Faet & Fantasy : Winter

The magnificent sound of a thousand fluttering wings melodiously echoed as the Winter Fae arrived at Raven Dell.

Kiena watched from her porch as the hosts of Raven Dell cheered.  The Lord of the colony took forearms with the Lady of the dell in welcome.

Bored with formalities, Kiena scanned the newcomers interested in how many there were this time.  She’d never paid a great deal of attention to the Winter Fae as she and Rynn took off on marvelous adventures more often than not prior to Acacia arriving.

Kiena found herself staring at one of the fae.  While she was looking him over, his eyes met hers.  Caught off guard by the piercing stare of blue eyes, Kiena looked immediately away.

Foolish move. She thought to herself glancing his way again.

His features were sharp and angular.  Shaggy black hair setting off his pale skin and blue eyes, with his sharp ears pointing out of his hair.  His wings were like crystal, tinted with lavender.  She only imagined his voice was just as glorious as his appearance.

His eyes trailed to hers.  He could feel her staring.  Hiding her cheeks from the coming flush, Kiena stood and went inside to hide from the embarrassment in being caught staring.  This last time she was sure he smirked and shook his head.

Her throat constricted nervously as she peaked through the narrow seam of her curtains hoping he wasn’t on to her, Kiena admitted she felt foolish hiding from him.  Maybe he would forget– though, she reminded herself, being the only one in her colony with black hair, Kiena stood out like a dandelion in a field of grass.

As the colony began to disperse to their seasonal homes, Kiena watched him fly across the way with a group of males.

He was single from what she could tell.  Perhaps she might consider getting to know him.

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Faet and Fantasy : Kiena

Kiena circled the glen slowly, wrapped in thought.  Her eyes mindlessly scanning the flowers she buzzed past, her hair gently whisked at her face.  She held an arm behind her back, keeping her toes pointed to the ground while in flight. Instead of watching where she was going the fae started when fur collided with her face.

Grinby, her dearest fox friend barked in surprise.

“Oh, I apologize Grinby.”  Kiena spit fur from her mouth, pulling a strand of decent length from her tongue.

“You’ve been quite distracted lately, Kiena,” Grinby chuckled.

“I don’t mean to be.”  Her eyes stayed focused beyond the ground, her expression still blank.  “I’ve lost all sense of direction since they left.”

They being Rynn and Acacia.

Grinby offered a smile meant to comfort, though foxes rarely can look empathetic beyond their natural pointed scowl.  “I know my dear.  We all hate to see you like this.  Is there anything I can do?”

Kiena shook her head, her black curly tresses bouncing untamed with the motion.  Her empty eyes seemed to glisten as she quickly wiped her nose and looked away, “It wouldn’t help anyway, I’m fine.”  She sniffed once, smiling to Grinby without cheer.

Grinby nodded slowly, “Well, I was off to the cubs to bring in dinner.  If you need anything, you know where to find us.”

“Thank you,” Kiena said trying to appear sincere, though she knew it wasn’t working.

The fox left, and the faerie decided it best to try to head home.  Twilight began setting in, early though it was as winter approached.  A chilly wind gusted suddenly.  Kiena braced herself against it, welcoming the cold.  Soon she could shiver and others wouldn’t ask if she were alright.

And why did they ask anyway?  What could anyone do about it?

There was more silver lining to be thankful for, she reminded herself.  The winter fae would be migrating again, and no doubt they would take attention off of her for a few months so Kiena could finally mend her sullen mood.

Lit mushroom lanterns dotted the tiny village as she made it back to Raven Dell.  Some of the fae were out dancing at a festival of sorts near the top of the rocky face.  Perhaps it was a birthday for a youngling?

The image brought back the memory of Rynn and Acacia’s wedding.  It had been a lovely event.  Acacia had been a vision of a bride.  Her blonde hair shining like gold to offset her burgundy dress.  Rynn had not taken his eyes off her the entire night.  He was enchanted with the fae.

Tears blurred Kiena’s vision again and she quickly ducked inside her tiny home.

Her main room looked out into a cleft of the dell where she could watch passersby.  Tonight, she did not light the candle on her table, she simply went into her room and stretched out on the bed going instantly to sleep.

Sunshine Blogger Award!

I was recently nominated by a writer friend of mine to answer 11 questions in the Sunshine Blogger Award.  D. James Fortescue was one of six authors in a collaboration project I joined in 2014.  It was a great deal of fun working with him, and after the team had gone our seperate ways, it was quite exciting to see his name pop up in my notifications with this nomination.

