Monday, April 30, 2018

Z is for Zoe

It’s so easy to forget things, to just get lost in the stacks at the library. I don’t recall much of whom I was or where I came from. I’d much rather read other people’s stories, get absorbed in their tales. 

Perhaps I was living in limbo until I saw Rhane Soames. When she walked into the library, something tingled through my body, awakening me to myself and what was round me. I snuck peaks into her crystal blue eyes, distant and dreamy, only to feel a connection to the here and now. To her. 

It took me a long time to dare to speak to her. I followed her to a coffee house and overheard the conversation between her and another girl. What spirit flickered in Rhane’s eyes died around Beatrix, squashed by her girlfriend’s abrasive personality. 

Beatrix complained about a lack of players in their roleplaying game. I stepped up to their table with a boldness I hadn’t realized I possessed and introduced myself as a gamer. 

Beatrix let her dark eyes rove over every inch of me, giving the impression she liked little of what she saw. 

Rhane blinked those wonderful blue eyes at me, taking me in, truly seeing me for the first time. Another electric shock ran through me. 

Beatrix glanced from me to Rhane, frowning, no longer quite certain if the girl she’d taken for granted was truly hers. I sensed Beatrix’s dawning apprehension just as I’d awakened to Rhane’s presence when I first noticed her. 

I wanted a connection with Rhane, but I don’t understand this empathy for Beatrix. It’s not like I want it. She doesn’t either. Perhaps she felt it, too.

Maybe this is why she gave me Rhiannon, whom was formerly a non player character and a favorite of hers. 

Maybe this is why I accepted Rhiannon rather than creating a character of my own. 

Once Rhiannon became mine, everything changed. I found myself talking to Rhiannon in my head, dreaming about her. She told me Amberwyne and the other characters wanted to free Rhane and their players from the terrible Game Master. 

Only the Game Master wasn’t truly terrible. There was more to Beatrix than the bitter, angry woman she’d become. We had to help her appreciate life and those around her more. She’d be a better person if she did. 

Rhiannon and I have been adding twists to the game, under the guise of plot complications. Rhiannon understand what Beatrix enjoys, how to play to her tastes, sparking her weary interest  in Game she’s only going through the motions with. 

It’s true. Beatrix thinks the Game is all she cares about she, but she’s grown bored with it. She’s lost interest in it along with everything else. She’s taking her boredom out on Rhane. 

This I won’t tolerate. If she keeps it up, I’ll take Rhane from her. Perhaps Beatrix will only realize what an amazing girlfriend she has if I do. Only I may not give Rhane back if she turns to me. Why should I help Beatrix just because I understand her? Don’t Rhane and I enjoy a chance at happiness, too? 

Rhiannon wants me to get Beatrix to appeciate the good things in life, to save her if I can. This will only work if Beatrix wants to be saved. 

I’m not sure if I want to save her. Why should Beatrix get to keep Rhane, the life she has, if she’s stupid enough to grow bored of both?

Maybe she doesn’t deserve either. 

Rhiannon wants me to help Beatrix become a better person, but she’s had her chance at a life. She’s making Rhane miserable. Why should Rhane stay with her? Why should any of her players if Beatrix cares so little for either them or the Game?

I care about it. I’m listening to Beatrix’s former character. I’m getting more and more involved with the players and our characters. Neither Rhiannon nor myself care much for Isolde. Mona, Isolde’s player isn’t sure what to make of us. Mona seems to fancy Rhane herself, but she lacks the guts to stand up to Beatrix, to tell Beatrix off when she’s wrong. 

Beatrix holds an almost sinister emotional grip on both Rhane and Mona, draining them of their spirit, their nerve. 

I’m not sure if our Game Master isn’t a lost cause. 

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Y is for Ylynessa

How lovely the night air is! It makes me think of a poem a religious scholar once wrote, describing it as the very embodiment of the Black Unicorn, the darker side of our goddess. No need to stare like that. Surely you’ve wondered what it’s like to look at the night world with more than human vision. My own sight is so limited, unlike my Willie’s. I mean to say Lord William Caerac, my brother and father. What must it be like to hear the heartbeats of your approaching vassals, to wonder if they’re lying or not? To taste warm blood, spilling across your lips, savouring the liquid life you’re drinking?

