lilgryphon: (zephyr qull)
( Nov. 26th, 2009 10:02 pm)


I thought it was time I make a master post of my writing so that it is a bit easier to find what you’re looking for if you’ve found your way here.  This will also be the only time I'm going to 'warn' for slash. If M/M relationships bother you it's time to hit the back button.


Rajala Universe

If you spend time reading my journal you’ll find that I mention Rajala or Tiger Eyes frequently. TE is the novel that I’ve been working on for years, but have recently started a serious edit for it. I’ve been swaping chapters with Skimble, whose journal you should check out; she has some amazing characters of her own. I allow very limited access to TE, but I do have a couple short pieces that take place in Rajala that I’ve left public.

Judgment

A Royal Mage in service to Rajala is desperate to return home and confront rumors and truths.

Spider

My own little fanfiction with Bryan as my victim…A quick oneshot. 

Full Circle

This is a piece that I work on whenever I find the chance. It started out as a short story, but in most cases I tend to write things that are either very short or epic length. I don’t know which one this is going to be yet. I hate to give it a true summery because this is one of those pieces that needs to unfold for the reader. Still a WIP.

Part One
Part Two

Black and White

The Black and White series began with the short story – wait for it – Black and White. I had originally planned to use this concept in one of my Rajala pieces, but I couldn’t seem to make it fit with the characters that I had intended it for. Then one day I sat down and wrote almost the entire piece in one sitting. The series explores the life of Jack and his best friend David, and later Shawn. If the names sound familiar to anyone, I swear, Jack and David were purely random names I had picked and once *I* made the connection I was already attached to them. This began as something to work on when TE just wasn't flowing, and now it's become quite addicting for me.

Black and White

David’s having issues concentrating in class, and Jack finds the entire situation amusing.

It's Jack

Shawn’s facing finals and Yale in the coming fall, it’s time to leave a part of his life behind, and he’s not sure he’s ready to.

This isn't Arcata - WIP


Connecticut
isn’t Arcata and Shawn’s still trying to sort it all out.

Part 1
Part 2

 

It's here, finally!! This piece was a request from Skimble to take Kennan from my Rajala universe and Jack from my Black and White series and put them in the same story. I'm still not sure if I'm entirely happy with it for various reasons, but here it as.

 

All I Want to Touch is You )
lilgryphon: (zephyr qull)
( Aug. 13th, 2009 01:02 am)

I thought it was time to post an update, as it's been just about forever since I've really posted anything on here. Some days life is just a struggle, and it has been for me a lot lately, but I think I'm finally starting to pull out of it. Nothing is really fixed or changed, it's just that I'm resolved to the fact that I can only do what I can do, and focus on the things that I do have the power to change. So as I continue to fight to find work and worry over where exactly we are going to move to by October, I'm trying to swing a big part of my focus back to my writing, where it should be. When I write I'm happier with life, even when it isn't going so great.

TE and other ramblings )

 



Some time ago when we first started swapping stuff I mentioned Spider and said I wanted to post it but was afraid of the spoilers. Well after your long week I wanted to post something short for you that required no real brain power (and I haven't gotten around to finishing J/S) so I read over this and removed what was spoilerish about it. Don't read too much into it, Bryan is so OOC it isn't even funny (well, actually it is), I swear, it's like I wrote my own fanfiction. As far as Kennan, yeah, that’s pretty much him…

 

            Kennan stalked after Bryan, hastily pushing an offending branch out of his way. Bryan had retreated into the woods near camp because Kennan had riled him again by mentioning his past. Now after a brief rise of guilt he was chasing after him.

            Damn the Gods if I know why I am following him. It would be a pleasure to me, the camp, and Daved if he would keep walking until he reached Raji. Why do I bother? He’s brought this pain on himself.

            He spun on his heel, fully intending to let the older man return on his own, when he heard an ear piercing scream.

            “Damn you, Bryan,” he muttered. “Only you would scream in the face of an enemy.”

            Swords drawn he ran in the direction of the scream, almost tripping over a fallen branch, and fully expecting to come upon an ambush. What he found was Bryan, alone back against a tree.

