Berserker, (pt4; end)

Rather pleased with how all of this turned out. There are still some things which might need addressing but real life is like that, too: loose ends are a way of life.

Was seriously “in the groove” yesterday and got down about 2500 words of “Culture Shock,” my next short. Hoping to wrap that one up today.

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Berserker, (pt3)

There are about 1200 words left in this story but there was no even break. So, this one is a little shorter and the conclusion tomorrow will be a little longer. Such happens.

I finally have two days off in a row from DayJob; I swear those people do not know what “part-time employee” means. I also now have two more short ideas to round out my next collection. Oh, yes… it will be called “Imperial Entanglements.” That title is, of course, borrowed from somewhere else. I invite guesses.

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Berserker, (pt2)

I admit I do not write personal fight scenes well. I can see them in my head but run, jump, jap, parry, gouge… I don’t know what to type in or leave out. Tactical or strategic battles? Read my Crusade Trilogy; I do those well, even if they take days to weeks or research to get correct. Six years ago, when Daughter #2 was still at home, I’d borrow her for her Shorin-Ryu karate training to understand some of the motions of hand-to-hand contact (“If you knock Dad out, no dinner!”).

So, we get what’s below. I do not think I botch it too bad. There are two points much more important than the action: one, Aurie knows she’s no superhero; she’s a little girl. Two, I want her and the readers to become aware of her rising bloodlust. That, to my mind, is something insanely dangerous for a demi-human to have.

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Berserker (pt1)

I need at least one or two short stories to fill out a second collection for publication. In “Regent,” which had the working title of “Colour” as I explored it here on my blog, there was a moment when demi-human princess Aurelia Hartmann killed twenty-seven men, pirates. She started with her rifle, then pistol, then knife, then teeth and hands. She seemed to revel in it.

Later in that story, talking with her grandparents at their place, we learn she has done this at least once before, and is somewhat uncomfortable if not embarrassed about that old memory. I wondered, when was the first (only? I don’t know) time this happened? How old was she? What were the circumstances?

And thus this short story was born.

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Colour | Epilogue

And that’s a wrap. 67,800 words of “Regent.” For those of you reading along from the beginning, congratulations. Anyone who has commented here or sent me a note, I appreciate your input and it all goes to make the story better.

I’ll be doing some editing and formatting for a day or two before dropping this load onto my copyeditor. At the same time, I’ll see if my cover designer has not frozen to death in central Germany to prod her into action. With chance and luck, I can have this commercially available by the end of January.

Merry Christmas, everyone!

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Colour Strange Charm

Merry Christmas Eve. Level 3 storm warning here. My pharmacist at DayJob is literally dialing it in: logging onto EPIC from home. It’s too cold for the salt to work so the roads are a mess. Told me to stay home.

I think I can finish this MS today. That would have symmetry for me. It was Xmas Eve, eight years ago, just before midnight when I clicked “Publish” and changed my world.

And no, I don’t know what she is, either. Kalí first makes her appearance in “A Texas Naval Affair,” where another young man was trying to woo someone from the imperial family. Love will make a man do strange things.

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Colour’s Nephew, Again

Sometimes I reference other books. Sometimes, such as here, I call back to what I wrote a few chapters before. Sometimes it is completely off-the-wall; I mean, seriously: did NO ONE get the “Broadsword to Danny Boy” reference? I worry about y’all sometimes.

This segment accomplishes two things: we now have the beginnings of a diplomatic buffer between the imperium and Canada. They are small but I do not think either power wants to rile up the Northern Federation. Second, Robert puts Jimmy on notice: just what the effing hell do you think you are to Aurie now? What will you be in a month? A year? We know from waaaay back at the start of this story that Aurie’s had a couple of guys prior. No matter what she may think of Jimmy at this moment, he needs to step up.

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Colour of Salvation

As you might expect, parts of this were shown to me at church back on December 11th. Always should check in with the Lord whenever you can. He’s still arrogant but I think Robert a bit more humble than his gifted brothers and sisters. It was and is Aurie is fond of Jimmy but that does not means she’s not an egotistical jerk.

That’s something surprising: how comfortable demi-humans seem to be in their own skin. Putting aside Empress’ Fussy’s occasional “normies” comment, none of them appear to look down on humans or act like narcissists. I wonder if it has something to do with how they think, faster and a bit different from us? I’m sure I’ll find out some day.

As an illustration of how all these stories touch, Panck Hill, below, was Robert’s CO in part 2 of “Obligations of Rank,” and after one too many coincidence, twigged as to who Bob Hardt really was. And was both wise and kind enough to ignore it.

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