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Saturday, November 28, 2015

Serial Story Saturday

Unexpected Adventure, Part Nine

Cloudwillow set her face away from the ruined building and marched ahead. “First step, get the cape. I only know one place where that could be, and that place is the elven city.”
“Magic people?” Regis glowered. “No, thank you.”
“Oh, come on! What do you have against magic?”
“It’s unnatural.”
“Or maybe it’s natural and the only reason you don’t like it is because it can do things you think are impossible.”
“I’m not going to put myself at the mercy of magic just to get a cape.”
“But it’s important!”
“Come on. I know a place we can set up a temporary camp.” Regis walked.
Cloudwillow sputtered. “Are you listening to me?!”
“No.” Regis was rewarded by seeing the little elf’s face turn red.
Suddenly, the red washed from her face and she beamed. “Only a few minutes into my first adventure, and already I find myself tried. Daddy was right; this isn’t going to be easy.” She hummed and skipped beside Regis, who raised an eyebrow.
“You’re not going to try to force me to find the cape?”
“Nah. If you want to defy a Prophecy and do things out of order, go ahead. I’ll just watch when you hurt yourself.”
Regis hoped he wasn’t going to have to listen to her talk the whole way to his site. The elf kept quiet for a few minutes. Then, “We’re going to get the sword first, right?”
“No.”
“Then what’s the plan?”
“Get far away, don’t get found.”
“You’re doing this all wrong!” Cloudwillow tried to argue about the merits of the Prophecy, but Regis refused to respond. Finally, the elf fell into a gloomy mood. “We’re going to get hurt,” was all she said.
When the sun’s bleary eye was at its midpoint, the pair came to Regis’ destination; a cave.
“Let’s see, rocks, rocks, wet, cold…” Cloudwillow groaned. “It’s a regular cave!”
Regis set his pack down and lighted a heat lamp. “What were you expecting?”
“Something amazing. Like, a secret hideout with revolving doors, buttons, and a weapons’ cache.” She plopped beside him.
They both took out a small meal of bread, dried meat and warm water. Cloudwillow gnawed at her meat. “You know,” she said between bites, “you’re taking every precaution. You even remembered to cover our tracks. But I still think we’re going to find the sword first.”
Regis sighed. “Let me eat in peace.”
Outside, the sky darkened, and snow began to fall.
Regis remembered what had happened before the first fight with the cloaked man and readied his daggers. He took several more from his pack and slid them into his belt. “Arm yourself.”
“Me?” Cloudwillow gave him an incredulous look. “Alright. But daddy says I couldn’t hit a mountain if I was standing at its base.”
Regis swore under his breath. He hastily slid the shield from his back. “Then take this. Push the center if you’re in a tight spot.”
Cloudwillow grunted and slid the shield—it was nearly as big as her—onto an arm. “If you say so.”
The storm increased rapidly, until it was as if a tornado hovered just outside the cave. The black figure stepped through it.
Regis threw one dagger, so fast it whizzed.
The figure stepped aside, and the weapon spun into the whirlwind. “Predictable. Come with me—”
The cyborg’s voice interrupted. “—and the elf won’t die.”

Regis spun. The cyborg was behind them. And poised to nab Cloudwillow.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Serial Story Saturday

Unexpected Adventure, Part Eight

“Cloudwillow!” Regis braced himself against a shelf. With a grunt, he pushed himself off and tottered into the smoke.
Where could she—there, a darker lump amid rubble, where the stairs used to be. She wasn’t moving. He shoved aside pieces of timber, then dropped to his knees (remembering about his injury rather late). He felt for a pulse.
At his touch, Cloudwillow’s eyes fluttered open. “Aw, you care.” She clambered up, seemingly unhurt. “I brought your pack down, first thing after you left. I just came here to see if you were made of the right stuff.” She shuffled through smaller bits of rubble, then produced his pack. “This thing’s really sturdy. And heavy. Kind of like you.” An impossibly large smile shone bright amidst the murk.
Regis wondered if slapping the elf would be wrong. “You’re impossible.” He took his pack and slid it on. It was unusually heavy.
“Thank you,” she said in singsong. “Now let’s get going. We don’t want to be here when he comes back.”
“And they always do come back.” Regis sighed. Whether he liked it or not, he was stuck with the elf. “I’ll see what I can salvage.”
“Food shouldn’t be a problem; I packed.” She produced a sack; light cream and fastened with a bone of some sort. “And I got some daggers, and sleeping bags, and other camping stuff. That’s why your pack’s heavier.”
Regis stared at her. “Why do you seem more prepared for this than I am?”
She shrugged, swinging her shoulders. “Daddy says to always be ready for anything. That, and I’ve been reading about it for a while.” She gave a little squeal. “I just can’t believe it’s finally happening! Oh, and we’ll need staffs. Staffs are a necessity for adventurers.”
She dashed back into the library, and exited toting two long poles with strange pads on the ends. “These’ll work until I can finish healing you.”
“No. It will heal on its own.” Regis took the staff and levered himself up.
“Then let’s go already!” Cloudwillow bounded up the half-wrecked stairs as limber as a deer, and hopped through the still-smoldering debris.
Regis went out through the still-intact door.
The cold and strain stung his leg. To his surprise, it wasn’t bleeding. He looked to Cloudwillow, who was skipping in circles some distance ahead.
“Magic,” she shouted at him.
Regis waited to retort until he caught up with her. “Can magic give you your house back?”

