Thursday, October 27, 2005

Chapter 9

Here’s part of another chapter I’m working on.  As always, I welcome, critique, comments, suggestions.

As they reached the low rolling foothills, Omron guided the stallion from the road.  Tall winter grass crackled loudly under the weight of the two massive horses.  Fresh rabbit tracks crossed their path at irregular intervals, promising good hunting.
"Over there," Carandahl could not keep the excitement from his voice.  "Release your bird first, Omron."
"Hunt," Omron commanded, following the falcon with hungry eyes.  He was tempted to allow his mind to join the soaring bird, but he knew the folly of such an act.  Here in the wild, he would be vulnerable in the extreme should he succumb to this desire.
A resonant screech signaled that the bird had espied her quarry.  Wings swept back she plummeted arrow like toward the frightened hare.  Swift, unforgiving death descended as the rabbit froze in its tracks.

Raising his arm to bring the falcon in, Omron stopped short. "Caran, listen!  Wolves, hunting this early in the day.  They’re close by the sound of them.  We had better go."
The tone of the mage's voice chilled Caran to the bone.  He sensed more than Omron had voiced.  It was much too early in the day for the packs to be about.  His bay, Harn, danced nervously at the proximity of the ravening throng, nearly unseating the captain.  "Blast it, Harn," he swore quietly. "Settle down before you get us all killed!"
Without warning, the first wolf burst from cover, directly in front of the riders.  Harn balked slightly, but held his ground now that he could see the enemy.  
The animal was a pale grey, mangy beast, with a full black ruff around its neck.  Malignant, yellow eyes pinned the Arch Mage in his tracks.  Teeth barred in a ferocious snarl, it ruthlessly stalked the men.  Just as suddenly, two mottled brown, shaggy mongrels darted for the horses from behind.  Leria kicked viciously at the nearest, sending it sprawling with a broken neck.  Three more animals rapidly took its place.
Caran tore his long blade from the sheath, but the skittering horse made it impossible to use.  One of the lesser creatures launched itself at Harn's throat as another snapped viciously at an exposed tendon.

Whirling the black in a tight circle, Omron shot mage lightning at the animal lunging for Harn's throat.  The ferocious creature was blown to pieces.  On instinct, Leria charged at the wolf dogging the other horse from behind.  The great hooves crashed repeatedly into the wolf's head, leaving no more than a bloody smudge in the snow.
"Run!" roared Omron, spurring Leria into a gallop.  Moments later, Caran followed suit, the wolves nipping at their heels.       The badly frightened horses strove valiantly to leave the monsters behind, but they stolidly refused to give up.  Another victim fell to Omron's mage fire and a second keeled over dead in its tracks.  Its heart had burst.
Alone now, the huge grey animal continued to follow the men and horses.  Oblivious to all else, the wolf pursued them to within sight of the Keep, driven by a manic rage within its tiny brain.
Within a hundred yards of the stable gate, Omron vowed he could not permit the animal to live.  Loose within the Keep, it would do untold damage.  Signaling Caran to return home, he turned the black to meet the enemy head on.
There could be no true battle between the Arch Mage and the crazed wolf.  Animal cunning and stealth was no match against the centuries of knowledge and power held by Omron.  Even so, he was loath to kill the brute.
Driven mad with hate, the wolf threw itself head long at the rider and horse, completely unaware of the eminent danger.  Omron caught the animal in mid leap with fire and lightning singeing the air.  In the space of a heart beat, the wolf was dead.

The stench of charred flesh filled Omron's nostrils, nearly causing him to wretch as he turned with disgust from the monster.
He hated killing.  And this was the worst kind; cold blooded murder.  It was no consolation that the blame was not his own.  He was certain that the wolf acted at the behest of another.  Someone or something had driven the animal to pursue the Arch Mage.
Angrily, Omron spurred Leria toward the Keep.  He sought only to put as much distance between him and the dead wolf as possible.  The horse trembled under his weight with fear and excitement, glad to be quit of the coppery smell of death.