It’s not tasted particularly appetizing to me. What? We do drink blood at times during Unicorn rituals. There’s nothing wrong with that. We even offer our own up from time to time. 

I keep dreaming about a helpless little waif who would have been monster food if Willie hadn’t saved her from such a fate. William himself was almost devoured as a child. 

Such rubbish. Never trust children, especially when they seem too innocent to be true. It’s one of the reasons I know that brat of Daeric Nevalyn’s is up to no good. 

Not that I believe Willie was ever such a brat. He cares so much for this cursed Keep of his and the wretched humans whom live within it. He’s so determined to protect them from the monsters. 

How I hate that word, yet I keep using it. I must call them nonhumans until I’m finally used to it. They’re victims as much as the humans they prey upon. Too often they’re used as foot soldiers by some dark lord or lady, or worse an elite monster dominating them into challenging ambitious humans. Those human cut the poor creatures down, trying to make a name for themselves. 

No more. Humans had better look to their own guilty consciences. They may find themselves turning into giant shapes or being slashed by shapeshifters. Or worse, they rise from their graves as the undead; skeletons, ghouls, and zombies. 

Worse than humans are the cowards who try to pass for human, like Maggie, Daeric, and that arrogant Undine. They act like they’re superior to all others. Aunt Xyla and others go on, acting like some nonhumans are so much more beautiful and powerful than others. 

Any creature can be humbled. They just have get unlucky. 

I’m here to represent the kobolds and all the lesser nonhumans trampled under human feet. If anyone objects to that, they can take it up with the Captain of Willie’s guard. Quite a treasure, isn’t he, even if he never opens his armour. I can say with some certainty I made him the man he is today. 

No, I’m not afraid of the Vampire Corwyth. He belongs to the legends of the past. Whatever is happening is something new. Corwyth might have turned Corwyth Keep into a walled paradise for the undead, but he stopped there. Whatever is reaching out from the night to claim helpless humans as its prey, why, I think it has much bigger plans than that. 

Not that I’m worried. We have the Unicorns to protect us in all their holiness. A rigid minded lot, but I have high hopes for some of them. 

They’re hardly going to let the residents of Caerac Keep be devoured by the forces of the night, are they? I mean, that would call their entire role as agents of purity and the Goddess’s will into question. 

I know they’ll never let that happen, no matter what is lurking in the night, waiting for them. 

Friday, April 27, 2018

X is for Xylanthe

Spider once spread her elegant webs to catch unwary prey from every land while Snake thrashed her way across the towers and mountains. I was the silent partner to Nevalyn’s showy ostentation until this ridiculous Unity chased me into the Dark Circle, forcing me to concentrate my power there. 

I still light a candle on the day of Serena Jasior’s death just to let her know I haven’t forgotten the inconvience Nevalyn’s little upstart inflicted upon myself and my daughters. Her treachery resulted in my poor, foolish Snake being banished from this world. 

Serena seized the chains Zenobia forged, using them to bind the Serpent Born right and left. Spider was forgotten in the Dark Circle, luring the unworthy into her lair to drain them of life. I took on a new name, Xylanthe, after the bold Maethyrian maiden who forged the Circle of Thirteen in Maethyria. 

Ah, Xylanthe, how tasty she was. She remains in my heart and soul always. I fear some of her grief, being kept out of Maethryia by the warding watch of the Thirteen. 

It doesn’t matter. Their eyes can’t see everywhere. My spies can. What they tell me troubles me. 

There was a time when Maethyrians made pilgrimages to the Dark Circle, or they sent their exiles here. The worthy made a pact with me, gaining great power in becoming part of my Circle. The unworthy were eaten. 

Thus I began to spin my webs once more from within my lair, gathering all creatures who hungered for warm flesh and blood. 

Often bold adventures dared the Dark Circle, hoping for treasure and glory. How I adored these hotheaded fools. I even let a few of them achieve their goals, dragging heaps to treasure off to build Keeps in the neighboring land of Rowenda, never realizing they’d been marked by me. They became my eyes and ears, those chosen few. The others became my Circle’s meat. 

