Annie show everyone she’s really a teenager at heart.  Only she can kill you with her mind, which means you still gotta stay on her good side.

Now, if Kerry is wondering about Annie getting up right about the time he’s laying down, if you remember what happened during their time apart last Yule, you’ll know what’s coming next . . .

Cartref yn ôl ar Gyfer y Gwyliau

And with a title like the mouthful posted today, it means only one thing:  someone’s back home in Wales.  It goes without saying that this is probably not a good moment for my Ginger Hair Boy, because home is not a good place for him, but at least he didn’t have a break down moment like the last time he left a certain Chestnut Girl who was on her way back to Bulgaria.

He know he’s going to see her in a few weeks, and this slight pain he feels is a good one.  Or so he was once told.

Therefore let us to head off to the place of the return and see what transpires next.

No word if Kerry picked up a tasty steak pastry before leaving the station, however.

No word if Kerry picked up a tasty traditional steak pastry before leaving the station, however.


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

Kerry followed Ms. Rutherford out of Cardiff Central Station and headed towards the Audi saloon with the raised boot lid. He set his roll-on bag in the boot, tapped the lid to activate the auto-close mechanism, then got in on the rear passenger side, setting his backpack between his legs. The moment his seat belt clicked shut, the driver put the car in gear and pulled out.

Weather was about normal for this time of year for Cardiff: cloudy with a light winds and about eight Centigrade. The sun had set about an hour before, but the lights of the city kept everything bright. It was rare he saw this part of the city when it was dark: the few times he’d went with his family anywhere during the evening, they bypassed downtown by taking Western Avenue. Not that they ever went anywhere at night . . .

His mind wasn’t on being home: it was on Annie and on meeting her father. After the discussion he had with Ms Rutherford before their late lunch, he couldn’t get over the feeling of her dad scrutinizing him, of trying to determine if there was something different about him. He didn’t get that exact feeling while standing across from him in the jaunt waiting area, but a few hours later, after he’d had time to analyze the meeting, the meeting left him a little unnerved.

Annie told me there were things I needed to know about her family— He caught a quick glimpse of the prison as they drove eastward. She didn’t mention anything about her father doing his best to make me feel a bit insignificant.


After a few hours of sitting and lunching and enjoying some great sandwiches and talking with Ms. Rutherford, Kerry finally starting to get those “I just met my girlfriend’s father” jitters, and it’s not leaving him in a good place.  The last twenty-four hours have been pretty heavy for Kerry, with parents meetings and talk of babies.  What else can get laid on his twelve year old ass before he’s dropped off for Christmas?


Bernice sensed his contemplation. “Thinking about anyone I know?”

“Annie—” He looked straight ahead. “And her dad.”

“Ah, yes: the future father-in-law.” She almost chuckled at the sideways look Kerry sent her way. “There’s one thing I didn’t tell you about fathers—”

“What’s that?”

“The never think there’s any boy who’s good enough for their daughters. They spend their entire lives providing and protecting their little girls, and then along comes some boy who captures her heart, and . . .” She shrugged. “I want to say it shouldn’t be that way, but often times it goes in that direction. You do have one thing going for you—”

He looked across to his case working. “And that is?”

“Annie. From what I know, from what you’ve told me, she’s made her choice, and she isn’t about to change her feelings for you. Given the powers of persuasion she has with her parents, I believe when the time comes, she’d get her father to come around to her way of thinking.” She glanced out the window to her right. “More or less.”

“That’s comforting.” Kerry chuckled imagining that confrontation. “Guess there’s nothing I can do about it right now.”

“There’s nothing you can do about it, period.” She turned back towards Kerry. “Just be yourself, Kerry. If you try to actively impress her father, you’ll likely end up looking ridiculous. Don’t try to be someone else: be the one with whom Annie fell in love. That’s all you have to do.” She reached over and patted the back of his right hand. “That’s all that’s necessary.”


It seems like this holiday jaunt is a lot about the kid’s future, and while it seems like it’s Gang Up on Kerry time, you’ll see in a bit that Annie’s gonna get here share of questions, too.  This is a package deal, and you can bet someone in Annie’s family has a few questions, too.  And does it need to be mentioned that a time will come when Annie gets to meet her future in-laws, and who the hell knows how they’re gonna take this headstrong girl with a strange accent?  Especially Kerry’s mom:  she seems like a bit of a control freak, so what’s it going to be like when she runs into another one taking over her son’s life?  The Controlling Mom meets The Dark Witch.  Should be a good one.

But that’s for another time, and tonight I’ll get my shot and after that make another video to mark an occasion that happens this Sunday.  So much to do, so little time in which to eat, drink, and try to be merry.

