I sketched Othello after he murders Dezzy (poor Des)

Said sketch:

sketch 107a5

So I’ve been thinking about my moral compass, and I think the biggest horrible thing that happened to me in early life was that I was taught by many and varied peeps not to have any solid understanding of lying by omission.

I’m fixing that so I can be a confidently authentic and not-backwards-lying person. They were some gnarly, misguided degenerates, all those folks. Here is some story.

Sample

A Waiting Game

Moffer Bones stomped over to grab me, and I’m sure he was planning to half pick me up and force me to walk out of his house. I was planning on coming right back if he magicked me away like he’d done before.

I mean, my game plan was to persistently haunt Moffer Bones until I had all the answers I needed about how to protect my wings and what was going on with the Queen, so I was not particularly concerned about him hefting me about and dropping me off outside the woods.

I was actually (ahem) looking forward to the manhandling parts, because it would be, like, the third time I’d been touched by another person. (So far all my touching had come from Moffer Bones, and I was not complaining at all. He was so flipping hot.)

So anyway, he stomps over to my chair and bends a little, getting ready to grab me around my upper arms, and I was sitting there in my gorgeous hoodie and jeans. I wasn’t doing anything, but when Moffer was about three inches away from touching me, he froze and his eyes got all tense.

“Stop doing that,” he says.

I had no idea what he was talking about. I was just sitting there, but he made this irritated, snarly face and started to get really flushed.
Don’t,” Moffer Bones said, and his voice, I am bound by an allegiance to the truth to state, was obviously aroused.

I thought he was trying to play a trick on me, so I smiled at him in a blithe way, and Moffer Bones made this angry, hissing kind of noise, stepped away from me, and stalked deeper into his house. I think he went into his bedroom and slammed the door, because there was a big banging sound, and then I got up and went over to shut his front door, because I didn’t want any fauna or strangers to come poking into his house just because he’d left his front door ajar. You know, because he’d opened the door prior to throwing me out, but then he did this whole song and dance about how he wouldn’t touch me.

I figured my not-talking strategy had been serving me pretty well up to this point, so after I shut the door I went back to the chair and just sat and waited.

I’ll skip all the boring parts, but I was there for a long time. After hours had passed—and night had fallen outside. I mean, it was in the depths of the night when this next part happened. I don’t want you to envision the sun just having gone down or something, because it hadn’t. This was late, what I’m about to tell you next.

Hours have passed, right? And Moffer Bones, after all this time, comes striding out of his room, still blushing, and he settles on the couch across from me, and he glares at me for a while.

Then he says, “Will one kid do it? I could maybe compromise and give you one kid.”

He looked so serious. I was sitting there, still keeping my mouth shut and my face neutral, but inside my heart I was like . . . ‘What? What, now?

I mean, it sounded like he was offering to give me a kid. Like, you know, that we would have a kid together, which was about the weirdest thing he could have said. I didn’t even know this guy, and he’s all, ‘I’ll impregnate you if you go away!’ Like, what a strange dude, right? He seemed really serious about it, too.

You’re reading Victor Poole, and in my current novel, someone just had a visit with a dentist (who is also a gangster!). You can get my latest book here.

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Man on Horse (plus Rebel Fairy)

man on horse

Sample

(If you recall, our fairy has been worming answers out of Moffer Bones, and he has just explained her unconventional family tree.)

A Staring Contest

This was just a lot to take in, you know? Part of what was so strange was that now I knew who my father was, and you have to understand, fairies really don’t find out about their dads, like, ever. When a fairy mom puts her stuff out there, a bunch of different fairy dudes will come along and—you know. Put in their half, so a fairy baby really might be from a handful of guys. There’s a crowd of potential fathers, so for me to know who my dad is was just . . . really odd.

I mean, every other fairy knows who their mom is. The moms raise the kids, right? Thats how fairies do things, and I was the only fairy I knew who didn’t have any idea about my mom. Except now I had a flower mom. Ugh. So weird.

I kind of believed Moffer Bones at this point, because everything he was saying did make sense, and he had that reliable sort of look in his eyes. I mean, I trusted what he was saying. It seemed really legit. After he said this about there having been three babies like me, I wanted to know who the first one had been. Like, there was me, right? And then this other fairy girl, Monacsta, who I’ve always been told tried to assassinate the Queen and is now a statue (poor Monacsta!), and then Moffer Bones said there was another one, and I knew that the Queen must have drained this other fairy’s powers until they seemed average, so I wanted pretty badly to know who this third half-sibling was.