Caran was nearly ready to ride back to aid his friend when he espied the black moving toward the Keep.  Seeing the wolf gone, his heart filled with relief.  The stricken look upon the mage's face gave him pause.
"The animal is dead," Omron whispered.  "I had no choice I could not allow it to live."
"Omron, do not berate yourself," Caran pleaded.   "As you said, you had no choice.  You must not blame yourself."
Simply nodding his head, Omron sighed, "You are correct, of course, but that doesn't make it any easier.  Come, let's go inside.  I've had enough hunting for one day."

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

I'm Still Here

Twice now I've written a long post and then lost them when the internet cut out. I just wanted to say I haven't fallen off the face of the Earth.

I'm afraid to press my luck, so this is it for tonight.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005


Notice that was with an "I" not a "B". Problem is, I have hives all over my body. I took a Benadryl as soon as I got home, but that doesn't help me at work because they put me to sleep. I think my body has revolted. I've been in almost constant pain for the last four years, endured sciatica injections, physical therapy, chiropractors, pain pills and epidurals.

If that isn't enough, I'm having to do the work of three people (I'm too stupid to say no), writing a book or I should say editing a book, and reading five books at one time (I even read at stop lights.) And let's not forget my Master Gardening class on Mondays. The heat is on at work to get the store in Biloxi, MS and Beaumont, TX reopened. And I have three revisions on other stores waiting for me. That's not including the 51 cost tracking reports I have to do the fifteenth of every month.

I was a little ticked this afternoon when I asked if one of my co-workers could help me out a little. They were both too busy. Next time they ask me to take one of their projects...I'll probably just say yes. I told you I was too stupid to say no.

Worse yet, I haven't been able to blog or check anyone else's. I'm being deprived.

I think the real clincher was that stupid fund raiser Saturday night. It was a whole bunch of phonies parading around trying to look important. The young ones reminded me of one of Karyn's characters (I'm so rich and beautiful). The old ones wandered around trying to look like the young ones. I've never seen so much makeup in one place.

On another note, some of you may remember me saying I pulled two dead rats out of the garden pond back in July. Well, I was sitting in the family room the other day when I saw one at the bird feeder. Jimbob called Terminex and they supposedly came out (while we weren't home) and baited and old trap.

A few days later I saw first one rat going up the side of the house and a short time later two more. Jiimbob called Terminex again and they reluctantly sent a man out four days later. This guy swore the damage we had in the garage was from a rabbit. At Jimbob's insistence, he finally set numerous traps in the garage and attic. The first day we caught 7, the next day seven more. Six adults and 8 babies. If we hadn't killeed them, before long there would have been thousands.

Oh well, I think I'll take my hive covered derrier and go sit on something soft.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Fund Raiser

I'm just sitting here waiting for my blue jeans to dry so I can wear them to a stupid fund raiser called, "Diamonds and Denims". Now ain't that just too cute?

Jimbob's step-daughter, T is really into that kind of shit and I absolutely hate it! She gave us tickets, and he thinks we HAVE to go because T gave us tickets. Grumble, grumble.

On a lighter note JC, Ali and I went to the Texas state fair this morning. We really had a great time. They always have a bird of prey show that I like to watch. And the botanical gardens were beautiful.

Well, anyway, I better go check my denims to see if they're dry yet. I have the dryer set on high, which is probably a mistake. I'll probably look like ten pounds of sugar in a five pound bag. I just hope this affair isn't going to be as bad as I think.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Hi and Goodbye

I sat down here to do a really great blog, but all my enthusiasm suddenly evaporated. So it's high and goodbye for today.

Sunday, October 09, 2005


Down and out. At least that's how I feel at the end of Monday. I'm not used to sitting all day without being able to get up and move around when I need to.

I love the Master Gardening class, but I"m not sure I have enough pain pills to make it throught the entire class.

