Flyby Sight

Hey, no zombie writing today–I actually did that over the last couple of weeks, because there’s nothing to write about this week.  Well, I wouldn’t say nothing . . .  There’s always something.

For example, since I was only one thousand words away from hitting one hundred thirty thousand words last night, and because it was two weeks since I’d reached one hundred twenty thousand, I was like, “What the hell, chick, you gotta do this.”  I got to work and, well . . .

Yeah, I got this shit.

Yeah, I got this shit.

Given that the last scene took four days to write–over a five day period, I should add–I figured I needed to kick my ass into gear and get some stuff done.  Yes, fighting through depression isn’t a nice thing, but hell, kids, I gotta write–right?  Not really, but I did it anyway, because this scene is All About Annie and a place she likes to visit so she can talk to someone she likes.

Let’s go there, shall we?  We shall:

 

 

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

Annie touched down lightly about four meters from the entrance of the Divination Building at Memory’s End. She’d taken off from the Pentagram Garden within minutes after Kerry left after lunch for his pre-race lecture, and was certain no one saw her land under her own power because nearly everyone else was either on their way to The Diamond, already there, or hanging out elsewhere because they weren’t interested in the races.

Not that she was concerned about anyone seeing her using her Flight Gift. The retelling of her Judgment Trial against Lisa’s champion was all over the school by breakfast then next morning, and that evening Vicky and Isis spoke with her while Kerry was off in Advanced Transformation. They let her know that they weren’t unhappy with her “Unveiling” and that it was only a matter of time before the rest of the school became aware she could fly, and they saw nothing wrong with her flying around, as long as she remained inside the outer walls.

 

Now, I should point out something:  Memory’s End is really two buildings.  It’s not always easy to spot on the maps, but when you see it close up, it’s obvious.

Now with 100% more trees!

And now with 100% more trees!

When looking at the picture, the Divination Building is on the right, and the Numerology Building is on the left.  Why are there two buildings for studies that really aren’t that big?  Well, that’s one of the things you’ll discover in this scene.

And if you’re wondering about all these paths, here you go:  the one from the left leads to Gwydion Manor, the one going off the top leads to Astria Portal, the Firing Line, and Observatory Tower.  The one on the right leads to The Witch House, and the one going off to the bottom ends at the main path running between The Witch House and History and Social Studies Building, which is just north of The Pentagram and Åsgårdsreia Tower.  And that little tower-like object on the small path in the bottom-left section, that’s a stairwell leading to the tunnel system below the school.  All roads lead here, it seems.

For a point of reference, when Annie and Kerry visited here the first time, they walked up the path appearing on the bottom of the image frame.  There, now you know more.

And as you can see Annie is able to fly around the school because, what the hell, people saw he doing it, so it’s not like she can hide that any longer.  Let your flying, um, fly.

What waits for Annie here?  This:

 

She stood listening for sounds: walking, coughing, activities of any kind. Nothing. The building was completely silent, even more so with the sounds from outside cut off. Now she was even more uncertain about Deanna being present, but the last thing she wanted to do was call out her name. I’ll sound like a frightened girl in a horror movie, and that’s the last impression I want to make.

She was right in the middle of preparing to walk to Deanna’s office when the seer called out to her. “I’m down here, Annie.”

Annie yanked on the hem of her sweater and headed down to Deanna’s office. She expected to find Deanna sitting cross-legged on one of the various pillows, but found her instead standing before an old-fashioned desk that folded down from a wall cupboard. “Hello, Deanna.” She stood in the doorway and examined the seer, whose outfit of a sweater, jeans, and sneakers matched Annie’s in everything except top color. “I wasn’t certain you were here.”

Deanna finished writing something on a tablet before answering. “I like to come out here after lunch on the weekends because it’s quiet and I can get a lot more done in this office than I can in the coven tower.” She tapped the screen as if to punctuate her statement. “There. All done.”

 

Spooky Muslim Seers be spooky, right?  Of course Annie’s a polite girl and all, but after a while she’s gotta ask the question . . .

