[Story] A Story a Week 17

[[ Prompt: A story set in a country you’ve never been to.

Wow, this prompt was soooo vague, because basically everything I write is set in a place I’ve never been to. I decided to continue Tamazi’s story, as she’ll soon be stepping into a place she’s never been as well. ]]

Tamazi could still feel the lightning crackling through her whiskers as she and Harvian fled the swamp. Tamazi the Drakeslayer! She could only imagine the expression on the faces of her clan if they ever heard about that. But how would they? They were so far away from them now, and they wouldn’t allow her back even if she did return. And the only one who’d seen it was the little creature beside her, marching grimly through the black mud beside her. She doubted very much that they would listen to him. Perhaps if he did that lightning trick first. Still, Tamazi felt a thrill of excitement that was difficult to forget.

They found a place to rest near a small stream, wading in to wash away the clinging black mud. Tamazi’s reached over her knees, but poor Harvian was covered nearly to his neck. His fancy cloth looked ruined too. Tamazi watched as he shrugged out of it and washed them in the stream, too. He looked even smaller and more vulnerable without it, just a tiny scrap of a thing. He hung it across a branch to dry, and he made a fire so they could get warm in the meantime. He took the map out from his pack and unrolled it.

“We should be here,” he said, pointing just beside a dark spot on the map. That must be the swamp. Tamazi looked at the markings, but they didn’t mean anything to her. She’d never been this far south, and wasn’t sure what else might lay ahead of them. There was one thing she could decipher — the temple. It was drawn larger than anything else, and had a circle drawn above it that looked like the Eye. But if Harvian had a map, why did he need her to take him there? If he could make lightning, he seemed perfectly capable of protecting himself against clans or drakes or anything else.

Harvian put a string into the stream with a bug on it, and caught some fish to eat. Tamazi had never eaten fish before, but she found them very pleasing, their flesh was light and delicious, yet just as filling as meat. That was something else she could show to the clan — if she ever went back, that is. She could not think of any places where fish might live, but she could find one and return with some, their bodies gleaming silver in the sunlight. She had not really considered what might happen once Harvian reached the temple.

Unmarked, any proper clan would see her as an outsider, and turn her away. There were surely groups of rogues, other unmarked hunters who banded together for the sake of survival. She remembered sometimes hearing stories about them from the males. But he made them sound wicked and terrible, oathbreakers and murderers and worse. Tamazi wasn’t any of those things, at least not on purpose. She looked at the map again. Maybe clans did things differently in the south. Maybe one of them would invite her to stay; after Harvian told them of her amazing feats. Maybe they’d even make her their chief huntress. Wouldn’t that be something!



[Story] Imralion’s Journal

Kuul has been helping me with the investigation. Mostly he’s been filing papers, which can’t be very interesting but he seems happy to do it. I was able to get some information from the Spire but it’s not very well organized so we are working on that. His handwriting isn’t very good but he can put things in the right folders. He is working on it, though. I asked him if he might not want to learn magic one day at the school, but he said he’s too old. I don’t know if that’s really the case, but maybe he’s just not interested, I know I’m not. Then I suggested that maybe he could go to the rangers, I know their captain will train people and someone from the Row already went there and he’s doing fine as far as I know. Kuul said that he would rather be a blood knight. That’s not easy. I didn’t want to discourage him, but I think it might be really difficult for someone from the Row. It’s one of those places in the city where your name is important. But they let me join, so I guess if he’s good enough it won’t matter. Or if no sons from rich families are trying out during that time. He wants me to train him. I had to make sure he meant actual training and not something else. I guess I could do it, I’ve never trained anyone before but it could be helpful for me too. Then he could go during one of the trials and hopefully impress them enough. I think he should make up a fake name and a mysterious background. They’d probably like that more than the Row. I am going to give him one of my old swords that isn’t very good. It will be fine for practice.

He’s the one who is actually on the Row a lot of the time, and hears things. It’s still so frustrating to me that people don’t trust me and won’t talk to me like they do to him. I guess I can understand why, but I’m actually trying to help them. Making it more difficult doesn’t help, it’s already difficult enough. A lot of times proper records aren’t kept so we haven’t been able to identify the man who rented the building yet. And evidently he never paid taxes either, which doesn’t surprise me too much. Kuul has been telling the workers to keep an eye out for him. I don’t know if that will do much, because they were before and someone still went missing. The need to eat has to over-ride the need for caution eventually. I thought about making a signal they could use if they were in danger, something like a code word that wouldn’t tip off the murderer. Then they could alert people around them if they felt something was off. Kuul seemed to like the idea. Hopefully it’ll catch on, and actually help. But if the murderer takes them somewhere isolated, it still won’t save anyone. I feel like that kid dying is my fault. I should have stopped it somehow. I don’t want any more to die.

Things are okay at home, though Kavia keeps coming over. Aeramin keeps trying to invite her to stay over, or he asks if I want him to leave the room. I still think they should spend more time together. I did try asking about Lyorri and that didn’t go very well either. But I guess Kestrae and Ordinicus have finally adopted her, and changed her name away from Pumpkinhead. Arancon must have been steaming mad about that, I wish I could have seen it. Serves him right though.