(All three of us came from different flower mothers, so that’s why I’m saying half siblings like this, because we are.)

Anyway, so I broke my strategic silence and asked Moffer who the other one was, and he got kind of this distasteful look on his face and said “You know that grumpy old dude called Bo?”

I said I did know Bo, and Moffer Bones said, “Well, it isn’t Bo, but Bo has a best friend who lives under a mushroom cap and doesn’t mix socially, and Bo’s best friend is your oldest half brother. His name’s Dez and he’s a *freaking* mess.”

(Moffer Bones said the real word, not ‘freaking.’)

I asked why my half brother was a mess, and Moffer Bones grinned at me.

“It’s a long story, Winstance. I’ve given you all sorts of information now, and I want my turn. What message did Amance send me this time?” He had this twinkle of hard, shiny fun in his eyes, and he looked cynical and remorseless, and I just sat there and did not say anything.

Moffer Bones narrowed his eyes at me. “You can’t just sit there,” he said in this really accusatory voice. So I did, I just sat there.

We stayed like that for a really long time, too. Like, it turned into a kind of battle of wills, which I won.

I say that I won because Moffer Bones got up and went and opened his front door, and I was still sitting there waiting. He broke first, so the victory was mine, I felt. He opened his front door and said “Get out,” and I didn’t say anything, and I didn’t move, and Moffer Bones left his door wide open and came over to grab me.

Aaaaand, this is where things got really weird. Prepare yourselves for strangeness, guys.

You’re reading Victor Poole, and in my current story, a young man is (painfully) having some tattoos removed. My latest story you can get here.

Rough dragon sketch . . . and story : )

Here is the promised rough dragon sketch!

Rough Dragon Sketch:

some dragons

Sample

(In our story so far, the rebel fairy wanted to run away in order to experience love and wear snazzy, modern clothes. On the road to her goals, she ran into some complications with the Fairy Queen and the mysterious (and handsome) Moffer Bones. Our rebel has found out she is not, in fact, pure fairy. Enjoy:)

Complicated Fairy Genealogy

Moffer Bones sat up on the couch across from me—I was in his chair, this comfy white chair in his living room, and he was across the coffee table from me—and he leaned forward and put his elbows on his knees, and he got this intense look in his eyes.

He was so darn glamorous. I was a little bit tempted to go over and sit next to him, just to be closer. I didn’t. Obviously he didn’t like me or want me in his house, but by gum, I wanted to kiss the guy. And, you know, have a fling. Get my heart broken. All that fun stuff.

Um, so he sat up and leaned forward, looking all serious, and he had just said that he would explain better, and this is what he told me:

What Moffer Bones Told Me

  • 600 years ago (I already knew this story; everyone knows this story) the next heir to the fairy throne, Prince Zaeffo, did a huge no-no and fell in love with a wood nymph named Yeaai.

When he told me this part, about Prince Zaeffo falling in love, Moffer Bones made this dismissive face, like love was the silliest thing in the whole world. This—kind of pissed me off, but also intrigued me, because it wasn’t the same expression fairies make when they’re poo-pooing the idea of romance. Moffer Bones seemed to take the whole idea of love personally, which kind of added to my suspicion that he was entangled in some mysterious sort of fated relationship thing with the Queen. Color me curious, for sure! Anyway, back to my list:

  • Zaeffo fell in love with the nymph, Yeaai, and had a baby with her.
  • The baby was named (I’d never heard this before, so yay for keeping my mouth shut and being observant!) Hozlefunashti (which apparently, in wood-nymph language, means ‘I really wanted this kid, and don’t judge him for being half-fairy.’ I hadn’t known before that wood nymphs were as judgy and exclusionary as the woodland fairies are, but apparently—they are!)—

Let me start that item over. The baby from the fairy prince and the nymph was named Hozlefunashti, which is sure a mouthful, but a really cool name, I think, and the baby was, as a blend of nymph and fairy, permanently banished from the forest, because apparently he had a lot of power and no respect for either group of people. He caused problems for everyone, but Moffer Bones didn’t elaborate about what those problems were.

  • Hozlefunashti is now living somewhere on the opposite side of the world and nursing a bruised ego while missing his mother, who still lives here in the forest. (She’s a wood nymph, so she can’t leave. You know, because she’s a tree most of the time.)
  • His mother also misses him.

