Finally On My Mind

Well, I slipped up last night.  I made it to six hundred words before realizing I was about to launch into a wordy section of the new scene, at which point I thought, “I could do this tomorrow,” and relaxed.  So almost seven thousand words in seven days, but it seems like I’m back in a kind of groove.  At least when I’m ready to write.  We’ll see.

Now, back to the excerpt of yesterday, which has the Lovey Dovey Couple laying in bed chatting.  That’s a pretty common thing to do, so why not let these guys do the same?

And in talking while flying along at ten thousand meters, Annie has a question:

 

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

 

Kerry looked at the ceiling imagining some of the conversations Annie and Helen had while alone. “I’m sure it’s gotten colorful at times.”

“Um, hmm.” She stopped playing with Kerry’s hair and began tracing the outlines of his ear. “My love?”

There was something in Annie’s tone that immediately put Kerry on guard. “Yes, my darling?”

Annie remained silent for a few seconds of she ran her finger over his lips. “I’ve never really wanted to say anything about this because I don’t want you to think that I don’t trust you, but…” She rolled on her side ahead still against Kerry’s chest, but Annie looked off towards the head of the bed. “If Emma should try anything during The Polar Express—”

“I will shut her down immediately.” Though The Polar Express wouldn’t happen for several more months, he had given some thought to the fact that Emma and he would be completely alone for at least two nights. He didn’t expect anything to happen the first night, as that would be the night they would jaunt somewhere into Canada, set up their campsite, and go immediately to sleep so they could prepare for flight that coming morning.

It was the next evening—when they would have to spend a night in the wild together—that concerned him the most. He felt that if a chance arose where Emma would actually try to proposition him, it would happen at night. He didn’t think she would, however—

I know Emma well enough that if she’s still carrying feelings for me when we leave on the trip, she’s going to say something. It would be kind of stupid for her to do so, but where her feelings are concerned, she doesn’t always think.

 

For close to three years and three-quarter of a million words I’ve been asked at various times, “Why isn’t Annie concerned about Emma?”  Here we find out that, yeah, at this moment in time the idea of Emma being with her soul mate in the middle of kilometer after empty Canadian kilometer is making Annie wonder, “Will that stupid bitch actually try something?”  And to Kerry’s credit he’s already anticipating the possibility that his wingmate might decide to “do something,” even though she’s been told more than a few times that she’s never advancing beyond “good friend” no matter how much she wants more.  Because he knows there are times when Emma doesn’t think.  Like when hormones are involved.

Now, I’m almost certain that I’ll be asked, “Why doesn’t Annie just warn Emma away?”  And that’s a good question, probably one Annie’s asked as well–

"I could solve so many issues with Emma if I just killed her now..."

“I could solve so many of my issues with Emma if I just killed her now…”

Okay, maybe she hasn’t.

Let’s face it:  Annie knows she shouldn’t confront Emma at this point.  One, it makes her look like a jealous girlfriend and Annie doesn’t want to come off that way.  Two, she knows Kerry won’t give into temptation.  Why would he when his OTP is right there in bed with him.

And three:  Annie’s been infected with the same hormones the rest of the girls around the school and maybe she’s not one hundred percent certain Emma might not cause her to lose her temper.  If that were to happen, smart money is on the sorceress bitch to put down the Ginger From Bolder for good, which is something else Annie doesn’t want to do, either.

None of it matters ’cause Kerry has a cunning plan…

 

And he was ready for her. He was determined to let her down gently—because the last thing he wanted was a pissed off girl as his wingman in the middle of The Polar Express—but at the same time you make it extraordinarily clear that her chances of gaining his affections were far less than zero. In a way he hoped she’d say something before the end of the year because it would cause far less drama than pushing her back into the friend zone somewhere in the middle of Frozen Bollocks, Canada.

He lightly touched Annie’s cheek. “Hey, lovely girl.”

She turned to look at him. “Yes, my love?”

Kerry stroked her cheek. “There’s just one girl who I’m ever gonna sleep with and she’s right here with me.” He shook his head. “I’ve already told her, in no uncertain terms, that she doesn’t stand a chance of getting me to do anything. You are my first and only girl.”