 

The rules are:

  • Link back to the person who tagged you. TICK
  • Answer all 11 of their questions.  See below.
  • Nominate 11 bloggers with less than 1000 readers and let them know you’ve nominated them.
  • Ask them 11 questions.

Linking 11 bloggers.  Hm.  That’s the hard part.  Finding people who would do it.

I nominate:

  1. Travis Martin
  2. Beth Hammond
  3. Lilian Oake
  4. Carl Baumann
  5. Kasey Hill
  6. JC Boyd
  7. Laurie Wetzel
  8. Robert Cano
  9. Steve Rose
  10. Alvin Foeng
  11. Devani

 

My questions are:

1. When you think about your goals, how are your pursuing them?
2. What kind of things do you use to help get the mood going for your projects?
3. If you’re listening to a Pandora station, and a song comes on that you don’t like, do you stop your writing and change the song, or do you listen to it through and keep writing anyway?
4. How do weather patterns play into your stories?  Does the weather affect your characters?
5. If you had the opportunity to go absolutely anywhere for inspiration, where would it be?
6. What role do politics play in your stories?
7. Are you afraid to write about certain topics based on how others might view them?
8. As a BLOGGER, what do you blog about?
9. How do you feel your blogs are making an impact on your skills as a writer, or your exposure in general?
10.  Do you like chocolate cake or white cake?
11. If you had the option to eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?

 

My answers to D. James’ questions:

  1. As you are all awesome authors, what stories of yours are currently available for people to procure? (provide links)
    I am currently published in Den of Thieves, a Den of Quills Anthology
    My story is called “The Precious Jewel”.  It’s the first short story I have available, while I continue to work on my High Fantasy words.
    I also wrote a 100 word drabble for a Halloween themed drabble Anthology ((I also did the cover))
  2. What exciting things are going in your portion of the planet?  On my portion.  Well, we’re currently holding primary elections for President.  It is at this point in time that I have decided we should have started America as a monarchy, because then no one would be complaining about the idiots running for President.
    My son and daughter are growing like weeds, I’m extremely excited to have both of them.  On Sunday we’re taking them to A Day Out With Thomas to ride a very special blue engine from the magical Island of Sodor.
  3. Do you prefer your fermented beverages grain- or grape-based?  Grape and berry.  I enjoy a good blackberry merlot from time to time.  I also like coconut based– Rum is pretty good stuff.
  4. What currently unavailable works are you working upon?  The Tambine of Eldegras, and the first book that has yet to be named.  I’m also writing a book for my branch of the wonderful universe of Volden.
  5. Who’s your sports team of choice?  I’m partial to the Green Bay Packers.
  6. Dream holiday location?  Ireland.  I love Alaska’s inside passage and would cruise that stretch every year if I could afford it, but my dream trip would be to see Ireland.
  7. Your feelings on the current status of the USA Presidential Nominations?  I hate everyone on the ticket, and think We The People should overthrow the candidates and set up a new panel of candidates to vote for.  But considering everyone in America is so darn compliant, that won’t happen.
  8. If you could start your own religion, who/what would be its figurehead?  That’s an odd question.  I don’t really want to start a new religion.
  9. Favourite style of house?  Mansions.  Lots of them.
  10. Greatest source of strength and inspiration?  Lord Of The Rings.
  11. I couldn’t figure it out. What DID The Fox say? 

 

 

Thank you for the tag and the opportunity to answer your questions.  I look forward to reading everyone elses answers!

Happy Spring!

Authoring and Littles

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It has been said a number of times that friends are impressed with the amount of writing work I can do, and raise two small children ((almost 3, and 7.5 months)) at the same time.
Even now as I write this, I am holding a sleeping baby in my arms.

On the one hand, there isn’t as much work happening behind the scenes as they might believe.  This time last year I was publishing my first short story, The Precious Jewel for debute in Den of Thieves: A Den Of Quills Anthology, I was blitzing through episodes of The Ranger Of Severum, and I was writing my High Fantasy series.

Being able to write and blog are only two hobbies of like, five, I enjoy doing, and it’s becoming difficult to have to choose which one to do in my free time.
Do I read?  Do I workout?  Do I write?  Do I paint?  Or Draw?
Better yet, DO I SLEEP?!?!