Prince Zaeffo, like I told you a lot earlier, got his wings stripped off, was made to live as a mortal in human form for one lifetime, and then got transformed into a river, which is apparently about twenty miles outside the forest. And also, Moffer Bones said that he’s been to see Prince Zaeffo before, and the Prince, according to Moffer, is fully sentient and kind of hates being a river. (What a mess, right?)

  • Before the kid, Hozlefunashti, was banished from the forest, he was going around and—well, being kind of a hooligan. He was trying to—um. You know how I told you that lady fairies leave their fertile egg-things lying around in flowers for the man fairies to come along and—do stuff with? Well, Hozlefunashti, as a kind of joke, had been going around and trying to fertilize fairy eggs. And the fairies were offended and outraged and kicked him out of the forest. And Hozlefunashti, in a fit of pique, snuck back into the forest and—well, um. He spread himself all over a big field of flowers kind of in spite, and then the fairies caught him and did a lot better job of throwing him out so he really couldn’t come back.

And . . . Moffer Bones told me that the fairies tried to—dispose of all those ‘contaminated’ flowers, because the fairies were annoyed, and apparently even though they tried to get rid of Hozlefunashti’s genetic material, every two hundred years or so since then, a random fairy baby pops up in a flower, because Hozlefunashti’s, um, male stuff is apparently pretty much indestructible and can—uh, impregnate flowers, since he’s half wood nymph.

Yeah.

And then Moffer Bones told me that, um, these babies who spring up are isolated from the rest of the fairies and allowed to grow up a bit, and then Queen Amance, who’s been in power since before Prince Zaeffo had his half-nymph child—and they’re brother and sister, apparently. Queen Amance is Prince Zaeffo’s older sister. I had not known that before. I thought they were cousins, but Moffer Bones told me that the fairies kind of smudged over the records and bloodline history after Prince Zaeffo got a wood nymph pregnant. Also, it sounded to me like Queen Amance was really excited to boot her younger brother out of the succession, since he was supposed to be King after her reign was over. (Royal fairies kind of take turns, and the throne passes after an interval of time, instead of when the last monarch dies. So Amance is having more than her fair turn, basically.)

Anyway, Moffer Bones told me that these random Hozlefunashti babies who pop up—and there have been three of us so far, apparently. I’m the third one. Um, these babies who pop up from flowers are really powerful, and don’t keep the rules very well, and Queen Amance just waits until the babies get old enough and then starts leeching power off them until they either turn into an average fairy with less power or else she—well, she didn’t kill the last one, but—you remember that stone statue I told you about? That one girl, Monacsta from two hundred years ago who got her wings stripped away and is now a stone statue? Yeah, apparently Monacsta is my half-sister. So.

Talk about a weird day, right?

You’re reading Victor Poole, and in my current novel, someone is being held a prisoner and experiencing a lot of stress about the situation. You can get my latest story here.

Dragon hunter and more story

dragon sketch

Sample

(If you recall, Moffer Bones has just explained that Winstance is one quarter royal fairy, one quarter wood nymph, and half flower. He also believes the Fairy Queen has already explained this to Winstance and is expecting a message of some kind from the Queen.)

The Birds and Bees of Fairy-Kind

I mean . . . a flower? My mother was . . . a flower? What?

Luckily I was still feeling some leftover annoyance from the way he’d been refusing to answer for so long, because my face stayed pretty calm and stoic, despite the shock I was experiencing. I say this was lucky because it meant that Moffer Bones stopped being so flippant and tried to tone himself down to match me, more. He said, “I’m sorry. I guess it’s kind of big news. Um, how’d you take it? And what do you really want from me? Usually Amance is trying to get a date out of these little messenger-ploys, so what’s she after this time?”

I just stared at him. My mind was still circling around this insane thing he’d just told me, that I was—half flower. Like, what? How is someone half flower? It’s not like I had blossoms springing out of my head every spring or something, and I sure as heck looked exactly like a normal fairy. I guess my face was pretty disgruntled, because Moffer toned it down even more and got kind of sympathetic.

“Did she leave out the part about the flower?” Moffer Bones asked. I couldn’t really help myself, and I let out a kind of scoffing breath, because—a flower? Seriously? I was pretty sure this was some weird kind of joke, because baby fairies simply do not burst up out of flowers.