[Art] Custom Funko POP – Ornasse

Yay he’s finished! I feel like I’ve improved a lot in making hair and clothes. Now I just need to perfect the art of shading…

He is customized off the blank Male DIY figure. I’m thinking about a few others, such as Lor’themar, but my reborn kit arrived today and that’s next on my list!

[Story] A Story a Week 16

[[ Prompt: A story that begins with a gunshot.

Tirzo embarks on a life of crime and villainy! ]]

The blaster shot crackled through the silence of the morning, and for a moment, the whole world stood still. Then it erupted into chaos, shrill alarms sounding from the ambassador’s compound, shouting from someone within. Tirzo clutched the blaster pistol tightly, still hot from use. He wasn’t startled by that, at least; he’d been practicing. No doubt the Captain would have refused if he’d known what Tirzo had in mind. He ran as fast as his legs would carry him, crunching across the crust of snow. In a moment of panic, he realized that he had left a trail of footprints. It would take them no time at all to find him. Throwing the blaster into his pack, he scrambled up a rocky cliffside. Hopefully it would be enough to lose the guards, but he knew he didn’t have long.

Had the ambassador died? He thought so. Tirzo would never forget the look on his face as he sunk to the floor. It scared him, but at the same time he felt glad, and worse — he felt powerful. He had done that. He was the one who had taken care of the problem, made things better for the poor people who lived there. They were on one of a series of backwater planets in Imperial space, Tirzo didn’t remember the name. They all looked the same. The Captain wanted to sell things and pick up supplies, though he confided in Tirzo once that he was looking for something else. Just what it was, he could never get the Captain to admit. It had been his mother Xiras who suggested they stop here. She paid for the clothing and shoes out of her own salary, which inspired the Captain to give supplies to the townspeople as well. She wouldn’t say why she was so keen to help these people in particular, Tirzo guessed that she knew them, perhaps had even once stayed here when she was younger.

Everyone hated the ambassador. Tirzo was doing them all a favor, even if they’d never know it was him. Or at least he hoped. He ran up the plank into the ship, mindful of how loud his feet sounded on the metal. He’d wait in the cargo hold until everything calmed down. His mother or one of the other crew would find him sooner or later, and everything would be okay. Or at least that’s what he told himself to try to soothe his jangled nerves. It wasn’t working. His heart still fluttered in his chest like a small animal caught in a cage. He could still hear the sirens outside, and something else as well. A transmission in the cockpit? Tirzo tipped his head to try to listen; he could hear the static and crackle and someone was speaking, but he couldn’t make out the words. Frowning, Tirzo carefully took the blaster out of his pack. It had been dangerous to leave it in there like that, it could have gone off and hurt him while he was running. The Captain would scold him if he knew, and surely take it away from him. He didn’t know that Tirzo had it now; he’d lifted it out of the armory closet when it was left unlocked, which was most of the time. Tirzo opened a crate of killik silk and dropped the blaster inside. He could retrieve it later.

“You just caused us a whole heap of trouble, kid.”

Tirzo blinked to see the Captain with him in the cargo hold. Thankfully his mother wasn’t here — yet. She always had a sense when he was in trouble and tended to show up just in time to catch him in the middle of it. Tirzo furrowed his brow. “He deserved it.”

“Yeah, maybe. That doesn’t change the fact that Imperial guards are locking the place down, no one leaves until they find you.” Tirzo stared at the Captain. “And they’re just going to send somebody else to take his place, who’s going to be on edge already. Guess who’s going to pay for it?”

“Oh,” said Tirzo. He hadn’t considered that.

The Captain glanced quickly around the cargo hold, then he went to the ramp to look outside. “If anyone saw you–”

“They didn’t!” Tirzo insisted.

“Are you sure?” The Captain gave him a hard stare that had Tirzo cringing back behind his crates. “There are cameras and droids all over this place.” Even here? Tirzo hadn’t considered that either. He felt tears stinging his eyes. He was scared, but he wouldn’t admit it to anyone, least of all the Captain.

“What am I going to do?” Tirzo asked, and his voice wavered in spite of all his attempts at bravery.

The Captain took his blaster from the holster. It was a good one, a lot nicer than the piece of junk Tirzo had been using. “Take this,” he said, pressing it into Tirzo’s hands. “And this.” He rummaged in his pockets for a stack of credits. They were 100 each, and there were a lot of them.


“You can’t stay here,” the Captain hissed, his voice low. “They know your mother is here and they know you were on this ship. They’re going to tear it apart looking for you. You need to disappear. I know someone who can help you do it.”

“But–” Where was Xiras? He had to at least tell her that he was leaving. He had to at least tell her goodbye.

The Captain was on his holo, his voice was low enough that Tirzo couldn’t hear what he was saying, but he sounded worried. Or scared. Maybe both. The holo was old, too, and he couldn’t see the person on the end very well. Maybe that was intentional.

“Get in there,” the Captain pointed to one of the crates. “Hurry.”

Tirzo blinked, but did as he was told. It looked far too small for him, but he could fit if he tucked his legs and arms in all the way. He heard it click closed and the latch go into place. He couldn’t see or hear anyone. It was the last time he saw the Captain or his mother.

