Time to Throw Down: Sucker Punch

Well, it’s June and that means it’s Pride Month.  Which means it’s Pride Month on my blog because–surprise!–I happen to occupy a couple of letters in the LGBTQ+ label.  Now, nothing out of the ordinary is gonna happen, though you never know if I’m gonna start show Pride stuff in my posts.  It’s possible.  You never know.

In the continuing story of Cassie the Roller Girl, I went to practice last night and did pretty well.  I managed to actually skate, as in I made it around the rink many times at pretty good speed.  I fell three times, two of them being a flat-out lay out more or less, but other than a couple of bruises I came away from it okay and made it to the end.

 

I survived Wednesday night practice. And didn't suck that bad. #RollerGirl

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The upshot of all this is that since I was actually, you know, working out last night, I am sore as hell today.  I’ll get over it, but it’s feels like the shape of things to come.

But let’s hear about fighting–or, in the case, the aftermath of Kerry being hit with a spell and sorta, kinda blown back by a combo Air Hammer/Fireball.  And Franky getting caught with his hand in his pocket–literally.  What does it mean?  Well…

 

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

 

Franky withdrew his hand showing an object which looked like a stick of lip balm. “Just this.”

“That—” Ramona approached the student slowly, recognizing the object instantly. “You have a spell caster?”

“Well, yeah.” Spell casters were enchanted devices that contained a prepared one-shot spell that could be used by a witch who may not be proficient in certain areas of magic or sorcery. “I checked the rules; it says I can use this.”

At the moment Ramona wasn’t concerned with how he got it: she was more concerned with something else— “You’re supposed to tell me you have one.”

Franky looked down, a sheepish look upon his face. “I didn’t know.”

If you read the rules concerning spell casters you know you’re supposed to tell me.” Ramona thrust a finger in his direction. “I’ll deal with your bullshit in a moment; stay right there.” She hurried across the mat to see how Kerry was doing.

 

First off, you have to love that in front of half the student body–and probably a few instructors as well, for they’re invited to these things, too–tells a student that she’ll deal with his bullshit later.  Ramona doesn’t get made often, but when she does you don’t want to mess with her.  And she is not happy that someone jacked with her Judgment Trial traditions.

Now, spell casters:  if you can invent something like a Panic Button, which is pretty much an enchanted object with an teleportation spell set inside, it’s gonna be easy to make something that will do a quick and dirty spell for those who can’t normally.  Franky couldn’t fight Kerry one-on-one, not with Kerry being a good sorceress and Franky not, so it stand to reason he’d need help–and here it is!  Why didn’t Lisa use these?  Because she was called out and the rules say you can have someone fight in your place if they agree.  The rules aren’t there to be liked, they’re there to be followed.

Though Franky was supposed to tell Ramona he had one of these and not go, “Oops, I forgot!”  Which is why she’s gonna deal with his bullshit later.  Right now–how’s Kerry doing?

 

Nurse Bianca was running a scanner over Kerry while Annie knelt beside him, stroking his hair. The left arm of Kerry shirt was blackened by fire and there was an odor of singed hair surrounding him. His eyes were half open, which meant he was unconscious but merely dazed. Ramona knelt down next to Kerry’s left knee with Annie to her left and Bianca across from her. “How is he?”

Kerry chose that moment to stir. His eyes open fully Annie stared at the ceiling for a couple of seconds before he began to moan. “Unnn, unhhh, uhhhhhmmmm, ahhhh…” His body jerked from both pain and frustration. “FUCK.” He closed his eyes to calm himself and slow his breathing: when he opened them he realized who was standing over him and had likely heard his explitive. “Sorry, Professor.”

Ramona chuckled as she patted the back of his right hand. “Given what just happened, you’re forgiven.”

Annie turned her gaze upon her martial arts instructor. “What happened? What was that?”

“Franky had a spell caster in his pocket. I’m guessing he got it from the Spell Center before coming here—something he was supposed to tell me and conveniently forgot.” Ramona looked back over her shoulder where Franky stood. “When I saw his hand sliding into his pocket that’s when I called stop, but Franky went ahead and triggered the effect anyway.” She looked down at Kerry. “Good thing you can get your shields up fast or this would’ve been worse. Bianca, what’s the story?”