Take little Ylynessa for instance. I placed her in William Caerac’s path, created a past for her similar enough to his own to stir what human sympathy remains in his undead heart. Oh, yes, I’ve guessed his dirty little secret. I suspected it before Ylynessa wrote to me, her Aunt Xlyna, confirming his true nature. 

I worry about Ylynessa. She’s been an excellent spy but she’s fallen silent about events at Caerac Keep. Her letters are filled with frivolous, emotional rants about kobold rights and other such nonsense. Has she truly become such a vapid fool? Or has she remembered who I truly am? 

Is it possible one I marked has turned against me? The last deed of significance I heard about was the binding of Undine to a suit of armour, taking on the guise of the Captain of the Guard at Caerac Keep. 

Worse, fewer and fewer adventurers are entering the Dark Circle. 

I consider the ridiculous rants Ylynessa has made via letter, condemning adventuring as wrong, accusing those who hunt monsters as being no better than murderers and thugs. 

Could this nonsense be the reason we’re no longer getting large numbers of willing victims walking willingly into our webs? It’s very inconvient nonsense if so. How are we supposed to eat if it’s no longer glorious or heroic to attack the Dark Circle for its riches or the glory? We may have to start going out and hunting our own food, leaving the security of our lair! 

This is more than inconvenient. This is outrageous. 

To add to the annoyance, Ylynessa has begun to enthuse about sending pilgrims to the Dark Circle to learn about our ways rather than attack us. 

Well at least we’ll still have food walking willingly into our webs. Somehow these pilgrims sound a lot less interesting than the adventurers. 

Ylynessa did offer one interesting morsel of information among the tidings of irritation and change. A small party may be venturing out to the Dark Circle who are not pilgrims nor our usual adventurers. They include a unicorn cleric, one of the Serpent born, and a Maethyrian descendant of the original Xylanthe. 

Now these are tidings to whet the appetite. They’re almost too good to be true. Unicorns are strong and hard to catch. The Serpent Born are all too rare, rare enough for me to be skeptical at the prospect of one of them coming to me, although is it possible Nevalyn is acting through her descendants once more?

I thought Kyra Nevalyn severed the connection between the Serpent and the Serpent Born long ago. Such a connection is very hard to cut completely. 

I’m not sure whether to rejoice or be apprehensive. I haven’t exactly done anything to aid Nevalyn in her exile. Not that she ever sought help from me. Our alliance was one of mutual convenience and hunger. 

I am curious about this boy descended from her, though. This Rhodry Nevalyn. I’ve always regretted never getting a taste of Corwyth Nevalyn before the undead got to him. If this Rhodry is anything like him, well, it’s a chance to resolve an old regret. 

Nothing is quite as exciting, though as a descendant of Xylanthe walking willingly into my webs. It’s been far too long since I’ve had any Maethyrian. I can’t help feeling like Ariadne was raised just for me, being carefully guided by one of my agents back in Xylanthe’s homeland, groomed to return to my side. 

I’m not sure how much I can trust my agents. How long does my Mark last away from the Dark Circle? I fear its strength is being tested and found wanting. 

Regardless of what else is happening, Ariadne is coming to me. Slowly, step by step she is making her way back to me. 

I do have an advantage in getting her to come if nothing else fails. 

After all, she wants to find her sister. 

Thursday, April 26, 2018

W is for William

Don’t look at me with such insolence or reproach. I happen to be the Earl of Caerac Keep. No, I wasn’t born to the title. I was born long before such a title existed. Caerac, whom became Lord Caerac adopted me as his son and heir. 

The world thinks I died long ago. It’s a secret I’ve kept, reinventing myself so I could hide my true nature from all but a few intimates. I’ve kept my appearances mysterious, used underlings to act as my daytime eyes and ears. I’ve managed to sustain my appetite for blood, killing seldom. 

Daeric Nevalyn has been very obliging in feeding my hunger. A little of his blood goes a long way in satisfying me where I’d have to take far more from another victim. 

Daeric Nevalyn is no victim, though. He’s far older than I am. Everyone regards him as my pet sorcerer, my pet catamite. In truth, he looked exactly as he does now as he did when I was a mortal boy. He is no vampire, though. I’m not sure what he is. His tower stood long before Caerac Keep was built. He’s kept an eye on me and my walled city, advising me for so long I don’t know what I’d do without him.