The baby has now woken up and every few words or letters, I have to push away at her little smacking hands as they hit at the laptop keyboard.  She giggles, finding it a game, I move the computer, and then she pulls on my clothes, to stand up and reach over my lap to try at it again.

What it all boils down to is time management.

 

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Exercising is difficult to make time for with littles.  Especially when they demand your attention all day long.  But, what I have found is I can get in an hour of cardio by doing squats, and swinging the kids around, and dancing with them, doing jumping activities, all by including them in my fitness goals.  Swinging a 26 pound child up in the air, and down through your legs while squatting really works your thighs, and you feel it for the next three days.  Doing the various leg lifts lying down on the floor, planking, sumo-squatting, bridges, yoga positions, you suddenly become a bridge, or a mountain for cars to drive up and down, all the while you’re toning, slimming, trimming, and making your goals happen without having to duck off to the gym in time you really don’t have.

Painting and drawing can also be activities to do while in the living room.  Set up the canvas on the counter, with all of your tools out of reach, and stand and paint while watching the kids.  Boom, easy.

Reading and writing are the tricky ones, as both are full attention activities.  So, when going to bed at night, or during naps in the afternoon….  I play games and scroll through Facebook, because I suck at time management.  ((I have written 440+ words and it’s taken me roughly thirty minutes, because Facebook))

Usually I read myself to sleep, once my pocket game has been taken care of.  I’m currently beta reading for an author friend of mine, and I find his book is best executed at night before going to sleep.  My husband works nights, so I have from the time the kids go to bed, to when the baby wakes for midnight feeding, to myself.  And again, I have to pick “Do I work, or do I sleep?” and in the end, socializing wins most times.

Mothers are secluded creatures who need to clear their headspace.  Clearing headspace involves mindless activities and SOCIALIZING with other people.  So, my writer friends on the internet are readily available to socialize with when I want to sit and do absolutely nothing when I’ve been going, going, going all day.
This, by no means, means I am inactive during the day.  All the day long, I’ve been working through my writers block lately, to try and plan out the course for action in my High Fantasy series.  One day, I hope to set the world of Eldegras in orbit for the world to see.  I’ve just spent the last two years trying to clean it up and make it ready.  This became an even slower process in bearing children.  Along with the kids comes managing the household, doing laundry and dishes, and cooking and cleaning, and being wifely by spending time with the husband….  All of the responsibility!  Nobody should be surprised when all a woman wants to do is mindless nothing on the internet.

 

My simple advice to mothers everywhere, workout with the kids, do your hobbies with them, and in the quiet moments you have to yourself do whatever the hell you want to.  You deserve it.

Oh.  And Coffee.

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The Ranger Of Severum: Episode 9

While Trillian was on his way through the city, Yulissa found him first, “Trillian!” he heard her call. Looking around for her, he tried to swallow the lump of nervousness building in his throat. His eyes lighted on her coming across the square.  She was dressed in riding clothes which accentuated her willowy figure. He couldn’t help but admire the way she looked in them as her cloak swirled with her quick steps.  Her boots rode up to her knees, hiding whatever was left of her burgundy leggings which dove into them.  Her traveling tunic was grey, she wore a dark leather vest, and matching belts about her waist.  Her cloak swagged over to one shoulder, clasping in a large golden brooch, and her hair was braided hanging over one shoulder.  Trillian wished he could stop looking, but with women off limits, he’d never had the chance to really admire them before.

Her brow drew together in confusion as she approached, “Aren’t your wings healed?”

Watching her eyes flick back and forth caused his heart to skip a beat, “Um, yes.” He stuttered, “I haven’t tried to hide them away yet.”

“Could you try?” She prodded with a hint of alarm.

He smiled playfully, “Do they bother you?”

Her expression did not relax as she laughed, “No, not at all. It is rather important, though, that you do.”

“Why?” Trillian asked with a laugh, though the way she asked cause an alarm to sound in his head.

Yulissa’s actions gave him the impression she was in a hurry. Visibly she tried to relax and smile, “I haven’t had the opportunity to see you without them.”

Raising his brow, he tried to figure her out. He didn’t care for the way she nervously looked about, or how she seemed to fidget impatiently. After all, in his mind, she could have left the city at any point if it bothered her so much. And why was she so interested in him all of a sudden?