 

I told you Kerry was going to drop a f-bomb and there it is.  But, you know, getting set on fire and blasted by of wall of air sometimes wants to make you say stuff like that, so all is forgiven.  For now.  He probably knows he’s not gonna be able to drop that on Ramona in class one day–

How bad is Kerry?

You’ll have to tune in tomorrow, ‘kay?

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Time to Throw Down: The Sudden But Inevitable Betrayal

As this is the last day of May, sometime tonight I’ll finish the last scene of my little mermaid story for #MerMay, which means I’ll have something to say about that tomorrow.

In the meantime…  You know how I say I never seem to have enough time to do everything?  Well, just to prove I’m a liar I added something else.  Like–

So… Guess who tried out for roller derby? #Crazy #SkateOrDie

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Yeah, that’s me in all kinds of padding with a helmet and skates on, trying to get fit to be a derby queen.  And last night was killer:  I had to actually lay down three times ’cause I was on the verge of passing out.  Out of freakin’ shape, I am, but if I stick with this I’ll get back into shape by the end of summer.  And maybe even get my old skating form back.

Now, speaking of form–or lack thereof–it’s time to get back to the mat and see what’s up in the Kerry-Franky Throw Down.  Needless to say, go time is here:

 

 

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

 

She ended the same way she ended the last judgment trial Kerry attended. “Remember to always respect your fellow combatant during the trial; the greatest honor we show our opponents is when we treat them as individuals and not objects in need of defeat.” She eyed Franky hard as she spoke this last line. “The moment you remove respect for your opponent, you lose respect for yourself. You never want that to happen.”

Ramona walked backwards slowly to her position at the top of the mat. Given the differences in skill twenty-two combatants, Ramona did not expect this match to last long. As soon as Franky removed his jacket and set it aside she straightened and addressed the crowd. “All spectators will remain behind the red lines to keep you protected from whatever happens within this ring.” She raised her arms the protective enchantments into place. “Watch, and learn, from this lesson.”

She looked to her right and left. “I wish you well in this trial.” She slowly raised her arms until they were chest high—

 

So we have Kid Cardiff squaring off against the Newfoundland Kid.  I wanna see a clean fight–

 

Kerry cleared his mind, keeping his eyes focused on the boy on the other side of the mat. For his part, Franky didn’t appear to concerned about what was to happen next. Though Annie and Kerry discuss the possibility that Franky was going to do something nefarious, right now Kerry couldn’t see anything out of the ordinary, though he did wonder why Franky slowly slipped his right hand into his trouser pocket—

Ramona set her defensive spells in place and checked the auras of her combatants to make certain they weren’t powering up spells. “And—STOP.”

Kerry never had an opportunity to comply with Professor Chai’s instructions as the year before him exploded in a massive fire rushing in his direction. Though we wasn’t supposed to use magic, his overriding sense of self-preservation forced him to throw up the shield he was already visualizing. Some of the heat and flames made their way through before the quick-cash shield stopped the effect, but a second later he was struck by an Air Hammer that knocked him off his feet and threw him a meter or two backwards hard into the floor.

Ramona dropped the safety enchantments: the moment they were down Nurse Bianca Gaillard, who was over from the hospital to lend medical assistance should be needed, rushed to Kerry’s side as did Annie. She turned to Franky, who was still in his start position. There was a shocked expression on his face and his hand was still in his pocket—the reason she halted the trial before it began. “What do you have in your pocket? Show me now.”

 

Naw, brah, that shit ain’t about to happen.

Come on:  you knew this was coming.  You knew Franky was going to try something sneaky and do something to Kerry, and in the trailer for this novel you see Kerry getting blasted back during an event at school, so it doesn’t take a great leap of imagination to know what happened in the trailer happened here.

Franky is a little shit who doesn’t always play nice.  And he just did–what’s that thing you say, Wash?

Yeah, that thing.

Yeah, that’s it.  Franky did something to get in that quick sucker punch and Kerry caught it.  Not all of it, but enough that it’s gonna hurt.  But, did Franky break any rules?  Well…

I’m not gonna say–at least not today.

Time to Throw Down: The Comfortable Setup

Looking over my blogging from yesterday and Sunday, I see that I published a total of eight articles in two days–and two articles each on Friday and Saturday as well, for a total of twelve articles published in four days.  Not a bad amount of writing, and I even managed to get out and do stuff once in a while.  Especially yesterday: it seemed like I did get out and do things, but at the same time it seemed like I spent a lot of time sitting down behind the computer.  Which I did.  No getting away from that.