Oh, you probably don’t know how baby fairies are born, so . . . I should probably tell you that, so my reaction makes more sense. Um, I told you before about how fairies really, really aren’t into touchy-feely stuff, like, at all, and they don’t engage in romance. I mean, there is no cuddling, or—well, no one has crushes on each other, and there is no love, in the sense of anyone partnering up and wanting to spend time with each other. Fairies are just super, duper hands-off and independent, and they don’t like to be touched or to feel too—um. Too—I don’t know how to say this.

They don’t want to feel like anyone relies on them in an emotional sense, and they, in general, value their internal autonomy to kind of a ridiculous extent, in my opinion. I mean, the rest of the fairies, the vast majority of them, by which I mean everyone but me, is just—cold. Emotionally, they’re very calculating and cold, not in a mean way, I think, but that’s just the way they’re wired. I’m not that way, so you can imagine how no one among the fairies particularly gets along with me, because—well, I have a lot of emotions and a bunch of them center around love and wishing to be touched, and to touch in benign, happy, silly-flirty kinds of ways. Plus the more serious kinds of touching, and I want to have love with a capital L.

So I’m really different that way, and I was setting out to tell you how fairy babies are made. Well, it’s not very romantic, and I don’t think it’s particularly interesting. You know how some kinds of—like, fish, I guess? Um, some creatures will have a male and a female where their, uh, bits never actually get involved with each other? Like, one of them lays out the eggs or whatever, and then the other half of the species strolls along and kind of—spreads the spermy stuff? Yeah, that’s how fairies do things, except the girl fairies, after they plop—sorry, this sounds really gross, but—um. Let me think of a more delicate way to say this.

Erm.

So the lady fairies, when their bodies go into that overdrive of ‘I must have a kid!’, they go along to a couple of different sorts of flowers that grow in the forest, and they—secrete—yeah, I’ll say secrete, that’s nicer than plop. Um, the girl fairies secret some stuff on the flower, and it apparently smells good to male fairies, because then the male fairies will come along after the female fairy is gone and—uh. Do their thing, you know. Get their half involved, and then they also stroll away, and the girl fairy comes back at some point and gets the fertilized stuff, and—yeah. That’s as much detail as I am willing to share, because the rest is kind of gross. But she gets the material back in and grows a baby, and eventually plops it out into a flower, and then she is super hands-off and feeds it and teaches it how to be a regular fairy, and by the time the kid is about five, he or she is cut loose and just on their own.

There you go. That’s regular fairy reproduction, and of course I’m this wild anomaly because I want to do things the more—uh. Carnal way. Not that I want kids, because I don’t right now, or possibly—I don’t know. I’m too young to be thinking about kids, but I want love, and all the warm, cuddly parts. Of course I’ve kept most of that wanting to myself, because the other fairies would see me as an aberration, because I am. I’m abnormal, compared to how all of them are, and the takeaway from this whole story is that I was a little baby in a flower and my mother never showed up. You know, like I just told you about how the mom fairy has the baby in a flower and then feeds the kid? Yeah, I just was in a flower, and no mom, so I always figured that my mom had me and really just walked off.

And now Moffer Bones was telling me I had spontaneously combusted into being from a flower. Like, uh, no? That’s now how making babies works, you know?
He had just asked me if the Queen had failed to mention this ‘your mother is a flower’ element, and I guess I looked pretty disbelieving, because Moffer Bones laughed, kind of in a pitying way, and he told me he would explain everything better.

I was like, good, because yeesh. I sure wasn’t buying this flower business. I was pretty sure, at this point, that he was using ‘flower’ as a metaphor for ‘deadbeat mom’ to try and spare my feelings, which I did not appreciate. I mean, I’m not a little kid, and I got used to not having a mom about fifty years ago, so come on, Moffer Bones! Be honest with me, you know? So this is what he said next.

You’re reading Victor Poole, and in my latest story, a new guy is grooming a horse creature while being inundated with valuable insider knowledge.

We find out what Winstance is today! !!!

But first, some acting thoughts:

Back when I was in acting school, something that was funny (odd) to me was how a large proportion of actors didn’t think about the future in any coherent manner.

For example, there was a big push near graduation for the different seniors to travel out to theatre hubs and apply for work, and to go to grad school auditions, but . . . but all but a tiny, tiny percentage of the actors doing this weren’t seriously ready to move or take up any work (or grad school), and I was like, gosh, what are you guys doing? (I was saying that in my head, because it was none of my business.)