            “Kennan,” Bryan gasped, relief washing over him.

            Bryan?” he hesitantly inquired.

            Bryan said nothing, shaking slightly.

            Slowly Kennan sheathed the duel blades and then lowered his head to meet Bryan’s eyes, “I heard you scream, I–”

            Bryan’s arm shot forward, a single finger pointing to a nearby bush.

            Kennan followed his hand, but saw nothing, “Bry? There’s nothing there.”

            “Sp – spi – spider,” he stammered.

            Refraining from laughing, but only just, Kennan approached the bush and what could be now seen as a small, black spider, no bigger than his own thumbnail. He reached out with said thumb and forefinger to flick the spider out of Bryan’s way and then slowly turned to face him again.

            “Gods! One of the most powerful Mages in existence and you are afraid of spiders,” he chuckled.

            Bryan shot him a look, all fear gone from his voice, “Not one more word, Kennan Briars, or I will smite you from this earth.”

            Kennan grinned, “Why didn’t you just smite the spider?”

lilgryphon: (zephyr qull)
( Jun. 20th, 2009 12:03 am)

Well despite the fact that I haven't posted anything new in a few days I've been plugging away in Rajala like mad. Chapter twelve is *very* close to being ready to post, I'm just still playing around with the ending for it. I had to write out my outline again, as I detoured a bit with eleven and twelve by switching the POV for them. This meant I had to decided how I was going to do the next chapter as it was going to be Bryan's, but I'm trying to avoid putting the same POV back to back. I'm not completely against the idea, but I'll trying to prevent it. Interestingly the number of Cassandra and to a lesser extent, Aidan chapters have increased quite a bit. There both becoming more prominent, which I think is a good thing.

I've been trying to finally settle on the magical aspects of Rajala, going over stuff I already had and researching some more. There are a few things I've been trying to weigh and decide how I want to go about them. I don't want to write myself into a corner with them, but once I make the decision they are a bit permanent. I find I do a *lot* of thinking lately.

Jason's still sick and it's been pretty bad. He's missed work, but so far I've avoided catching it and he is starting to feel a bit better.

Zephyr was playing with one of Kuzco's feathers today and prompted a mini photo shoot, so I took the time to post them over on my deviantart and respond to some messages over there. With all the work I've been doing it had been a while since I was on, I've got some 100+ deviations to go through one of these days, but like everything else it's just going to have to wait.

I'm also trying to not remind myself that the MLP fair is this weekend. I swore to myself last year that I would be going this year...but yeah, broke. It didn't bother me so much when it was clear over in RI last time, but Vegas is only about a six hour drive from my house...More than anything I'd just like to get the chance to meet so many people from the arena and see those that I had at my Colorado meet last year.

lilgryphon: (Default)
( Jun. 10th, 2009 01:18 am)
Things are going a bit slower than I'd like, Cassandra is being her usual pain. I keep getting hung up on her next chapter and that isn't helping, seeing as it is THE next chapter. I've been able to work on bits and pieces of the ones that follow it, but I really need to get things laid out properly with chapter ten. I'm starting to dread working on it...

Oddly, I spent today mostly working on what is towards the ending of the second book in the trilogy. Kennan was just begging me to come back to him...It's a piece I'm pretty proud of, so that helps!
Tags:
Alright, I've hacked through it, and here it is. I spent a lot of time removing bits, adding new ones, and switching the order of events, so if something gets repeated, please, please tell me. This chapter has been worked on so many times that I can almost recite it from memory, which does not help when one is trying to edit it! Skimble, I hope you're up for this one...

Tiger Eyes

           Dyrania, Goddess of destiny, can be a cruel woman, haplessly binding men to paths that they seem unable to find the strength to walk, and yet dare not turn away from. Her wants and wills are known only to the higher Gods, and many mortals will argue that her existence is only the fantasy of women and bards. I cannot claim to know the truth of Gods, destiny, or fate, but I can speak of what I have seen.