Annie moved up and planted a strong, passionate kiss upon Kerry, one they held for nearly a quarter of a minute. When they finally broke she returned to using his chest as a pillow. “You are the only one who will ever get my virginity.”

He couldn’t help but hear her chuckle. “What is it?”

She rolled on her stomach and rested on his chest so they were face-to-face. “If it wasn’t for the fact I started my period yesterday, I would be tempted to lose my virginity right now.”

 

Okay, Annie!  Thanks for the TMI, girl!  And just like Kerry everyone now knows when Annie has her period.  And that there will be only one guy she’ll sleep with.  And whose hormones seem to be affecting her…

That last is nothing new as we’ve seen her bemoan the fact that she can’t have sex yet.  If this girl is having these issues at thirteen, what’s gonna happen with her in a couple of years?  Sounds like another “talk” is in order and Coraline should see to it soon before that whole Three Bindings thing goes up in, um, smoke.

And speaking of that–they’ll speak of it tomorrow.

Sensitive Discussions

This is the part of the presentation where I tell you I started a new chapter last night.  And guess what?  I did!

Right here it is!

Right here it is!

The new chapter is Annie and Kerry and all their little B Levels getting together down the lower levels of the tower.  Why the lower levels?  Well you’ll find out probably a week or so, because that’s about how long it take to get to the new scene I’m on now.  Six nights of writing: six nights of a thousand plus words.  And right now I’m just a little over two thousand word short of eighty thousand, which means if I write tonight and tomorrow night at the same pace, I’ll pass eighty thousand words Wednesday night.

Not a bad deal, I’d say.

So now we get in to what I think it’s one of the most unusual scenes I’ve ever written.  The reason it’s unusual is because I’ve never written this sort of scene before. Oh sure, I’ve had my kids in similar situation, but not this exact sort of scene.

And what exactly are my kids doing?  How ’bout you see for yourself?

 

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

 

Kerry came out of adjustment slightly disoriented. The room was nearly pitch dark and there was a soft, ever present hum all around. He closed his eyes and drew in several deep breaths, letting his head clear. After a few moments he knew exactly where he was: winging somewhere along the eastern coast of Canada, very likely between two and two and a half hours away from their landing at Logan International Airport in Boston.

He was conscious of someone in the bed next to him. Correction: she wasn’t just next to him, she was lying against this chest, content and singing softly to herself in Bulgarian while her fingers danced over his stomach. He buried his face in their chestnut hair and kissed the top of her head. “Good… afternoon, I suppose.”

“It is.” Annie ran her fingers up his side and touched first his cheek, then his lips. “I’m glad you’re awake, my love.”

He tousled her hair. “How long have you been awake?”

“Maybe five minutes.” Her fingers moved down the curvature of his neck and over his shoulder. “I knew it wouldn’t be long before you awoke. So I relaxed and made myself comfortable.” Her hand stopped in the area of his left nipple and she emitted a soft giggle. “Won’t be long before these start getting extremely sensitive.”

 

Okay, yeah… One of the things you have to come to expect is that when you go to bed together, you wake up together.  And sometimes when you wake up together, you lay in bed and talk.  That’s why I said I’ve never written this sort of scene before.  The closest I’d ever come to this was from their time in Kansas City together in the A Level novel where they were sitting in bed and talking before they went to sleep, and then waking up together in bed while dreaming in the B Level novel.

But by now they’ve gotten used to the whole, “Well honey, it’s time for bed, let’s snuggle little and fall sleep,” way of life.  When they first started waking up together they probably lay under the covers and look at each other and giggle and snicker and maybe kiss and cuddle.  Now?  Annie just camps out on Kerry’s chest and sings to herself in Bulgarian.  And talks about Kerry’s nipples.

And that leads to this exchange–

 

The last thing Kerry wanted to talk about were the parts of his body that were going to exhibit tremendous change after his transition, and his nipples were one of those areas. “They’re sensitive enough already.” He chuckled as he moved her hand away. “I don’t know that they need to be any more sensitive.”

