Archive | August 22, 2014

The Beast We Become

To [personal profile] clare_dragonfly‘s prompt.
Set in Year 6 of the Addergoole School, about halfway through the year.

Aelgifu (Ayla) and Callista (as well as the mentioned others) are Addergoole characters.

“You can’t ignore it forever, you know.”

When Ioanna said it, she was gentle. Callista hadn’t gotten the feeling of being gentle yet, so it came out, like so much of what she said, rough and raspy and cutting right to the bone.

There was no question what Callista thought Aelgifu was ignoring. For one, she was waving at Ayla with all six arms. For another, they’d been talking about this on and off for the six months since they’d crewed up.

“I’m very good at Masking.” It wasn’t quite an answer, but she didn’t want to give an answer.

“Can’t Mask your brain, little jackalope.”

“Don’t call me that.”

“Why not?” Callista leaned forward, mid-arms resting on her thighs. “I’m a spider, you’re a jackalope, your pretty girlfriend is a face-changer, and your brother is an antelope. It’s just the way things are.” Her smile twisted into something nasty and fierce. “And Ib is a demon.”

“Ib is a demon.” There was no argument there. “But a jackalope is a mythical creature.”

It was the wrong thing to say, and she knew it before she’d closed her mouth. Callista rattled out another laugh.

“Look around you, sweetheart. We’re all mythological here.”

This entry was originally posted at You can comment here or there.

Her Verdict, a continuation of Reynard


“And that’s how I ended up Belonging to a terrifying mass of muscle, ma’am.” Reynard did his best to make a bow, although the bonds of probably-hawthorn restricted his movement enough to make it only a twitch. “How I ended up Belonging to a -” he coughed. “Forgive me, ma’am, to a beautiful woman like yourself is another story.”

The woman studied him for a minute. She seemed neither be offended by the compliment nor complimented by it – for the life of him, Reynard couldn’t read a single emotion off of her face. He was out of practice working without magic.

“That is a very interesting story.” She spoke slowly. Shit, was she – differently abled? He’d never belonged to anyone slow before. “I even believe most of it.” She pursed her lips. “It definitely sounds like you.”

That again. And he couldn’t remember her at all. He coughed, and went for a completely non-committal “Ma’am?”

“It will do for now, at least.” She picked up a pair of wire cutters from her table of tools.

“Ma’am?” This time, Reynard knew his voice went high-pitched. The things you could do with wire cutters… “Ma’am, I…”

“Shhh. You belong to me, Reynard called Fox in the Henhouse. I’m not going to hurt you. I’m not going to torture you.” He wasn’t entirely clear if the repetition was clarification or reassurance. He wasn’t reassured, either way.

“Ma’am?” This time it was a whisper. He didn’t have much choice.

She started clipping, far too near parts of him he was very fond of. “When I’ve got you out of this, we can talk living arrangements.”

Well, at least that meant he was probably going to live.


This entry was originally posted at You can comment here or there.

Any Given Apocalypse – You Do What You Have To

To Three-Word-Wednesday (Today’s words are Impulsive, Morose, & Sparse)

You did what you could with what you had.

There was no running water, so you carried it in buckets, or ran a hose from the creek. There was no indoor lighting anymore, so you used candles, if you had them, flashlights, if the batteries still worked, or lamps, if you were lucky.

And that was the comforts. The necessities were harder. But you did what you could with what you had.

You burned what you could for heat, and tried not to think about cancer or the ozone layer too much. You huddled all of you in one room; in the coldest nights, all under one blanket. Privacy was a luxury for warm days, and you were none of you too clean, anyway.

You ran through every can in your pantry, every bag of grain, trendy or plain, and told yourself the bugs were protein. And when it was nearly gone, you started looking to see which of your neighbors had left, or died, or just not kept a gun, and raided their pantries too.

You did what you had to for what you needed, and tried not to think about how scarce resources were going to turn into complete rarities before long.

You learned to make every day, every hour, every minute of daylight count – shoring up your shelter, bringing in burnable material, repairing weapons. You learned to take five minutes of quiet time as your vacation, and learned, usually a harder lesson, that there was no room for being impulsive.

You did what you could with what you had; you did what you had to for what you needed. You tried not to get down about it all. There was no point at all in being morose and mopey about the hardships of life – you were alive, after all, when so many weren’t.

You tucked in for the night by candlelight, close to your family, and remembered, as you huddled near the fire for warmth, that any count of your blessings started with we made it and ended with and we can do what we need to, to keep making it.


This entry was originally posted at You can comment here or there.

Gonna Be a Samurai, a story of Doomsday Academy for the Giraffe Call

Written to [personal profile] inventrix‘s prompt, although I didn’t get to the catboy part yet! O-O

Using Cynara (Prof. Doomsday) and Leofric (Prof. Inazuma)’s son’s icon, since I don’t actually have an icon for either of them.

Set about 5 years into Doomsday.

Austin was going to be a samurai.

He had known since he was five years old and that wandering samurai had come through town, killing the monster and rescuing Austin and his little sister.

He had known despite his mother’s insistence that one crazy man in funny armor did not mean that samurai really still existed. He had known even when his older brothers – 6 and 8 years older than him – told him that he couldn’t be anything like that, that the best he could hope for was to be a farmer, like his (not their) father. He had known despite his father spending every day of every week teaching him how to be a proper farmer, how to be a land-lord in, his father said, the old sense.

He read books on samurai, first from the local library, then, when he was old enough, he convinced his parents to let him to go the next town over on a trade caravan. They had a bigger library, salvaged from the ruins of several towns.