I didn’t do any of those sorts of things because it wasn’t the time for that in my life, personally. For one thing (and this was genuinely a big reason), at the time I looked like a prepubescent child, and I didn’t want to play children professionally as an actor. It took me until my late twenties to finally start looking like an adult.

Anyway, the point of this story is that my vocal and bodywork is finally starting to get traction, and I can (just barely) see the light at the end of the tunnel for [redacted personal goals]. Yay!

And now, for a complete and abrupt change of topic!

Here is a drawing of some flying horses from one of my fantasy work-in-progresses:

Flying Horses!

into the east

Aaaaaand here’s some story for you to read.

Sample

Just before this in the story, our rebel fairy has broken into Moffer Bones’ house and is now working at getting answers out of him. Enjoy!

A Giant Secret, Revealed

Okay! So he’d told me my wings were cute, which I was just in paroxysms of glee about, secretly, though I kept on being stoic and quite on the outside, and Moffer Bones stared out of the window for a long moment and seemed to be getting all meditative.

“I wouldn’t mind, you know, if she wasn’t such a bitch,” he said. Again, I had no clue what he was talking about, or which ‘she’ he wouldn’t mind. I also, to be honest, was not comfortable with him saying the ‘b’ word. I’m only saying it now because I can’t think of anything else to replace it with that would make sense. Next time I’ll just tell you he said something that wasn’t very nice.

Um, so he said that, and I, of course, kept not saying anything at all, and after a few minutes he pushed his hands through his glorious hair again and looked at me.

“So you want to know what you are. Great. I know you already know by now. Did you work out a trade with her? Protection in exchange for some of your magic? Or is she making you a princess or some *crap* like that.” (He swore, he didn’t actually say crap.)

Um, so I figured at this point that he must have been talking about the Queen Mother all the time, and I was sort of intrigued, and also tired of standing all the way across the room from him, so I wandered over to a chair and made myself comfortable, because based on how roundabout he was being so far, we were going to be at this all day long. I mean, it seemed like he couldn’t get two words out without adding in a big, significant silence with a lot of sighing thrown in, and I didn’t want to be standing up forever while he struggled with his inner demons or whatever. He kind of grinned at me when I sat down and he said, “I wish it was you instead. You’re nicer than her.”

Well, guys, this seemed like a really portentous thing to say. It really sounded, from my first impression, like he was involved in some kind of—I don’t know, some unpleasant destiny involving the Queen, and that he was saying he’d rather be stuck with me in that kind of magical ‘you are doomed to be together’ way than with her.

This was honestly kind of freaking me out, because things just kept getting more complicated instead of less, so I went ahead and repeated my original question for the third time. I said, “What am I?”, and I guess I looked pretty impatient and fed up with the wandery way Moffer Bones had been refusing to answer, because he sighed and nodded, looking all romantic and busy with the workings of fate again.

He seriously had the most expressive, gorgeous face. When he felt anything, it just seemed to be broadcast all over his features, and his eyes—my gosh, his eyes were special. I know when there’s a really beautiful person, sometimes other people will say something like that they have—the beautiful person, that that person has eternity in their eyes, or seems to hold all the universe, but that’s honestly how Moffer Bones’ eyes seemed to me. He just—he was so concentrated, and completely vivid, as a person.

I really felt like his actual soul was lying just under the surface of his skin, and lurking right behind his eyes, and it seemed to me that if everything had been different and if we could have been friends, I could have reached out and touched his arm, and I would have felt the whole fabric of his being just under his skin. Like if he was a condensed piece of sunlight, hot and concentrated and pure, and I would be able to feel that warmth and beauty right under my fingers.

Of course we weren’t friends and he didn’t even want me to be there, so I wasn’t going to touch him or anything. I’m just saying how it seemed at the time, with how changeable and passionate his whole being was. I liked watching him. Um.

Not in a creepy way! In an admiring way, like he was a rare bird or a really awesome, secretive fish that I was peering at through the water. Like that. Not like a stalker or a gross, greedy person. Just like an admiring and standoffish—uh, admirer of nature. Like that.

