No Fool

“And? What did you end up telling him?”

“Hmm? The merchant?”

“Yes! What did you end up telling him?”

I was desperate to know.

Lorent smiled at me, taking a sip from his goblet—gold glinting wickedly off his irises as he took his time.

He sipped, and he grinned. Wicked, like a sidhe cat, before he spoke. Continue reading “No Fool”

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Drift

For eons, we’ve been like this.

Striving for ways to go faster. To do things better. What used to take us centuries now only take a few minutes. With the help of our machines, we can speed things up. Skip through time. We can cheat the system. Grow crops in days. Cook food in seconds.

Reach the stars.

That’s what we were always clambering for. To be able to walk other planets. Rove through asteroid belts. Brush against the stars. Going fast—moving at the speed of light—that was the only way to achieve that.

And we did.

Centuries ago, we did.

And it wasn’t enough.

It’ll never be enough.

Faster, faster.

Faster.

We always have to go faster.

Sometimes, I think it’d just be nice to…

Turn the power off.

Slow down a little.

Drift. Continue reading “Drift”

When We Fall Apart

“It’s falling apart.”

“It’s always been falling apart.” As I walk away from the glass dome, I poke him in the head, doing my best to smile as I call him, “silly goose.”

And then, I feel it.

The ship gets rocked with the blast. With fire cracking tectonic plates to bits. Crumbling lives, calling for rescue. A million things left behind.

Destroyed.

I feel the shockwave. Tremors of love and loss. Of desperation and pain. Of joy.

Of hope.

Beneath the glass dome of the ship, he stands and watches as it happens, and I can’t blame him for not looking away.

The world beneath us burns. Continue reading “When We Fall Apart”

Consequences

Whiskey burns the back of my throat as I exhale, settling my gaze on the placid man before me.

A shadow of what he was before.

Because, before, he had light. Had life. Something to look forward to. Something to hold on to. Back then, he thought he was tough-shit. Thought he was the bee’s knees. The cat’s meow. Thought he was something better than the rest of us, stepping on anyone and everyone to get his way. Rabidly pursuing any who thought differently, who dared to try and make him face fact.

Before, he was confident.

Stood proud. Stood tall.

But, now…

Now?

Now he cowers, a glare dying in the corner of his eye. Weak, because he knows.

I am the one who snuffed that light.

The one he should’ve left alone.

The one creature that he wasn’t tougher than.

I was the one who showed him that he wasn’t anything special. That he was no bigger than a sneeze. And, I’ll be the one to seal his fate, too.

To steal the son. Continue reading “Consequences”

All For Cause

In a world teeming with superheroes, the term “villain” gets tossed around too much. Applied way too often.

And, normally, it gets applied where it isn’t applicable at all.

What makes a hero a better than a good Samaritan? Better than a good citizen? More than just someone doing the right thing?

The answer might surprise you if you’ve never thought about it.

Additionally, the answer mirrors the answer to the question:

What separates a villain from a criminal? Someone nefarious? A no-good person? Someone who’s rotten?

What separates them? Where do we draw the line?

What’s the difference?

If you’ve never thought about it before…

Well.

I’m sure the answer will surprise you. Continue reading “All For Cause”

A Useless Jump

It happens every time, without fail:

Right when I’m about to fall asleep.

That moment where I’m dancing with dreams, my mind slowly succumbing to the beauty of rest. To the warmth of it, the necessity. It’s right when my mind is starting to go blank, right when I’m about to slip away. Away from the waking world and all its problems. Forgetting all the things that are bothering me, all the tasks I need to accomplish, all the orders I need to fill.

Its then that it always happens.

I’m on the verge again. Darkness whispers sweet nothings into my ear, assuring me that it can give me rest. That I can relax—

And there’s a knock on the door.

Every time. Continue reading “A Useless Jump”

Waiting For Lions

They didn’t speak of him. Not at all.

The king with the white mane.

A notch hanging off his ear.

Ridges gouged around his eyes.

He sat in the corner, silently. Watchfully. His tail swishing mindfully as the others ignored him. Steering clear of him, because of his odd color. His strange scars. Or, maybe, because of the way he seemed quiet. Daunting.

He was an anomaly, honestly. Something to marvel. To ponder. Something to observe, take in, and marvel.

And yet, there he was.

Abandoned.

Forgotten.

Alone.

There, in the corner—away from all the others—he sat. Just the tiniest bit of sunlight shrinking in his eye.

The white lion. Continue reading “Waiting For Lions”

Forging Seasons

We were wolves, basking in the glow of the moonlight. Chasing autumn’s heels as winter froze our game. Hungry bellies that ached beneath the warmth of our fur, our smoking breaths, our hopeful howls. We huddled through the cold, cobbling warmth together with beating hearts and heated blood. When spring came, we were the first to greet it. Singing praises to the melting snow and the blooming life. All things renewed in our meadows, filling us to the brim with new scents, new trails. And we stayed through summer as well, panting through the sun’s burden of heat. Powering through so that we might blend with the colors of autumn once again.