This is going to be a weird week. I could go out and do something tonight; I’m getting my nails done tomorrow; I have to write a TV recap Thursday night, which will likely take up most of that evening; and Friday night I’m having dinner with someone.  But it goes without saying that since I’m returning to Indiana this coming weekend, is highly unlikely I will get any writing done on Saturday after having driven a thousand kilometers.  But we’ll see.  I sometimes full of surprises.

Now that I have Kerry and Franky inside Gwydion Manor, it’s time to get them ready to rumble.  Though, if you remember back to the first time we went through this situation, there is a little bit of tradition each kid needs to go through–

 

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

 

Kerry stepped out of the crowd instead his backpack and jacket down just inside the protective redline, then removed his shoes before walking over to the mat. Though all his items would be inside the protective field shielding the combatants and Professor Chai from the combat, he knew an additional protective shielding would fall over his personal items so they couldn’t be accidentally destroyed. He stepped to the edge of the mat but didn’t step in to the yellow box that indicated where he was supposed to start; as he had seen with Annie’s judgment trial, there was a certain protocol to follow and he didn’t want to come across as some sort of know it all ignoring tradition.

As she did during Annie’s Judgment Trial the year before, Professor Chai stepped into the middle of the mat and held out her arms as a way of quieting everyone. “I welcome all students to this trail and ask that for the duration of the procedures that you remain behind the red line surrounding the mat, which is there for your own safety.

“We are gathered because we have two students who are unable to resolve their differences amicably and the aggrieved party has requested a judgment by trial, which is the right of any student attending Salem. This trial will proceed obeying the rules set down by the Mistresses of Judgment, from the first days of the school until today.” Ramona scanned the students in the room. “And woe be unto those individuals who believe they are above those rules, for they will quickly discover they are not.” She glanced from left to right. “Now, who is the aggrieved party? Step forward and be recognized.”

 

Just like a good programmer reuses code they find in another program, I basically took some of the lines from the B Level novel involving Annie’s Judgment Trial, modified him a bit, and laid them down here in this excerpt.  That was probably one of the reasons why I was able to get through this section rather quickly, though it still required me going through the other novel, cherry picking what I needed, and then making the necessary changes.

Though you’ll see below, I cut out a significant portion of Ramona going over the rules as was done in the last novel:

 

Franky stepped up on to the mat, his shoes off but still wearing his jacket. “That’s me, Professor.”

“Come to the center of the mat, please.” She continued as soon as Franky joined her. “State your name, coven, and class level.”

“Franky Smith, Ceridwen Coven, C Level.” He almost seemed uncomfortable standing in front of everyone giving this information.

“Welcome, Franky.” Ramona glanced to her right where Kerry stood. “Is the a grieving party here? If so, step forward and be recognized.”

Kerry stepped onto the mat and walked directly to the center, after bowing to Ramona—and receiving a bow in return—he gave his identifying information without being prompted. “Kerry Malibey, Cernunnos Coven, C Level.”

Ramona glanced at each boy. “Welcome to Gwydion Manor. Before we continue, I must ask: can this disagreement be resolved without combat? Franky, as you are the aggrieving party, you must decide on this matter before we can continue.”

Franky shook his head. “He called me an idiot and made disparaging remarks about my girlfriend. I’m not gonna let that go.”

“I understand.” Ramona turned to Kerry. “As the aggrieved party you have to right to walk away and ask for administrative punishment. There is no shame in reconsidering your decision and leaving the matter to the instructors, whom I am sure would come to a quick decision.”

Even though Ramona was letting Kerry know that if he were to walk away it was unlikely he’d receive any detention, Kerry was aware that if he backed away from Franky, he’d become a source of ridicule. “It was just a heated discussion, Professor, not one really worth getting called out over. That said—” He looked at Franky and smiled. “I’m not walking away from this one.”

“As I would imagine.” Ramon approached the two boys and stopped when she was about half a meter away. “Then we will proceed with the Trial—” She began going through the instructions for what would happen during the trial and the overall outcome depending upon whom would win. When she asked if there were any questions, none were asked, so she proceeded on to what they could and could not do during the match, as well as detailing the penalty system. “Do either of you have questions?”

Franky shrugged. “No, Professor.”