Anyway, so Moffer Bones, when I asked for the third time what I was, glanced at me with this deep, soulful look in his eyes, and he said, “You’re a spontaneous growth from the remnants of Prince Zaeffo’s bastard child. Half flower, one quarter royal fairy, one quarter wood nymph. That’s what you are. You don’t have a mother, as I’m sure the Queen told you, or your mother was a wildflower, I should say. There. How’d I do? Is that what Queen Amance told you, or did she elaborate about the nitty-gritty?” Moffer Bones asked, giving me this annoying handsome grin.

I was kind of shocked.

You’re reading Victor Poole, and in my latest book, someone is resting up for a big adventure. : D You can find my latest book here.

An in-progress sketch and some story

A Sketch!

mids1.1 crop

Some story!

Sample

If you recall, Winstance is trying to get information about herself out of the reticent (and handsome) Moffer Bones.

An Unexpected and Delightful Compliment

Finally Moffer Bones sighs again, and he’s like, “Well, she always sends a message, anyway. What’d she say this time? I’ll answer your questions if you tell me. I need you to give me that first,” and then Moffer Bones looks at me with this super expectant look in his eyes.

Well, guys, I really didn’t know what to do at this point, but I was completely sure that if I fell off my determination to be stoic and quiet, that I would—well, that I wouldn’t recover afterwards. I mean, most of my life (let’s be honest here, all of my life was this way)–let me start over.

Gosh, this story is complicated to tell.

But for all of my life, I’ve been the one putting myself out to please or impress or placate other people. I really have never made myself important, and I was always kind of an extra person, as far as when anyone thought about me or involved me in things. I mean, I don’t fit in super well with the other fairies, for all the reasons I’ve already told you.

Most fairies—okay, fine, all the other fairies, it seems like, are content to just go on being their humdrum, everyday selves forever. They don’t care about the leaf clothes we have to wear, or that we aren’t allowed romance. They honestly don’t mind, and it drives me nuts, and the bottom line is that I’ve been putting myself last forever and trying to get along with everyone, though I’ve been really grumpy about it.

My point is that right in this moment, I was being silent and kind of forcing Moffer Bones to figure out what he was going to say or do, and I was completely convinced that if I departed from my new *silence* policy and explained that I didn’t have any clue what Moffer Bones was talking about, that I would then just go straight back to acting like an overly friendly pushover. I didn’t want that.

So I didn’t say anything.

Moffer Bones had asked for this message he thought I would have from some female person, and I, of course, didn’t have any message at all and had no clue who he was talking about, and I just stuck harder to my ploy of not responding or contributing any talking myself.

Moffer Bones seemed to be surprised by this, and his eyebrows kind of climbed.

“Seriously?” he asked, and then he smiled and looked kind of like he felt better. “Well, this is fun. So she’s evolving her approach. That’s novel. What’d she promise you? I bet she’s saying that she’ll protect your wings. You have cute wings,” Moffer Bones added, and I had to fight so hard to keep from blushing and melting into a kind of cooing pit of ‘oh, thank you!’ and squirming, and . . . feeling special!

I mean, he told me right out that my wings were cute. Cute! Aaaugh! I loved that. I felt like it was practically a request for a first date. Mmm. So he said that, that my wings were cute, and then he laughed again and ruffled a hand through his super amazing, dark brown, curly hair.

Oh, gosh, his hair looked sooo soft, and the pretty hazel highlights were all dancing around from the sunlight falling through the window. Sigh. . .

You’re reading Victor Poole, and in my latest book, someone just got kidnapped by some gangsters (for being a wannabe assassin). You can get my latest story here.

Face Practice and Musings

Here is this drawing for more face structure practice:

Sketch!

facepractice2

So… I was thinking the other day about how, um, when you get rid of icky stuff in your life, there comes up this other issue where I think you have to replace the ucky crap with nice things. So that’s what I’m doing right now.

Victor Poole, you’re so vague!

I know, I know. That’s one of the alluring high points of my personality, is my meandery abstruseness. : D Let’s talk about one of my actors for a minute, okay? Just for the sake of storytelling, we’ll call him Henry. Ahem.

Henry carried his body in a very odd way. He had developed flexibility for the physical discipline he was into, but he had little to no core strength and made strange flaps with his feet, which, together with the way he disengaged his hips, made him seem just a little like a disorganized, svelte duck.

A duck, you say? Well, you’re a turkey, Victor Poole!