At least I enjoyed my Cosmos with dinner last night.

At least I enjoyed my Cosmos with dinner last night.

Willkommen in Wien: Vater Themen

And just like that, Chapter Seventeen is half over.  Four nights of averaging about seven hundred and eighty words each night brought the scene to an end, and now I can move on to the kids finally arriving home.

This has been an interesting scene, because it’s nothing like I originally envisioned it in the beginning, which was just Kerry coming back with Annie and then both of them realizing they’d been seen arriving holding hands, which of course gets all sorts of things going in Daddy’s mind.  Here I went more into an explanation of what’s going on, and, like below, some of the implications of what this all means.  Like . . .


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

“It’s obvious you don’t have a sibling.” Bernice settled back in her chair and crossed her legs. “If you had a sister, you might have noticed how your father acts differently around her.”

He stopped tapping the chair’s arms and sunk down in the seat. “It’s just the way he was looking at me—like there was something wrong with me.”

She chuckled. “Don’t take it personally. That attitude goes all the way back to the days when it was considered part of the father’s duty to guard their daughter’s virginity.”

Kerry was aware of this being a standard in some cultures even today, and her found it as ridiculous as Ms. Rutherford seemed to make it appear. “That’s dumb.”

“It is, but . . .” She glanced towards the lounge entrance. “You have to realize something, Kerry. I’m somewhat aware of the deepness of your relationship with Annie—I know that Annie almost didn’t attend Salem because you wanted to stay in Europe and look for you when she got older—and I’m certain her mother know how deep it runs as well. It’s even possible Annie has said things to her mother about your relationship that it only know to her and you.

“When it comes to the father, he may not know the depth of your feelings for each other, but he’s aware it exists. He knows Annie has feelings for you, and you for her. When he saw you today, he didn’t see a young boy holding hands with this daughter—” She tapped her finger in the air in Kerry’s direction. “He sees a potential suitor for his little girl.”


All of a sudden Kerry is getting hit over the head with being a husband and, as we’ll see, something else.  It’s something that no twelve year old kids under normal circumstances ever deal with, but we all know Kerry is far from normal . . .


The moment Ms. Rutherford finished her statement Kerry began wondering just how much she actually knew about Annie and his relationship. There were only a few people who knew of the vision they shared, and while he was certain that Annie’s mother didn’t know about their vision, he was aware she’d seen his name in Annie’s wedding book. She knows Annie is serious about me, about what she wants to do. Her dad has to feel we’re not just a couple of kids holding hands. “He automatically knows I’m gonna marry Annie in the future?”

Bernice kept her face impassive, but she caught the way Kerry phrased his statement: Not “If I” but “I’m gonna marry”. He’s completely sure of where their relationship is going— “I’m sure he’s discussed you with Annie’s mother, and I’d venture that he was sizing you up as more to Annie than a boyfriend. He knows his daughter—”

“And what Annie wants, Annie gets.” Kerry chuckled. “First time I’ve said that.”

“Really?” Bernice chuckled with him. “The thing to keep in mind here, Kerry, is that all fathers are usually a bit unsettled by their daughter’s boyfriends. They know they have the potential to become their husbands, and because they were once some girl’s boyfriend who then became their husband. And it doesn’t take them long to understand why their father-in-law was so unsettled by them, because they also waited for their daughters to tell them the one phrase they didn’t want to hear—”

“What’s that?” He couldn’t imagine Annie’s father being that upset by anything Annie would tell him . . . “’I’m getting married’?”

“No: ‘I’m pregnant’.”


Yeah, just keep hammering home those little witches waiting in the wings!  The one’s who’ll have either red or chestnut hair and will get practice brooms when they’re five or six and ride around behind Mama and Papa in the yard, or maybe even down at Grandma’s and Grandpa’s big yard in Bulgaria, and then grow up and go to Salem and see pictures of their parents kissing two miles up in the air and hear the stories about how all they did was snog and eeeewwwwwww . . .

Really, these kids will, at some point, have to live down the fact that their parents were a couple of Tweenage Horndogs when they got to school, and other’s might wonder if they’ll follow in their footsteps.  When they’re not following in Mama’s Murder Time skills . . .


Those two words froze Kerry’s train of though. The thoughts of marriage didn’t bother him: after reconciling Annie’s vision with his, and continuing the discussion to where they would start their home after the wedding, this was the second time in twelve hours he was reminded that their was another responsibility that came with getting married and making a home for each other. Annie said she already carried our children, and now Ms. Rutherford is saying her dad is living with the knowledge that those kids are coming–

He shook his head. “I’m not ready to think about this stuff now.”