Only I am now forced to do without him. Daeric has disappeared along with countless other people in my walled city. 

I’m not alone in facing this menace. I have the girl all the world thinks is my younger sister, my Ylynessa. She has grown up to be a clever and capable woman, plus she’s one of the few I trust with my secret. Only she goes a little too far in advocating monster rights to the point that she puts Caerac Keep in danger. 

I miss Daeric’s counsel, his knowledge which spans across centuries. I feel helpless without him. 
I don’t like to think of what’s capable of capturing him. The possibility that it might be the Vampire Corwyth terrifies me for more reasons than one. I’ve labored for centuries to encourage skepticism and forgetfulness in regards to vampirism. I don’t want anyone guessing my true nature, let alone driving a stake in my heart. 

These recent abductions, the bloodless bodies that have been found have gotten people thinking about vampires again. Whomever is behind all of this has to be stopped. They could undermine my entire way of unlife I’ve created here.

Not that I think the children I asked to investigate the disappearances will actually stop anything. No, they will stir my enemy into action, luring them out into the open. Once they do so, I shall strike, teaching this upstart that Lord William, Earl of Caerac Keep is not be taken lightly. Afterwards, I’ll remove every trace of vampire involvement that might come to light.

I’ve worked hard, creating a comfortable existence for myself as a lord here. I’ve also toiled over the century to make Caerac Keep a peaceful, prosperous place. I’m not letting the Keep or my existence go without a fight. 

Trouble at Caerac Keep means trouble for me. I won’t let it continue. Not as long as I rule here. 

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

V is for Varwyth

Good evening, ah, is it not evening where you are at? I prefer evenings myself if not the still of the night. Its peace can be exquisitely romantic, punctuated only by the soft moan of your prey right before sinking your teeth in. 

Not that such moments need be unpleasant experiences for the prey. Night terrors are too often the cheap gimmicks of unsavory creatures incapable of inspiring anything more complex than fear. They resort to actions like snatching people from their homes and rooms at the inn, blaming their escapades on the Vampire Corwyth. 

How very tacky. It just goes to show whoever is behind the Trouble at Caerac Keep is someone with poor taste. It also reveals a lack of any name of their own to strike fear into the hearts of others. 

With a complete lack of creativity, they hide behind Corwyth’s name. What’s worse, they dared to lay hands on Daeric Nevalyn. 

Such behavior is intolerable, but I will admit, shrewd. If I was plotting something nefarious at Caerac Keep, I’d want Daeric out of the way. 

I’m fairly certain our enemies have only just begun their activities. I’ve got a feeling they plan to raise an undead army, claiming that Corwyth is the one behind the resurrections. 

I’m guessing there’s a necromancer involved. That could be…troublesome. 

At the same time, I’m intrigued by the children William has asked to investigate the disappearances. One of them is my delicious little Rhodry. I am curious how he’ll handle this matter. He’s been so sheltered by Daeric. I’ll have to make certain he doesn’t get into too much trouble. 

One thing I’m quite certain of is that Corwyth is not the one behind these abductions. I’m rather curious who’d be bold enough to use his name. 

Such boldness should be discouraged. I really don’t want to give other creatures of darkness ideas. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

U is for Undine

Once I was as free and flowing as the water itself until a fair maiden completely lacking a heart found me and trapped me with a spell within a shell of armour.

I serve the Lady Ylynessa in the guise of the Captain of the Guard. I’m not sure whom else I serve, but I’ve been forced to do terrible things, transform people into monsters. 

I no longer have a will of my own. 

Sometimes I manage to cry out in someone else’s dreams. Sometimes someone hears me. 

A foreign sorcerer once did, like and unlike my captor. He tried to free me. He failed. I don’t know what happened to him. 

For now, I serve my captor, trapped in a warrior’s form, bound within metal. 

I try to leak out, sending a warning. Yes, there’s Trouble at Caerac Keep. 

I’m a part of it. 

Monday, April 23, 2018

T is for Thomas

Who am I? I thought I was dead, perhaps in one of the many hells I had nightmares about in my previous life. The Voice of Seraphix brought me back from that, returned me to my parents and sister. 

