Jun 30 2014

Shadow of Hope 42

Cheskith came through the battle unscathed, and the walking and adrenaline have limbered him up to the point that he was no longer in danger of toppling; having a fire drive back the chill didn’t hurt either, though the conversation that went back and forth caused him to reassess the purpose of it.

Since the others were engaged in mending one another or sorting through the leavings, Cheskith chose to place himself as sentry, adopting a northeasterly spot from the fire that allowed him a vantage over Haron and the horses as well as a reasonable view of the other approaches; however welcome it might have been in some regards, fire was likely to attract attention, and it might not be entirely friendly attention. Continue reading

Jun 29 2014

The Realm

Most folks do a fair job at celebrating their birthday.  Some make a big tadoo over the affair.  Others don’t even bother.  Here, we like to celebrate something called The Realm, short for the birthday realm.  I’m not sure when it began exactly.  Somewhere in my 20’s I believe.  What began as an effort to squeeze a few more days of goodness out of the celebration has taken on a life of its own.

And no one is safe from it. Continue reading

Jun 27 2014


Umung walked among the gods.  His soul was one of the most ancient.  He paralleled the paths of perfection sought by those along the journeys of spiritual completion.  There was one problem though.  When his enlightenment should have been at hand, should have come to pass, he did not transcend.

Umung carried a seed of darkness, and the gods knew not how or why. Continue reading

Jun 26 2014

Tent Flap VI

Gordon turned and thought he had found God.  He had escaped the religion of his youth unscathed, and while not an entirely spiritless person, he considered himself a good deal more pragmatic and realistic than the average soul.  He grounded his beliefs in reality and what he could perceive.

So what the fuck was he looking at exactly? Continue reading

Jun 25 2014

Shredder 50

Anibel wasn’t sure what to make of the cold.

This realm was unlike anything she had studied, and her repertoire of knowledge was vast.  Eddies of sensation and currents of memory snaked around her without purpose or pattern, at least that she could discern.  She was dead, by all biological definitions.  She had seen her own corpse, a more displeasing sight she had yet to encounter.  Yet she carried on.  She felt an underlying purpose, a driving force, but the particulars were elusive. Continue reading

Jun 24 2014

Losing Your Cookies IV

“Well I hope she puts on ten pounds because of it,” Andi said.

“And anger the bear with a sore ass that much further?” Carl replied.

Andi winced sideways and shook her head in her usual I-suppose-not routine.  Her head tilted back the other way and she stared at him with that look that had captured his soul.  The cookies had a hold of him, true enough, but for her, Carl would forego them until the end of days.

“How do you convey that out loud though?” he said, out loud. Continue reading

Jun 23 2014

Shadow of Hope 41

As Kurn moved in the direction of the battle’s western edge, he was met by Zulian and Rôhn emerging from around a cluster of trees.  The Dwarf seemed fine, though Zulian appeared to have faired no better than Borlak or Kurn at the mandibles of the great insects.  Striated tears could be seen along the clothing of her midsection along with the telltale glisten of the Ankheg’s volatile saliva.  She waved off any aid that was offered at the moment in favor of discussion.

“No sign is given that any of these creatures moved away from this site overland,” she said, “Though we cannot know to what extent they have tunneled beneath us.” Continue reading

Jun 22 2014

Into the Wind

The terrain surrounding our home is flat.  Liquid flat.  One might even say superflat.  Such an environment is ideal for biking.  No hills is a wonderful thing, and we bike wherever and whenever we can.


We are also in an area with fickle weather patterns and a great deal of wind.  That combination creates the stunning propensity for the sensation of always riding into a headwind…

Always. And all ways. Continue reading

Jun 20 2014

Wu-Wu Fan

Wu-Wu Fan was a scribe for the Sacred Order of Monarchs.  Not those that ruled the kingdoms, but those that ruled the monastery gardens, flitting on delicate wings.  The Great Transmutation was a lifelong study for the monks of the Order.  From nothingness to formative egg.  From devouring caterpillar to devout cocoon.  From majestic monarch back to nothingness.  Enlightenment in all stages of life brought harmony with self and surrounding.

Wu-Wu Fan had only recently evolved into her caterpillar form.  She devoured the written pages before her, scribbling the archaic writing into legible and durable translation.  The circle of life for the written works, too, honored the Great Transmutation.  One sheet after another passed through her, as the caterpillar ratchets through the foliage, and the knowledge of the ancients accumulated. Continue reading

Jun 19 2014

Tent Flap V

There were dreams then.  Or what Gordon presumed to be dreams, for his world had long ago ceased to touch upon what he considered reality.

A tree made of butterflies, skeletal at its heart but feathered with a million wings the size of his head.  He would have dismissed them utterly had not the trembling earth with its sulfurous exhale sent the host of insects fluttering skyward in a cascade of creams and greens. Continue reading