            This is the tale of my life, but in many ways it is the tale of another, and who Dyrania it seems willed them to become. One would never believe that from our meager beginnings we would face the tasks she had given us, to learn to fight, or die. Little did I know that She had intended for our paths to cross, entwine, and eventually become one from the very beginning, and She could not allow that to be altered.

 Chapter One

            Few men would call my beginning meager, although if one had bothered to take the chance to ask me, I, Bryan Desmond Masters, would have told them how insignificant I found them. Most would argue that I had been given a life of privilege. I had mentors and tutors blessed with the highest amount of qualifications coin could buy, from books to weaponry, and could have any possession I asked of from my mother. Of course, most would call me blessed simply because of the large amount of land and wealth I would some day inherit. It was that land and responsibility I did not want, and yet never dared speak those words.

I had the fortune of being born the eldest son of Darren Masters, Lord Holder and protector of Greensburrow, one of the eight providences belonging to the realm of Rajala. My family had held Greensburrow since before our country had taken its name, and for longer than we had written record. Our people were mostly shepherds and weavers, fate entwined with that of their flocks and the health of our grasses. Darren took great pride in his people and their sheep, even if he did not see directly to their care. He was not, however, a shirker of duties. Like his father, grandsire, and the countless before, his place was at his holding, and although he had overseers and servants, his own tasks numbered enough to keep even the strongest of men busy.

            He was titled, yet had always remained an irrevocably simple man. His clothing was only moderately superior to that of his men, and rarely was he seen in anything other than one or another shade of brown. A disciplined man of the sword, he was willing to live and die by the strength of his blade. We were close enough to the borderlands of Jaidan that war could easily reach us, and as with any landholder, there was always the possibility of a band of raiders in search of a weak leader or stronghold. As he constantly reminded me, our forefathers had sacrificed their sweat and blood into our lands, and it had fallen upon us to defend it.

            I suppose it was inevitable that the responsibilities he held made Daren a hard man, and I had certainly never seen him with a weakness. He expected, and was consequently given, complete and loyal obedience from all those he came in contact with, from his servants and peasants to his wife and sons. As a child I never questioned his authority, instead struggling to meet the expectations he laid for me. It never occurred to me not to strive to see them met, whatever the cost.

            Death would change that.         

It was the summer of my sixteenth year, and winter’s loneliness had left me increasingly bitter. The warmth of sun on my face had awoken me that morn, and although I attempted to ignore its unyielding presence, it was a battle I had clearly lost before it had begun. Judging by the amount of light that had infiltrated my chamber it was nearing midmorn and still far too early by my own calculations. Somehow I had developed the habit of sleeping until midday, leaving the outside world to continue without me. It had never been easy for me to rise early without being awoken, leading to the continuing dismay of Darren and so many others after him. Recently I had ceased to answer the summons from whichever page had been dutifully sent to pull me from my coverings, and eventually they had stopped making an appearance at all. Quite possibly, if I had only sought the comfort of my bed earlier in the evenings it would make the mornings easier to bear, but that solution had never appealed to me.

I intended to simply ignore the light, and try to return to slumber, as sleep had avoided me most of the night. Long before the first snowfall had I ceased to keep up pretences, outright defying Darren in almost everyway I had once obediently followed him. He seemed unconcerned with challenging me, but I knew better than to skip weapon’s work. As long as I was in the courtyard that afternoon with a sword in hand I would be left undisturbed in the sanctuary of my room.

Sleep had almost overtaken me again, when a nagging little voice filtered into my subconscious, which sounded suspiciously like Darren, today I had to rise. After muttering a half spoken curse I forced myself to sit up, even if I was still contemplating sleep. I knew if I delayed any further someone would be sent to fetch me, and it would not be a simple page. No doubt, that someone would be my younger brother, and only sibling, Rickon. He would be all too eager to stride in without announcing himself and then return to Darren to explain the state at which he had found me.