 

Annie finally entered the office once she understood Deanna wasn’t going to make the request. “Did you know I was coming?”

Deanna turned towards Annie. “The funny thing about being a seer is that most people never believe you if, once you’re asked a question, you reply in a negative fashion.” She set her right elbow upon the fold-out desk and gently leaned upon the surface. “Everyone believes you see everything, so when you say ‘no’ in way of a response, they immediately assume you’re lying.” She brushed hair back out of her face. “It’s a hell of a thing to have in your life.”

“I can imagine.” She looked directly at Deanna. “Did you know I was coming?”

“Yes, I did.” The seer shrugged. “It doesn’t matter how I knew, the actual reason I came out here to work was to wait for you because I saw you coming out here to speak with me. So I thought I’d better be here when you arrived.” She cocked her right eyebrow upward. “You believe me?”

Before answering Annie considered her current dilemma of accepting that Deanna was speaking the truth, or if she was telling her what she wanted her to hear. It would help a lot if I could read Deanna’s aura—I should work on that next. “I believe you.”

 

Deanna has pulled this a few times on Annie:  knew she was going to show up and called her down the moment she entered the building, or made a remark based upon something that was already on Annie’s mind.  And when Deanna tries to skate on that shit, Annie calls her out once more, and gets an honest answer–or does she?  Why does Annie want to see Deanna’s aura?  Because witches who can see another person’s aura can tell if they’re lying by watching the colors and shades of said aura.  Except really good witches know how to keep their aura from changing, and Deanna’s a really good witch when it comes to not letting people see your inner feelings through your aura, so even if Annie could see it, it’s likely she’d never know if Deanna was bullshitting her or not.

This is one of the reasons when new students arrive instructors can tell if they’re being lied to or not–among other things.  You’ll be surprised what instructors can determine based upon the color and shade of a student’s aura . . .

After a little more back and forth–and once I got in my thousand words–I wrote up just a bit of strangeness:

 

Annie decided to move on to another subject. “I’ve never seen you use that desk before.”

“No, when you’ve been here in the past we’ve sat on the floor; I’m normally not working when you come to visit.”

If you want to call speaking about a problem a “visit”. “Did you have that put in?”

“Me? No.” She set the bag on the floor and folded the desk up into the cupboard and shut the doors. “This desk was put in when the building was constructed in 1804.” Deanna chuckled. “You can thank Crazy Wanda for both of those things.”

Annie gave a surprised laugh. “Crazy Wanda?”

 

"I don't know; does she have mangoes?"

“Who is Crazy Wanda?  Does she have mangoes?”

No, sorry Pupok, she doesn’t have mangoes.  But you’re about to get a history lesson on the school, that much is true.

Maybe tomorrow everyone will get to hear the tale of Crazy Wanda.

Given I’m not doing anything else this morning, it’s highly likely.

Above in the Transept: the Conversation

It’s now getting down to the End of the Act.  The last scene of the last chapter of Part Seven is more than half done, and what remains are Part Eight, four chapters, and maybe fourteen scenes.  These will get knocked off during NaNo, and in the very last moments of the very last scene of Act Two, you’ll be introduced to a character who is going to change the lives of a couple of kids a lot more than any of the instructors have. over the last few months.

Just a hop, skip, and a jump over from November to the End of December, and right into the end of January.

Just a hop, skip, and a jump over from November to the End of December, and right into the end of January.

There’s a conversation in the East Transept, one between Annie and Professor Arrakis, who seems to be popping up in these last few scenes.  And what is this transept you speak of, Cassie?  If you look at any old cathedral, they’re the “wings” that stick out of a building to make it look like a cross.  The West Transept of the Great Hall is where the Security Center is located:  the East Transept, as indicated in the scene, is the location of some of the offices used by the instructors, and it’s also where you’ll find the Headmistress’ Office.  The first floor on this side is unusual in that there’s a cutout in the middle of the floor, and one can look down upon the students coming and going out of the East Entrance–perfect for an instructor laying in wait for someone coming from classes there, or where they can spy on them walking through the Rotunda.

One East Transept, coming up.  Annie's in there somewhere . . .