Kerry faced his martial arts instructor when he spoke. “No, Professor.”

Ramona raised her hands. “Face each other and bow—” As soon as they finished she pointed to the white rectangles at opposite ends of the circle. “Go to your respective start positions.”

 

There you have it: the combatants are in place and the spells are ready to fly.

So who’s going to get off the first blow?  You probably have to wait until tomorrow to find out…

Time to Throw Down: Bringing People Together

Here it is, Memorial Day, and in The Burg it’s rainy as hell.  While people were likely still sleeping, or at Lee staying comfortable under the sheets, I headed out for breakfast, something I do on a regular basis whenever there’s a holiday.

How I always start out my holiday morning.

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Yes, we have a Denny’s in the area, and starting out the morning with steak and eggs and coffee is not a bad way to go.  After I’m done with this post I’ll start on my Sense8 recap, and when I’m finished with that I’ll head over and get some ribs over at the Artfest a few blocks away.  This was dinner yesterday:

Just finished up dinner on the banks of the Susquehanna. Now to grab an ice-cream shake and go home to write.

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When I return I get out the first of two mermaid excerpts I need to write, maybe watch a little Mr. Robot, then work on the novel before finishing off the evening with the last mermaid scene of the evening, which will get me all caught up on that story.

In other words, no big cookouts for me: it’s going to be another day of massive writing.

The scene I’m working on, the first part of which I’m excerpting today, has been going rather well. Last night it did well over eight hundred words, and when I have worked on this scene the fewest words I’ve written were right around seven hundred.  I don’t know that things are going easier, but it does appear that I’m making my way to the scene rather effortlessly.  As always, the biggest obstacle I have is simply getting started, but it seems that as of late I’ve been more eager to start writing, and get into writing, and get it done.

So maybe this is a turning point: maybe I’m getting back into the swing of things.  We’ll see, ’cause I’ve said this before and I’ll probably say it again–and just because instead doesn’t make it true.

In the meantime, it’s time to get Kerry and Franky on the mat.  But before that happens, there’s all the preliminary stuff:

 

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

 

As seem to be the case whenever word got out that either Annie, or Kerry, or both, were about to engage in combat at Gwydion Manor, a sizable number of students appeared so they could watch the action. By the time Annie and Kerry arrived, they estimated at least seventy students were present, which was nearly half the enrollment of Salem. Annie, however, did not see this is a good sign. “I can’t believe this many people are showing up to watch you go up against Franky.”

Kerry didn’t take Annie statement as a slight against his ability. On their walk to the Tesla Science Center for their Practical Super Science class, they continued to express disbelief that Franky believed he could go up against Kerry and win his judgment trial. “Not only that, but who is spreading around word that we’re going to do this?”

“That answer is easy.” She spied Franky and Lisa standing on the far side of the combat mat. “He tells Lisa, Lisa tells her friends, her friends spread the word to their friends. Before you know it half the school knows what’s going on.”

Kerry glanced about the room. “Literally.”

Annie turned to face Kerry, coming as close as necessary so as to not be heard by anyone else. “You need to be careful. There’s a lot about this I don’t like.”

He nodded. “Don’t worry; I’m good.”

She cast her eyes downward for just a second. “Do you need to take another dose?” Annie referred to the gel caps Coraline gave him after their visit to the hospital and his examination. She told him they would help with the raging flux of hormones with which he was currently dealing and to take two more in the evening, as well as tomorrow morning, if he continued feeling stressed out. She was quite aware that what Coraline had given Kerry was nothing more than a light dose of the same hormonal medication Coraline gave to girls suffering from PMS. As she didn’t know how Kerry would react to that news, Annie felt it best not to mention anything.

He shook his head. “No, I feel good.” He reached into his jacket pocket and gave her the tin with the six remaining pills. “I think it’s best if you hold on to this, though.”

Annie took the tin just as Professor Chai walked into the Manor. “It’s like you’re about to start.”

He removed his backpack and slipped out of his jacket. “Better get this over with.” He wrapped his left arm around Annie’s shoulders and gave her a warm, slow kiss. “Wish me luck.”

“You’re not going to need it.” She nodded toward the mat. “Go on.”