Reluctant, and yet resolved, I brought my feet to the stone floor. My head pounded from lack of sleep, and my limbs felt heavy. It was as if I should have been just climbing into bed, and not out of it. No amount of sleep seemed to lift the constant exhaustion, for with each passing day I only craved rest and solitude more, even if my dreams plagued me. In a failed attempt to become more coherent I ran a hand through my short, tousled hair, trying to force the present to overtake the past. As always, the dreams and distant memories were hesitant to fade in the sunlight.

Pushing back the fragments and images that remained from the night, I crossed the room and pulled on a pair of black leather riding breeches and a thin linen tunic I had gratefully laid across a wooden chair the night before. Still somewhat groggy I found myself fighting for balance as I attempted to put on boots that had been left in the same vicinity. Admitting defeat, I fell into the chair before finally getting them on properly. I laced up the tunic, absentmindedly hoping that it would not be too warm for the summer day. Once I had worn a wide variety of colors that I had known secretly irked Darren, but as they pleased my mother he had never commented on them. Now it was only the shade of death that appealed to me. Even the thought of irritating him with a change of garment did not sway me.

I scanned the room, searching for anything I may have forgotten the night before, having already sent a pack down to the stables previously. My eyes fell on the shortsword that had carelessly been left in a corner. I stood, unwillingly taking it into my hands. The blade had been kept by my family for generations, passed from father to first-born. Someday it would be replaced by the sword kept by Darren, once Greensburrow was mine – another possession I did not want.

The sight of steel brought back the grief, sharp and overpowering. The dreams were resurfacing, and I fought to quench them as I exited the chamber. It was too long ago, far too long to still think about. I had allowed my thoughts to wander too much as I lay in bed the night before, and yet, I had let them wander no more or less than the days or nights that had already passed.

In attempt to quietly leave the holding, I hurriedly made my way towards the stables. With luck I could leave before another meeting with Darren, the presence of Rickon, and a tearful farewell from my mother. Avoiding the main hallways and passages, I exited out the servants’ doorway of the kitchens. I knew every location of my childhood home intimately, where I was likely to come across another, and where I was more likely to pass alone. I had spent the last few seasons doing everything within my power not to let my daily whereabouts come to the attention of Darren. Far less of my time was spent on the holding then anyone realized, and I intended to keep that knowledge with my secrets.

I was able to escape without seeing another soul, save the kitchen servants, who were generally too busy to tell anyone anything save themselves until the day was out. When they gossiped, it was after nightfall. The stables, however, were not unoccupied. I had expected to find someone watching for my arrival, fate and Darren were not going to allow my leaving to go unnoticed. Once I stepped through the doorway I was faced with Rickons’s presence, who was altogether too cheerful.

Rickon and I had never been close, five years lay between us, and we were two entirely different sons. In appearance it was I that almost mirrored our sire, and I often mused that if I had not he would have questioned the loyalty of my mother, if only to rid himself of my presence. We both had the same dark chestnut hair and eyes, while Rickon’s hair was distinctly lighter and his eyes a shade of green that no one in our family seemed to share. While Darren was tall, and I could almost match his height, Rickon seemed to be growing at an alarming rate, and I fully expected him to tower over both of us someday. I had his round nose, which I despised, and our ears were the exact same shape, in fact the only difference between the two of us seemed to be age and the shear size of him. Darren had bulk and muscle, hard and defined from both practice and battle with a great sword I could not possibly hope to lift, where I was slight like my mother, even where I had muscle.

It was Rickon, though, that was Darren’s blessing. There were few things I did not have to struggle to exceed at, while he seemed to conquer almost anything naturally. There had been no need to question his parentage, for he had always seemed to know exactly what Darren would expect of him and fought with all he had to provide it.

Books and figures were a curse for me, and I relished in the tasks that brought me outdoors. I lived for the hours I spent on the back of a horse, and consequently excelled at horsemanship. That, perhaps, had gained me the highest of my father’s approval, even if it was grudgingly given, in his eyes I spent far too much time in the stables. Weaponry was the only other study I did not completely despise, even if I still struggled with it. Anything was better than sitting inside listening to a stuffy old man drone on about politics and wars. Rickon, however, devoured books, figures seemed to just come to him, and above all, he could defeat anyone his age, and in many cases years older, myself included, with a blade.