Annie turned her head and looked at him with a naughty look in her eyes. “You don’t seem to mind how sensitive mine get.”

“Well, yeah, but you’re a—” Kerry stopped but realized that the damage was done. And Annie knew exactly what he had been about to say…

She finished his statement. “A girl?” Even in the darkness her smile was radiant. “My love, there is so much you’ll need to learn.”

He grunted as he slid up his pillow, elevating his head. “And I know you’ll be there every step of the way teaching me.”

Annie rested her chin upon his chest. “If I don’t teach you, who will? Maybe, Erywin? Or Wednesday? Maybe Deanna?” She tilted her head slightly to the left. “Maybe get one of the older girls to show you things, like, perhaps Nadine or Riv? I know: Emma—”

The last name cause Kerry to burst out laughing. “Emma would lose her shit if she found out I could change into a girl.”

“Not that you have yet.” Annie played with his hair. “You used that expression a few times in Paris.”

He didn’t need to ask what she meant. “You mean lose your shit?”

“Yes.”

“It’s what all the cool kids say these days.” He began wrapping a strand of Annie’s hair around his left index finger. “It’s not like I swear like Nadine.”

Annie watched his actions out of the corner of her eyes. “She’s a bit like Helena in that sense.” She snorted. “One day I’ll tell you some things Helena has said while we’ve been in the Black Vault.”

 

We know from past novels that there are things about Annie that Kerry knows–like when she is having her period, for example.  And that probably relates back to how he knows certain parts of her anatomy get sensitive.  Like her nipples.

Then again, that has to make you start wondering: did he learn about it some other way?  My kids are thirteen with Annie going on fourteen, and if already been exposed to things that most Normal kids would never know at their age.  Like how each other are going to look naked when they get married.  I mean, honestly, Annie is already seen Kerry make it a couple of times in real life, though on those occasions he was usually busted up from a racing accident.  But naked is naked no matter how you cut it…

And now are beginning to see a few changes in their language.  Kerry starting to get a little more free with some swearing.  This isn’t unusual for Annie: we’ve seen her swearing as far back as the A Level novel, though she’s already told Kerry on a couple of occasions that his parents treated him like shit.  We’re reaching that point in their lives where they are no longer tweeners and they’re transitioning into young adults, so a lot of these changes are going to take place.

Annie teasing Kerry about having to learn Girl Instruction from some of the older girls is something we’ve never seen any due before.  Why?  Because is nothing she would ever do in public.  While there may be some playful teasing of Kerry now and then, she would be very careful about where it would happen. She would never do anything that would embarrass him in public, just as she knows he would never do anything that would embarrass her in public.  That’s the sign of a healthy relationship: you keep stuff like that in private or semi-private situations.

But we all know when it comes to his upcoming transition, Annie would never ask another girl to help Kerry out.  Though the mentioning of one of those names is going to bring up an even more interesting conversation in the next excerpt…

Preparation to Destination: Westward Bound

All was good on the writing side last night.  For the first time in a long time I cleared twelve hundred words.  Sure, it took writing in the morning and writing at night to get that, but it was done.  And in doing that much I not only finish the scene, but I finished the chapter, and I finished Part Two.

The proof is always in the posting.

The proof is always in the posting.

So 30,000 plus words written for Part Two: not bad.  Slightly more was written for Part One, but then, everything that happened in Part Two took place over the course of few days and consisted of a lot of Kerry moping.  Kerry moped a lot in Part One, too, some sensing a pattern.  Don’t worry, is away from the parents so is going to be a much happier boy soon.  Though, at Salem, happiness is relative.

Oh, something else: after three years I finally hung up art work.  Both are pieces by Karen Hallion, and artist whom I love.  I have one hanging over my computer–

That would be this one.

That would be this one.

–and another will be peeking out behind me the next time I do a video, so you’ll get a chance to see it.

And speaking of scenes finished, here you get the rest of the scene of the kids leaving Paris.  You want to see what happens?  Here is.

 

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

 

While Kerry slipped on his robe he examined Annie’s pajamas. They were much like she’d seen her wear during their stay in Paris: white yoga pants and a matching camisole over which she wore a silk floral print robe. “I can see your—” He touched himself just over his heart.