Trillian had to admit after six weeks of this cumbersome wear of his wings, he was ready to hide them away again. Standing his full height – which was difficult enough with the kink in his spine – Trillian dropped his head back, bracing in case of lingering pain, and folded his wings. He didn’t know what it looked like to hide them away, only what it felt like, but considering the woman’s reaction, Trillian could only guess it was certainly an unusual sight.

Yulissa’s eyes had widened, whether it was out of fear of disbelief Trillian did not have time to ask. As soon as his wings disappeared, she took hold of his arm, “Alright. Come with me. We haven’t any time to lose. Quick, this way.”

Bewildered with confusion, Trillian found himself following. “Where are we going?”

“No time to talk.” Yulissa stated, dashing to the northern side of the village.

Darting between row houses and narrow alleys, Trillian tried to make sense of the situation. Considering it had been his home for the last twelve years, it felt strange to be sneaking through the town. A few villagers watched curiously as they fled through the back streets. Trillian did his best to not make eye contact, feeling his cheeks redden with embarrassment.

When Yulissa finally did stop they were in the forest, safely out of sight from Severum.

“Would you mind telling me what this is about?” Trillian panted. Having physically exerted himself for the first time in six weeks he felt as though he might fall to his knees. Not to mention his aching back from sagging to one side for so long.

Taking three exaggerated steps toward a large oak tree, then five more to the right towards a pile of bramble, Yulissa crouched and began digging with her hands, “There isn’t much time to explain, my ship leaves tomorrow morning, and we need time to travel.”

Trillian reeled back, “What do you mean time to travel? I can’t leave Severum, you’re out of your mind. We don’t even know you.”

“The name is Yulissa, I’m a Realm Jumper, your life is in great danger.” Brushing off a small pouch, she opened it checking it’s contents. Seeming satisfied, she closed it up again, sticking it under her belt, then took six exaggerated steps to a grouping of bushes.

“My life? How would you know?”

Bending down into the bushes, she pulled out two large packs, “Listen Trillian, I’ll have plenty of time to tell you later, but right now you need to move.”

Irritation growing, Trillian put his hands to his hips, “If you don’t start talking right now I am going to—”

“Here.” She tossed him one of the packs carelessly, clearly not paying any attention. “And here is a cannister of water. You might want to drink some now before we get going, you sound rather thirsty.” She was referring to his pant.

He looked down at the cannister, then back at her. Yulissa pulled the strap of her bag over her shoulder, tapping her foot as though impatiently waiting for him to drink.

Trillian again found himself complying to the request. After a long drink of water, he did feel a bit refreshed. He capped the cannister off, putting the strap around his neck.

They stood staring at each other, both expecting the other to do something.

“You good?” She threw her hands out, “We need to go.”

“First, I need to know where you’re taking me.”

Yulissa shook her head, “Even if I told you, you’d never believe me.”

Trillian grit his teeth. His curiosity had kicked in, which created a great deal of conflict in his head. His duty to Severum and the likelihood of being murdered by Sideon for running off being the highest of confliction.  “I’m not going to go with you unless you give me some kind of reasonable response. My life could very well be in danger if I left the Severum.”

“You mean Sideon?” She laughed, “Your step-father is a coward. Especially since he thinks primitive distractions like women need sent off and away from his boys so they can fight mindlessly for him.”

“This coward you reference took the city over and killed my father.” Trillian defended angrily, “Who do you think you are anyway?”

Yulissa huffed, “Trillian, I guarantee I am your friend. Mark my words, Sideon is a coward. Everyone in all the Realms knows it, except for you blind fools in Langoria. Why nobody has tried to overturn your ridiculous leader is beyond me. Clearly your realm fantasizes your dark ages too strongly to have any form of common sense!”

“You’re unbelievable.” He exclaimed, “Are you listening to a wor—”

“No, you listen to me,” she started with vehemence, “you are wasting valuable time. Either you come with me willingly, or I will tie you up and drag you along behind me, do you understand?”

Taken aback, the ranger was at a loss for a reply. His mouth dropped open, but nothing came out as they met eyes.

“Good.” She whirled around, “now follow me. We haven’t much time.”

The ranger found himself complying yet again, put his pack over his good shoulder, and followed silently behind her into the forest.

The Ranger Of Severum: Episode 5

Trillian held his breath as the musty scent of the damp palace filled his nostrils. The women of Severum were allowed to clean, but Sideon preferred the depressing, gloomy air that hung even in the open areas of the Palace. It fed his evil soul the tiniest bit of comfort. Trillian did not find the air unbearable. The Master Trainers and Rangers were allowed brighten the fragrance of their rooms with the spicy aroma of pine. Though dreading the scent, Trillian also found it welcoming because it meant he was home.