Oddly, I was content to let him bask in Darren’s praise. I never envied their easy relationship, the Gods, and even Rickon knew I did not want it. No, I had simply spent too many marks wondering why, if there were Gods, Rickon was not the eldest, he wanted it, and I could have spent my life perusing something I could find joy in. I only fought with my studies because I knew someday I would have to take my father’s place as Lord Holder, and even if I did not want it I was not fool enough to shy away from it completely.

I disliked him, simply because he was Rickon. In my opinion he desperately needed someone to knock him down to the same level as the rest of us, and he had not yet met anyone yet that could do so. Things came so easily to him that he was an overconfident, pompous, unbearable prig to everyone other than our parents and his tutors, and he was even worse with me. My mother had once said that he had come into the world taunting me, and I had never been one to ignore the taunts. We often fought, although we were both smart enough to never let it come to blows, or let it fall within Darren’s earshot. A true fight between us would have earned us both a sound beating, and we knew it.

A wide grin was spread across his face, causing me to fight the sudden urge to strike him. He was thoroughly enjoying that Darren was sending me to Havermoore, with the same force that I was dreading it.

“Good morrow, Brother,” he called out as I approached.

“Rickon,” I acknowledged, fighting the urge and slipping past him into the stables. The faster I could saddle my horse and ride out, the smaller chance I had of facing a far worse encounter. I made my way to Lightning’s stall, a black stallion that had been a gift from my mother to mark my fourteenth year. He was near perfect, and one of the few things that could bring me pure joy. His head appeared at the sound of my footsteps, and as I approached him he snorted, eagerly straining his nose toward my hand. I reached out and gave him a quick scratch behind the ear before unlatching the door to step beside him. Gently he nudged his nose into my chest, but instead I turned away from him to pull down his bridle. Normally I would have been more affectionate, but my mind was already screaming a warning that I had not been followed into the stables. I busied myself with saddle and tack, at a speed that only came from constant, daily routine. In moments he was ready, and after tossing my pack on his back I led him from his enclosure and out into the sunlight. There, as if waiting to bid me a proper farewell, stood Darren, Rickon, and my mother.

I had expected it. Where else would Rickon have gone, but to fetch Darren? Expecting it had not prepared me for the reality, and I inhaled sharply, willing myself not to let this turn into a full confrontation. As one would assume Rickon was still grinning, Darren stood beside him, his face a hard mask, while my mother sobbed softly on his shoulder. She looked as if I had been sentenced to exile.

My mother, Kathryn Ditrystan Masters, was a loyal wife, but she had always held me very close to her heart. I could see by her stricken, tear streak face that this had been one of the rare occasions when she had fought with her husband, and lost. She tended to think a little too highly of me, if the truth is told, and expected far less of her oldest son then his sire. Where he ruled with hard discipline, she preferred the power of coin and affection. Her sobs could easily smoother you once they started, but she never gave me reason to doubt her love. Admittedly, I hated to see her cry.

My hands drew into fists, and as my eyes moved from my mother to Darren the rage only grew. The events from the day before came rushing back, Darren’s words, mine, and those that had been left unsaid between us.

I had known the moment I was summoned from weapon’s practice to Darren’s study that something was terribly wrong. He had always told me that the art of the sword was more important than any other lesson, person, or task. To shirk that duty would only find you wounded or killed when you drew a blade. I always found his words on the subject a bit extreme, but I would never have admitted to the fact. I had been waiting for him to finally acknowledge my defiance, expecting it since my complete withdrawal from my lessons, but I knew he would not call me from the courtyard for a simple reprimand. I was not expecting to be told he was sending me into the hands of a Mage.