She nodded. “I noticed that when I was putting them on.” Annie shrugged. “None of the other students are going see it, and I’m certain that, just like on all the other flights, the hostesses are APs and it’s not as if they’re going to say anything.”

There was a buzz at door and Laverne entered carrying a tray with two flutes of champagne. She had one to Annie before giving the other to Kerry.  “Compliments of the flight crew. It’s not as if you can leave Paris without having a little champagne.”

“Thank you.” Annie sat her glass upon the side table. “We had some for dinner one night: it’s good to have a nice reminder of that evening as were leaving.”

“Then you have more to enjoy.” The hostess moved closer to the door. “We’ll be pushing back momentarily.”

Kerry sat Annie’s right as he always did.  “Champagne for dinner; champagne for take off—” He took a sip. “This is really going to spoil me.”

Annie chuckled. “You’ll have to tell your parents to stock a good vintage when you return in the summer.” She raised her glass and clinked it against Kerry’s. “To our first visit together to Paris.”

“And to many more to come.”

As they took a sip the pilot came on the intercom and informed everyone they were pushing away from the gate and preparing for takeoff. They fastened their seatbelts and sat back and enjoyed the quiet in the private cabin. They said nothing as the huge A380 taxied around the airport and join the other aircraft waiting to take off. It was only when they were all those in position for takeoff that Kerry took Annie’s hand and kissed it. “Sorry I was such a butthead, Darling.”

“I understand, my love. When we come here again I know you will be in a much better mood.” She leaned over and gave him a passionate kiss. “And we do know where we’ll stay.”

“That’s for sure.” As the engines wound down into silence he squeezed Annie’s hand. “Here we go.”

The engines opened up and the A380 leapt forward. Annie and Kerry continued holding hands as they rocketed down the runway, seeming completely content content. As the aircraft nosed up and left the ground Annie raised her glass and looked out the window. “Au revoir, Paris. Nous vous reverrons.”

Kerry raised his glass and looked at the vanishing city beyond the windows. “See you, Paris. We’ll be back—” He turned to Annie, who turned to him. “I promise this with all my heart.”

 

So they have it: the kids are finally winging their way out of Europe and returning home–home, of course being the school of Salem.  Not much there to do except watch them kick back and enjoy champagne in the pajamas.

In a way it’s kind of nice to be two scenes ahead of what I’m posting.  Now I feel as if I can take a break and not have to worry about getting something out.  It will also give me a chance to do something this evening–do a couple of things, actually.  But now, what I need to do, is post this get ready for work.

As usual, I’m already wondering what I’m going to wear…

Preparation to Destination: Traveling in Private Style

Well, yesterday was a rather full day.  I did a bit of running around, with one of the high points of the day involving a nail repair–

Looks good as new, yeah?

Looks good as new, yeah?

Also, as it is December and I usually get something pierced I had thin rings permanently set in each ear:

Yes, it's right there.

Yes, it’s right there.

I should also point out that in two weeks time I am going to treat myself to a full-day spa treatment because it’s Christmas and if I don’t give myself a present, no one will.  So I am going in for a good five to six hours of pampering ’cause I need it bad.  I’ll get pictures ’cause I’m sure there’s a few of you wanna see what I look like while wearing a facial mask.

Not as much writing last night as expected because who knows, right?  I was just short of five hundred words so no chance I’ll bust eighty thousand words this weekend, but by next weekend it’ll be mine.  Mine, I’m tellin’ ya!  And I’m still shooting for one hundred thousand words by the end of the year.  It is doable.

Now, my kids…

It would seem they have a private cabin–yes, you heard that right.  Not only did they share accommodations in Paris but it seems they are being elevated to “VIP Status” when returning to school.  Is there a reason for all this butt kissing?  Well–yeah, but I’m not saying why.  One could say it’s because there’s fear that Erywin and Deanna don’t want him transitioning in the middle of a flight in front of dozens of students, but that’s not the reason.

