Saturday, October 30, 2010

Ah Utah

Well, I found out that my weak knees were not the problem when I was running, well, not the only problem. I was looking at my running shoes the other day and realized that they are almost completely worn down and haven't been giving me adequate support. So I am going to ask Glenn for an early Christmas present and get new running shoes. Yeah, it is going to suck rebuilding the cardio but I still have the muscular endurance so 3o min on a bike and 30 minutes running for the next month should put me back on my way.

And as you all know how much I love being right since that is so rarely the case and we finally got Glenn new street shoes because I was convinced that his old shoes were causing his ankle problems. It has been one week and he hasn't had any ankle problems. I love being right, especially when me being right helps relieve my husband's pain. Unfortunately, due to his permanent nerve damage I will be running alone which means no iPod for Glenn's peace of mind.

This is a rather shoe heavy blog but I shall go on. Glenn got me a new pair of Galoshes because we had a little snow storm the other day and my feet were soaked. And thanks to my circulation which is about the same as that of a corpse he was worried that my feet were freezing after an hour of them being under a blanket. Another reason to get back to running. Until I get new shoes however, I will try to talk Glenn into walking three miles with me a few times a week. Well, that is all from here. Bye

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Chapter 1

Hello Everyone,
Two people responded so that's good enough for me. As such I'm copying over the first chapter now. Please keep in mind this a very rough draft. Anyway let me know what you think and if you would possibly want to read more. Enjoy.

Glenn

P.S. There is a prologue but I didn't want to start you off with it. It reads a little like the old testament.

Chapter 1

Pain was the harbinger of my rebirth. A cold scorching pain, like a thousand acid icicles had lodged themselves in his skin; stabbing, freezing, and searing every part of me. I could still remember what it was like to take that first gasping breath. The feeling of cold dry air cascading into my lungs seemed both novel and natural somehow. Of course breathing brought with it new sensations, most of them less than pleasant. How long had I lain in agonized prostration? I’m not really sure. Time, or at least my perception of it, can be somewhat unreliable when under the duress of pain. Slowly, ever so slowly, the racking spasms subsided and I came to myself. Actually that’s not quite accurate. Maybe it’s just semantics, but is it possible to come to yourself if you have no idea who you are?

My surroundings were simple enough. Calling it a cabin would be something of an overstatement. It was more like a shack. The furnishings were sparse: a stool here, a table and work bench there. Tools too old and rusty to be useful lay scattered about the floor, accompanied by several tightly woven medium sized bags. Slivers of predawn light trickled in where the seams of wall boards failed to meet. Next to the door a long coat and broad brimmed hat made from the same nondescript leather hung from pegs.

I looked down at myself half expecting to see blackened flesh and possibly a few missing limbs. To my surprise - and relief - my body looked more or less intact. No mutilations, puddles of gore, or severed bits that I could see. Definitely a plus.

My clothing was as unpretentious as the clothing on the wall. A simple shirt and trousers with a sturdy vest enclosed an athletic frame. The only remarkable item was a silver ring with a curious blue stone on my left hand.

Sand scrapped against the floor boards and shifted under hand and foot as I rose tentatively from the floor. I paused and glanced down. What appeared to be an enormous circular sand painting had been crafted in the center of the room underneath me. Grains of almost every color imaginable spiraled and swirled across the floor to congeal into various tinted pools. Multiple symbols made of a sand that seemed to shine with remarkable brilliance given the dim light lay partially smeared by my awkward rise. They were aligned in a row along where I’d had lain. Seven items lay on the outer edge of the painting: a large blue-black stone made smooth by the patient care of a river’s flow, a small plant with its roots still attached and wrapped in the protective embrace of a heavy cloth sac, a bowl filled with clean water, a small handheld fan, a long dry bone, a single burning candle, and at the head of the diagram a small silver pocket watch and chain. The back of the watch bore a strange symbol. Each item surrounded by its own small circle of sand.

On the table there was a shoulder pack made of a simple yet sturdy fabric. Next to it was a black long sword. The guard seemed to sweep up from the handle and extend out only slightly over the end of the scabbard turning abruptly and ending in two fang like points. Both the guard and pummel of the weapon were constructed from a silver colored metal. The handle and scabbard were black and accented with silver filigree. A simple belt of black leather was attached and coiled around the weapon like some kind of flattened serpent. Leaning against this very unusual weapon was a piece of folded white paper. Lastly - and probably most important at the time - was a plate of food and a water skin.

I descended upon the hapless vittles and consumed them ravenously; pausing only to quench my parched throat. The food was of a hardy variety - made to keep with very little thought given to taste yet still providing plenty of energy, To me it might as well have been the nectar of the gods.

After a few moments of engorging myself, my attention finally turned to the paper on the table. Still gnawing on a piece of dried meat I unfolded the letter and began to read.

Hello Soldaran,
You are no doubt wondering why you’ve found yourself in a strange place. If everything went as planned you won’t remember a thing, not even writing this letter. I wish I could shed some light on the situation, but I can’t. I know you’re curious. Don’t be. That line of reasoning will get you killed. Suffice it to say you’re being hunted. And it’s vital that the people looking for you never find you. The pain you have just experiences is nothing compared to what you’ll meet at their hands. If you try to retrace your steps they will find you, follow you, catch you, and most likely kill you. Please trust me. There is a very good reason why I did this to you . . . or, why we did this to us. Its better if no one ever unearths what I’ve labored so hard to conceal. Time is your only advantage but you have precious little of it. EAT UP, GRAB YOUR GEAR AND GO! Don’t stop running and don’t slow down for any reason. Don’t trust anyone, not even with your name. Whatever you do don’t get separated from this weapon. If you do you’ll die within a few days. Only use it if you absolutely have to. And above all, DO NOT GET CAUGHT!!!

