Archive | August 28, 2014

K Orion Fray’s Inspiration Wednesday: Mountains, Gandalf!

The Writer-Moving-Out-of-My-Attic has posted a lovely Inspiration Wednesday post:

But what if you’re absolutely feeling burnt out and desperately need away from it all?

…Well, it sounds to me like you need a vacation. You need to have an adventure.

It’s a nice one, and one I plan to try.

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Going to Learn How to be A Samurai: continuation of Doomsday Academy for the Giraffe Call/@inventrix

To [personal profile] inventrix‘s commissioned continuation of Gonna Be a Samurai.

Austin was going to be a samurai.

He was going to a samurai school, and he was going to have a samurai teacher, and he was going to learn how to be a samurai.

“It says in the letter that they gives you a full education, Austin. Math, science, history, literature, life skills. I wonder what they mean by life skills?” His mother shook her head. “Nothing about being a samurai.”

“But you saw him! You saw Professor Inazuma!”

“And I saw Director Doomsday. I must say, that’s an ominous name for the head of a school.”

“Wasn’t there a note on that, too?” The welcome letter had come with quite a stack of welcome-information, including a small bio on each of the teachers. “She was… what’s a prepper?”

“Something from the before world. But that’s okay, she’s probably from the before world, too.” Austin’s mother shook her head yet again. “Are you sure you want to do this, Austin? I don’t think it’s going to be all samurai training.”

“I don’t care! I’m going to be a samurai! Please, mom? Please? I’ll work extra hard all summer!”

“Well, let me talk to your father…”

Austin was going to be a samurai.

He looked at dismay at the uniforms available. “But what about hakama and kimono?” Kilts and pants and plain white shirts were so boring. Especially compared to Professor Inazuma’s clothes… “Do I have to wear boring clothes?”

“Austin, they’ve nice clothes. Don’t be rude.”

“We have kimono.” The nice lady behind the uniform counter smiled at both of them. It took Austin a moment to realize that that was Principal Doomsday, the head of the school. The weasel ears had thrown him off for a moment.

So had the strange smile. She continued, as if unaware of the panicked surprise on Austin’s face. “That’s one of the things I actually did prepare for. Here are your kimono,” she added a hefty stack of black, just like Professor Inazuma’s, to Austin’s pile of uniform clothes. “And Miss Ascha is waiting for you over there.”

Austin was going to be a samurai.

He was going to be a samurai, even if he had to take classes in math and reading – some of the kids here couldn’t even read! – and how plants grew, and poetry. Even if he had to share a room with girls – and other boys, including the ones that couldn’t read. Even if everyone else thought this school was about growing up to be a teacher or learning how to be a doctor or even, in Sianna’s case, a silly ballerina. (Were there even ballerinas anymore? At least they knew teachers still existed!)

He was going to be a samurai, after eight years of classes and then, Professor Inazuma told him, maybe more classes still. But he could start learning right away, not just the math and reading and farming and stuff, but really learning.

“I’m going to be a samurai,” he informed Sianna. And he got to start today!

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The Goat Legacy

To [personal profile] kelkyag‘s prompt(s).

::You know how to do this. You know how to win this.::

“So does everyone else here.” Liezhta strapped the talking stick to her back – talking stick, ha, her ancestors had possessed a horrible sense of humor – and tried to ignore its whispers.

It didn’t work, of course. Ever since her aunt had passed down the family goat-crook (and what family had goat-crooks they passed down? Liezhta’s of course, the family that produced more goat-wives and goat-husbands than any other three families on the mountain), ever since she’d first wrapped her hand around the ancient, twisted root-wood stick, the blasted thing had been talking in her head.

::You have several advantages that nobody else here has. One, you have me.::

It turned out the stick was an ancestor – or, at least, that was what it claimed. There was a family member named Ketkez or Ketkezhie, long back in the history, who had been, not a goat-spouse, but a herder and breeder of goats nonetheless. And, if such a thing was possible, the few notes in family records suggested Ketkez/hie was the type of person who would, given an option, live forever to nag their descendants.