The Ranger walked swiftly into his Master’s study, fearing the punishment in store for him. When angry, Trillian was the one Sideon took it out on.

Trillian was different from the others, his tolerance to withstand punishment was higher than most anyone else’s in Severum. He could bear it without discouragement, whereas many of the other men found themselves degraded and self-conscious.

Sideon wanted a chance to break that in him and to cause Trillian to crumble as the others, but his attempts were frustratingly futile.

Trillian stood at the door in procrastination. He finally raised his fist to knock just as the door swung open.

There, face to face, Trillian met Sideon.

“So, you finally come to me?” The Lord of the Rangers started.

His dark hair was pulled back and held in place at the nape of his neck. Streaks of gray ran above his ears and one shock trailed from the center of his brow down the back of his head.

The Old Master was in his five hundredth year and his life was coming to a close, though at least another hundred lay before him, belying the signs of age.

His angular face smoothed with relief, “Trillian, you are well aware that keeping me waiting is not a good idea. You know what happens to those who try my patience.”

“Yes, my lord.”

“Wake up in a nightmare, you will, if I catch you coming to me late again.” As Sideon closed the door behind Trillian, the Master’s attention was drawn immediately to the severed wing which hung helplessly down the left side of Trillian’s back.

“What have you allowed to happen to yourself?” he shouted angrily. Sideon could seem merciful and gracious the one minute, but the next his anger would surpass constraint as he let loose in violent fury.

Trillian held his breath, ready to give his well thought explanation, but before he could begin, Sideon started right into his questions.

“So, did you complete your second mission?” Sideon asked impatiently.

“Yes Master, not one troll was left.”

“You had no encounter with any enemies?” Sideon clearly wanted the account concerning Trillian’s wing.

“This did not happen in Taar.” Trillian began.

“And has it something to do with the woman everyone watched you walk in with? Is she the one who gave improper care to your wing? I know you did not do that.”

The accusing tone in Sideons voice gave Trillian nervous pause.

“Tell me, what was she doing as she bandaged your wing?”

“I made no form of contact with this woman. I merely saved her from a small band of the Druids of Câr. She asked me to escort her to Severum this morning after she had given care to my wounds.”

“I do not believe you,” Sideon said with raised eyebrow. “I will have some of the satraps inquire of her, and if I find any reason for you to not be in earnest, I will send you and her away in disgrace.”

“If you will but give me a chance to explain—” Trillian suddenly collapsed to his knees as pain shot through every nerve in his body.

Sideon contemplated the idea of hearing his explanation, “Very well, I give you five minutes.”

Trillian related every detail that had happened from Taar, to fighting off of the last Druid.

“You used your power against them? You are not one who can work against the powers of the druids. What were you thinking?” Sideon asked angrily.

Trillian nodded, “I know that I should not have been so hasty in the matter, but I found this challenge welcome amid the frame of mind that had settled upon me.”

Sideon remained silent, so Trillian continued.

When the Trillian finished, Sideon sat back reflectively, “Your story does seem to carry some truth in it. You completed the task I sent you forth to do, you earned your punishment for combating alone, and so I suppose there is nothing left for me to do. Well done, Trillian.” He mused, tracing a finger beneath his chin. “What does this woman want?”

“I am not sure,” replied Trillian.

“Then I am giving her situation to you. You are free to go.”

Trillian knit his brow and stood, “Thank you, Master.” he replied slowly.

“Hurry and go to the healer. That wing must be tended immediately.”

“Yes, Master.” Trillian bowed at the waist, then turned to leave. He was confused, but was not going to hesitate for a moment. The mercy he had just acquired was a precious gift indeed. His hand caught the knob, and Trillian was gone without taking a look back.

Sideon almost laughed in glee, as Trillian closed the door behind him. He clapped his hands together in delight, lacing together the pieces of a grand new idea.

“Rûthlion!” Sideon called out.

“Yes sire?” the general entered from a side door.

“I want you to keep an eye on Trillian. This is the second occurrence of such events. You remember what kind of revolt he ensued last time, we do not want that happening again.”

“Yes sire. And the woman?”

“She can remain. Yulissa is promising, maybe she will be the one to beguile him.” Sideon mused.