Inside the Walls: Try It Baby, One More Time…

I know what you’re thinking:  you’re getting a blog post out now?  You know it, baby.  And the reason for this is I’ve been feeling under the weather for most of the day.  Even though I was out on a busy day yesterday–breakfast, practice, helping a teammate with new skate, going to a movie and catching up on old news with a former teammate–today the cold I’ve been fighting off for the last week decided it was time to hit.

So I’ve been coughing and sneezing and dealing with a runny nose that doesn’t seem to know when to stop.  I hope this means my sinuses will have dried out by tomorrow morning, otherwise I’ll need to deal with this shit at work.

As for writing–

I began writing this morning and ran out of steam after about four hundred words.  I was going to finish up during the afternoon, but feeling run down has a way of making you not want to do anything.  Finally, after eating, I cranked out another three hundred words and finished the scene.

That means the kids are back in the Great Hall and on their way to the hospital–right?

Right.

 

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

 

They quickly headed to the main hospital entrance and proceeded to the third floor, where Coraline, Deanna, Erywin, and Jessica were waiting for them still attired in the casual clothing they wore to dinner. Erywin spoke as they entered the main space. “Did you enjoy your time outside?”

Kerry nodded. “Quite a lot. It was nice being away from here even if it was a little cold.” She turned to Coraline. “I hope you don’t mind.”

“Not at all.” Coraline shook her head. “I can imagine you were getting a little buggy after having been kept here all day.”

“Just a little.”

“It was more than ‘just a little’.” Annie took Kerry’s hand. “I experienced her moods before and after going out. She enjoyed the experience immensely.”

“Well, how about a little more fun?” Coraline flashed a bright, wide smile. “Let’s try another transition before I put you guys down to bed for the night?”

Kerry nodded. “Yeah, why not?”

Annie touched the ginger girl’s shoulder. “It’s been almost a day; maybe you’ll have control now.”

“Let’s hope so.” Kerry pointed at the partitioned area about five meters away. “Change back there?”

While Kerry changed Coraline prepared the dais and recording equipment used in the six previous controlled transition attempts. By the time Kerry emerged from behind the privacy partition dressed in her smock and socks everything was ready for her. The school’s doctor perked up as her patient approached. “Since you know the drill we can get right to the test.”

“Right-o.” Kerry stepped up upon the dais as shook herself once as she relaxed. “Ready to go her, Doc.”

“Then let’s get to it. Begin recording.” Coraline’s voice shifted into the professional tone she used in the other attempts. “It’s 27 October, 2013, time 21:53. I am Doctor Coraline Gallagher and this is Attempt Number Seven of Kerry Malibey’s attempt to control her Bigender Gift. Kerry is in position and ready to go. As before, witnesses are Jessica

Kishna, Deanna Arrakis, Erywin Sladen, Isis Mossman, and Anelie Kirilova.” She looked in Kerry’s direction. “You ready?”

She nodded. “Ready as ever.”

“Then let’s get started.” Coraline stood upright and looked about the room before focusing on Kerry. “As before, attempt transition on my mark. And… three, two, one—Mark.”

Kerry closed her eyes on three, squared her shoulders on two, and slightly dipped her head on one. At mark her brow furrowed as she concentrated…

 

So it’s time for the test–the seventh.  And Kerry’s on the podium, dressed and ready to change.  And does she?

 

An eye blink later the boy who was at the Samhain Dance with Annie only twenty-four hours earlier stood on the dais.

For a moment no one said a word nor reacted. It was finally Kerry who noticed there wasn’t any hair lining his face before looking at his hands. After a couple of seconds of scrutinizing them his chortle sounded like an explosion. “Holy shit.”

While everyone behind her began exclaiming over the success of the voluntary transition, Coraline remained intent on the test. “Kerry—Kerry.”

He quickly focused. “Yeah?”

“We need to see if you can transition back to…”

He shrugged. “To a girl?”

“Yes.”

“Okay.” He squared his shoulders. “Give the word.”

“You know what to do—” Coraline waved her hands to hush everyone. “Go on my mark.” She swallowed. “And… mark.”

In the same blink of an eye moment Kerry changed from the Ginger Hair Boy back to the girl he’d been for nearly an entire day. She reexamined herself. “I think I got this.”

Coraline began chuckling. “I think you do. Go ahead and—”

Kerry instantly transitioned back into his male self. “Change?”

“Exactly.”

Annie moved away from everyone and stepped up next to the dais. “How are you feeling?”