One East Transept, coming up. Annie’s in there somewhere . . .

What happens in this conversation?  Just as mentioned the professor sees them walking in from the East–they wandered though the Pentagram Garden, around the south end of the Great Hall, and back up north towards Mórrígan Tower, and while Kerry is resting, Annie is talking . . .

 

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

Professor Arrakis had moved away from the Rotunda railing and was standing along the north side of the transept that led to the offices for some of the instructors that needed an office that was more accessible to students. Deanna stood close to the wall facing Annie as she approached. “Thank you for coming.”

“You’re welcome, Professor.” Annie wasn’t sure why she was being summoned, but she figured it was best to let the professor start the conversation.

Deanna did just that. “How are you feeling?”

“I’m fine.”

“And Kerry?”

“He’s . . .” Annie didn’t want to lie. “Not completely healed. He started limping after our walk around the garden.”

“But is he feeling well?”

“I think so.” Annie looked over her shoulder towards The Rotunda, but from where she stood it was impossible to see him. “He seems in a good mood.”

“I think we’re all glad he wasn’t too affected by what happened yesterday.” Deanna didn’t dwell on those matters. “So . . . has anything out of the ordinary happened with you both today?”

She knows something happened, but she doesn’t know what. Annie almost chuckled, but held back the urge at the last moment. “Yes, something did.”

Deanna raised one of her dark, expressive eyebrows. “Are you going to tell me, or will you keep me in suspense?”

“Kerry told me he loved me.”

 

So seers don’t see everything, though we do know that Deanna felt something would happen between them the night before, and that it would extend into today.  But there’s something else that Deanna missed which is still fresh in Annie’s mind.

 

Since Professor Arrakis was asking questions, Annie had to believe that she wasn’t aware of what happened in the bay last night. “Professor, Kerry remembered one of our dreams last night. The memories are still there.”

“That’s good then, yes?” She turned her head slightly to one side as if listening closely to Annie’s words. “That’s something of a breakthrough as well.”

“Yes, but . . .” Annie looked away as she clenched her fists. “He doesn’t remember any of it now. I thought he might, but it didn’t happen.” Annie moved a little closer to Deanna, shaking her closed hands before her. “The memories are there—why doesn’t he remember them?”

 

As one might say, “Again with the questions about the dreams.”  Annie won’t let it go, and now that she knows he remembers something, she damn sure wants to get to the reasons of why.

Unfortunately for Deanna, she asks Annie to wait and be calm and see what happens.  Annie doesn’t want that, and for the first time in the story we see an Annie that has only been hinted at, mostly be her:  we get the Annie Who Gets What She Wants.

 

Annie’s head snapped up as he gaze bored into the Seer. She wasn’t about to let someone else tell her what was and wasn’t important. “I want my Kerry back. I want my Ginger Hair Boy, the one who I shared dreams with for years, the boy I grew to love, the boy who loves me. I want him, Deanna. I want him to—”

Veruca Salt’s got nothing on this girl.  Boyfriend’s got memory’s locked up inside his head and they won’t come out?  Screw it:  “I want it now!”  This is the Annie here parents have seen, but who has never appeared at the school before now–

Unfortunately for Annie, my Iraqi Seers isn’t her parents . . .

 

You selfish girl.”

Annie immediately stopped speaking and stared dumbfounded at the Divination instructor. She saw a Deanna that was contrary to the woman she’s known these last two months. She towered over Annie; her face was a mask of disapproval, her dark eyes hard and unwavering—

And Annie had driven her to this moment.

Deanna walked around the now stupefied student, then turned and cocked a finger at her. “Come with me.” Annie followed her to the railing overlooking the Rotunda. Deanna turned and motioned her to a point in front of her. “You stand there. I’m going to talk, and you’re going to listen.” Deanna’s voice unfroze and went back to what Annie has always seen before: a calm, pleasant, cheerful woman. But the tone of her voice remained the same, indicating her appearance was for show. “You can smile and nod your head, make it look as if we’re having a nice conversation—but at the same time I want you to keep an eye on that boy sitting in the Rotunda: the one waiting for you . . .”

