Happy Holidays!!

Merry, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Yule, and Festivus (for the rest of us) to you all!!

Being the time of year for giving, I thought I would share an excerpt from a story I have been working on. It takes place after the collapse of society (AKA the post-apocalypse) and follows a group of freelancers on a quest. The excerpt is from Chapter 2, where two of our freelancers get chatted up by a post-apocalyptic store owner about something he heard on the radio…

And here it is…

While Medix and Rivett were perusing the guns & ammo district, one of the shopkeepers called out to them with enthusiasm. “Hey there, young’uns!” He cried. “Did any of ya happen to hear the good news?”

Rivett replied, “If we say ‘yes’, do we get a discount?”

Medix was less inclined to humor the old man. “We don’t have time to waste on town rumors, Riv…”

“It’s no rumor, young man!” The old man then pointed to the radio and said, “It’s on frequency 14.8!”

Now, even Medix was curious. “What is?”

“The Remnants! They’re talking to us through the radio!”

Medix thought the old man was losing his mind; all he could hear on the old man’s radio was a voice narrating about ‘peaceful times’. It was Rivett who asked, “What the hell are the Remnants?”

“They’re the old guard!” The man swung his arms, gesticulating wildly. “What’s left of our old government, coming back to save us from this hellscape we’re in!! Last night I heard the President say they’re coming soon!” Then the old man said the sweetest thing either of them ever heard; “Why, I’m so excited I declare everything in my shop is 50% off!!”

Then the old man’s wife, upon hearing her husband, intervened. “Clem Abernathy!!” She exclaimed, storming up to the old man till her face was inches away from his. “You ain’t givin’ discounts like that while your wife is still breathin’!”

Rivett looked at the old man crooked. “Your name is Clem…?”

Clem stammered, “W-well, I better tend to the inventory!” Then upon regaining his composure, he exclaimed “Keep an ear out for the Remnants, young’uns! And GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!”

Once Clem was gone, his wife turned to the two. “Sorry about that lil argument we was havin’, young’uns. What can Old Catty do for you today?”

“Is there really some guy talking about unifying the country again?” Medix asked.

Old Catty sighed. “My husband has had that station on night and day. Drivin’ me up the damn wall! I can’t really blame him none; we were young when the world went to shit. Clem still remembers how things were… poor fool.”

“Yeah,” Rivett chimed in. “Must’ve smelled better.”

Old Catty laughed so hard at Rivett’s remark she almost passed out. “Certainly was, child!” She finally had the breath to say. “But enough of the small chatter. What can I do for y’all?”

…Have a great day y’all! Till next time!

Untitled update X

Work has been hectic to say the least. Just finished working four days in a row. It isn’t terrible, but it IS draining. I need to take some time off work so I can decompress. Of course the holidays are upon us so I may have to wait until next year. No big deal though, I need to see how much vacation time I accrued…

I’ve gone off the beaten path in Pokémon Sword. Been trying to level up a flying/psychic type I got for the fighting gym. Gonna be rough going. I know one of the Gym Leader’s pokes is fighting/dark! I may make posts about my adventures in the games at some point, if it pleases people…

Till next time!

Busy, Busy…

After today I have a four-day work week. Fortunately I’m only working five hours a day. Unfortunately, those hours are from early afternoon to evening, so if I had a night life, it would be put on hold.

Otherwise, I been getting ready for the holidays, giving to family, giving to myself, and basically preparing for next week and how busy it will be work-wise. No plans for the day itself. Probably going to play some games on the Nintendo Switch.

Speaking of, Been playing a lot of Pokemon Sword. Got through the Fire Gym (which was harder than I thought it would be!) Need to train some Pokes for the next gym, cause most of my guys are Dark-Type and would have a rough time with this one.

So in case any of you don’t know, this is the month for holidays, and I’m wondering which holiday you guys celebrate…

Christmas?

Hanukkah?

Kwanzaa?

Or do you just chill and stick to yourself like I do? Let me know! Till next time!

The first part of the story

Here are the first six pages of my first complete original story, titled “An Orc in Need”.

In the barren wastelands of the North there live a race of elves. As beautiful as the High Elves who live in the West but feared combatants and hunters like the Dragonborn of the East. They are the remnants of an empire that stretched across the frozen lands of the North that now lay in ruin.