“Feeling?” Kerry stepped off the dais without permission and stood next to Annie. “I feel great.” He took her right hand and kissed it. “You might say, I feel like my back to my old self…”

There you go.  You knew it had to end sometime during this day, and we can finally get back to using “he” pronouns and not get confused if she is meant to be Annie or Kerry.

But, you know, the day isn’t quite over yet…

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Inside the Walls: Feeling Alright

Look here!  It’s a real post!

While there was some writing today, there was partying last night.  My team had their banquet last night and I decided to get all dressed up so I’d fit in.  I haven’t really gotten dressed up in a while, but this was some next level shit if I should say so.  Instead of trying to tell you what I was like, let me show:

Slay, bitch. #HARD #OffSeason

A post shared by Cassidy Frazee (@cassidyfrazee) on

 

Yes, I’m wearing a domino mask, and I commented that if my hair was purple I’d look a little like Hit Girl from KickAss.  But I wasn’t as murderous as her: I had dinner, I had one drink, and I did some dancing–even once in my heels.  Yes, for the first time I was dancing in high heels and pulling it off.

Oh, and we had the party in a skybox at a race track:

The track beyond. #HARD #OffSeason

A post shared by Cassidy Frazee (@cassidyfrazee) on

 

Since I survived the evening, that means I did some writing this morning.

It’s a continuation from last week, with Annie and Kerry sitting on the wall talking.  And Annie shows concern–and it goes from there:

 

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

 

“And you are doing so with quite a lot of grace.” Annie slid her right arm around Kerry’s left. “How are you feeling now?”

Kerry pulled Annie tight against her. “I’m feeling pretty good right now. Getting out and walking around—once I got used to knowing we wouldn’t be seen, I began enjoying the evening. Got to spend it with people I know—” She lay her head on Annie’s shoulder. “And you.”

Annie was pleased that her soul mate felt better, but she also knew part of the reason she felt better came from Coraline giving her a mixture before they departed the hospital. Coraline told Kerry the medication would “help her relax”, while Annie was aware the medication was actually a mild antidepressant that would help Kerry deal with her current frame of mind. I’m certain she knew what that mixture was for as well: Kerry may have felt depression taking over, but she’s not so ignorant as to not know when she’s being given something to help her cope.

“I loved being with you.” Annie reached over and ran her fingers down Kerry’s cheek. “And so you know, it was nothing like being out with Alex when I was in Kiev. She’s a friend, but you’re someone—” She gave Kerry a soulful look. “Someone far closer to my heart.”

Kerry laughed as she pulled back. “Well, I would hope so.” She stared at Annie for a few seconds as if unsure what she should do next, but was saved a second later by a pop behind her. She glanced over her shoulder. “You rang?”

Isis stood some four meters away, a coat thrown around her shoulders. “Coraline wants you both back at the hospital.”

Both kids carefully swung their legs over the wall and stood, smoothing out their coat, before approaching the Chief of School Security and taking her hands. Annie squared her shoulders. “I’m ready.”

Kerry nodded once. “Let’s rock.”

Isis visualized their destination and jaunted to the first floor West Transept just outside the Security Center and the secured jaunt station. She released the student’s hands and began walking towards the walkway. Kerry held up a moment and spoke with a slight quiver in her voice. “It’s okay to go out there?”

Isis turned and smiled. “It’s almost twenty-two hours: everyone’s in their towers either chillin’ in the commons or in bed. The Great Hall is empty.” She waved the girl forward. “Trust me.”

Annie gave Kerry a slight nudge. “You know Isis wouldn’t bring us here if it wasn’t safe.”

“Yeah. I know.” She walked past the security chief and proceeded directly to the first floor walkway, stopping at the railing. “Wow.” She examined the darkened Rotunda. “It really is empty.”

“You were expecting to be greeted by all your adoring fans?” While Annie suppressed a chuckle Isis gave Kerry a smile as she waved her onward. “Come on: Coraline’s waiting for us.”

 

So they are off the wall and back in the Great Hall–in fact, they’re probably looking over a part of the school they walked through hand-in-hand nearly twenty-four hours earlier.  That means once they’re back in the hospital it’s likely Kerry’s going to do something–

And we all know what that is…

Inside the Walls: The Chocolate Statement

Hope your turkey weekend was a good one.  Mine wasn’t bad, though I had to deal with an annoying super bout of depression yesterday that did little for me beside make me want to do nothing.  But I got through it and–guess what?  Did a bit more writing.

As you can see I’m just a touch over five hundred words into the next scene–

Really, I’m doing it.

 

–and that’s going to set up the last scene of this chapter.  Which I do hope to get to this week.

