NaNoWriMo Day 29

As I said last night, I actually already hit the 50k, but I’m still writing a bit today and tomorrow to finish things out. Today I wrote a little bit more of my villain for the story – he’s coming along nicely in all his lawful evil efficiency.

Word Count: 500


“The eighth king of Synka has been born. He is living destitute in a small town, barely more than a village, in the Timewilds. The people’s living hope is in squalor.”

Another thing about elves, Autumnus had noticed, was that they never minded letting a pause draw out. While his revelation sank in, the two of them watching his face closely for any tells he didn’t intend to give away, Autumnus relaxed into his chair. He could be damned patient himself; his only disadvantage against them was not having elven longevity. Whatever processing they needed to do, he could wait it out. That was part and parcel of dealing with their kind.

“The eighth king,” the second elf echoed delicately. His eyes were keen as a razor. “And you haven’t secured him yet?”

Autumnus tilted his head and let his expression shrug for him. “Your rumor-mongering is powerful indeed, my friend, but even you could not dress up news of the Order taking a child from his mother without there being some careful … massaging of the truth in place first. Even if he is the most important asset for us, we can’t move too hastily.”

“This will put pressure on the mother,” the elf woman surmised.

Autumnus smiled, the expression reaching his eyes this time. “Precisely. Who is Marina Fehrliss to argue with the will of the people?”

NaNoWriMo Day 21

Words words words! I actually started early today, which I rarely do. I almost don’t know what to do with all this free evening time I have now. Also whoops I keep not wanting to excerpt the more Exciting parts because I need to make sure they make sense to me so. Fantasy slice of life it is!

Word Count: 2226


Marina couldn’t man her stall for the entire day nonstop like she used to do. During the midday hour or so break, she had to take her leave from the market, packing up her things safely and bringing Vantage out of the brightest part of the day.

She found herself in the scraggly shade of a tree in one of Arelvo’s only maintained green spaces. It was a small park near the southern end of town, beyond which were rolling hills of grass and the occasional boulder. Long, smoothed-over scars from the last time great ice mountains had carved their way across the timewilds, leaving behind remnants of the Dragonrest mountains and whatever else they’d dragged along.

Vantage never really cared to look out at the scenery with her, but then again Marina wasn’t quite sure if he could see that far yet. She hadn’t asked many questions of the midwife that helped her with his birth, when could she expect certain milestones, things like that. For all anyone knew, a halfgod child could have an entirely different timetable than a fully mortal baby.

At least he’d grown consistently. Marina didn’t know what she’d do if she had to deal with an infant that didn’t grow up at the rate he should. The thought of being this sleepless a year or more down the line, all of it owed to waking up to feed the little scamp every few hours, made her shudder.

NaNoWriMo Day 14

REALLY good writing day today. I wasn’t sure when I first started – some scenes are just resistant until you actually get a groove going. And then Marina started being protectively sassy and it just went off. You go, momma witch!

Word Count: 2376


“Miss Fehrliss,” one of them greeted, offering a polite bow. It made the scabbard of his short sword upset the back of his surcoat, and she imagined a short little tail growing there instead.

“Steward,” she greeted back, not returning the bow. They would forgive her for it; she had a baby strapped to her, after all. “As I said, it’ll be a moment before you can browse.”

“We aren’t here to browse, miss,” the second steward said, all business and decorum. Gods bless him, he could barely be over seventeen years old. “We’re here to talk about -”

“You’re in a market, gents,” Marina chided them. “Bold of you to announce you don’t intend to buy anything.”

“Miss Fehrliss, please,” the first man cut in, holding out a hand to shush his companion and tilting his head at her with a faint, friendly smile. “We have been trying to be respectful of the situation you’ve found yourself in, but it is difficult for us to stand by while you struggle so.”

“Struggle?” Marina echoed, looking and sounding scandalized. She put her hand on her cheek and tilted her head. “To what struggles are you referring, dear steward?”

To her surprise, the man understood her sarcasm for what it was, and had the presence of mind to look apologetic. “I mean no insult, miss. But you are still running a simple market stall to make ends meet, and living in a small hovel that is in no way fit to raise a child. Especially one like-”

“Don’t talk to me about my child, unless it’s to tell me how cute his little round cheeks are.”

NaNoWriMo Day 12

Today I got plenty of words written! I never struggled to keep myself writing. And yet, it felt like every time I checked on my word count for the day, I’d only written like, twenty more words than the last time I checked.

Word Count: 2147


It took him a few months to wander back into town. Marina had given him up by then, so she was as surprised as everyone else when that familiar tall, cowled figure had appeared in Arelvo’s single market district once more.

The bastard had the nerve, back then, to look happy to see her, to lean in for a kiss as if the intervening months hadn’t happened at all.

Marina didn’t allow it. Out of respect for the cowl and the mask he wore, she didn’t slap him like the scorned young women did in all the hexcoin novels in stock at the bookshop. Never one to be idle, Marina had continued her discipline. She hadn’t sat and pined for him at her window, though she had taught herself a handy spell for if she ever saw him again.

A thump of solid force right to his sternum seemed to get the message across loud and clear, and in front of the entire market to boot. He didn’t bother her at her stall after that.

It took him three days to convince her to see him again. By his explanation, it was like he really didn’t understand just how much time he’d allowed to elapse. Her ire over his sudden departure, over his silence all that time, never occurred to him. Those blue eyes of his – beautiful, clear blue eyes that were normally so hidden by his cowl – were wide with the dawning understanding of what he’d done, and how he’d hurt her.

He had apologized, and that had surprised Marina more than most of his odd, clueless behavior before. It wasn’t the first time he’d apologized to her, but it was the first time he did it without her telling him he needed to do so.

And gods damn it all if she hadn’t been swept right up into his charm once again.