The greatest of these Elves is the one known as the Winterhawk. A huntress from a dead village who escaped the bonds of enslavement to become a hero to all. Her adventures would bring great praise and glory to her name. This is but one of those adventures…

Our tale begins miles at the border between the North and the West, where the harsh snow gave way to green fields in the warmer months. It is here that Gaile Winterhawk was traveling by foot to meet with one of the most powerful kingdoms in the West, known as the Clans of McColloch. Compared to the other kingdoms the MacColloch’s were the most unique in that the leader was not one man of noble rank, but a council of elders and clan leaders united under one banner. One of these leaders was a Dwarf lord known as Tuenor. He had sent word to Gaile that his people needed her help a week prior to her journey. The Utopian Legion, in their desire to shore up as much iron as they could, had begun to kidnap any of Tuenor’s kin they could, holding them ransom for shipments of the metal. At first, the scum had tried to treat with the dwarf lord, but he would not hear them. Now his people cry for justice, but first the captives must be found and freed. But dwarves are good at three things; mining, crafting, and fighting. They are not good at tracking an elusive enemy. Tuenor had heard of Gaile from tales of her bravery and courage against all odds, as told by his kin from the Bleak Mountains. He had sent word to her by way of his cousin Balinor, telling of his peoples’ plight. Though she had just finished a hard-won battle, she went to them that day, knowing it would be a five-day journey to the lands down south.

But she did not travel alone. Accompanying her was a druidic ranger known as Quelleg. Having been born in the lands of McColloch, he had dealings with the Tuenor’s kin, and would be a useful guide in these unfamiliar lands. Being tall for a Gnome, his love for drink and womanly company was lost on his former fellow druids, who cast him out when he was due to be ordained. He didn’t mind; he was happier casting druidic spells without the rigidness of their rules anyway. Being tall for a gnome made it easier to make friends who couldn’t step on him accidentally.

Unfortunately, being tall for a gnome didn’t make it easier for long distance travel. His legs had tired of walking long ago, and now he was riding on top of their pack mule, a rather stubborn mule named Missy. Missy did not appreciate having a gnome on her back, and Gaile had to hold her reins in case she decided to stop moving, which the mule did often and for little to no reason.

“Tell me again why we have this blasted thing with us,” She asked her companion during one of Missy’s more stubborn bouts.

“Because it was that or carry five days of provisions on our own,” Quelleg replied, doing his best to urge the creature on by digging his heels into her sides. Eventually, the mule won out and they rested on the side of the road.

Gaile glared at the mule, watching it munch on one of the few patches of grass available on the path they were taking. “And to think this is only the third day!” She complained to Quelleg. “Must we suffer this mule any longer?”

“We could have it for dinner,” Quelleg replied with a hint of humor in his voice. “IF you would be willing to carry the provisions by yourself…”

Gaile frowned. “I guess we’ll have to suffer it a bit longer…” Quelleg laughed at her reply, then reached into his side bag for his pipe. “It is fortunate I know where we are,” He said, as he cleaned the old ash from his pipe. “There is an old inn half a mile from here. It lies near a tiny field where the stream feeds into the river. If we can get this mule to move, we should make it before dark.”

“Sounds good,” Gaile flashed Quelleg a weary smile before standing up. “I just hope there’s someone who will trade us a better pack mule there!”

“Maybe,” The gnome replied. With that, Gaile went to Missy and got her roused. The mule apparently had had enough of Quelleg riding her and started bucking every time the gnome tried to sit on her. Eventually, Quelleg decided it would be safer to walk behind Gaile and help her by holding the reins.

The sky had just begun its turn from day to night when they came upon the inn that Quelleg spoke of. “Ah! The inn!” Quelleg cried, unable to hide his relief. “Quickly, Gaile! The inn! The inn!” With that, the gnome began to make for the inn as fast as he could.

But Gaile did not share her companion’s haste. Something felt wrong to her senses. It was too quiet for one, especially for this time of night on a heavily traveled path as the one they took. And it had been a long time since they met anyone coming from the other direction. Most importantly, an inn is usually a bustle of noise and motion, even in the early evening. And innkeepers- the experienced ones, anyway- would hang a lantern out near their doors when it began to get dark for the weary travelers. And not only was it quiet, but there were no lights shining outside or in.

Just then, her senses picked up a noise that confirmed her suspicions; The light crunch of feet on dry grass. They were being stalked. “Quelleg!!” She shouted. “Take cover!”