“I don’t blame you.” Bernice checked her watch. “It’s been about fifteen minutes; I figure Annie and her parents are back in Bulgaria about now.”

“I think so, too.” He stood and checked that his backpack was firmly secured around his handle of his roll-on bag. “I’m ready.”

“Good.” Bernice grabbed her bag and secured it tightly on her shoulder. “Feel like a light late lunch? I know a place here in Vienna that serves the most wonderful sandwiches.”

Knowing that he’d likely have nothing but take away or leftovers when he arrived home, Kerry liked her suggestion. “Dining in Vienna . . . sounds good to me.”


Ms. Rutherford knows her charge, and knows he’ll probably get crap for dinner when he gets home.  It must be nice to get a late lunch in Vienna after coming home from school with your girlfriend.  At least someone’s looking out for this kid.

Here we now are:

Half way done; half way there.

Half way done; half way there.

And if the titles of the remaining scenes are any indication–along with the times–I think we can say the kids get home in one piece . . .

Willkommen in Wien: Antworten und Abschiede

Interesting morning, let me tell you.  If I were more superstitious I’d say the people in Philadelphia who said today is the end of the world may have been on to something, but it’s really more like someone’s been jacking around with the firewall filters, and that’s messed people up.  Never the mind:  I have my excerpt, and maybe a little something else that I’ll mention at the end.

Still in Vienna and still with Daddy Kirilovi.  Now, you know Annie’s dad isn’t going to lose the opportunity to ask a certain Ginger Hair Boy a few questions, and so, yeah–he does . . .


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

Another protracted silence fell between Annie’s father and Bernice’s charge, and she wondered who was going to be the first to speak. Annie watched them both, her eyes flitting from Kerry to her father and back, examining both the way her father was examining the boy standing before him. It was Victor who broke the stalemate. “Are you enjoying school, Kerry?”

He nodded. “Yes, sir, quite a lot.”

“Must have been something of a shock to find out you were Aware.”

“Um, yeah, it was a bit.” He cast a glance towards Annie for just a second.

Victor noticed the glance. “Have you your time with Annie?”

Annie’s face darkened as she glanced towards her father. “Papa.”

Annie would really like to look more peeved, but do you know how hard it is to find that picture?

Annie would really like to look more peeved, but do you know how hard it is to find that picture?


Yeah, Papa, you wanna watch going there with Daughter Dearest standing next to you, ’cause she’s protective of the moyata polovinka and she’ll get all up in someone’s business if they aren’t kind.  Fortunately, Kerry’s not gonna freak:


Kerry held up his hand for a moment. “Naw, it’s all right, Annie.” He started to relax, though there was a hint of nervousness in his voice. “Annie did a lot to help me fit into this new world; she helped me understand The Art so I could become a better witch—and a better sorceress.” A light grin played across his face. “She’ll say that’s not true, but I know different.” He smiled at her before facing her father. “I value every moment I’m with Annie, sir. She’s . . . She’s a special person. The most special.”

Bernice knew of the things that Kerry had already surmounted, but over the last minute she’d watched him present his bravest face ever. Victor Kirilov was an imposing man even though he wasn’t tall or large, but his confidence gave him an unshakable persona. She saw, as did Annie, and Kerry was a bit unnerved, but he didn’t cower—and if the look on Annie’s face is any indication of her current mood, she’s proud as well.

Victor turned to his wife. “We need to get home.” He placed a hand on Annie’s shoulder. “This young lady needs to do her adjustment before we go to dinner.”

“I agree.” Pavlina turned to Bernice. “It was pleasure meeting you again.”

She adjusted her purse so it set better on her shoulder. “Same here, Pavlina.” Bernice held out her hand. “It was a pleasure meeting you, Mr. Kirilov.”

“The pleasure was mine.” He shook her hand, then held his out for Kerry. “It was a pleasure to meet you, Kerry.”

“Thank you, sir.” He gave Victor’s hand a quick shake. “I’m glad I got to meet you.”

“Oh . . .” The right corner of his mouth curled upwards once more. “I’m sure it won’t be the last time.” He spread his arms as he took a step back. “Shall we go?

Pavlina waved to Kerry. “It was nice seeing you again, Kerry.” She shot a sideways glance at her husband. “I’m sure we’ll meet again soon.”

“I’m sure.” Kerry held out his left hand towards Annie. “I’m, um, I guess—”

“Hold on—” She spun around as her parents prepared to leave the waiting area. “I’d like to say goodbye to Kerry.”

Pavlina looked towards the young man. “Go ahead.”