Tomorrow I go for my last epidural and I hope to get better results from this one. I think the second one actually made the pain in my back and legs worse. But I still have hopes. I don't want to live the rest of my life gulping pain pills. I sure could use a little magic here and a whole bunch of prayers.

Saturday Blahs!

Yesterday was a total do nothing day.  I got up in time to fix Jimbob breakfast and then sat down in the recliner and went right back to sleep.    I didn’t even hear him when he left.

It’s a good thing I set my alarm so I could tape the Texas/OU game for him or I’d have slept right through it.  Not that it mattered much the way the Sooners played.  He gets so emotional when his team doesn’t win.  The way he yells I don’t know why he even bothers to watch.  

Of course, I think the way the Dallas Cowboys are playing this year, I may decide to go for a very long walk.  I’d say go for a drive, but who can afford to do that anymore?

Friday, October 07, 2005

Its Friday Frippery

It’s Friday Frippery. My word of the day is: algophobia. Today, we have to go to the Britannica On Line Encyclopedia. Algophobia means: an abnormal fear of pain. As in: I refuse to go to the dentist because of my algophobia. Maybe I came up with this one because I couldn’t sleep last night due to back pain. No wonder I’m in such a pissy mood.

WARNING: This is my forum to be my inane, irrelevant, irreverent, irregular, irresponsible, smart ass self. The opinions expressed in this column are still not and probably never will be those of management. Who gives a damn what management thinks?

1. Here’s an example of what I mean when I talk about gouging on gas prices. I pass a Chevron station everyday on my way to and from work. This particular station has always been the most expensive in McKinney (and living up to its reputation). Tuesday evening their sign read 2.79. Wednesday morning it read 2.85. Wednesday evening the same sign read 2.89. Now here’s the kicker. Thursday morning the new price per gallon of gas read 3.09. That’s 30 red cents in less than 48 hours. That’s called piracy!

Something is definitely wrong with this picture. You can’t tell me they had 3 deliveries in a day and a half with higher cost on each that would account for this kind of price increase. At this rate, I can’t afford to drive to work.

2. I heard on the radio late yesterday that the cost of heating with natural gas may go up as much as 90% this winter. First we’re getting screwed on gasoline prices and now this. Thank God Texas doesn’t normally get bitter cold. Of course this will be an all time, record setting, subzero winter. I HATE BEING COLD!

3. Last night, rummaging through the moldy attic of my brain, I ran across the scene of Madeline Kahn in Blazing Saddles in which she sings the awful song, I’m Tired. She blats in a horrible imitation of Marlene Dietrich “I’m tired, so tired. I’m so very tired”. The saloon had billed her as the “Teutonic Titwillow”. Absolutely hilarious, but I was too tired to laugh.

4. I’ve been working diligently on my book. About the time I think I’ve finished one chapter to my satisfaction, I realize it needs to be tweaked (goosed) again. At this rate I’ll never finish. On the way home last night I had an epiphany. As I mentioned before, I wrote this years and years ago and I decided to dust it off and see what I could do with it. Unfortunately one of my characters bears a strong resemblance to Hagrid in the Harry Potter books. Of course, no one will believe that my Jessup was born long before Hagrid was even a wet dream for JK.

I hope everyone has a great weekend. TTFN

Sunday, October 02, 2005

By the by...

I've had very little time this past week, so of course no blogs. What I've been doing is...working on a book. It's one I wrote a looooong time ago. Since I have a dozen or so projects started and none complete, I decided to dust this off and see what I can do with it.

How embarrasing to reread what you thought was good only to realize how bad it was. Below is a few pages of chapter ONE that I have reworked. Feel free to offer advice, criticism, PRAISE, or whatever. If you don't like fantasy, you probably won't like it, so go away.


His face set in stone, only his eyes betrayed Omron's mask like countenance as he searched the eager faces mobbing the council chambers. "Fools!" he whispered.

Of the myriad assortment of men, only the prisoner, Raith dared to return his unflinching stare. Raith was the one man he could not look in the eye. The youth lay at the center of their salvation, and he must sentence him to death.