But dinner is over and it’s time for the kids to get back to the school.  though that doesn’t mean returning immediately to the hospital’s third floor:

 

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

 

At the conclusion of dinner in Salem everyone—Annie, Kerry, Coraline, Erywin, Deanna, Jessica, Isis, and Headmistress Laventure—jaunted back to the secure station on the first floor across from the school’s Security Office. Before leaving the room Mathilde told the two girls that given the time—a little after twenty-one hours—they could go anywhere they liked on the school grounds as long as they stayed way from and out of the coven towers—

Kerry knew exactly where to go.

Without having access to her broom Isis agreed to jaunt Annie and Kerry to the North Cove Entrance, one of the openings in the Outer Walls that allowed Normals to use a walking trail created before the walls were extended that far to the southwest, the Cove Path, which was heavily enchanted to prevent Normals from accidentally straying on to the school grounds proper. From there Annie and Kerry left the path and headed about forty meters to the north, to where one of the many sets of stairs leading to the top of the Outer Walls was located. After reaching the top, they continued heading northward, walking slowly, hand-in-hand.

They reached the next tower on the well—the one everyone called Double Dip Tower even though it had no official name—and continued walking until they reached what at one time had been the western-most tower of the Outer Wall, Sunset Tower. There they sat on the outer edge of the massive walls, holding hands while scanning the illuminated darkness beyond the school.

Nearly five minutes went by before Annie glanced to her right. “Still thinking about dessert?”

Kerry smiled and nodded. “Oh, yeah. I can’t get over how good that tasted.”

“I told you.” After they finished their main entrees Annie suggested that Kerry try the cherry-covered chocolate mousse that Coraline, Deanna, and she enjoyed so much. Kerry remarked that she didn’t care much for chocolate other than the school’s famous hot chocolate but after a bit of nudging from the others she gave in and ordered the dish.

Much to no one’s surprise, Kerry not only loved the dessert, but afterwords couldn’t stop talking about how delicious it was. Annie even chided her on the way back to the Salem jaunt station, telling Kerry if she spent more time as a girl in the future, the school may need to watch their chocolate inventory.

Annie patted Kerry’s left knee. “You know why it tasted so much different tonight, don’t you?”

Kerry glanced over. “From how I’ve tasted chocolate before?”

“Yes?”

“Because of all the estrogens in my system.” She ran her hand over Annie’s. “Changes my sense of touch, my sense of smell, and my sense of taste.” Kerry shook her head. “Again, I knew there would be these changes, but it’s a lot different living through them.”

“And you are doing so with quite a lot of grace.” Annie slid her right arm around Kerry’s left. “How are you feeling now?”

 

First off, let’s look at where all this is taking place.

Finally getting out for the night, even if it is a ways from the living areas.

 

The North Cove Lane entrance is to the lower left of the picture and is one of two open portals that Normal traverse on to school grounds.  As mentioned, everything is so enchanted that even when they want to stroll off the lane they can’t–though they might believe they are.  Remember, The Foundation uses enchantments and Glamore magic to make Normals think they’re hiking through the woods on Cape Ann, when in reality they just sort of find themselves being moved about without knowing where they were outside the walls.  Sunset is all the way up at top center: it’s where Wednesday went to recharge the detection node during the Day of the Dead.  And now the kids are resting there.

We find out Kerry has developed a taste for chocolate, something that can happen when you’re suddenly flooded with estrogens.  Trust me on this one: I was like Kerry and not much of a chocolate lover, but I love it far more now.  Funny how that happens.

Now that we know dinner was a hit, it’s time for Annie to find out how Kerry’s feeling.

I’m pretty sure she’s in better shape.

Posting on a Saturday Afternoon

Sure, it’s a late post, but it’s the thought that counts.  Enjoy!

Out On the Town: Items and Ideas

Here it is, another day off, another lazy day, another slow afternoon.  Which means I’m getting the blog post out late as well.

But there is a difference today.

This morning there was a lot of writing–like just over eight hundred words worth of writing.  And that means I finished the first scene of Chapter Nineteen.  Which means a lot of things happened in those eight hundred words.

Like the following…

 

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

 

They walked a few meters to the Witch Tees shop and stopped before one of the windows. Annie pointed to a pink tee shirt emblazoned with a logo showing four witches on brooms drinking from martini glasses while flying. “Remember when you thought I should get that top back in September?”

Kerry nodded slowly as the memory returned. “Yeah, I do.”

“Well, now we can.” She arched one of her eyebrows as she smiled at Kerry. “Both of us.”