Am I gonna tell you what it is?  No.  Because I’m a bitch.  I mean, you can’t have all my secrets.

With that said, let’s learn a bit more about these New Digs in the Sky:

 

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

 

“Indeed it is.” Laverne stepped around both children and stood in the center of the compartment facing them. “We were requested to give these to a few students traveling as couples, and both professors Sladen and Arrakis said that you should have this one. The cabins behind you are unoccupied and there’s nothing forward of your area but a few hostesses and the flight crew.

“The chairs here—” She pointed to her right towards the aft of the aircraft. “—are designed like a sofa, though we recommend you keep your seat belts on while in flight. Across from you is a ninety-two centimeter screen for your entertainment system. The area underneath the entertainment center can be used for the storage of small items like your backpack, Mr. Malibey.”

Laverne moved closer to the outside bulkhead. “All the private cabins moved along one side of the aircraft so that you would have an outside view.” She pointed at the door situated between the bulkhead and the seats. “This is a closet where you can hang your clothes—” She moved closer to Annie and Kerry and pointed at another door located between the exit to the court and the seats. “This is the entrance to your private lavatory.”

Kerry’s eyebrows shot upward. “We have our own bathroom?”

“It wouldn’t be much the private compartment if you didn’t have your own bathroom.” Laverne folded her hands together and held it before. “There are two pair of pajamas in the closet. They are unisex, though one is slightly larger than the other. That should approximate your body sizes, but they are enchanted to mold correctly to your forms once they are worn. There also two pair of slippers that act much the same. We will be pushing off from the gate approximately fifteen minutes, so if you wish to change I would do so as soon as I have left.

“Approximately thirty minutes after takeoff someone will be in to convert your seats into a full bed: that will take about five minutes and during that time you may relax in the lounge. About ten minutes after that dinner will be served and as you know from past flights, within thirty to forty-five minutes after the start of dinner service everyone will be asleep in an adjustment. Don’t worry, someone will tuck you in should it become necessary.

“As in the past you should wake up approximately two hours before we land in Boston. Thirty minutes before we touched down someone will be around to remind you to change back into your street clothes if you haven’t done so already.” Laverne gave her best smile. “Do either of you have any questions?”

Annie and Kerry exchanged glances before she turned to the hostess. “No, thank you, Laverne. You’ve told us everything we need to know.”

The hostess nodded. “I’ll leave you to get comfortable; I’ll return momentarily with a snack.” She stepped into the corridor and press the outside keypad: the door closed with a whisper.

 

While my cabin is a bit more opulent, it’s based upon an accommodation offered by Singapore Airlines for first class passengers traveling as a couple.  Price for that cabin is $23,000 USD and up, and while that seems like a lot of money, there are some accommodations aboard an A380 that run more.  That’s called having money to piss away.

For $23,000 that better be a great bottle of champagne.

For $23,000 that better be a great bottle of champagne.

Now, the difference between what the kids have and what’s shown above is that their cabin is set so they have a widow view, there isn’t a partition between the seats, their video monitor is a single, and they have their own small closet and bathroom.  There aren’t any windows allowing people to look in on them, either, so they are completely sealed off from the rest of the aircraft.  Pretty nice way to cruse if you ask me.

Oh, and if they pass out from whatever stuff is in the food that makes them fall into adjustment, someone will come along and get them all tucked in the right way.  Now that’s service!

Now that they are alone–again!–it’s time to get comfy:

 

As Annie opened the closet Kerry slipped his backpack off and set it down. “I’ll change in the bathroom—”

I’ll change in the bathroom.” Annie handed him a hanger with pajamas and a robe. “You’ll be done changing two minutes; I’ll need at least five.” She stopped in the open doorway of the bathroom. “Please get my slippers?” She flashed him a bright smile.

He smiled back. “No problem, Darling.”

As she’d anticipated Kerry was in his pajamas in about two minutes. He noticed they weren’t so much pajamas as comfortable lounging pants and a slightly loose tee shirt. He placed his clothes on the hangar and put them in the closet, then grabbed the slippers and set Annie’s by the bathroom door before putting on his own. He was just about to sit down when Annie emerged from the bathroom. “Here, let me take that.” He took her clothes, already on the hangar, and hung them next to his.

