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Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Dark One

The Dark One is a (hopefully) short story [to be], inspired by a particularly mortifying dream I had one night. I did not think of turning it into a story; it was my father's idea. Although it is particularly frightful (or at least it was when I dreamt it!), after thinking about it now from a calmer state of mind, I think my Dad was right when he told me it would make for an interesting story-seed.

Here's what I have down thus far:

"I did not want to go anywhere near there. The day was dark and the air that surrounded me was cold and damp. It was well beyond me why nobody else reacted to this creature, but even though I did not know who or what it was; I knew immediately that it was nothing good.

From the shadows between outcrops of wall and in the reflections of the gritty, stirring puddles on the asphalt, I could see his toxic-green eyes glowing back at me with malicious intent. His presence followed me like a horrible shadow: dripping, dark, and ready to strike.

“I’m telling you, he’s following me!” I cried, panting, to my classmates up in the lounge. Those who bothered to listen at all had little sympathy to offer.

“There’s nobody following you, Nila.” Abram said to me. As much as I trusted him as a dear friend, I knew my senses weren’t lying to me either, and my ego got the better of me.

“Maybe not now,” I murmured, staring off wide-eyed into the distance outside the window. “But He is waiting.”

“Who is He?”

“The Dark One.” I whispered, cringing within just to hear the words that described him. “He is everything in shadows and water, creeping vines and puddles of rain.”

Abram looked around the mostly-empty hall, frowned, and shrugged. “I haven’t seen anyone... or anything... too unusual.” He looked outside. “Besides, the sky is clear and the sun is out – not a cloud in sight.”

I glanced out the window.

The skies were gray – Dark Gray – and the wind blew fiercely, tugging mercilessly at the supple branches and leaves of the trees in the courtyard. No blue sky in sight.

“Come on, Nila,” he said. “It’s time for gym class.”

I whirled back around and stared blankly at him like a deer in headlights. “Gym class?” I squeaked.

He raised an eyebrow. “Yeah; it’s third period.”

I shook my head. “I’m not going down there, Abe.”

“You can’t be serious…Ni.”

I crossed my arms firmly over my chest and stood there, not willing to budge for the world.

Abram grabbed my arm abruptly and tugged me along with a yelp; “Come on.” "

** Note: I have changed the names of the people in my dream for the story in order to avoid any awkwardness or other "social setbacks". ... Just in case you were curious...

A Bit of History

This is a small excerpt from my second book (which is still in need of a title). It is a historical fiction novel which takes place in 18th Century America, during the time of the American Revolutionary War. It is narrated primarily by two characters (taking separate turns): Abigail Kensington - a time-warped teen from 21st Century Philadelphia, PA; and Lieutenant Warren J. Sands - an American soldier in the Revolutionary War.

This bit, narrated by Abigail, makes up the greater part of the first page of the novel:

"I gathered a deep breath and ran. Around me, bullets cut the air that was filled with the bellows of explosions. War was upon us. I felt the searing heat of a building as it was thrown into the sky, only to come raining right back down onto the battered, snow-covered streets of what used to be Pittsburgh. I caught sight of a smoldering pile of bricks that was once the armory, and I hurdled myself over, skimming the fractured rubble on top as I passed. On the other side, I pressed my back against the jagged surface and clutched my father’s pistol to my chest. Whether it was because of the masonry digging into my back or the sudden flashback of memory from that morning, I’m not sure, but I began to cry.

“I’m sorry, Mom, Dad… Robby… I’m so, so sorry…” I whispered to the burning air. My father’s pistol offered no sympathy.

I kicked at a chinked piece of brick lying on the ground by my right toe, but it didn’t budge. Already frustrated enough, I slammed the pistol down on the ground beside me and reached out to grab the block and send it flying, but I was stopped short by a sudden, blazing pain in my right leg. The pistol had fired. A set of arms and hands appeared from above."

Preview of "Thunder Island"

Here is a little snippet from my first ever completed novel, Thunder Island:

"Cassidy stood up straight atop the disappearing mound of stones, threw back her head and screamed for help, battling the thunder with her voice. She imagined her voice shooting out like bullets, their gunshot echoing all around.

Please, God… Please let somebody hear me…

She called out again, desperately and listened to her own voice echo within her megalithic prison. Cassidy looked down. The water lapped coldly against her feet.

Please let somebody find me before it’s too late."

First Post!

Hello all, and welcome to my blog!

I'm quite excited to finally have a blog of my own where I can post my work for others to see (and to give you all the heads-up on my publishing progress). Ideas are welcomed and feedback is encouraged! I am still new to the whole "blogging" concept, so please, bear with me as I click every wrong button possible before finally figuring out how to something the right way (we've all been there at some point or another).
Let me know if you have any suggestions for the blog layout, gadgets, or even story topics! I aim to set up a forum-type thingumywhatsit (if that's even possible on here) for readers to talk with me and with one another.

I hope you all enjoy what I have here (and will have in the future as well), and you can tease me for my low levels of internet savvy-ness, but remember: it's all fun and games 'til the author figures it out (whenever that may be...)

Ciao for now!

~ Jeanette Schramm