 

And that’s all you get for today.  I wrote almost twelve hundred and sixty words last night, and I’ll finish it up tonight and maybe even start on the next scene of the next chapter–something to do with shadows.

Can’t wait to get to that.

In Dreams They May

This thing last night . . . it’s called editing, and after sweating through a scene that was sort of driving me crazy, I finally cracked the code I was looking for and headed forward.

This was Annie’s scene, a rewrite of her visit to Professor Arrakis, to tell her about her dreams of her Ginger Haired Boy, and how she was feeling after two weeks of being with him in real life.  They weren’t the same, and it was not only driving her a little crazy, but she was starting to wonder if she should even bother with him, since he seemed to not be the same boy she remembered from sleepy time trysts.

 

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

Annie didn’t want to go over that moment again: she needed to tell the professor about what was in her heart and mind now. “There were things we said to each other in my dreams—that I said; that he said. Heartfelt words . . .” She turned and stared off to the side for a moment, remembering those words spoken in her dreams. “I know he meant all that he said, but now everything is so different that those moments in my dreams . . .

“What, if after all that happened before—what if he doesn’t want me? What if after all these years of needing him next to me, he doesn’t care, he doesn’t love me? What if he wants someone else?” She brushed her hair back from her face with more effort this time.  “Or worse, what if I keep at him to be with me—what if I’m just pushing him to say he loves me, but he doesn’t, but he still stays with me because he feels obligated to make me happy?

“What if he hates me for that? What if he stays and comes to hate me because he knows I’m a selfish girl who never cared what he wanted?” She lay back against her pillow and stared at the ceiling, her mind swirling with all the possible problems she’d imagined happening.  “Deanna, what will I do?”

Deanna immediately moved to Annie’s side and to be closer to her.  Though he wasn’t visibly distraught, her aura told the seer otherwise. She hold everything inside and doesn’t show others her true emotions—but I can see what most others can’t. I know how she feels.

She reached down and stroked Annie’s hair. “You’re so tortured by your feelings. I understand them, Annie—I do.”

Annie looked up at the professor and relaxed as the seer ran her fingers over her hair. “Thank you . . . Deanna.” She’d decided there was no longer any point in being formal while she was being comforted this way. “I’m sorry for how I acted.”

“There’s no reason to be sorry. I know how upsetting these things become.” Deanna slipped back to her pillows. “You’re both emotional—but you each have your own way of presenting.”

Annie found enough humor and truth in the statement to chuckle. “You’re right. I’m the opposite of Kerry.”

Now that she was aware of Annie’s fears, it was Deanna’s task to try and put them to rest. “You came to me because I know your rune dream and knew something of your relationship with Kerry. But I also believe you came because my position as a coven leader—along with my abilities—give me a far different perspective on matters.”

“Yes, that’s correct.”

“May I make a few observations on your ginger haired boy?”

Annie rolled over and faced the professor. “Yes, Deanna.  You may.”

 

That Annie:  stroke here hair and she gets so personable.  Someone should tell Kerry.

It was the visibly distraught part that I had to work past.  First pass through there were tears and a bit of tissue passing.  But, see:  when you’re not the sort of person who lets her feelings show–like Annie–how does one know you’re really hurting?

Why, you hang out with witches who can see the future and read your aura.  Simple, neh?

I was able to get into Part Two of their discussion, which was broken apart by Kerry flying about the school like the Red Baron and thinking about all the sucker kids he knew back in Cardiff.  The second part deals with a report Deanna, as a coven leader, read on Kerry.  It didn’t paint a pretty picture; in fact, the kid in the report came off as a bit depressed and emotionally disconnected.  Deanna was starting to see something different, however:

 

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

“Now, with regards to your concerns . . . I watched you both after Trevor and I left. I saw how you sat with Kerry, how he held you, how you both talked the rest of the night. He didn’t seem like a boy who didn’t want to be with you, or who was upset with you. He seemed like a boy who was content and pleased to sit with a close friend and enjoy her company. He looked like a boy who was sitting with—if I may be forward—his girlfriend.