Or did he? I’m not sure if my current family is truly mine. They may be weak and worthless, but they’re still better than the father I remember. Not that I recall much about him, only that he always made me feel weak and worthless. 

I’d rather it was someone other than me who gets to be the weakling this time. Omphalos is filled with potential weaklings, especially those twins at the Old Cottage, Danyel and Tayel. Ugh, no boy should ever be as pretty as those two. I wouldn’t be surprised if they were really girls in disguise. Maybe I’ll get close and find out, only those frail brats are a lot stronger than they look. They’ve already beaten me a couple of times, not that I’m going to let that go. 

They’ll be really sorry, along with everyone else in Omphalos. I hate everyone here, everything, too. 

The only thing I like is the talisman around my neck. It allows me to talk to him, my own personal godling. His name is Seraphix. Yes, other people claim to have talked to him, too, but they’re just posers, pretending they’re better than they are. Seraphix is my godling, not theirs. He’s going to make all my dreams come true. He’ll change me into someone Danyel won’t be able to look down on, regardless how good he is at this ‘Dance’ his mother has taught him. Such a prissy term for fighting moves, but I can’t deny they worked. We’ll see, once I change and become one with Seraphix, Danyel will beg to be my friend. None will be able to resist me. 

Only I don’t know what’ll happen to me once I change. What happens to Thomas once I become Seraphix?

Oh, who cares? I didn’t like my life in Omphalos anyway. What’s wrong with changing into someone new? It’s not like I’m giving up anything that great.

I’ve just got to remember how much I’m going to make everyone regret ever looking down on me, once I chance. You’ll see, once this stupid scribbler finishes and publishes A Godling for Your Thoughts. I’ll show all of you just what I’m capable of. 

Saturday, April 21, 2018

S is for Seraphix

A godling for your thoughts? This is the question I ask everyone who would worship me. For that’s exactly what I am. Hold my talisman in your hand and wish. I’ll become whatever you want me to be. I’ll transform you into whatever you wish to become. 

Yes, I was once Seraphix, God of Balance. A young boy’s shadowy faith made me strong. Christopher gave me power beyond measure until he lost it. He stopped believing.

I shattered along with him. We became shadows of our former selves, feeding on lost memories to survive. 

All of this changed when I was awakened by a pair of magical twins carrying some of Christopher’s essence. They became my Hand and my Eye as much as his. 

Perhaps I would have been contented with the new existence as Shade which Danyel and Tayel shaped for me. Only I was distracted and awakened by hunger. A hunger for worshippers, for more power in other worlds beyond the Door. 

A new acolyte introduced me to this hunger. He gave it a Voice. He became its Voice. 

The Voice of Seraphix gathers Followers by means of a talisman, a coin with a symbol which alters on its surface, depending on the Follower’s thoughts and wishes. It creates a link with me via those thoughts and wishes. Through them, I manifest. 

Like any good godling, I do my best to grant my Followers’s wishes. My manifestations, however, can be unpredictable. Depending on their wishes, these manifestations may be at odds with each other. 

What distresses me most is that Danyel and Tayel, my precious Hand and Eye appear to reject my manifestations.

This rejection hurts. It’s like being abandoned by Christopher all over again. It reminds me of the searing pain which rippled through me whenever Christopher disappears, fall into a pond, and scatters himself across the Shadow Forest in bits of light and color. 

I refuse to be abandoned again. I won’t let Danyel and Tayel destroy themselves or me by shattering my Followers’s faith. Nor will I let them deprive me of their devotion, their love. Those two are mine. They’re part of me. They will not escape, even if I have to employ every trick, trap, or Follower to keep them from leaving me. 

Never again. No more shattered dreams. I won’t allow it. 

Friday, April 20, 2018

R is for Rhane

Hmm, what’s that? Oh, I’m at the Forbidden Cauldron. 

What? It’s not that strange. I’m always drifting off to other places in my imagination. I’d rather spend time there than in the real world, dealing with me. Amberwyne is so much more interesting than I am. I’d rather roleplay her than mope around being me. 

Lately, she’s been so lively, interacting with my surface thoughts. I could almost feel like she’s arguing with me, telling me to pay more attention to myself. Not to accept all of Beatrix’s insults and attempts to direct to me. Encouraging me to make plans of my own. 