Annie put under slippers been stretched. “Oh, I love traveling this way.” She sat on the sofa and crossed her legs. “And this is delightful.”

 

There they are:  changed into their PJs and ready to fly.  All that remains is for the plane to take-off and for the kids to get to adjusting.  And for them to wake up somewhere outside Boston–where, I’ve been told, they’ll have a rather interesting conversation because the voices in my head are telling me so.  But they’ll get some shut eye in before that happens–

Will there be rose petals?  Tell me they'll have rose petals...

Will there be rose petals? Tell me they’ll have rose petals…

Not telling.  You’ll find out tomorrow.

Preparation to Destination: All Aboard

I stated yesterday that if I wrote over thousand words last night that would be five nights in a row I had done so.  And guess what?  I did it.  Yay!  Yep, for the first time in a long time–probably not since the days of NaNo 2013–I wrote more than five thousand words together in a five night.

It’s not only quite an accomplishment but it’s put me way ahead of the curve.  Let me show you what I mean.

Here's Exhibit A.

Here’s Exhibit A.

Today’s post is still giving excerpts from the above scene À Plus Tard Paris, which was the second for this chapter.  But I’ve already started writing the last scene in Chapter Six, Back Home Once More, where I added two hundred and twenty-three words.  I think this is about the furthest I’ve ever been ahead when it’s come to posting excerpts.  Usually I’m like maybe five, six hundred words ahead will bring something a post, but at this point I’m actually about thirty-five hundred words ahead.  And it’s a real good possibility I’ll have finished the chapter about the time of getting into the excerpts for the penultimate scene.

It’s nice to be ahead of things once in a while.

One other thing: last night I surpassed a total of 75,200 words.  A good stretch of writing will put me over eighty thousand words by next Tuesday, and it’s conceivable I could be very close to a hundred thousand words by the end of the year.  Seeing as how I’m only five months into writing, reaching a hundred thousand words after six months would be quite an accomplishment.  (16 January, 2017, is the six-month mark of writing, and I’m pretty certain I’ll be over a hundred thousand words by then.)

In the meantime my kids are about to board the aircraft.  They’re going to go through the normal check-in procedure, but after that things are going to take a rather strange change–

 

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

 

A few minutes later the gate opened and queued up students had their boarding passes checked. Annie and Kerry both understood that while it was no longer necessary for them to masquerade as Normal students, they also understood that The Foundation didn’t want anything to look out of the ordinary and having a group of students simply file through the checkpoint and on to a jet without any sort of examination would likely raise suspicions.

The boarding pass project headed back receiving them along gangway leading to the A380. They could see into the enormous cabin several seconds before reaching the door. Both Erywin and Deanna were waiting inside: Erywin held the tablet and spoke as they stepped into the aircraft. “Well, I see the first of our VIPs has arrived.” She held out the tablet. “Check in, please?”

Annie placed her right hand upon the tablet first; after a beep Kerry did the same with his left hand. Erywin checked the manifest as soon as the tablet beat the second time. “You are officially on board and ready to return to school.” She looked at the hostess standing to Deanna’s left. “Laverne—” she pointed to students before her. “This is Kirilova and Malibey: please take care of them.”

The hostess nodded. “Of course, Professor.” She motioned for Annie and Kerry to follow. “This way, please.” They walked a few meters into the cabin before the hostess indicated a few pieces of luggage pushed up against a bulkhead. “You may leave your bags here: they’ll be put away and return then when you depart.” As soon as luggage was set aside she gave both children a smile. “If you follow me, I will show you to your seats.”

Annie was quick to speak. “We have assigned seats?”

Laverne nodded. “Yes. As you heard the professor say, you are one of our VIPs. This way, please.” She walked to the stairs and headed to the upper level.

The upper level landing open upon a large open area with three small tables around which were gathered several chairs. There was sofa seating against both sides of the cabin and bulkheads to the fore and aft with the passageway beyond both on the right side of the aircraft. Laverne addressed the children before they could ask questions. “This is the Forward Lounge. It can be used as a gathering area where students can come and have conversations with her friends. For much this flight, however, it will only be available for a short time before our arrival.”