Sincerely,
Soldaran

P.S. Try not to get yourself killed. That’s my life your playing with.

Soldaran? Who was that? The name didn’t sound familiar. I tried to recall if I had ever met anyone by that name, to no avail. I tried to recall a face to go with the name.

Nothing.

My mind froze in horrified shock. The more I pondered the subject the more I realized that I didn’t recall anyone from my life: parent’s siblings, cousins, neighbors, teachers, friends, enemies. They were all completely gone. In a panicked frenzy, I tried to recall someone. Anyone, but it was no good. Every relationship of my life, every person, every face I had ever known had vanished from my memory, as if consumed by the cold flames of my rebirth. The more I concentrated the less I seemed to recall. I broadened my mental search to include more general things: places I had seen, important events of my life, my own name.

Still nothing.

It was simply gone. My life, all I’d known and everything I was had been stolen away from me. Replaced by a cold, empty, unnatural vacuum. The realization was unsettling but not as striking as one might think. Can you truly miss something that you don’t recall ever having in the first place?

There was one other avenue of logic my brain didn’t wish to consider, but I was at a loss for any other viable explanation. Regardless it warranted testing. I rummaged around in the pack until I found a pen and an ink well. With aching fingers and tentative strokes I repeated the phrase “DO NOT GET CAUGHT!” an inch or two below the post script.

The handwriting matched perfectly.

Apparently I had written a letter to myself. A little ostentatious perhaps, but effective none the less. Whatever had happened to me had obviously occurred by design. My design. But why would I have my own memory taken away? That possible purpose could that serve?

Then I heard it, a low long savage howl. The kind of howl that summons a deep primal fear. My brain screamed at me to run but my leg failed to comply. The call was soon answered by others. What kind of pack hunts during daylight hours? Then it hit me. Predators don’t hunt during the day, hounds do! I’d never heard a howl like that - at least not that I could recall - but one thing was certain. I did NOT want to be here when those things arrived.

I snatched the coat off its peg with a speed and accuracy that surprised me and adorned it in a single fluid motion. Then I hastily repacked the shoulder bag and slung it over my head. The strap tugged on my neck just before the bag itself collided with the small of my back with a reassuring thump. After hastily securing a secondary strap across the lower half of my chest. This one designed not to bare weight but rather to secure the bag itself in place. I retrieve the hat and stuffed it on my head. Finally, I grabbed the sword off the table and flung the door open with my other hand. I decided it would be better to have the sword readily accessible should those things overtake me.

The landscape outside was stern and mountainous. Large rocky slopes and shrubby grass predominated the area. Evergreen trees stippled the landscape. Thankfully, the tree line was within sight about a half mile away. I headed strait for it. My soft leather boots somehow gripping the hard stone allowing me to ricochet from rock to rock bounding towards the safety of the trees. My heart pounded in my ears with the sudden exertion. Muscles flexed and pounded against the granite underfoot, both refusing to give any quarter. In a matter of moments I reached the relative safety of the trees. At least here I would be harder to spot.

A sudden noise caused me to turn. This was not the same blood curdling howl I had heard before. This cry was decidedly less canine but no less terrifying. A quasi human shriek shattered the early morning stillness with its high pitched wail that seemed comprised of equal parts anger and frustration with the promise of grim retribution. Moments later there was a sudden rush of air and the shack irrupted in an instant pillar of red hot flame. Monstrous figures stood in stark silhouettes against the blaze. Some almost human, others disturbingly less so. One in particular stood eerily still a top mountainous steed watching the flames lick higher into the early dawn sky. I could almost catch a glimpse of heavy metal armor reflected in the light of the conflagration. The horse was flanked by two creatures that appeared for the most part human, except for their size. As bulky and tall as the war horse was these two towered over it by at least a full head. Each possessed the kind of built that attested to years of vigorous combat experience. Other silhouettes - more animal than human - prowled back and forth; their noses pressed to the ground. Suddenly a head snapped back and one of the marginally canine monstrosities howled, signaling to the others that he’d caught my scent.

I was out number, facing what looked liked well armed, well trained - not to mention well muscled - opponents, and my position had just been given away. So I decided to take my own advice.

I ran.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

If anyone is interested in reading the first few chapters of my book I'd be more than happy to post them. Believe me I need as much constructive criticism as I can get. Comment if you want to read it.

Jack-o-Lantern Fun


Last Night Glenn and I had some friends for the ward come over and we had a pumpkin carving contest and watched Hocus Pocus. Here was my pumpkin (Glenn has not yet finished his, going the artistic route)
I think I need to carve out the scars a bit more so more light shines through

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Maiden Voyage

In case any of you are wondering. Yes this is my first time blogging. I've been resisting it so long, but if this is the best way to keep in touch with my in-laws . . . then so be it. So with no further delay here's what's been happening with us lately.

Whitney and I have been experimenting in the kitchen. Today we made this interesting rice paddies. The original recipe was a little bland for us so we decided to throw in some sesame seeds and it worked really well. Next time we make this dish we're going to throw in some chicken and see how it works. Then later on in the day we made chocolate cup cakes with home made whip cream. Yum. We tried to invited some friends of ours over to share in our delicious cup cakes. Only the wife came over. The husband was stuck in a WOW raid. His loss.

Anyway, for those of you who don't know, I've been working on a book for quite a while now. If I had to describe in a single sentence I would say its kind of like the fantasy book version of the borne identity. Right now I'm working on plot continuity and setting. There's a lot of work to do, but its fun to work on and that's all I really care about right now. If I had to describe my writing style I would say its somewhere between Brandon Sanderson and Jim Butcher. Lots of originality and twists combined with awesome humor and first person observation.

Well I don't know if this is an appropriate place to stop, but I'm going to anyway.