Why should I bother? Arguing with Beatrix takes too much time and effort. 

Only in this game, if it concerns Amber, I want to treat my character right. I want to develop her in a way that brings out her full potential. 

Even if it means I have to challenge Beatrix to do this. 

I don’t know if Mona will back me up. Mona wants to please me, a little too much if you ask, but she goes wherever Beatrix follows. She’s even less used to standing up to Beatrix than I am.

Now Zoe will stand up to Beatrix, but Zoe is a little too hot headed. I’m not sure if direct conflict with the Game Master is going to work. 

I’d rather not upset Beatrix if I can. I try so hard to make her happy, to make this game fun. Every smile of hers has been a sneer of late. When I’m around her, I feel depressed, languid, and tongue-tied. I can’t a word in edgewise. She interrupts me before I can finish a sentence. 

Even talking to her is getting exhausting. 

It wasn’t always like this between us. 

When I first met Zoe, our conversation flowed in a free and easy way which reminded me of how Beatrix and I used to talk. Before Beatrix turned grim and grumpy. Before she started dominating every conversation. Before she lost her temper at the most innocent phrase. 

I wish I could get the old Beatrix back. I’m not sure how to do so.

Instead I play her game, getting more and more wrapped up in my character. 

Only that character is urging me to stand up to Beatrix. To leave her. This means some part of me isn’t happy with the way things are. 

What can I do about it?

Play the game. After all, The Players Are the Thing. Not even Beatrix can deny that. 

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Q is for Quartz

You treacherous scribbler! Combining Q is for Quartz with Secondary Characters Speak Out is underhanded! Hmmph! Well I suppose you are busy, writing about other characters than myself. Again. You’d better get back to that book about stones once April is over…I want you at least a little more knowledgable on the subject when you write my story. Hmph!

Fine. This time, I’m interviewing myself for my monthly blog. Me!

You want to know what my goal is? For the scribbler to finish *my* story. For her to improve her education on the rich and fascinating subject of rocks and stones, which are not necessarily the same thing. Not always. This information should make her do a better job and give me a little more power other than turning into simply the reluctant bride of some crazy sprite who gets trapped in a coffin. 

Above all, I want not to be dead. To give all those secondary characters out there a voice. Except for Oriana, that no good ladyfriend of my poor Fairest. Nimmie Not shouldn’t have one either. 

Who’s Nimmie Not? I really wish I wasn’t going to find out. It’s a measure of how cruel and capricious the scribbler is that in giving me a story, she also gave him one. 

Huh, these have more been my goals as a blogger and breaker of fourth walls. As a character, well, I wanted to find a home. Some measure of peace from the interracial conflict between the dwarves, goblins, and kobolds in the mountains more rich in precious metals. Hmph, some of those creatures are calling themselves gnomes now. Trying to look like dwarves, hanging around in gardens, pretending they’re all friendly and cute. Hah! I haven’t forgiven them for the pranks they played on poor Garnet. More fool me for making a bargain with one of these creatures, even when the advantage appeared to be mine. It never is. It seemed like the best way to deal with Nimmie Not at the time. Now my brothers are stuck in a cottage which almost feels like a part of Nimmie Not, especially that blasted cuckoo clock. I wanted to throw it out, but Opal actually likes it, the fool. Ah, well, the cottage seemed sanctuary enough for my brothers. It was a haven for our little princess, too, when she came to live with us. 

Only something went terribly wrong. Fairest’s former love caught up with her. Tricked her into taking a bite of that cursed apple. For almost a century, our lass slept in the crystal coffin I wrought with my ability to shape quartz. I’d finally figured out a way to wake her up, only it cost me. Yes, there was more to my falling down, seemingly dead like that. 

This is what I get for listening to Nimmie Not’s advice. You’ll be able to read the whole story once the scribbler finishes Of Cuckoo Clocks and Crystal Coffins. Gah, is that the best she can do for a title?

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

P is for Phaedra

Hello! Phaedra here, protagonist from our creatrix’s published short story, A Symposium in Space. Only it’s expanded! Hopefully I’ll be the main character in an up and coming novella by the time you read this. 

What are my goals? I’ve been asking myself that question. I think I discover them in the course of my story. 

