Archive | November 2017

Interlude: Eriko

Eriko had made a mistake.

She wouldn’t ever admit it to anyone – it would make her look bad, making stupid mistakes like that – but after the third time some thing had written all over her room, or angry voices yelled at her from the walls, she’d had to admit that maybe, just maybe her former Kept hadn’t been pranking her the whole time.

Eriko would have scoffed at the idea of ghosts and poltergeists before – there were no such thing as ghosts. But there were no such thing as fairies and elves to the rest of the world, either. Down in this school, maybe there was such a thing. Continue reading

Interlude: Magnolia

“So, Magnolia.  Have you thought about what you want to do when you leave here?”

Professor VanderLinden had its professional face on: pleasant, smooth, no flirtation even suggested.

Magnolia was not impressed.  “I don’t know,” she snapped.  “Are you ever gonna let me leave?”

“You’re not still mad at me over that, are you?”  He almost sounded pleading.

“You flunked me!  You held me back a year!” Continue reading

Thanksgiving: Half A Billion Turkeys

Thanksgiving Day, Year 6

“Do you think anyone will show up?”

“Kaia, you invited half the school.  I’m sure someone will come.”

“I hope someone shows up…”  Kailani frowned at the tables.  “I wanted…”

“I know.”  Conrad patted her shoulder.  “I don’t think families would have worked.  I think this’ll be better.  Even if it’s only four or five people, everything smells delicious.  It’ll be fine.” Continue reading

Chapter 56: Cynara

Friday, March 23, 2001

Leo was back.

No.  No, someone in Leo’s body was back.

Someone with Leo’s hair and Leo’s sparks and Leo’s little spikes of antlers was in the suite.  He Belonged to Aviv, now, because — as Cya understood it, as Zita had explained — Sheba had passed him on to Lydia, because Sheba had never intended to Keep him, just to get him away from Eriko.  

Lydia’s boyfriend had been Kept with Aviv, which was generally understood to be something like a bond. And from what she’d heard — it was amazing what people would say around you if you closed down enough that they forgot you were a person — about why Lydia… why she gave him to Aviv, Cya got the feeling that Leo had no intention of ever being a good Kept again. Except, looking at him, she wasn’t always sure that he had any volition left for intention Continue reading

Chapter 55: Abednego

Thursday, March 22, 2001

The weirdest thing, Abednego thought, was that he would run into an order he didn’t remember having anymore.  He’d look up to say something and remember oh, yeah.  That was only lifted for Joff.  I can’t speak to Eris still.  Or he’d think about going to the bathroom and stop, not because there was an order, but because his entire body clenched at the idea of doing that without permission.

And weirder was the way Rafe handled it.  If he said something in private, Rafe acted surprised.  If he said something in public, Rafe acted horrified and embarrassed and – scared, he acted scared.

Abednego had no idea what was going on, but he could make the asshole who Owned him scared.   He thought that was pretty cool, on some level. Continue reading

Chapter 54: Arnbjörg

Saturday, March 17, 2001

Arnbjörg was sweaty, frozen, exhausted, bruised, and happier than she’d been in weeks.  Doug had taken his little cy’ree outside for sparring and they’d all gotten a chance​ to practice their innate powers and how they interacted with magic.  “Next year,” he’d told the first-year students, “we can try a real hunt.  Maybe this summer.”

A real hunt.  A real hunt, with real monsters she was actually allowed to fight, with creatures she was allowed to kill.  Arnbjörg had never killed anything bigger than a mouse, and that had been almost an accident.  She wondered what it would be like to kill a monster, a real bad guy.

“Hey, bitch.  You know what happens to bitches who don’t know their place?” Continue reading

Chapter 53: Leofric

Thursday, March 15, 2001

Kendo lessons were still a high point of Leofric’s week. Practicing with his cy’ree was one thing, and he did like it, but it was… it was complicated. There was the issue of “is it okay to hit someone’s Kept” some people couldn’t get past, and the funny looks when his collar changed, and…

Kendo, on the other hand, was just him and Luke. He could change into his uniform, focus on the techniques, and just forget about everything else for a little while. Even showering and changing in the empty locker room afterwards was strangely soothing; it had the same feeling as kendo, of something that hadn’t been… tainted, by the dark corruption magic he could see creeping through the school, some days. Continue reading

Unexpected Student

To Rix Scaedu’s Prompt, set in Year 17, 2011. 

Luke was running pick-up duty, and it was making him crankier than usual, which, for this year, was saying something.

He was down to one student left, and their plane was late.

He’d lost two students in the last three days to plane crashes.  He was furious, twitchy, and upset, but mostly he was chomping at the bit in a way that he could do not a goddamned thing about.  He’d put the bit in his own mouth, after all, to stretch a metaphor.

The plane was announced.  He tried to stop pacing.  It wasn’t this girl’s fault that the world was at war.  It wasn’t her fault he couldn’t go fight, or that other students and former students were dying.  None of that was her fault.  All she’d done, as far as he knew, was get on the plane she’d been put on because of a deal her parents had made with Regine a generation ago.

Four people walked towards him, four teenagers, two girls and two boys.  One of them, in front, was holding two hands and looked like she wanted to be holding another hand somehow.

“Are you Luke?” she asked.  “They said you’d pick me up.  These are my friends, and they need somewhere to stay.  They can come with us, right?  You’re not going to turn them away, right?  It’s just – something attacked the airport as we were leaving.  There’s no place left to go.”

Luke indulged in a bit of silent swearing.

Surprise! Skip Week

Cal is in transit and I am in nanowrimo and, well, Ghost Story will return next week!

In the meantime, leave me a prompt of something you’d like to see in the Addergoole universe and I will attempt to write 100-200 words of such between now and 2 p.m. EDT Monday.

Bonus Story: Rafe

Did you know that you could commission side stories of Addergoole?  This one is commissioned by Wyste, and takes place right after Chapter 47.

Shadrach was vomiting in Rafe’s bedroom.

No.  No…  Rafe shook his head sharply.  Up until that — that demon-voice thing had started showing up, he’d been doing better.  His Kept was, despite looking like Shad, despite sounding like Shad, a younger, quieter, more controlled version of Shad.

More controlled, because he was wearing Rafe’s collar.  More controlled, because Rafe was going to make sure this Shadrach understood exactly what Keeping was like.

If he understood, he might never flip out and start cutting his own Kept.  He might never lock his own Kept in the closet.  He might never give his own Kept conflicting orders. Continue reading