We were wolves.

And things were beautiful.

It was not perfect.

It was not easy.

Yet…

It was life.

And it was good.

We were wolves. Together under the gaze of the forgiving moon. Hidden along the trees’ shadows, watchful and hopeful with every passing season. Looking forward to the future together with our eyes looking past the skies.

But now…

Now I’m unsure.

The foreign scent brings me grief. Filling me to the brim with something akin to summer’s heat, yet, it leaves me empty like winter’s bared teeth. This strange, familiar shape I see…

This change brings a season I’ve never heard of before. Winds that jar my senses with the foreign scent it brings.

You’re changing.

You’re…

Leaving.

Becoming… other.

And I don’t know anymore.

If we are not wolves…

Who will we be? Continue reading “Forging Seasons”

Mystery Blogger Award!!!!!

The lovely Tom Burton has nominated me for a Mystery Blogger Award!

What’s that, you ask?

“An award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging; and they do it with so much love and passion.” — Okoto Enigma

Essentially: it’s a wonderfully kind compliment. A true honor to receive.

Thank you Tom!!!!

Now, there are some rules to the award. Which, usually, rules make me go “bleh!” but these rules aren’t nearly as painful as most rules.

They are as follows:

  1. Put the award logo/image on your blog
  2. List the rules.
  3. Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  4. Mention the creator of the award and provide a link as well
  5. Tell your readers 3 things about yourself
  6. You have to nominate 10 – 20 people
  7. Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog
  8. Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify)
  9. Share a link to your best post(s)

One through four are already taken care of.

See! Not so bad, right?

Pretty simple rules.

Though I will say that I’m going to skip 6-8. Mostly because I don’t know that many bloggers.

But, I have no problem continuing with the rest of the rules!

Three things about me:

1. I absolutely love steak. Like, love love love steak. Medium rare is my style, and I love caramelized onions as a topping (or grilled! I also love onions).

2. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before, but: my family owns goats! Four, at the moment. My favorite being the baby of our herd. She’s very sweet and lovable. She was born right before winter set in, which means that she got held a lot when she was a baby. She’s the cuddliest goat we have. An absolute lover, and a cutie to boot.

3. I’m a rollercoaster fanatic. I grew up in Florida and we lived only about an hour and a half away from Busch Gardens in Tampa, and about three hours from Disney/Universal Studios (I-4 willing, that is). My mom and dad both love rollercoasters too, so they were more than happy to take us when we had the money. In fact, every year for my mom’s birthday, I would pay for three or four of us to go to Universal for a weekend. It was always a fun time with the family, plus I loved showing off my shootin’ skills in the MIB Alien Attack ride. I always get the high score 🙂

Five questions from Tom:

1. What makes you happiest about your blog? 

I would say that I really enjoy when I make something and someone goes “wow! This was great! This inspired me/touched me/made me realize ___!” That’s usually my goal as a writer. I like writing about things that seem like they matter, and I definitely write about things that matter to me. So, when someone communicates that they resonate with a story I wrote, it makes me downright giddy. When that happens, I definitely feel like I’m succeeding in my writing. It makes my day!

2. What motivates you to continue blogging?

The rush of posting a story that I resonate with.

Some days, I write just because I need the practice. But, originally, this blog started as a way to de-clutter my mind and help me sort my feelings (truth be told, I am not very skilled at either of those things on my own/without the proper tools, lol). And, when I post a story that really helps me do that, I feel a weight lifted. Like I’ve truly done something to lighten the burden on my mind. It’s self-help, I guess, or self-therapy. A way to detox, and, when I find the exact right story my mind is looking to release, it feels great.

3. Favorite blogging/writing advice?

Do it your way.

A lot of time, grammar rules get in the way of your emotional flow. We don’t talk grammatically correct, so, often times, when you write like a grammar nazi, you don’t evoke any emotion. Or, you don’t evoke the right emotion, or, perhaps, you’re just not evoking to the level you want to. Grammar is important, and your sentences have to be understandable, but, at the same time, don’t sacrifice your emotional flow for the sake of grammar. Like I said, we don’t often speak to one another in strict grammar rules. So then, why should we write creative stories within the confines of those rules?

I read a book recently that was part of a series and, in this particular book, the author killed off one of my favorite characters. This was the third book of the series, and the character she killed off had been around since Book One, and I absolutely loved this character. But, when the moment came:

I felt nothing.

Absolutely nothing.

Nothing!

Looking at the writing, I realized it was the grammar rules that kept the author from being able to bust out of the robotics of writing and punch me in the gut with the loss. It made me so sad that the author couldn’t accurately express the sadness of the main character—the sadness I was supposed to share in, because I’m the reader—due to grammar. It felt so disingenuous when the main character talked about their sadness, because it was so logically confined. Constructed so carefully in the midst of this unexpected loss of her friend.