The first is to change my relationship with Pausania. I’m not happy with how things are going, but I don’t want to lose her. 

The second is to attend Agathea’s symposium. I’m curious why she invited me along with Pausania. Why would one of the wealthiest, most powerful citizens of the Intergalactic Democracy invite either one of use to a private dinner party? What is she planning?

The rest of my goals I’ll discover as I go along. What a discovery it is, though, involving a space pirate, a wandering philosopher, and the space ship of my dreams. Plus I’ll explore the very nature of love itself in a form I can literally taste. 

Don’t take my word for it. Look A Symposium in Space when it comes out in an expanded form. Discover along with me just what my goals are. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

O is for Oleander

Take a closer look. Have you ever seen such loveliness as mine?

Oh, all right, this sweet face isn’t truly mine. It belonged to a boy long ago, a boy as lovely and poisonous as the flower I named him for. 

No, that wasn’t his real name. Tough, it’s the name I’ve given him and better than he deserved. Oleander enjoyed tormenting people with his looks. He pretended they weren’t there, wrinkling his nose when they demanded his attention. I can just see his little button nose wrinkling. I don’t need to read his thoughts to know what they were. 

Ugly Thomas. Thomas the troll. 

He thought he could look down on me, act like I was nothing. Only I won, didn’t I? I stole his face and made it my own. Oleander’s beauty is all mine. In fact, I am Oleander, the Oleander I always dreamed of. Not the boy I wasted my fantasies upon. Not the big disappointment I was punished for stalking. 

Strange. I sometimes still talk as if I were Thomas. I don’t need to be that pathetic loser any more. Not now that I’m one with Seraphix. My godling has transformed me into something new. Thomas was just a shell I hatched from.

I’m perfectly poisonous, exquisitely evil. I can be the dark temptation others inflicted upon me. Beauty is now mine. I shall use it. 

Only this face is nothing compared to another’s. 

I thought Oleander was the loveliest thing I’d ever beheld. My desire to possess him brought me back, drew me to Omphalos. It made me call upon Seraphix. 

Only I’ve seen a pair of twins even more beautiful than Oleander. 

Each has the same delicate face, the same enormous violet blue eyes fringed by golden lashes, a little darker than the shaggy curls falling from their heads. Each of them has the same cute button nose, even cuter than Oleander’s, curse them!

The thought of those twins, Danyel and Tayel irk me more than anything. They live in the Old Cottage. They’re among the first residents of Omphalos, the sons of Ashleigh, and the favorites of Lord Dyvian. 

All of this irks me even more. Irks me, yet fascinates me. 

Seraphix cheated me. I struck a bargain with this godling in return for possessing perfect beauty. I thought Oleander had it. Now I find there are boys even prettier than him. 

Ah, but Seraphix may be in trouble. I emerged from the fusion between Him and Thomas, emerging from Thomas’s wish. I was born from an aspect of the godling. 

This means I have as much power over Seraphix as He has over me. I just need to figure out to use that connection. 

One thing troubles me. One of the twins were there when I was created. He held my hand, leant me his power. 

Why did Danyel do that? 

He never liked Thomas. Thomas bullied him, tormented him, did everything to force him to admit he was small and weak. 

Danyel retaliated by making fools of both Thomas and his father, showing them how big and clumsy they were. 

I can’t help admiring him for that. 

Thomas did, too, in spite of himself. I’m guessing Jupitre did as well. It was quite a blow to his pride. Thomas’s father can be a vengeful one. Not that Jupitre is truly Thomas’s father. 

Thomas’s actual father was a lot meaner. He’s the one that showed Thomas how worthless he was unless he smashed someone or somthing to a pulp. 

All that smashing never made Thomas feel any better. 

Well, I’m not going to be like my former self, attacking squirrels in order to prove myself. 

I’m going to watch Danyel instead, follow his every move. Where does he get his power? Why was a frail boy like him able to beat someone twice his size?

I’ll discover Danyel’s secrets. Once I do, Danyel will be mine. Neither of his brothers will be able to stop me. 

Watch me in A Godling for Your Thoughts? when our fool of a creatrix finally publishes it. You may catch glimpes of me in other Tales of the Navel/The Shadow Forest. You’ll see what I can do.