Having known Gaile too long to suspect her of paranoia, the gnome dove for cover as an arrow went over his head, making a quiet whisper in the wind. Suddenly, twelve men rose from their hiding places, armed with clubs and axes. One of them strode forward, a sardonic grin creeping across his face. On his belt was a severed hand with two fingers missing. These were bandits plotting an ambush… and they walked right into it.

But these men were carrying themselves too proudly. The lot of them circled Gaile, ignoring the gnome for what they thought was more deserving prey. Gaile smiled wryly. Amateurs. She thought.

The grinning one shouted, “Get ‘er, men! That she-elf is ours!” his voice not even hiding his joy at what he thought were more easy victims. Several of the men bounded forward, then lurched to a halt, a few falling flat on their faces with the force of the sudden stop. Something had grabbed ahold of them underfoot. They looked down to see what had grabbed them and found a mass of roots tangling their feet together, one of Quelleg’s enchantments.

But their leader was not among them. Not knowing what the holdup was, he shouted “What’s wrong with ye? Don’t tell me yer afraid of an elf?”

His words spurred the rest of the group into action. Three of them tried to swing at Gaile with their clubs. Unfortunately for them, they swung too slowly and put too much strength into their swings. They stumbled and fell as Gaile danced around their swings, taking out her sword in a way that Quelleg would later describe as ‘elegant’ and swinging upwards at one of her attackers, taking his head off.

This act seemed to have the intended effect on the others, as they tried to step away from this unexpected threat. But it was not enough. For as they stepped further away, they fell into another one of Quelleg’s nature enchantments; unnatural quicksand. Once they had realized what had happened it was too late for them. Struggle and scream though they did, it only ensured that they would sink deeper into the quagmire.

The remaining few who weren’t engaging the elf now began to run away from her and her companion. As Gaile finished off the last of the stragglers she began to seek their leader.

“That’s far enough, elf,” He said. Gaile spun around to meet her foe, only to see Quelleg clenched in his forearm, a dagger at his throat. “Gaile- “He began to say before the bandit tightened his lock and silenced him.

“Drop the sword, elf,” The slaver commanded, a leery grin on his face. “Or the gnome dies.”

I’ll leave it off there. Hope you enjoy, and till next time!

Forgive the dust…

Been awhile since I posted on here! Sorry about that. I created a satellite blog on Facebook that links to here. Been spending most of my time updating that.

I’ve been preparing for some plumbers to arrive at the house today. They will be tearing the whole bathroom apart-pipes and all! A total overhaul. Gonna be a loud few weeks…

That is unfortunately all I got right now. Till next time!

A taste of my writing

Below is a sample of what I’ve been working on. Its a story that takes place a couple decades after an environmental and societal collapse, around the time that society is rebuilding itself. In this, the main character (Rosie) is meeting with an intermediary about a job…

“You’re finally here,” A man came out of the crowd and approached Rosie. He was short, middle-aged and ugly, and he was Rosie’s primary source of jobs. His name was Riley Ratigan, ‘King Rat’ to those who worked for him, and like Rosie, people who crossed him didn’t live too long. Mostly because he knew people like Rosie.“What took you so goddamn long, Rosie?”

“Fuck you, Rat,” ‘Fuck you’ was how she usually said hello to people. “You called about a job. Stop your fucking complaining and tell me what it is already.”

“It’s not a job for me,” He motioned to a small table where a man was sitting. He was obviously from a more civil place and looked uncomfortable among the partying raiders. He was also unassuming. Rosie hated unassuming people. They usually turned out to be the worst kind.

…This is just the beginning of the story. If you like it, I can share some of my other writings. Till next time!

About politics…

I’ve been trying to keep politics off my blog, but I wonder if that’s a mistake?

So everyone knows, I am what the last president calls “too far left”. Never knew wanting more for the folks like me at the bottom was such an awful thing, but whatever. I’m not very involved in the political process though-I just donate $8 total to Bernie Sanders. He’s one of very few who genuinely care about us. It’s awful telling how the so-called left hates him more than the right. It’s like there is no left, but that’s not true, right???!!!?

Anyway, the tenor of the times affects the stories of the time, and so it is for my stories. I feel that our world leaders leave a lot to be desired. Most of the stories I am working on have main characters who are untrusting of authority and those who wield it. The main antagonist of one is a society inspired by contemporary America ffs! Harsh, but we are the enemy.

And on that sour note I’m gonna stop for today. Till next time!