 

In case anyone was wondering you now know: Kerry is being given PMS medication to keep his hormones balanced.  Because why not?  One hopes Coraline tells him what she’s giving him after he becomes a she, because by then who will care if she freaks out?  Actually, she should be on medication so she probably won’t be able to freak out, so that’s good.  Though after she transitions back to Male Kerry, there will be that hint of understanding that he was getting PMS medication so he could chill.

Yeah, this kid is getting his mind messed with in a big way.

Since the festivities are about to begin that means the magic is about the fly.  Still thing Frankie’s up the something?

Maybe you’ll find out tomorrow.

And the Challenged Issued…

Well, the last couple of days have been interesting and busy.  Not necessarily happy ones, but that’s nothing new: I’ve been dealing with that for a long time now.  But that’s another story.

There were certain aspects of today’s excerpt that were given away in yesterday’s video, so because I was sort of Chatty Cathy, I figured it’s a good time to just do a massive data dump and get the rest of the first scene out for all to see and read.  Plus, I actually wrote one thousand, one hundred, and forty words per the scene I’m currently working on, some still staying nearly 3000 words ahead of you.  And I intend to write some more today, so that’ll help.

Most everyone who watched the video yesterday knows what’s coming, but before that happened, Annie and Kerry–mostly Annie–did their best to defuse the situation:

 

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

 

Annie hadn’t expected this outburst. She knew what was driving it: it was the same hormonal imbalance that had been driving his moodiness for the last month. And as much as he tried to tell her he was in control, everything she had just witnessed told her that he was far from in total control of his actions. The Kerry from a year ago would have never confronted Franky this way: he would’ve just waved at him and kept walking. Now he looks as if he’s ready to fight.

She tugged on his jacket sleeve. “As much as I know you’d like to continue this discussion, we need to get to Sorcery class.”

Kerry slowly let out a breath he’d been holding in for a few seconds and nodded. “Yeah—” He turned to Annie and gave her a slight smile. “You’re right.” He rolled his shoulders to adjust his backpack. “See you around, guys.”

As Kerry began walking away Frankie’s displeasure was evident upon his face. “Malibey.”

Kerry continued walking without looking back. “Will you idiots just leave me alone?”

MALIBEY.”

What?” He came to a stop as he half turned back towards the boys.

Franky drew himself up as he took a deep breath. “I’m calling you out.”

It took a few seconds for Kerry to understand what was happening. When he finally realized what Franky said, his first reaction was one of disbelief. “Are you serious?”

Franky stood with his friends, his fist clenched and an angry look on his face. “Yes, I am.”

Kerry glanced at Annie, who was just as surprised as he, then rolled his eyes for all to see. “Really? You want to do this?”

“You insulted Lisa. You insulted her and said derogatory things about her.”

“And it’s up to her to call me out, not you.” Kerry wanted to walk up to Franky and jabbed a finger in his face, but doing so could be seen as confrontational and would give Franky a reason to call him out legitimately. “You have no reason to do this.”

“I have every reason to do so. What you said about her was wrong so—” He gave a slight shrug. “I’m defending her honor.”

Kerry glanced at Annie as he muttered under his breath. “Oh, geez.”

Annie decided to step into this argument to make a few points. “Kerry’s right, Franky: if Lisa was insulted it’s up to her to call Kerry out. Which means you can go and tell her what Kerry said, but—”

“Kerry also called us idiots.” Franky motioned to the other boys. “All three of us; he called us idiots. So I can call him out for that.”

 

The “Will you idiots just leave me alone?” line was in the trailer, so you get a sneak peek at Kerry getting ready to be called out.  And frankly, it’s a bullshit reason.  Kerry sets Franky straight and tells them that if he said stuff about Lisa that he should in the stead, it’s Lisa’s place to call Kerry out.  But since we know Lisa’s a cowardly bag of pus, there’s no way in hell she’s ever going to approach Kerry and call him out for calling her shitty racer.  It’s just not her style.

Even so, Kerry is giving Franky a chance to walk away–though in the end it does no good…

 

All Kerry could do at this point we shake his head: he knew enough of his current condition that he was afraid of getting into a major argument if he was saying what was on his mind at the moment. “You really don’t want to do this.”

“I know what I’m doing, Kerry.” Franky turned to Fidele. “Go find an instructor so we can finalize this.”

