Archive | February 27, 2014

Food Log 2/27/14

Coffee, 2T half-and-Half, 1 teas sugar
Coco multigrain pop cake, x2
egg salad w/ tomato and lettuce (the tomato and lettuce helped a lot!)
Puffed grain cake x2
tiny apples
Cake – one piece of carrot cake
Butternut et Spinach Colbeth

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Jumping Rings: A Story of the Circled Plain – Background Character Word-Doodles (@korionfray)

So, the writer in my attic, K Orion Fray, has a writing-inspiration e-mail that Ri sends out, which includes a writing prompt.

This week’s prompt:

I have a personal obsession with sideline characters, and making sure that everyone has a story and a background, no matter how little of it you see. So: Choose (or make up) a character that is the least developed right now, or would not be a major part in the plot of their story. Fashion a series of ten-minute exploratory exercises for them both in and out of the story frame. For example, write a pivotal childhood memory for the character that could have ramifications within the context of the story currently being written/drafted.

I sort of took it sideways.

My three questions:

1. How did they get their name?
2. Why do they dress in the manner they do?
3. If you asked them, would there be a pivotal moment in their life that brought them to this particular interaction with the MC?

And the character:

Teswarnen Eshmarn, the Second Circle Deputy Oligarch of New Indapala

How did they get their name?
In New Indapala and the Circled Plain, names begin with an initial syllable, the rest you earn.

The teenager Teswar, born in the outer circle of New Indapala, earned the neuter-gender -nen when she chose to become ri*; she had started a business out of her mother’s house, hiring other children and teens to do manual labor and contracting them to adults. That earned her her admittance to the next-inner circle, her first proper job, and the -nen.

In ri’s twenties, Teswarnen continued contracting and sometimes selling ri’s peers, climbing ever higher up the Ladder and becoming ever richer as ri went. The Esh came when ri finally made it to the Second Circle; the marn when ri was recognized as Deputy Oligarch for ri’s Circle.

Why do they dress in the manner they do>
(And what manner is that?)
Teswarnen dresses lavishly but not wildly; there is a conservative cut to almost every piece of expensive clothing ri wears: high-necked tunics, long flowing pants, colors that are rich but not bright or screaming.

Teswarnen grew up in one of the poorest areas of New Indapala, and worked ri’s way up through the Circles to affluence; however, the inner circles of the Circled Plain are often unwelcoming to those who actually came from the outer circles, however much it’s the tenant the entire system is based on. Dressing conservatively helps Teswarnen glide through the upper crust society without sticking out – which is very much what ri wants.

If you asked them, would there be a pivotal moment in their life that brought them to this particular interaction with the MC?

Teswarnen Eshmarn leaned back in ri’s chair and looked out the window over the city. From here, you could see all the way down to the Tenth Circle and the wall-builders working on the new walls. It was a beautiful – from here, with a light coating of mist and distance covering up all the dirt and pain.

A ten-year-old had pushed a five-year-old Tes in the dirt, down there and all those years ago, and Tes had stood up and paid her last cent to a twelve-year-old to repay the bully tenfold. Everything since then – every purchase, every sale, every wall scaled, every time Tes had fallen – everything had been because of that moment.

Tes brushed mud that wasn’t there off immaculate silk and stood, turning an elegant and, above all, clean back on the illusion of the beautiful. There were beauties that were real, inside.

* ri, ri’s, riself – the pronoun used for those who have chosen the neuter gender in the Circled Plain. Ix is the honorific (equivalent to sir or ma’am).

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Unwelcome Guests, Part the Third

To [personal profile] rix_scaedu‘s commissioned continuation of Unwelcome Guests & Unwelcome Guests, Part II

(I should pay a little more attention to my list; this was for longfic)

Baram and his family are part of the “Baram’s House Elves” sub-series of the Addergoole ‘verse, which can be found here; Baram is also a background character in Addergoole.

“Girls.” Baram nodded at Via and Aly the second he heard the “basement” door shut.

“On it already, boss. Jaelie’s down with the kids and Aloysius. And Aly’s been waking up the rest of the defenses. Now she can swap with Jae and Jae can get the trees ready.”

“Good.” Baram paced out onto the front walk. There wasn’t much to pretend to do here, but he could still pace.

Behind him, the girls moved. This was not their first attack, not by far. They knew what they were doing.

The walls shifted. They weren’t awake, whatever Viatrix had said, but they were ready, braced, and stronger than they normally were.

“Precious cargo tucked in.” Jaelie touched Baram’s shoulder. “Aloysius has rear guard.”

“Good.” Baram didn’t have to like the useless thing to admit he could come in handy. “Trees?”

“They’re good trees, aren’t they?” She stroked the trunk of one of the front-gate flanking plants. “My favorite trees.”

Baram suppressed a shudder. Hawthorn trees weren’t supposed to be that big, and they were not suppose to /purr./ “Good trees,” he agreed. “Almost here.” The dust was rising on the horizon. “Inside.”


“Inside. Might not be a fight, best to find out.”

She sighed. “Inside, yes, boss.” She slipped out of sight just as the motorcycles roared into view.

Baram did his best to look casual. There was a bolt that needed fixing on the gate, anyway.

There were six of them, four males, two females; four warriors, two bitches, if Baram was reading them right, but they didn’t split along gender lines. They were wearing leather, which might mean they were young – or might mean they were pragmatic. Baram had met Aelfgar and his soldiers; Baram sometimes remembered, in dreams, flashes of being a soldier.

Take nothing for granted. They could even, he supposed, be just wandering through. Since the world had started ending, they had definitely seen odder things.

“Afternoon.” He nodded at them, doing his best to seem normal-and-human. Normal-and-human was not an easy setting for him, but these were people riding large motorcycles and hung with weapons. Their bar was a little lower than people in suits in glassy offices.

“We’re looking for a pair.” The leader – probably female, hard to tell, didn’t matter much in this case anyway – snarled it out without even bothering with the pretense. “One male, one female, skinny. They came this way.”

Baram shook his head. “Haven’t seen anyone like that.”

The leader narrowed her eyes and glanced, briefly, at the man Baram had tagged as her bitch. He paled, closed his eyes, and murmured incoherently.

“They’re near. I promise it, I swear it.”

“You lie.” It wasn’t clear whether the woman was talking to the man or to Baram. It didn’t matter; she was drawing a weapon. “You. Tell me again. One man, one woman.”

Baram shook his head. “Bad idea. Ride away now.”

“You, you are not going to tell me what to do.” She dismounted, and took steps towards the front gate. “Tell me. One man, one woman. And I might let you live.”

“Last chance.” He still hadn’t drawn steel. He didn’t need to. “Ride away. Now.”

“You fucking deaf or just stupid? Give us our prey and we’ll let you live.”

Baram found himself roaring, just as the trees by the gate found they could reach the woman. “This. This is a Safe. House.”

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