[Story] Fairsong Academy – Irael’s Letter

Dear Mother,

I told you to stop worrying about the school! They aren’t going to sell us or anything. If they were they wouldn’t have bothered to hire all those people to act like teachers and students. Did you see how I’ll have my own practice room? I’m really excited about that. I think my room is bigger than our whole house at home. I know some people live in the houses on the grounds, maybe they would let you do that too? I could ask if you want. But then I don’t know what jobs they have out here, mostly everyone in the town is dead. Or undead, you know. I think working in the city is probably better than working with dead people.

Monday was my first day of classes. I was soooo nervous about it but it helped a little when I talked to Magister Firewind. He’s the one who is from the Row. I bet you’d probably recognize him, he has really bright orange curly hair, it’s very unique. He talked to Felarius and I and he told us we wouldn’t have to worry about paying for things, and also to tell him if anyone was causing trouble for us. I’m not sure if I really would, because obviously they would know who told, but so far everyone’s been really nice so maybe it won’t even be a problem. Of course I don’t think they know where we are from, except for Des. Some of them are definitely rich, one was talking about how she went to a private school in Silvermoon. But others I think might just be from the city, not the Row but not the rich parts either.

So we’re starting to learn magical theory, which is good because it’s a lot easier when there’s a teacher you can ask questions and have them explain things to you. In the book there’s diagrams and things but the way they said it made a lot more sense. I am sure I’ll get better much more quickly now. Oh and we get private lessons with our teachers, which is really great. I’m going to be a magister in no time at all! Well, maybe not, Des has been here for years since the school started. I didn’t ask how long the scholarship was for. I hope it’s long enough that I can finish my classes. She also said they sometimes take trips to Outland. There’s a big library there that sometimes the students can visit, and also shops. I don’t know about buying things but Des said the Headmaster would give us money. I’d probably just keep it and buy one small thing to eat or something.

Speaking of eating, I’m going to get so fat here! The food is so amazing, it’s the best food I ever ate. I can’t wait for the party so you can come eat some of it. I mean I know we had lunch but the dinner is even better, and there’s cakes baked every day. I have to stop myself from eating three plates full every night, though secretly I think Tik likes it when I ask for more. Tik is the butler, if you remember. I can’t believe I’m in a place that has a butler! It’s so weird to write that.

Magister Firewind said I should go see the healer in town. He said it like just for a check-up, but I don’t want to go to a healer, there’s nothing wrong with me! Also I’d have to tell her where I’m from and that would be embarrassing. The others said she’s nice, which I’m sure she is, but you know how people are. There’s also a confessor who I guess you are supposed to tell all the bad things you’ve done. Nice try! I’m not admitting to anything. I haven’t done anything bad since coming here and it’s going to stay that way, so I don’t need to talk to him.


[Story] Fairsong Academy – Loralinde’s Journal

Our house is going to be ready so soon! I can hardly believe it. Every day I go and look to see how far they are, and every day it’s closer. Of course, there’s a lot to do on the inside once the outsides are done, such as the floors and walls. But it’s actually looking like a house instead of just a bunch of wood and stone. Keyalenn and I have gone shopping for some of the things we’ll need. It turns out there’s more than you think! Things for the kitchen and bathroom and all of that. It’s expensive, thankfully his parents gave him money for it. Mostly everything is blue so far, because he likes it. The builders are going to make the rooms all different shades, he already gave them the little scraps of paint to show the right color. It still feels strange to think I’ll have my own house soon, I don’t feel old enough to! But I’m happy about it. I’ll still want to study with the others during the day I think, then I can spend evenings with Keyalenn. I bought some mageroyal tea already too. I was so embarrassed I thought I would die! The lady said I need to start drinking it a couple of weeks before, so I’ve started already. I feel like everyone knows and they’re looking at me. I’m sure Tik knows. I’m a little nervous about that, too. Well, a lot nervous. The only person I know I can ask about it is Des and she isn’t very specific. I tried reading some books but they aren’t very realistic, I think. I suppose I could go to Lani and ask her.

Oh, we have two new students. They’re both a bit younger, still taking some general classes. I haven’t talked to the boy but the girl seems nice. She’s still trying to learn her way around and staring at everything, I remember being like that! I hope there’s a ball soon so they can see how nice they are. It’s getting warm enough now that it could be outdoors, so long as it doesn’t rain. The new girl is staying in Xarola’s old room, which might be a little lonely since there aren’t many people in the main house now. I hope the headmaster finds more students so she has someone to talk to. I also feel a little guilty leaving the others behind in the new house. I’ll come to visit them.

The ghosts have not been very active lately. I’ve not had very many signs of contact from them. I wonder if they prefer the colder weather? I am still keeping my notes about what they do and when. It’s strange but I miss them a little, is it possible to miss ghosts? I wonder if they ever miss anyone. I suppose they miss people from when they were alive.

[Art] WiP – Ornasse POP

I wanted to write today but weekends aren’t the best for it. I did get Ornasse primed, though! I’m really excited to start painting on him.