The little elf made an “oh” face. She turned from him to the decapitated building. “I don’t think daddy’s going to be happy.”

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Serial Story Saturday

Unexpected Adventure, Part Seven

Regis stared at the picture for a little longer. “What is this?”
“That’s you. See, your name’s right there.” Cloudwillow jabbed a slender finger onto a space below the picture. Sure enough, it was his name. It was even in his handwriting.
“So?”
“So, this is what it says on the page before.” Cloudwillow stood back and puffed out her chest.
“ ‘On eve of storm terrible and white, shall a man of courage come
And fight. Fight a dark monster, powerful and scarred;
It will reveal who they are. Cape long and blue shall the courage man
Find. Sword wrought with secrets and powers left behind
Will be won from caverns deep. Before these tasks are done,
Secrets will lie in the light of sun.’ ”
Cloudwillow bounced on her heels. “What do you think?”
Regis looked from the page to the elf. “Does it mean anything?”
The little elf’s face went red. “Of course it means something!”
“What?”
Cloudwillow hopped onto the back of the couch and leaned over his shoulder. She pointed to each line in question while she spoke. “That’s you, the man of courage. Whatever attacked you is the monster, and fighting with him will bring out the best or worst in both of you. Then you’ll find a cape and a sword, but not before secrets are revealed. I thought that was pretty self-explanatory…don't ask me what the cape and sword are for, though. Dad explained it to me, but he got excited and I couldn't understand him.”
Regis rubbed his forehead.
Cloudwillow giggled and patted his shoulder. “If you think that one was hard to understand, wait until I read you The Ballad of the Singing Turtle.”
“No.”
“Grumpy puss. Well, I’ll get your pack.” The elf darted out of the room.
Regis jerked to his feet, tottering. “Wait—!”

Explosions rocked the building. Regis fell. A billow of grey smoke poured from the other room.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

Serial Story Saturday

Unexpected Adventures, Part Six

Regis woke near a spitting fire. He shouted and brushed sizzling embers from his face. Instantly, he regretted it. Everything spun, and his leg burned worse than the embers. He squeezed his eyes shut.
“Sorry about that! The fire doesn’t like your belt, I guess. And neither do I. It smells.”
Regis pried his eyes open. Cloudwillow stood right in front of him.
He started. Her voice had sounded further away.
“You’re going to be sore for a little while. That was a nasty swipe to your leg. Oh, I put it back when I was done, but I had to take off that charm.”
“You what?” Regis grit his teeth and sat up. If he hadn’t felt so nauseous, he would have picked up the grinning girl by the collar of her dress.
“It was either that or leave you bleeding to death.” Cloudwillow shrugged. She put her hands behind her back and rocked on her heels. “So…notice anything?”
Regis looked around. Books. There were books everywhere. On all four walls, above the fireplace, and there were scrolls hanging from hooks on the chandelier.
“Where am I?”
“The inn’s library. I couldn’t drag you to your room, and I don’t think you would’ve liked being left hanging on a table. Oh, and before you ask, I heard you thumping around upstairs.” Cloudwillow began miming, dashing from one end of the room and back again, gesturing with her arms all the while. “I ran over the snow, found you bleeding, wove a few spells, and then dragged you back like a slab of meat. You just weren’t quite as bloody as one. So, yeah, I saved you.”
Regis blinked and attempted to process the babble of words. “…Thank you.”
“You’re welcome.” She smiled smugly.
Regis hardened his tone. “Next time, don’t remove the charm.” He felt better when the smile fell from her face.
“Fine. Be that way. You won’t pass out, right?” She raised an eyebrow.
Regis raised one back. “No.”
“Oh, good. In that case, here…” She trotted over to a shelf and took down a thick book. “…is what I wanted to show you.”
A book, with worn leather binding, thumped next to him. He poked at it, then gingerly lifted the dingy cover with one finger.
Cloudwillow came up close and whispered in his ear. “It’s not a blood lion.”
Regis glared. “Then what is it?”
“It, my friend, is the Book of Prophecy.” She said the last with a tone of reverence. Then she hefted the book up, turned it towards her, and flipped the sheaves of paper. Words and pictures blurred by, too fast for Regis to see.
“This page here, this is why I was expecting you to be totally different.” Cloudwillow flipped the book back over, her finger tapping at a page on the right.