“That won’t be necessary.” Professor Sladen reached the bottom of the stairs coming from the first floor of the East Transept and strode into the Rotunda. “I’ve been watching us for the last couple of minutes, so there’s no need to bring in of the witnesses.” She stopped about two meters from the arguing groups. “Franky, both Annie and Kerry are right: it’s not your place to call him out for something he said about Lisa. You can tell her what happened and it’s up to her if she wants to confront him.”

Franky shrugged. “Then I’m calling him out for calling us idiots. There was something said directly to us, and since we were speaking, I’m going to assume that when he said that he was referring to me.”

Erywin knew well that judgment trails could be used for transgression such as this, but it was considered a somewhat juvenile use of this power. “You may want to reconsider this.”

“I thought you might say that.” Franky shook his head. “Unless he’s going to get detention, I’m still calling him out.”

Kerry snorted loudly as he shook his head. “That’s not happening.”

Given that Franky wasn’t backing down, and she couldn’t see giving detention to Kerry for something as insignificant as calling someone an idiot when they were obviously acting that way, Erywin saw she had no choice with her course of action. “All right, then. I’ll notify Ramona that she needs to get the Manner ready for a judgment trial. When do you both want to do this?”

“Before lunch or before dinner.” Kerry looked completely disinterested. “I’m good with either one.”

Franky gave Annie and Kerry a disgusted look. “Before dinner is good.”

“Then seventeen-twenty it is.” Erywin waved Franky and the other two boys off. “All of you: it to wherever you’re supposed to be now.” As soon as the boys were far enough away to be out of earshot, Erywin move closer to her two friends and addressed the Ginger Hair Boy. “How are you feeling?”

 

Even Erywin knows that Frankie’s reasons for calling out Kerry are bullshit, but he’s not the first kid to go to the Manor because they’re butthurt.  And since she can’t get Franky to back down, and there’s no way in hell Kerry’s taking detention–though, you have to imagine if Kerry was given detention by Erywin, they’d probably spend most of the hours sitting around talking–she has no choice but to let Ramona know two kids are entering the school’s version of Thunderdome, and one will likely be leaving on a stretcher.

Of course, knowing what she knows about Kerry, it’s natural that when she shoes the other kids away she wants to see how he’s feeling.  Annnnnnnnnd… Kerry lets her know right away:

 

Kerry rolled his eyes and let out an exasperated sigh. “I’m fine.”

Annie rolled her eyes. “And that answer should tell you what you need to know.” She turned to Erywin. “He’s been like this all morning and refuses to go see Coraline.”

“Well, we’ll have to do something about that.” Erywin turned towards the boy. “Kerry, go to the hospital. Tell Coraline you need an examination because you’re feeling—a bit moody.”

Kerry caught himself before he almost gave another heavy sigh. “Do I really have to go? I’m sure—”

Erywin was not in the mood to be bamboozled by someone she knew was suffering. “I’m not telling you to go to the hospital as a friend: I’m ordering you there as senior coven leader of the school, young man.” She turned to Annie as she placed a hand on his shoulder. “Make certain you fill in the blanks in case he forgets a few details.”

Annie reach for Kerry’s hand. “I make certain of it, Professor.”

Erywin gave Kerry a soft smile. “Go with Annie. You’ll feel better when this is over.”

“Thanks, Professor.” Kerry walked away feeling slightly chagrined, because he knew deep down that both Annie and Erywin were doing what they knew was best for him. He leaned toward Annie as they approached the stairs. “Sorry for being a butt head.”

“It’s all right.” She gave his hand a tiny squeeze. “I know this hormonal flux is hard on you. Just remember, we’re all here trying to make your situation better.”

“Yeah.” As they began climbing the stairs Kerry shook his head. “I don’t get what’s up with Franky. He’s has to know I’m going to kick his butt this afternoon.”

Annie grunted. “That’s the problem.”

“What is?”

“That he has to know you’re going to kick his butt.” She stopped them when they were only a few stairs from the stop and turned to face him. “Don’t for a moment get complacent about this judgment trial. Since he’s doing this to defend Lisa, you have to assume that something else afoot here…”

 

So, first: it’s not often you see one of those who knows Kerry well to actually get Instructor Stern with him and tell him, in no uncertain terms, he has to do something.  As stated above, Erywin knows what’s going on with Kerry, but she also knows he can be quite obstinate at times.  So in that case, she needs a jump in his butt a little bit and remind him that when you get and order from the senior coven leader of Salem, it’s not meant to be taken lightly.