And that’s why it felt so limp.

Emotions aren’t logical people!!! They’re wild horses that you suddenly find yourself trying to tame!! They toss you and turn you and buck you a few times before you finally get yourself settled!!! Wild emotions aren’t meant to be tamed by rules!!! Especially not grammar rules!! They’re meant to be strung together like a train wreck.

Very few people experience loss and think so logically while sobbing. Loss makes your mind wild with grief, regret, disbelieve—and a million other things. When people experience loss, they don’t generally express themselves with articulate inner musings. Hell, I remember when I lost my best friend my brain went completely blank, and then it was a train wreck mishmash of random words, sobs, and doing my damndest to get myself to form one coherent thought or sentence. And, factually speaking, I’m not an outwardly emotional person, nor am I an inwardly emotional person. So, the fact that that’s how I responded says a lot about loss and its impact.

THAT’S how most people respond. So, if your character doesn’t respond the same way, or in a way that’s similar, you’re going to loose your reader. Emotions and compassion and identifying with characters is what keeps a reader engaged. If your story doesn’t properly sell the emotions in the book, your readers will lose interest.

I digress, but, that’s the general gist. My main point is:

If you find that grammar is messing with the emotional flow, then, break the rules. Do it your way to get the kind of response you want. That’s the beauty of English, and the essence of writing: communicating effectively. Including emotions.

4. Do you have a favorite book, film, or TV series that you never get tired of?

For books, I’d say its the Wolves of Mercy Falls series by Maggie Stiefvater, or An Inheritance of Ash by Leah Bobbit. I love all of those books very dearly.

For movies, I’d say The Lion King or A Nightmare Before Christmas. I’ve always enjoyed them, and the music in those movies is stellar.

As for TV series… well, I don’t watch much TV. I like Buffy the Vampire Slayer pretty well though (depending on which season we’re talking about) and I definitely don’t tire of My Hero Academia (the themes in that show are incredible, lots of great philosophy to explore).

5. Celebrate a flaw of yours; is there a particular imperfection that you’ve accepted, embraced and turned into a personal strength?

I think I’ve mentioned this here before, but, I have PTSD which makes me very paranoid about my surroundings. Actually, it makes me paranoid in general, lol (though, because of what I’ve been through, I definitely see it as justified. And, if I told the whole story, you’d probably catch some of my paranoia too).

That said, it used to be a weakness of mine. I always thought that everyone was out to get me. That no one could be trusted. My survival instincts were always in overdrive, and I was constantly on the watch for possible attack (which, you still shouldn’t startle me when I’m tired. That’s all I’ll say on that).

Over the years though, some of that has faded. After moving to the midwest, I realized that strangers can talk to you in a grocery store and not have an ulterior motive. Just because someone is asking you how you like your car doesn’t mean they’re fixing to steal it. People can approach you and have no intention of doing you harm. They really might just be trying to find the nearest gas station.

Anyway, I digress.

My main point was that: my PTSD used to keep me from doing things (I won’t lie, sometimes, it still does) but, my survival instincts haven given me a great attention to detail, which generally comes in handy.

For instance, if something is off in a room—if a room doesn’t look how it usually does—I notice. If there’s something strange sitting on my desk, or my boss’s desk or my mom’s desk, I’ll make a mental note of it out of instinct. There have been plenty of times when someone is looking for something and I randomly know where it’s at because my brain automatically picks up on those strange types of things. Though, honestly, that’s just one example of my developed instincts’ uses.

Over the years, my Survival Brain (as I sometimes call it) has developed into something really, extremely useful, rather than holding me down in some pit of fear—like some people’s Survival Brains do. Granted, PTSD is never fun, and I never know what will trigger me or where, but, it has taught me some very important things, and it’s given me an excellent amount of perseverance as well as some good survival instincts.

Still wouldn’t recommend PTSD to anyone though.

As per the rules I’m following (sorry 6-8, maybe next time) I’m also supposed to link to my best posts.

Weekend Wolf, despite being an older story (and not one of my most well-written) is still one of my top stories. Shortly followed by To Be Trifled With, and, as the third place winner, Lone Wolf!

Honestly though, those three stories are probably some of my favorites (despite Weekend Wolf feeling so different to me than my newer style and my more well-edited posts). I very much enjoyed writing all three of them.

And, that’s it for the Mystery Blogger Award! Again, a big thanks to Tom for nominating me.

If you’re here, odds are that you like stories, and Tom does stories excellently.

So, if you’re looking for something good to read, you ought to head over there. You won’t be disappointed 🙂

Landing Among Stars

It was dark here.

It’s been dark for a while.

The sky swallowed us one day. Decided that we weren’t worth its greatest gift. One night, the sun went down—just as it always does.

And it stayed that way.

That was all it took for us to be consumed. Trapped.

Eternal night.

Continue reading “Landing Among Stars”