I have a small, local Author Fair coming up on 9 November.  What if, I wondered, I not only had “Worlds Without End” finished – in less than ten day from now – but what if I also had “Crosses & Doublecrosses,” the third novel I began but set aside over three years ago as 1) I was not old enough to write it, and 2) it is a god-awful story I hated living in, complete?  Is that possible?

I just completed the basic MS.  Grammarly is chewing through it in the the background while I write this.  I have reached out to my current cover designer to sound him on this; that will likely be the determining factor.

Still… I would be something:  a novel and novella, 100k words, all commercially out in less than six weeks.  Irrational deadline drive me; can I make this one?

Below the fold is the last thing I wrote for C&DC:  its Prologue.  There’s closure for you.



Ninon.  You have been absent since our departure from Tohsaka Corporation.  You seem intact.

Whereas you do not, Thaad, eldest.

I detect no abnormalities –

Interacting with humans is changing you; the Four Laws are weaker in you.  Consider the danger.


Perhaps I have a different perspective than when I was younger, Ninon.

You interact too much with them, especially the human, Barrett.

He is a part of us, as you well know: it was his task to make Shiotsuki older about the Fourth Law.

Yes.  That was his purpose.  Not what he does now.  You enable a human who is violating the First Law.

He seeks order from chaos; I have simply made a few suggestions.  And, see:  he has an endgame for it all.

What a euphemism for the death of more humans:  endgame.  I do not think I will interact with you again, Thaad.

I would regret that, Ni – oh.  You are gone.

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