His older brothers went to school, but he and his sister, their parents said, were going to stay at home, where it was safe, where they could learn how yo be proper farmers. Austin kept reading – now the scroungers knew to look out for books for him – and kept learning. He was going to be a samurai some day.

When the letter came from the Academy, Austin was unsure. He was going to be a samurai farmer – what did he need with school.

His mother and father were unsure – he was going to be a farmer. What did he need with school? Besides, his mother had gotten her fill of boarding schools. And Austin was barely ten years old.

And then Professors Inazuma and Doomsday walked into their town. Looking over the blonde professor – Inazuma – in his kimono, Austin knew he was going to Doomsday.

This entry was originally posted at You can comment here or there.

Blog Hop Stop: Fiction in the Alder’s Grove

I have been tagged! That never happens…

The writer in my attic tagged me to do a Blog Hop. I’ve know Rion for a couple years (we met, more or less, because of Addergoole, like most of my current friends), and for the last year-plus, she’s been staying in our attic and occasionally rescuing our cats from themselves.

What am I working on?

Let’s see!

I’m posting Edally Academy, a Steampunk Boarding School serial (Meta: I’m working on getting a webpage up and running). Tairiekie & her new teammates not only have to deal with classes & teachers at a new, prestigious, & challenging school, they also have to figure out what’s going on with the mysterious Instructor Talmizhaab’s device.

I’m both posting & writing Inner Circle, a potentially-kinky fantasy serial with gladiators and strange magic (& a webpage). Taslin and Valran have both bent knee in order to raise in rank. But getting to the inner circle can take a lifetime – or cost you your life.

I’m working on the re-write of Addergoole, my first web-serial. Right now, I’m getting everything ready to launch the kickstarter!

I’ve got a prompt call open, where I take your suggestions and write fic to them. I’m working on short story submissions to two different anthologies & a contest (let’s see: Steampunk Horror, Genre Fiction Gender-Funky, and “Property”), and working on edits for another anthology.

AND I’m beginning to plan my Nanowrimo novel and working – still – on my fantasy travel-across-the-land possible-love-story, Into Lannamer.

Focus? What’s that?

How does my work differ from others in its genre?

Oh, dear, what genre do I write in?…

If anything, I’d say that I enjoy dystopic fiction more than most. In almost everything I write, eventually, the setting is going to be the bad guy…

…or is it? Because I’m also inordinately fond of shades (but not 50 of ’em) grey.

Why do I write what I do?

I write the stories that people like, and I write the stories I like.

I grew up reading fantasy & scifi, and find a world without magic (or the stars) a little too boring to write in. So most of my stories are speculative in nature, and even those that appear to be in this world are a little bit off, just like me.

How does my writing process work?

Generally: I start from a spark – either a phrase or a prompt, something that pops into my head in the shower or something someone else suggests (I once wrote a short story based off of cooking directions). I write until the spark runs out, then I sit down with an outline and figure out what I need to do to turn that spark into a full story.

(Of course, with flash, I just stop when the spark runs out.)

Who’s Next?
I’m going to tag [personal profile] clare_dragonfly! Clare writes Chatoyant College, a fantasy web-serial set at the only institution in the United States that teaches magic, and has recently been working on fiction set in The Ursulan Cycle, a gender-bent version of the Arthurian Cycle.

And, speaking of the Ursulan Cycle, I’m also going to tag [personal profile] ysabetwordsmith. If you don’t know Ysabet from her monthly poetry fishbowls (in which she takes prompts on a theme and produces very moving poetry) or her soft-fic Love is for Children Avengers fanfic (or any of the other awesome work she’s done), go do some reading. Go ahead. I’ll be here when you’re back.

This entry was originally posted at You can comment here or there.

Flying-Squirrel’s Freedom (or Fetters)

Written to [personal profile] lilfluff ‘s prompt


Farley woke fuzzily.  The fetters were fixing him firmly in place, pressed against some sort of stake in the ground. 
"Fuck."  He blinked the sleep out of his eyes and shifted his arms.  A series of dull aches and sharp pains greeted the movement.  The webs between his arms and body were stretched badly.  His hands were bound above his head and behind the stake; his ankles were bound similarly.  At least he was on his knees.  That gave him a little bit of slack – a little.  Not nearly enough. 
Where was he?  Bound to a stake, that much was clear.  But… oh.  A mast.  Farley swallowed around a lump in his throat.  This wasn’t going to go well.  If the pirates…
"Eeeee-ah!"  Farley jerked his head around, trying to look behind him, and got nothing but more pain for his efforts.  That shout.  He knew that shout.  
"Diiiiiiie!"  And that one.  Farley struggled against the chains in earnest now.  The Fondly sisters were very good fighters – very, very good fencers.  Unless the pirates that had him were of the Natashon Clan, they didn’t stand a chance.  And, in a manner of speaking, neither did Farley. 
The Fondly sisters were very friendly.  Very, very friendly. And, while Farley wasn’t the sort of squirrel to stay in one place – he was a flying squirrel, pretty much your definition of flit-about – well, the Fondly sisters had a way of making their wishes come true. 
"Dieeeee… aw, you died."  
Farley fought harder against the fetters. 

Further fic:

This entry was originally posted at You can comment here or there.

Did you know I STILL have a Giraffe Call open (#Promptcall)

It’s open here, and the theme is Animalia.

Centaurs and fauns, bull-boys and fox-girls, talking cats and telepathic pink horses. Transfurry things and sentient animal things, moddies and Changes and animal-shaped aliens. If it’s somehow an animal/person, it fits in this call. 

It will be open through 1:30 pm (EDT, UTC -5) 8/25/14; prompting is free, tipping is vastly appreciated (and gets you more words!)


Stories written so far include:
When the Stars Went Out

This entry was originally posted at You can comment here or there.