“Come to order,” he said softly. His words reverberated to the highest rafters of the stone room. Sunlight from the open windows suddenly pierced the gloom. Stragglers rushed to find a vantage point on the hard wooden benches in horseshoe ranks flanking the Chair of Honor.

Omron sighed. The brilliant winter sun mocked his dark mood. His entire life had been dedicated to serving the people. Yet most of them never overcame their fear of the wizards…and him most of all. Even his six council members averted their gaze as he quickly dismissed them from mind.

“Come to order,” he said again. Omron did not like what he was about to do. Yet, he must deal harshly with the young man to insure the trial appeared legitimate. Not even his closest friends must doubt the outcome of this hearing. Sadly, Raith would never understand the workings of his complex mind. It was a heavy burden that he must bear alone.

Let’s get on with it,” a rough voice jeered from the onlookers. “Give Raith justice for once!”

He would give them justice alright. It would be far more than they ever expected. Coldly he searched the cavernous room for…what, he didn’t know. Dust swirled in the combined light of the glow bulbs and sunshine reminding him of the fairy creatures of which he was so fond.

With more impatience than he intended, he intoned, "As befits the trial of an initiated wizard, there will be no outsiders present. All but the mage born shall immediately depart from this chamber.”

“That’s not fair,” a burley man dressed in the garb of a blacksmith shouted. “We’ve waited hours to see Raith brought down.”

“Guards, you shall also wait outside.” Omron ignored the outburst. “I will summon you at the proper time. This man poses no threat to me or any others privileged to witness his trial." He glared at the blacksmith to make sure he’d gotten the message.

Stunned silence followed as the commoners filed reluctantly through the triple sets of massive, double doors. They had come to witness a spectacle. This sudden, unforeseen development sat uneasily in their judgment.

The soldiers glanced nervously toward Omron, secretly hoping he would not change his mind before they might escape. Captain Loral asked, “Are you su…?” but the words died upon his lips. Omron’s gaze bored right through him.

“Get them moving,” Loral barked. But the order was unnecessary as the soldiers officiously hustled the laggards through the double sets of doors, gruffly disguising their own fear. Not one would admit their relief upon dismissal.

Omron turned his undivided attention upon the prisoner. His piercing green eyes probed for signs of guilt. "Raith of Thedi, you stand accused of murder and treason. As Arch Mage, it is my painful duty to bring you to trial before this council of your peers. How do you plead?" he demanded harshly.

“No!” the wizards Marrick and Gorning gasped. Several others rose from their seats. “Why?” someone else asked

Raith stammered, "My lord...I cannot believe my ears! I am now, and always have been faithful to you and the council. I stand unjustly accused! I am innocent of all charges." With the greatest of efforts, he drew himself erect and peered proudly into Omron's chilling gaze.

Manacled hand and foot, the slight framed Raith swayed precariously upon his feet. The spelled irons dampened his vivid blue mage aura to a pale glimmer. No wizard in Canth could stand against such cruel restraints.

The youth's words fell upon deaf ears. Omron continued without emotion, "Two days ago the elfling, Borg, disappeared amid a whirling vortex of virulent mage light. This base disturbance irreparably burned the eyes from several witnesses.”
Again, Marrick gasped loudly, “Surely this cannot be true. Raith has been missing nigh on a year.”

Omron silenced the protestors with no more than a look. “I accuse you, Raith as the perpetrator of this blasphemous misuse of the sacred art of magic!”

“No…that can’t be,” Raith whispered.

Omron continued, “There are witnesses who place you oft in the company of the renegade wizard, Borth of Stansa.”
Raith glared unblinking at his former mentor. “Then your witnesses lie. You of all people should know I could never perform such atrocities.”

“As you well know, Borth is a powerful and corrupt mage...and the sworn enemy of Aden and all that He stands for. We must deem those who would traffic with him among our sworn enemies.”