And in the aftermath of the calling out, it doesn’t take long for Annie and Kerry–again, mostly Annie–to wonder if something sketchy is going on.  Annie was already bamboozled by one half of this team, so there’s no reason to believe that Franky isn’t up to some kind chicanery of his own.  The question was asked and answered yesterday: yes, both Lisa and Franky saw Annie and Kerry do their little “Let’s Kill All the Zombies” test ordered by the Guardians, so Franky knows what he’s getting into the Monday squares off against Kerry.  Even Kerry is and oblivious to the fact that he knows he can kick Frankie’s butt without working up a sweat, and that Franky has to know it, too.

So the question remains: is there something up?

Hey, go ahead and speculate away until I get it published for you.

While Telling the Truth…

So much going on today.  For one, it’s the start of a three-day weekend here in the US, so expect lots of drinking and fireworks.  I have thing I need to do, and I’ll likely spend most of Saturday getting those things done.  I promise I’ll stay away from the booze–at least for the most part.

I’ve been busy with writing, but almost none of it with the novel.  Last night was TV recap night and I spent about three hours getting out the work.  Yes, I know, I should work on the novel.  But I didn’t.  Tonight I need to start catching up on my mermaid story–which I am close to ending–and then I’ll get into the novel.

The biggest thing I worked on last night…  as you know, I am half of the writing team of The Snarking Dead, where my friend Rachel and I do our recapping thing.  Yesterday we crossed the 100,000 views line, which is a good accomplishment after having the site up for only fifteen months.  As such, we decided to pull the trigger and kinda go pro, going to a straight up .com tag so we can began modifying the site as we like and, most importantly, begin setting up ads to bring in some cash.  We should also be able to change our metatags to get a better presence on Google, which could get us more hits.

Going pro, I am.  Kinda.  We’ll see how it works out and check out how our next year goes.  Maybe whatever exposure we’ve gotten in the last fifteen months will lead to something more…

Now, on to the story.

Kerry’s being questions by someone who is not one of his friends and things could get interesting fast:

 

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

 

She leaned in toward him and spoke in a husky whisper. “Be careful.”

There was a loud snort from Gavino, who lightly elbowed Fidele. “Yeah, dude. Be careful or your girlfriend will get mad.”

“Shut up, Gavino.” Kerry jabbed a finger in his direction. “This has nothing to do with you.” He turned back to Franky. “And this has nothing to do with you, either. You trying to make a big deal out of something that happened a half a week ago. It’s over, it’s done. And I had nothing to do with what happened to Lisa. So just let it go.” He began to turn away, as did Annie. “I gotta get the class.”

Franky wasn’t about to let it go, however. “If you had nothing to do with it, then why did she crash?”

 

Kerry’s right at the end of his last nerve and Franky won’t let him go:  he’s just gotta keep pressing those buttons.  We know how Kerry is when he’s normally getting his buttons pushed, but this time he’s having this strange internal battle inside his body and the filters he usually keeps up are a little loose.  And that’s never a good thing.

Franky wants an answer.  Okay, then:  you’re going to get one–and it’s one that’s coming on blast…

 

Because your girlfriend is a shitty racer.” Kerry spun around and confronted Franky before Annie could say anything to dissuade him. “She races the same damn way every time: she likes to hang back on people until you start going into a corner that is tricky or dangerous, and then she dives in trying to take advantage and kill your momentum, because she figures the other racer would rather lose a few seconds on the course than crash because of her.

“And that’s exactly what she did to me last Saturday. She got behind me after damn near crashing a few other people on the Blue Line and started bird dogging my six. And I knew she was back there and I knew it was her, because this is what she does every damn race.

“Only this time I wasn’t going let her do that. That’s why every time she started setting up to dive in I threw a block at her. She tried doing at a Pentagon Pass, she kept trying to do that in Helter Skelter, and she tried doing every time thought South Side Slide and The Sweep.”

He took a step closer to Franky and jabbed a finger at him. “I didn’t care if everyone knew I was doing it, and I didn’t care if Race Control knew I was doing it, because I am sick of her shit out there when we race. I’m sick of her trying to wreck other people doing that, and I’m sick of her trying to wreck me doing it. So I made certain she wasn’t going to do it to me.