NaNoWriMo Day 5

One day I’ll make one of these posts at a reasonable hour, when people can see them! But that’s not today. I did a lot of work today! I made progress and even got some work done in a new POV. Things are getting endearing between Marina and her new best friend. Hoping I can convey their silly little romance properly.

Word Count: 2480


He stared in surprise down at their joined hands, and for a moment Marina wondered if he didn’t even know what a handshake was. Then, he grinned too, and his laugh bubbled out of him. “You never respond the way I think you will,” he admitted, and he sounded completely delighted with the fact.

Marina shook her head with bemusement and stepped a little closer. His hand stayed closed around hers and she didn’t make a move to pull it away just yet. “Guess you’ll have to work on getting to know me a little better.”

He tilted his head, intrigue and excitement hiding just behind his beautiful blue eyes. Then, he nodded. “I suppose I will. Where do we start?”

Marina gave his hand a squeeze before finally letting go. “We can start with you helping me work, since you decided to mysteriously appear before me in the middle of an arduous task.”

His eyebrows lifted and he glanced around them, at the grass waving from the breeze and the strike of raindrops both. Then, he found the pouches on Marina’s belt, and the bag hanging over her shoulder. He looked like he wanted to say something against the idea of helping her with the gathering. Marina watched him steadily as his entire thought process seemed to play out on his face.

NaNoWriMo Day 4

It’s still the 4th where I live, so this still counts, though it’s another late post! Writing felt like it was going at a decent pace but it still took me a while to actually reach my goal. Marina continues to entertain, though soon I’ll reach the point where I plan to switch to a new character POV! We’ll see how it goes.

Word Count: 2165


Then there was the mask. Even with the cowl off and all the light available on it, it still rested on his face like a piece of the night sky was affixed to him. Marina found herself staring at it, at the way it fit so perfectly to his face, almost seemed to move with him, despite having no visible method of staying there. In the light, she understood the aura of the thing.

That mask was a curse. She couldn’t see the source, but she could see the weavings of magic like a tightly strung net, stuck to him like some kind of leech.

Some folks out there approach the gods in their tenacity. And among them all, none could break the heaviest curses.

Had he been traveling all this time looking for a cure to whatever that curse did to him?

NaNoWriMo Day 3

Late post today, but I did make my goal! Y’know, eventually. More exploration of Marina and her new friend today, as well as some environment setup. Unfortunately I started a story that involves some moderate flirting … which is why the writing was slow today. How does that even work? It’s a mystery I’m not prepared to solve. The excerpt will not be featuring the flirt attempts, as I am still unsure if they really work like I want. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Word Count: 2289


Cloth bundles sat out on her table, only a few feet away from her mussed bed. They imposed a certain weight on the cluttered room, the only things really out of place if she were to put much thought into it. She didn’t want to be around when the intended recipient of those parcels came around to get them. It was the same old routine – she would be out of the house long before her mum arrived to collect the offerings. She didn’t have to weather an awkward, cloying conversation about how she had chosen to live her life.

The room itself acted as a testament to that old argument. Was she truly doing what she was meant to? Did she need to put so much work and energy into her self-taught magic? Becoming a witch came with sacrifices, mum always said. Would it be so bad to change her mind about what she wanted to do?

“Yes, it would,” Marina mumbled as she finally squirmed her way out of her quilt. She rehashed the same old argument in her head; she didn’t do it as frequently anymore, but it just figured it would creep in while she was simply trying to enjoy the sound of a gentle rain.

NaNoWriMo Day 2

I had a slightly late start to the writing efforts today, but I made good progress and maintained a good pace anyway. Today Marina decided to pick a fight with a god. I’m proud of her for that.

Word Count: 2171


A small glass of sparkling water in hand, Marina marched over to the corner table. She felt like marching, anyway, though she had to drift around the cluttered, crowded tables. For once, she wished for nothing more than a straight line and a clear path to her goal.

Still, he didn’t seem to notice her approach until she was practically upon him, and she slammed the sparkling water onto his tiny table in front of him.

He didn’t flinch, but looked up quickly enough that he couldn’t hide the widening of his eyes, half-shadowed as they were in his cowl. Marina didn’t give him much time to formulate a response to her startling arrival. “This here is what you determined I was worth today,” she told him. “Nothing more than a child’s portion of fizzwater. Perhaps you’ll get more entertainment out of it, but personally, I’m hoping it leaves you a bit queasy. It’d serve you right, acting all high and mighty and then showing yourself here.”

NaNoWriMo Day 1

It begins – I am not sure if today’s momentum actually reflects how the following days will go, as I hyped myself up for this particular scene. However, I didn’t actually finish the scene, so there’s high hopes! I am so happy to finally get to write these characters.

Word Count: 2279


At length, he came to her table – or rather, he stood alongside it. Even then, she couldn’t catch a glimpse of his face with the shadow of his cowl stubbornly giving no hints. Marina waited an extra beat, but apparently it was her turn to try to catch this outsider’s attention. He turned, just a bit. She finally caught a glimpse of the shadowed jaw, masculine in its angles and the faint black stubble upon it.

If he wanted to buy anything, he’d already have patronized one of her fellow vendors, so Marina didn’t waste her time on the usual sales pitch. “You after anything, love, or is this a performance piece?”

The stranger paused, then turned towards her more. Odd shadows played tricks on her, kept her from picking out more details on his face besides his mouth. When he spoke, those lips turned up ever so slightly at the corners. “I beg your pardon?”

Marina returned a coy smirk of her own, leaning forward slightly as if she were a schoolmarm handing out an important lesson. “Respectfully, gent, a market isn’t the best place to beg, not in the middle of the day. Are you here to buy, or is the walking around mysteriously a part of a performance for all us little town types?”