He knew I despised them, and yet he lay out his intentions to send me to Havermoore as if he were discussing the harvest. For the first time in my life I openly challenged him, cold, hard, betrayal was still fresh, clawing to the surface. I had no desire to seek the Mages, the handful of memories I had of them were enough to last a lifetime. My defiance was met with a white hot rage of his own, and ended with an ultimatum. I could either take up the task he had laid before me, or leave his lands and protection. It was time, he had roared, for me to accept the responsibilities as his heir and leave the follies of my past to rest. I had never expected to be faced with disownment, and knew I could not simply walk away.

Even his threat could not prohibit me from speaking out once again as I stood there, clutching the reigns and listening to my mother’s sobs. Words tumbled from my lips, and I knew almost instantly that I should have held my tongue.

“This is a fool’s errand, and I am loathe to play the part of a fool.”

Darren’s jaw clenched, “A fool you are, for questioning me again. A fool and a coward.”

“I do not wish to spend two days riding to see a murderer,” the grief tore at my gut once more, “That does not make me a coward.”

Genuine confusion seemed to fill his features, and for the briefest of moments the harshness was gone from him, “Murderer? Only the Gods know where you have filled your head with these –” he paused, trying to find words, “accusations. This is the Gods decree as much as law.”

It was law, and if legend was to be believed also the declaration of the Gods for every child in Rajala to seek the Mages in their sixteenth year. However, I doubted the Gods or crown backed Darren’s reasons for my departure.

“The Gods have no part in this,” I snarled, and my mother let out chocked sob, burying her head deeper into his shoulder, and in essence, sealing my fate.

Darren roughly shook her off and stepped forward, his face so red I thought he meant to strike me. Instead he brought a single finger up to my chest.

“I am done with words, boy, either take up the task, or leave.”

I backed away from him slowly. Wanted or no, Greensburrow was my home, and without skill or trade, it was likely the only one I would ever know. Silently, I turned from him and mounted. Once in the saddle my eyes locked with those of my mother.

Brusquely, I nodded, “Until I return.” With effort I spun Lightning and then dug in my heels, causing him to bolt. As always, he was eager to run, and I made no move to hinder him.

 
lilgryphon: (Default)
( Mar. 19th, 2009 12:31 pm)
It's funny, just as I decide to take a break from my novel, it seems my muse has decided it doesn't want me to.  Of course, that doesn't change the fact that I still have a major decision to make before I delve back into the massive rewrite that Tiger Eyes requires me to devote to it.  I started writing TE when I was first married, almost nine years ago now, and my writings have, thankfully, evolved quite a bit since then.  What started as a stand alone novel has turned into at least a trilogy, and maybe even longer than that.  Rajala has became a world all its own, and I have at least a dozen stories aside from TE in mind for the universe I have created.  Of course, the first step would be for me to finish TE (which I guess, technically it is finished, it does have a beginning, middle, and end) but the rewrite that is involved is almost starting from scratch.  Which I have done, two or three times, but I keep returning to this same issue - I don't know if I want to write it in first or third person.

That probably sounds a bit crazy, I mean, it was third person to begin with, but at some point during one of the rewrites I thought it would be interesting if Bryan told it from his perspective and his own words, if you will.  For about a month ideas flowed through my fingers and it seemed as if I was finally getting somewhere again, and then I began to question my decision.   Sure, the rewrite was going great, the story was flowing nicely, but in changing the perspective I had in essence chopped out a large part of the book that had been devoted to another character, Cassandra.  I could retell parts of her story through Bryan's eyes, and I had come to terms with what I had to lose, until I started thinking of the second book.  That storyline would cause a split in my three 'main' characters, the third being Aidan, and they would all be in different locations for a period of years, which would leave Bryan virtually unaware of what was taking place in his former companions lives.  Add to this a fourth character, Kennan, who I felt could give the readers insight on Bryan that he himself was not able to do.  After all, no one sees themselves in the same light as an outsider.

So, then I decided to start again, and this time having each chapter from the perspective of the characters individually, although not in first person (because that would just be confusing, not to mention a bit odd).  I've managed to do about five chapters in this manner, but they don't flow as they did before.  And when I have a new idea I often find that I write it out in first person, without even registering I have done so.  It just seems that first person is what works for me, but I don't know if that is what is best for the story...
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