Regis stared. It was a picture. The picture was him. At least, the face was. He couldn’t attest to the starry blue cloak, ferocious emblem, or gem-studded sword.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Amazing You Tag

I got tagged by C.B. over at Proverbs 31 Teen. Thanks, C.B.! :D

Now, onto another question session.

AmazingYouTag

1. You’re on a deserted island, and you find a cave. What would you expect to find in it?
In real life? Probably a wild animal of some sort, so I wouldn’t go inside to find out…
Unless the weather was bad and that was the only shelter around, of course. 
If I was in a crazy mood, I’d expect a band of fantasy characters. ^.^

2. If you could have one superpower, which would you pick?
Teleportation. Then I wouldn’t have to drive. :P

3. What one song would you choose for the theme music for a movie about your life?
A few songs came to mind, but I think this one would be my final choice.



4. You can only wear one color for the rest of your life. What color would you pick?
Dark blue. Better to sneak around with. ;)

5. What’s one thing you want to do that’s wild, crazy, or unusual?
Physically visit a fantasy world of my choosing, of course.

6. If you had to give a speech to the whole world for five minutes, what topic would it be about?
Me? Speech? Whole world, five minutes? Uh…

7. You get to have lunch with any three famous people, present or past! Who would you pick?
Like, real people? Dang it. *crosses Gandalf and other such people from the list* Theodore Roosevelt, or Paul of Tarsus; they both gave their respective countries and time periods a really nice, swift kick in the pants when it counted. J

8. What is your favorite smell, and why?
The smell of the house when you’ve been out all/most of the day, and come back after something’s been cooking. Provided it didn’t burn…

9. Share one of your favorite quotes.
Gah, just one?!?! Okay…

“You should think ten times more than you read.” –A.W. Tozer
Before I read this, I didn’t realize how little actual thinking I was doing after I read a book (of any type/genre). So, sage advice to put into practice, especially for bookworms (we shall be unstoppable!!! :P).

10. Give us two true statements about yourself and one false statement, and see if your followers can guess which one is false.
I don’t have many followers yet, but okay. Let’s see…

1. I’m something of a politic writer (choosing one project, sticking with it for a bit, but then moving on to another one that seems to hold more promise)
2. I like clowns
3. School buildings give me nightmares

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Twinepathy Reveal

Hullo, everyone! C.B. Cook here! I am very pleased to announce that I am here to reveal the cover of Twinepathy! This wonderful blogger here has allowed me to infiltrate their blog (temporarily), and I greatly appreciate that. Thank you, person, for being a wonderfully dedicated follower of this blog.
Now, on to the cover reveal! Drum roll, please…


I’m so thrilled that you guys are celebrating this with me! If you’re on Goodreads, you can add Twinepathy to your Goodreads shelves – once we hit 100 people adding it, I’ll be posting an extra part. I’m so grateful for your support! Check out the cover reveal post on my blog for a bonus part. Keep on being awesome!

Author bio: Often referred to as a master of the cliffhanger, C.B. Cook is just a 17-year-old girl trying to find out where her King is guiding her, while writing the stories of the people she creates, the worlds she wants to live in, and the adventures she dreams about. Also known as a mysterious creature called an "author". She's a Christian and a homeschooler dedicated to changing others lives through the power of the written word.
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Merenwen here. The expected release date for Twinepathy is early 2016. I can't wait until then! :D

C.B. Cook is also the author of Paralyzed Dreams, a story about accidents...and faith. Check it out on Amazon (just click that title, and off you go)!