Kerry turned to Annie. “This is really nice.”

She nodded as she looked around. “It’s impressive.”

“Thank you. Come this way—” Laverne strode across the lounge and entered the passageway heading towards the front of the aircraft. They walked past two doors on their left before stopping in front of the third and last. The hostess pointed to her right. “There is the forward galley in the cockpit. Here are your seats.” She placed her right hand upon a palm print lock: there was a click and the door slid the wall.

Annie stepped through the doorway to the enclosure beyond with Kerry right behind. For a moment both were speechless as they took in their surroundings. She was the first to break the silence. “This is magnificent.”

Kerry turned to Annie and spoke in a slightly flabbergasted tone. “It’s a private cabin.”

 

First, we already have a pretty good idea of what the layout on one of these jumbos is like.  All of the students usually sit in something that looks remarkably like first-class seating, which is to say big, comfy chairs and lots of private space.

This is a pretty good approximation of what to expect when you fly Foundation Airlines.

This is a pretty good approximation of what to expect when you fly Foundation Airlines.

The reason everyone has so much room is because these chairs now fold out into a rather flat bed.  So it is time for the kiddies going to adjustment and sleep, they sleep comfortably.

But Annie and Kerry are VIPs, as we’ve heard.  And when every seat on board aircraft is a first-class seat, how do you treat your VIPs?

Kerry said it, and tomorrow I’ll show it.

Preparation to Destination: Passenger Configurations

Here we are, four nights in a row of a thousand words plus each night.  And I should be able to make it five tonight, which will be something new for me as I haven’t written over five thousand words in five days in a long time.  But we’ll see:  I’m in the middle of a scene where the kids are having a rather frank conversation and–well, Annie finally brings up something that she’s not mentioned through the first two novels.  Like I said the conversation is pretty frank and little is held back.

But that’s in the future and right now we’re in the present.  Or the past, if you like, as it is 29 August, 2013, in the story as this scene unfolds.  Nothing like a little time travel to keep you on your toes.  And talking about flying–which my kids are about to do…

 

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

 

Annie smiled and nodded. “Papa’s flown on one: he said it was incredible.”

“Really? How did he get on one?”

“He was on Emirates Airline: they flew his and several other teams to Abu Dhabi for the Grand Prix race last November. It was a Normal commercial flight, but he flew first-class.” She looked out the window toward the aircraft. “I imagine are seating accommodations are going to be far different.”

“Oh, quite different.” Erywin approached from behind and joined them. “The Central and East Asian and Oceanic returning students are right now flying on the first one The Foundation bought; this one is the second. It’s my understanding The Foundation bought a third, for right now it’s being prepped.”

Kerry faced the instructor. “Seems like an awful lot of plain just very around, oh what? Thirty-five people?”

 

The A380 is a monster aircraft:  it’s pretty much a 747 where the upper deck in the hump at the front of the aircraft is extended all that way back to the tail.  In a standard First/Business/Economy class configuration it can seat up to 575 people, but if you go full-on Cattle Car in the Sky mode, you can get close to nine hundred passengers inside one.

Sort of like The Hunger Games at 30,000 feet.  May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor that you don't lose your mind.

Sort of like The Hunger Games at 30,000 feet. May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor that you don’t lose your mind.

But this is a Foundation flight and they do things way differently–

 

Erywin shrugged. “Remember, The Foundation looks at operating costs a bit differently than the rest of the Normal world. For them, flying a bunch of returning students on this aircraft isn’t that big of a concern for them.”

Annie gave a quick nod. “What does The Foundation really intend to do with these aircraft?”

“It’s mostly a lot of show for various dignitaries, but—” Erywin’s tone softened as it usually did when she was relaying information that wasn’t well known. “For the most part they can use these for flying conference rooms: that allows them to avoid problems such as we had twelve years ago.”

Kerry shot Annie a quick look: by now they both knew what really happened at the World Trade Center back in 2001. “I can understand that. They could also use them for flying command posts.”