Kerry released a huge sigh. “I can’t get away from this, can I?”

“That you’re now a girl?” Annie shrugged. “I’m not trying to embarrass you, my love, but I don’t find any harm in pointing out that we now have a lot more in common that just our love.” She finally took Kerry’s hand and gave it a squeeze. “I mean no harm—you know that, don’t you?”

Kerry was fully aware that Annie meant no harm and that she wasn’t actually teasing him. There was this feeling, however… “I know you’re not being mean, Darling. It’s just—”

She looked down as she spoke. “I feel really touchy.”

Annie nodded once. “You mean emotional, don’t you?”

“Yeah.”

“And you know why, don’t you?

“Yeah.” She finally looked up and spoke in a low voice. “It’s this goddamn estrogen. It’s pulled all my emotional filters away and is making me feel…” Kerry gave Annie’s hand a squeeze. “Vulnerable.”

 

The tee shirt in question does exist, though I do wonder if it existed four years ago in 2013.  For now I’ll say it does, because it is possible for me to change things if I feel like it.  This is sort of Annie getting back for Kerry suggesting she get a tee shirt that showed a flying witch with the logo, “Good girls go to heaven, Bad girls go to Salem,” and we know Annie isn’t a bad girl.  Don’t be surprised if Kerry ends up with this same shirt should he remain a she for a while.  Because Annie would love that.

Now that Kerry’s been reminded for the nth time today that being a girl could be in her future, she once more opens up about how she feels.  And she has.  And that brings a response from Annie:

 

Annie thought it best not to mention what Coraline and she discussed before leaving the school this evening. “I don’t believe I’ve ever heard you use that word.”

“My vocabulary has adapted to my gender, I guess.” Kerry slowly led Annie back on to Essex Street. “If we ever come back here when I’m like this, we’ll get the shirts; I don’t want to show up at dinner with bags in tow.”

Annie was aware that Kerry was making an excuse but let it go, as she recognized that, in a way, she was right about not walking around with a bag for the rest of the evening.

“It’s agreed, then.”

“Yes, it is.” Kerry looked about. “When do we have to be at the restaurant?”

“Probably not for another thirty minutes or so. Coraline said she was gonna give us about forty-five minutes or so to walk around before dinner.” Annie glanced over at Kerry.

“She said she’d text when they were getting ready to leave the school, which means we’ll get a good five minutes warning.”

“Good.” Kerry glanced up at the now nearly dark sky. “I really like this. I’m surprised Coraline was able to put this together so quickly.”

“I think she’d worked on it for a while.”

“Why do you say that?”

 

Do we think Coraline put all this together on the fly?  I know what to think there, and Annie has some thoughts on that matter–

 

Annie nodded to her right. “Your clothes. They fit almost perfectly, which means Coraline probably got all your new measurements from your exams and had Jessica adjust them for you. She told me everyone who was going to show up for dinner when we spoke and also mentioned the headmistress had approved the trip.” Annie moved closer to Kerry. “I think she’d spent most of the time while we were watching movies to set up this dinner date.”

While there was a slight smile on her face, Kerry’s voice began to crack with emotion when she spoke. “Still, I have to thank her for this. She, and everyone else, could have left me up on the third floor for the entire day and… they didn’t.”

Annie silently agreed with her love. Given all the Spy Eyes on the third floor, it was likely Coraline spent part of the afternoon monitoring her patient and saw Kerry’s mood deteriorating. While the doctor in her likely wanted to keep Kerry safe, the her counselor half knew she needed to do something to improve her patient’s mood.

And getting outside the school was the answer.

They walked down Essex in near silent for nearly a minute: Annie wanted Kerry to relax and enjoy her newfound relationship with the world around them. She also didn’t want to mention that since leaving Witch Tees they’d continued walking hand-in-hand, as she worried that if mentioned, Kerry would become self-conscious and release her hand. Annie had already seen a couple of stares from people walking by but ignored each one—

She was walking with the one she loved and that was all that mattered.

Annie glanced over to her right. “Anywhere in particular you want to go?”

“Let’s go down Central and go pass Front Street Coffeehouse.” She chuckled. “I know it’s closed but I want to see what it smells like.”

Annie pulled herself against Kerry’s arm as she laughed. “Why not?” She pulled them to a stop and looked down Central Street. “As you wish, my Ginger Hair Girl…”

 

A walk in the cooling darkness, one that might allow Kerry to take in some different sights and smells.  Sounds like it’s going to be a good evening.

Now, while we won’t be there for dinner, you can bet we’re going to find out what happened…