“What I see is a boy who enjoys your affection. He’s been so detached from his emotions for so long that I don’t feel he’s afraid that things are going too fast—I feel he’s afraid he won’t know how to respond to your feelings properly.” Deanna tilted her head slightly to the right. “He’s an eleven year old boy dealing with an entirely new world, and it’s possible he’s worried, or even a little scared, that he’s going to do or say the wrong thing and upset you. From what I’ve seen of Kerry, he doesn’t want to upset you, Annie. That’s the last thing on his mind.”

All that she heard from Deanna surprised Annie, because she already knew Kerry, and her experience told her the lonely, sad boy The Foundation reported upon was nothing at all like her soul mate. “It so strange hearing Kerry described that way—”

“This is all different for you, too, Annie. The Kerry you saw in your dreams and visions was likely a far more stylized version of the boy you see here and now. Now that you’ve—”

No, Deanna.”

 

When Annie says “no”, she means it.  Good thing the instructors are pretty laid back.  Except for Erywin:  she might slap you if you get her in the right mood.  Helena would, too.  And Jessica . . . we won’t go there.

This is the last chapter in Act One, and my character rewrites are almost complete.  A nice little six, seven week detour, but really, it was necessary.  When Chapter Twelve is over and done, then I can move on.

"Edit in Progress" right near the end.  That means I'm almost done, right?

“Edit in Progress” right near the end. That means I’m almost done, right?

Tonight there won’t be any editing, however.  Tonight, I hop in the car and head south to D.C. to meet up with a fellow writer.  Cassie’s on the Town.

You better watch out!

Of Late I Dream of Multiverse

We are under Snowmageddon III:  This Time It’s Personal, watch once more.  People were speaking of the upcoming snow storm as if the undead were about to rise and we needed to stock up on food and prepare our Lobos.  A very high level of melodrama around the streets today–which, by the way, are quick frozen with cold.  I should have filled up last night, but it’s not like I’m going anywhere in the next couple of days.

The dreams were getting crazy last night again.  I seemed as if I joined in with a group of people and opened a business at an amusement center, but I have no idea what the business was, and it seemed as if no one else knew what we were doing, either.  People who came in from the outside were incredibly rude to us, and it seemed like other businesses didn’t give a single shit if they went out of their way to make us feel unwelcome, and to even do their best to drive away our business–which we didn’t have because we didn’t know what our business.

Oh, and there was a massive pickup accident in there, too.  Go figure.

Last night was another thousand into the scene, which is running longer than I imagined.  There’s a lot on Annie’s mind, and a lot for her to go over when it comes to showing her own selfishness.  She’s being honest–but then she’s speaking with the school seer, and it’s hard to BS a woman who might just drop something like, “I’d watch your third child,” and leave it at that.  What, are they going to follow you everywhere?  Are they going to become a serial killer?  Will they be named Carl and never stay in the house?  Stuff like that in a school of magic will play your ass for many years.

My mind was also playing with other things.  I like to call the work I do part of my “Multiverse”, and that’s because somehow everything I write is, in one way or another, connected.  Sure, maybe it’s because there are characters in different stories who find they are also related to people in other universes.  For example . . .

This current work in progress really stared with an old role playing characters, and then evolved into an idea I was considering for the characters from my novel, Her Demonic Majesty.  The idea was that my main sorceress, the lovely and sweet Jeannette Hagart, she from one universe dumped into the body of someone else in another, would end up meeting the characters from my current novel, and have to deal with the mind-bending realization that she’d dealt with these characters in her own world, but as fictional characters in an online role play, and not as actual people–which also leads her to wonder if the people who played them were in her universe as well, or if her characters was a living person in her new world, too.

"Make it stop!  Make it stop!  It's a war crime to make a person's head explode!"

“Make it stop! It’s a war crime to let a person’s head explode!”

That’s how my crazy mind works:  even when I’m in the middle of a project, I’m thinking about other things that might just tie into the project I’m working on and how they might affect each other.

I’m telling you, there are easier ways to make a living, but none nearly as much fun.