“Which, I understand, is one of their intentions. There is ever another Day of the Dead event, they can get all VIPs into one aircraft and get them airborne.” Erywin nodded toward the window. “Under Normal circumstances, that aircraft could stay aloft for twenty-four hours. Under a Foundation emergency, it could fly like a PAV and stay aloft indefinitely.”

Kerry glanced toward Annie. “If they can keep Salem hidden, it would be nothing keeping aircraft like that hidden.”

“Exactly.” Erywin nodded toward the check-in gate. “Deanna and I have finalized everything with the airport people. I’ll see you aboard the aircraft.”

 

It makes sense that they’d use their A380s a little like Air Force One in that they’d put one or two up as flying command posts.  And the idea of using them for important meetings in the sky is a good one:  get everyone together and fly out over an ocean and chat for a few hours.  They’d likely never file a flight plan and never show up on any radar until both were required for landing.

And in the meantime they can be used twice a year to ferry students at their most prestigious school back and forth because why the hell not?  When you have billions at your disposal spending a few million on a couple of aircraft for a day of operation is no big thang.  It allows the kids to relax and allows the pilots to gather data on how the aircraft operates.  You can bet that some of the Mad Scientist in The Foundation are gonna analyze the flight recorders and look at ways of–improving the aircraft.  Yeah, that’s what they’ll do.

But we’re not quite on board yet.  In fact, Annie’s doing a little eye spy, and her eye has a couple in view–

 

Annie was hoping that Kerry and she could spend a few quiet moments together, but only moments after Erywin left Anna and Elisha approached. Annie was somewhat surprised to see that he didn’t appear too self-conscious together in public: they’d seen them together when they were visiting Montmartre and they seem to have a bit of an awkwardness about them, as if they weren’t certain if they should act like friends or a couple. Seeing them together now, it was obvious they’d decided to lean toward couple.

Kerry obviously noticed a difference in their mood as well. “You two seem to be getting along nicely.”

Anna blushed. “We’re still sort of—” She glanced at the Turkish girl next to her. “It’s still a bit of a learning phase, you know?”

Annie smiled when she spoke to Elisha, attempting to put her at ease. “We saw you both at the Eiffel Tower that night when Anna told you what she was feeling. I’m pleased to see how happy you look now.”

Elisha glanced at Anna before turning back and replying to Annie’s comment. “Thank you. It’s still taking a bit getting used to this.”

Kerry hooked one thumb the strap of his backpack. “You mean not realizing that Anna had feelings for you?”

“I, um…” Elisha glanced at the German girl once more and blushed just a little as she spoke. “I mean, it’s never been a secret in the coven that Anna’s interested in girls. I’ve been friends with her for a while and she hasn’t been afraid to talk about the subject.”  She cleared her throat. “What’s taking me some time to get used to is that I didn’t realize I had feelings for her. When she told me the other night how she felt, it was like a gate opened up and all these emotions started coming out.” Elisha chuckled. “I never expected that to happen.”

Kerry smiled and nodded. “Yeah, I remember when I realized I was in love.” He reached for Annie’s hand, took it and kissed it.

Annie leaned close to him and spoke in a near whisper. “I remember both times you realized you were in love with me.”

“Both times?” Anna perked up. “You mean there was more than one?”

Just then and announcement in French came over the loudspeaker. Annie listened closely and spoke before the announcement was over. “They’re calling our flight.”

The announcement ended and was repeated in English. “Your attention, please. Those passengers traveling to Logan International Airport via special charter please report to Gate L22. Your flight will commence boarding momentarily. Thank you.”

 

Does this means Anna and Elisha are becoming a couple?  Could be.  Like Anna said, they’re still in a bit of a learning phase and they won’t know more until they’re back at school and they are spending a lot of time together.  Love at school is a tricky thing at a school for witches.  Unless you’re Annie and Kerry.  They you were born to love.  With an occasional mind-blocking detour once in a while, but witches are a strange bunch.  There will be more on this as time goes on.

Thanks to Annie understanding French they are probably among the first in line to board.  And once we’re inside the plane–

Just you wait.