Okay, thanks. Um, and the interesting thing about Henry was that his energy was diffused in a heavy stream from his upper shoulders to the midpoint of his waist. He was like a human waterfall, but the water (his natural impulse streams) didn’t gather into a pool or collect anywhere in his body, so the total effect of his personality was a little like a pleasant humanoid mister.

You know, a machine that sprays out a gentle, refreshing mist? Except that was his personality shooting out like that, and he didn’t have any leftover for himself, because he didn’t have a retaining container built into his physical or spiritual form.

Henry needed

a container to catch and utilize his own energy. Ideally, he would have constructed such a catch-all retaining unit in his hips, between the iliac crests of his pelvis.

I think his feet would have straightened out if he’d kept his own personality inside his body, and then he would have walked more like a sleek, powerful great dane or German shepherd, instead of like a wandering, handsome waterfowl.

And now, some story.

Sample

A Reluctant Crush

If you recall, Winstance is in Moffer Bones’ house and attempting to collect intel on her wings, mysterious powers, and current situation. Enjoy.

So Moffer Bones was sprawled all over his couch, looking like life was just too much for him, and his head was tipped back and everything, so his freaking hot jawline was just—man, he was amazingly attractive in that moment. I was trying to say, his jawline spoke to me, and it said ‘I am the most incredibly perfect person you will ever meet; love me.’ Obviously his jaw itself wasn’t the full person, but I mean Moffer Bones as a whole was having that effect on me, and I was working really hard on not getting even more of an embarrassing crush on the guy.

Had I explained yet that I had a devastating crush on Moffer Bones? It wasn’t one of those crushes where you’re, like, totally on board with things, either. I was resistant to my feelings, because I felt it was pretty clear that he really didn’t care for me. I wanted to have a whole lot of romance with a variety of partners in the future (one at a time, in succession, just to make that clear), but I had no interest in, like, developing feelings for anyone who wasn’t even mildly interested in me. Like, how humiliating and uncomfortable would that be? Super humiliating and uncomfortable, that’s how much!

Um, and so I was fighting back against my, uh, natural inclination to fall into a super deep attraction for the poor guy, who obviously just wanted me to go away. I wanted to go away, too! I just had to find out all the vital information he had so that I could protect myself and avoid whatever further traps and weird ploys the Queen Mother was likely to spring at me, you know? I mean, I felt bad for Moffer, and I didn’t want to bother him any more than I needed to to keep my wings safe and find out what the heck was going on.

Anyway, so he was lounging back on the couch looking persecuted and insanely hot, and I was trying really hard not to notice how ridiculously perfect and yummy he looked (soo yummy!), and he kind of laughed again, but in this romantic, hollow way (and I’m not just saying that. I want you to know that Moffer Bones had this, like, aura of cool charmingness, and he really was being all—all supermodelly through this bit of the action. I wasn’t projecting and being all gah-gah or something. So!)—

Starting over, he laughed in this hollow, ‘my life is so overburdened with unreasonable care’ kind of way, and he cast this glamorous, irritated, lazy glare at me (I cannot overemphasize how complex and completely gorgeous his glare was, which is why I’m adding all this description; he made this huge impact on me, is what I’m getting at)—

Sorry, okay. So he glares at me, in a very beautiful way, and then he says, “Are you seriously telling me you don’t know what you are by now? That’s rich. Right. So your price is that you’re going to humiliate me before you get down to brass tacks. Great. Fine. You’re a real nice kid, Winstance. Did she tell you about all the birth lore, too?” After he asked that, he narrowed his eyes and scowled at me.

I had NO IDEA what he was talking about. I mean, did he think I’d gone and had some kind of negotiation with the Queen? Was there some other important ‘she’ hanging around the forest I was unaware of? I mean, I know almost all the fairies, and aside from the Queen and a few members of the royal family, we’re really pretty much all the same.

I stuck to my original plan of just listening (already I was learning a lot of useful things, even if it was fragmented and confusing!), and Moffer Bones and I kind of had a staring contest. I think he was trying to break down my resistance or embarrass me or something, but I had on those incredibly comfortable jeans and the best hoodie in existence, and they were like armor or something. Plus, they smelled like Moffer Bones, and he smelled *really* good, so he truly was not scaring or intimidating me at all at this point.

I waited him out. This is what he said next.

You’re reading Victor Poole, and in my current novel, someone is making a sneak attack on the main group (and it’s thrilling and stressful!). You can get hold of my latest story here.