“And if you want to know why she crashed, I’ll tell you: because she’s not only a shitty racer, she’s also a shitty flier. When she pulled that last move on me in South Side Slide and I threw a block she decided she was going to keep coming—and when she saw I wasn’t going to give her any room to move up next to the safety enchantments, she tried to jerk her broom around to pass me on the left and lost control.” Kerry threw his hands up in the air to mimic an explosion. “Boom. And to use an expression that she dropped on me a year and a half ago, if she were a better flier she wouldn’t have crashed, but she isn’t: she sucks. End of story.”

 

Annie called it earlier:  normally Kerry walks away from something like this because he just doesn’t have the time for this BS.  But today–no.  He’s not walking away.  He’s getting right up in Franky’s face and telling him his girlfriend sucks and she’s a shitty racer and flier, so if anyone crashed Lisa, it was her.

And the fact that Kerry’s almost screaming this out in one of the most public areas of the school with a large part of the student body nearby gives you an idea of just how much he’s not in control of himself.  This is why you should listen to your soul mate, kid, and not make deals with her.

Where does this lead?  Well–

It can only lead to one place…

While Making a Deal…

Little fanfare today as I’m sort of running behind.  So, have at it, kids!

 

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

 

Kerry looked down as he scratch the side of his forehead for a few seconds, then spent a few seconds more looking about the room before turning back to Annie. “How about I make a deal with you?”

Annie took this to mean it was going to see Coraline right away. Still, she wanted to hear what he had to say. “I’m listening.”

“Let’s go to Sorcery and if I’m still acting the same way a few hours from now, then I’ll go to the hospital when we come back for lunch.” He gazed into her eyes as he smiled. “Is that okay?”

“Only if you accept the stipulation that if I think you’re growing increasingly unable to control your mood, I tell Helena I’m taking you to the hospital and we go.” The smile she returned was warm but serious. “Otherwise, I’m just going to keep after you until we see Coraline before leaving for the Witch House.”

Knowing this was an argument he wouldn’t win, he capitulated with the curt nod. “I accept.” Without say anything else he dove back into breakfast while, at the same time, he tried not to appear as if he felt like he was about to explode.

As soon as they were finished with breakfast they grabbed their book bag and backpack and headed out of the Dining Hall. As usual, they used one of the west doorways before heading across the Rotunda towards the North Passage leading to Åsgårdsreia Tower. In the past they would continue through the tower and beyond The Pentagon so they could take the path to the Witch House, but these days, when weather was good, they flew: Kerry on his broom and Annie on her own. And with the weather today being good, they both look forward to a short, pleasant flight to their class.

They were about five meters pass the staircase leading up to the hospital when the morning pleasantness ended with a shout. “Malibey.”

Annie turned as did Kerry and saw Franky Smith, Fidele Diaz, and Gavino D’Addario enter the Rotunda from the same hall they had exited moments before. The trio of boys stopped about three meters from them and stood staring for several seconds.

With nothing said after five seconds Kerry took it upon himself to be the first to speak. “You guys want something?”

Franky finally found his voice. “I want to know why you crashed Lisa last weekend.”

 

Just when you think Kerry may get through the day without being bothered on the way to class, here comes trouble.  And it’s really not a good time for him, right?  Plus, what’s this “You wrecked Lisa” business?  Which even has Kerry puzzled–

 

It was Kerry’s turn to wait several seconds before replying. “I crashed her?”

“Yes.” Franky nodded. “You did.”

Kerry wasn’t in the mood for arguing. “I didn’t. End of story.”

Fidele pointed in Kerry’s direction. “I don’t think that’s true, Malibey, ‘cause everyone saw it happen.”

“Including Race Control?” Kerry shook his head as he sighed. “Who obviously didn’t see anything, because I never got called in for a discussion about wrecking her—” He turned back toward Franky. “Which I didn’t do.”

Annie felt as if there was something else going on at the moment. It wasn’t so much that Franky wanted to pick a fight about something that happened on the race course over the last weekend, as it seemed like the boys were confronting them in an effort to rattle Kerry. And she didn’t care for any of their reasons behind that premise. Normally Kerry wouldn’t rattle, but given what is going through this morning he just might.

 

Now, one might say someone’s pushing Kerry’s buttons, and we have some idea of what happens when that happens.  But he’s never had his buttons pushed when he’s in this kind of mood, which could end up being… bad.

I guess we’ll see what happens tomorrow.

And I should have more to say as well.

Should.