Annie’s eyes narrowed slightly. “Privately?”

Victor seemed about to say something when Pavlina hooked her arm in his. “We’ll wait in the corridor.”

Bernice patted Kerry on the back. “I’ll be outside, too.”


Now, one might say Annie’s dad cut short the meeting, but really:  in a public place, do you really expect him to ask something like, “Are you doing kissy-face stuff with my daughter?”  Victor is a somewhat public person among Foundation people–being an F1 driver who just finished a season in third place will do that for you–and it wouldn’t do to have him getting all intimidating on a twelve year old boy.  Even if he did see that boy holding hands with his daughter.  Who wants to say goodbye to that boy Privately.  Did you get that, parents?  She wants privacy.


She headed into the corridor and leaned against the wall waiting for the kids to finish their goodbyes. She saw the Kirilovis standing about five meters from the entrance, speaking quietly to each other, and Bernice could only imagine the conversation they were having . . .

Annie and Kerry stood against one wall of the waiting room, and were just visible to Bernice. She saw their heads bowed and close together as they faced each other, holding hands. Annie touched Kerry’s cheek as she said something that appeared to relax him: it was only then that Bernice noticed his right hand quivering slightly. He listened as Annie spoke, stroking her arm as if to confirm she was there.

There was a moment when they gazed into each other’s eyes before hey kissed long and tenderly. Once the kiss finished then broke into a hug, and she observed Annie whisper something into his ear—something obviously pleasant and meaningful, for he was smiling as the turned and headed hand-in-hand for the waiting room exit . . .

They held each other’s hands tightly one last time in the corridor. Annie beamed. “I’ll see you in a couple of weeks, my . . .” She caught herself before speaking the last words within earshot of her parent. “I’ll write.”

“I’ll write back.” He quickly kissed her hand. “Have a good holiday, Annie.”

“Have a good holiday, Kerry.” She released Kerry and waved to Bernice. “Take care, Ms. Rutherford. Have a good holiday.”

“You, too, Annie.” Bernice waved back. “Enjoy your holiday.”

“I will.” Annie kissed two right fingers and held them towards Kerry. “Goodbye, mlechna.”

He did the same with his left fingers. “Sbogom, malko samri.”

She turned away with a giggle and smile and rejoined her parents. Kerry watched them walk away for a few seconds before her turned and approached Bernice. It was only then, while facing her, that his shoulders slumped. “Wow.” He let out a long, deep sigh. “Wow.”

“Let’s go sit in the lounge for a few minutes—” She pointed down the hall behind her. “Let them get to the public platform so they can jaunt home.”

“Sounds like a good idea.” He followed her to the small lounge where those who arrived early for an arrival or departure could wait in comfort. They found a couple of cozy chairs in a corner away from the few people there and sat. “Better?”

“Yeah.” He tapped his fingers on the arms of the chair as Bernice set her bad on the small, round table in front of them. “Why did he act that way towards me?”

She knew exactly to whom Kerry was referring. “Annie’s dad?”



Oh, you thought that was a grilling, Kerry?  Better watch out:  you may break under pressure.

Annie was about to lay “My love” on Kerry and caught herself.  One day soon she’s just gonna have to throw caution to the wind and kick it out there.  What she did call him was “sweet”, as in “sweet banista”, which is what she called him the night before at the Observatory, and Kerry responded with “Goodbye, little cabbage roll”, which is less romantic than “darling”, but darling might have had Daddy asking more questions.

Even so, Kerry got himself a case of the “First Time Father Meeting” nerves, and now gets to ask Ms. Rutherford about this.  Being that she’s a girl, she may have some experience in this matter . . .

Now, lastly, some news.  Yesterday I had someone ask me if I’d like to submit a series to Channillo, which is a website where people can post, in a continuing way, their novel series.  There are hundreds of writers already there, and it’s something that I may consider.  However . . . one of their stipulations is that whatever series you post there cannot be offered elsewhere for free, and were I to put, say, my first novel up, I’d have to go back over two years of posts and strip out excerpts that are hanging out on my blog.  Which, quite frankly, is a huge pain in the ass.

At the moment I’m wondering if this is a route I want to go, because I don’t figure to do a hack and slash on my blog that way.  The other choice would be to take another work of mine–say, one that isn’t selling all that well–and post it there with the promise of doing new content after the initial novel.  That’s a ballsy move, and one that would probably take up the majority of my time right now.

Right now I’m considering my options–one of which is I don’t think people are gonna pony up $5/month to read my first novel.  Maybe for another work, but not this one.\

So many decisions, so little time to do all the things I want to do.