::In another sense, you also have me; you have the blood passed down to you. Your family. You’re strong, fast, and clever::

“But I’m working with an unknown team. It’s only me from the family.” Liezhta checked the lacings on her boots, checked the braiding on her hair, and settled her hat snugly over everything. She’d have to stop arguing with a talking stick soon, and get on with it.

::And that’s a pity. In the old days, the whole family would compete, and we almost always won::

“Well. This is the new days.” With the way things were going, they might not even need goat-wives much longer. But for today, there was the race. She waved at the others, gathered by the shallow sledge. “Hello.” Liezhta bowed, while in her head Ketkez/hie grumbled about changing times. “I’m Liezta, and I’ll be your third runner in the human goat race today.”

Goat-bride information: here & here.

Information Liezhta does not have, but is useful for setting here.

Liezhta is pronounced LEEZH-tuh.

ZH stands for the buzzy sound of the “s” in our words “pleasure” or “casual”.

Ketkez/hie is pronounced ket-KEZH-(ee)

A root-wood shepherd’s (goat-herd’s) crook might look like this

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Other Soldiers, Other Fates

[A story of Reiassan taking place at the same time as the Rin & Girey story]

The war had ended.

Hiron was sure of that much.

The war had ended, the papers had been signed, and the camps were packing up.

And the prisoners were being packed up, Hiron included, pushed and prodded and poked into a long line, chained ankle-to-ankle and wrist-to-wrist. Hiron didn’t bother fighting as the legionnaire came to add him to the line. What good was it, when the country he was fighting for was gone? At least it didn’t look like he was going to be killed.

“This one’s mine.” The hand that grabbed Hiron’s wrist was as hard and sword-calloused as his own; the voice had the rough gravelly-whisper sound that only throat injuries gave, and the uniform was field-worn but clean. The chin was strong but, strangely for the Calenyen, beardless. Hiron got that much in the first glance; the first listen also told him the soldier’s accent was, as his commander had said, “field not tent.”

“Tribune?” The legionnaire paused, shackles hanging over Hiron’s wrist. “They’re going up North.” At least, Hiron was pretty sure that’s what he said. The Calenyena language was tongue-twisting and throat-biting.

The clink of coins passing hands was unmistakable in any language, however. “This one’s mine,” the tribune repeated. “I’ll take him now.”

“Tribune.” The legionnaire gave Hiron a little push. “Here, you.” He used the field-Bitrani most of the Calenyena soldiers had picked up. “Go with her.”

/Her?/ Hiron took another look at the Tribune. They all had braids, they all wore the same uniforms. But that beardless chin… Hiron swallowed. The Tribune patted him on the shoulder. “You’re pretty,” she told him, in mangled field-Bitrani. “You’ll do just fine.”

Two Continuations Anonymously Paid For (GiraffeCall)

So, I got a lovely donation to the Giraffe Call to pay for two non-donors get get a 500-word continuation.

I rolled the dice, and the results are

(Drumroll please)

[personal profile] alexseanchai
[personal profile] thebonesofferalletters

Please collect your 500-word continuation at the customer service tent!

(drop me an email (thornealder/gmail), send me a PM, or comment on this post)

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Getting close to the Second Donation Level: Take-out (#Promptcall)

At $25, T. & I get take-out. Thai, I think, though it may be Indian. Reached!

at $40, I will commission a piece of character art from a crowdfunded artist

At $50, I will write an extra fic for everyone.

At $75, three prompters chosen at random will get an extra 500-word story written to their prompt

At $80, I will commission another piece of character art from a crowdfunded artist

Remember, every Giraffe Call tip not only gets you MORE WORDS – 100 words/$1 – it also gets you a second story written to your prompt AND moves the ticker along towards that $50 mark, where you’ll get YET ANOTHER fic (and so will everyone else).

(Happy kitties like tips;
click on the kitten to go to paypal)

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