T is for Troile

I’m Troile, son of Priam, child of Troy, the most powerful and influential city in the world! Or so I would have once introduced myself. I fear there is some doubt, as to whether I’m Priam’s son. It’s a doubt I would have been too shamed to admit, once, but it doesn’t seem to matter in these strange times. To think my proud declaration of whom I am is now considered pompous and foolish! Not to mention Troy itself is now nothing more than a memory, although it lives on in legend, story, and in Rome herself. I’m sorry to hear the cruel untruths in some of the legends. Achille is too often portrayed as my violator, my murderer, and my lover only in the most brutal sense. Not to mention my moment of cross-dressing has given birth the fictional existence of my sister, Polyxena. I hope to get a chance to reveal the true story. It’s a love story, which began, when I first saw Achille’s face in Ganymede’s cup, revealed to me in a dream. One sip from that cup transported me to Scyros, where I met Achille. Only he was calling himself Aissa, at the time. Yes, he was disguised as a girl, using a girl’s name. I recognized him, though. He couldn’t disguise himself, nor his delight in seeing me, when I fell from the sky, on top of him, pinning him below me. We fell in love, right from the start, even though we knew little about each other. Family, friends, and the Trojan War threatened to pull us apart, when we realized we were on opposite sides. Blood was shed, blades were crossed, but Ganymede was our loyal champion, throughout all this. Yes, Ganymede. Does it surprise you to hear him named as a patron god to a couple of mortals, struggling to be together? Ganymede was a Trojan prince, though, before he was swept away by a powerful god as his beloved. He was in unique position to sympathize and to interfere, but I’ll say no more on the subject. You can read our tale for yourselves in ‘Aissa and Polyxena’. It was submitted to Lethe’s ‘Friends of Hyakinthos’ anthology. If ‘Aissa and Polyxena’ accepted, you can read it, when ‘Friends of Hyakinthos’ is released. If not, our author shall find another hope for our tale. Perhaps with another publisher, or through self publishing. Let her know, if you wish to read our story.

Finished and Entered!

I won! I just finished and entered a version of ‘On the Other Side of the Mask’ for #CampNaNoWriMo!

Now I just need to finish and polish up the other version for #Lethe Press’s ‘Gents: Steamy Tales of the Age of Steam’. 🙂

Alas, neither version had as much interaction with Father/Lord Ruthvyn as I hoped. The version of ‘On the Other Side of the Mask’ I entered at #CampNaNoWriMo was well over 6000 words, way over Lethe Press’s requested count. The version I’m submitting to them is even shorter. A lot of the interaction between Shelley and Father/Lord Ruthvyn had to be cut. 😦 I’m still sad about that.

Here’s an excerpt from the draft I just submitted to Camp. I’m picking right where I left off for #RainbowSnippets, last Saturday.

‘It was a curse, as much as a blessing. The first boy frowned, as if pondering the dark consequences of their choice of names. However, the gentle smile of his companion urged him out of a brood, as the two walked out of the court into their new lives.

A man and a woman watched them, as they left. They would have had no business in this court, but for the purple band around the man’s top hat, and the purple ribbons winding within the woman’s hair. Purple was still a color of distinction, even in these barbaric times. Not to mention the beaded masks, which concealed the upper halves of their faces.’

 

 

S is for Shelley

Nobody named me Shelley. The name called to me, whispered to me, as I stood, shivering before my warden, before I was released to the church. When I saw Byron, claiming the poet’s name, I uttered my own new name to the world. It’s the only things we wards of the church get to choose in Paradise. Our bodies, our souls, and voices belong first to the church and afterwards to our masters. Our names, Byron’s and mine, created a bond between us. We looked at each other, smiling a secret smile. We knew we belonged to each other, in our hearts, no matter who else tried to claim us. When we sang in the church choir, our voices took flight, mingling together, inspiring everyone else who listened. Everyone, including the other boys and girls singing, found themselves dreaming, tasting a little bit of what they themselves could be as individuals. Unfortunately, we also caught the lords’ attention. The pale aristocrats, who seek out artistic souls, claiming them for their very own, so they can steal their vitality to replace their own fading energies. Only my lord and master didn’t ask me to call him my lord. He touched my cheek, asking me to call him, ‘Father’, before he took me away from Byron. He locked me away in a golden cage in his home, trapped me in a maze created of the madness within my own mind. ‘Father’ has been trying to force me to sing for him, alone. I’ve been losing my voice. Madness threatens, as I see what lurks behind ‘Father’s human mask. He earnestly wants me to love him, but he’s stealing my life away. A new life, strange and fey, is stirring within me. It’s enabled me to take flight, to locate Byron’s own golden cage. Yes, he’s trapped, too, but he can sense me. All I have to do is find my song, in order to reach him. ‘Father’ has been trying to keep it to himself, but it’s always been one with Byron’s. Come with me, as I transcend my own madness in ‘On the Other Side of the Mask’.

R is for Rhodry

Hello. (blushing a bit) I’m Rhodry. Originally, I was a character in a roleplaying campaign. I was fleeing from a noble family of evil blood mages, wanting to use me in a dark ritual, which would bleed out my life. I was played in several games, rewritten a number of times, but my background remained intact, until ‘The Keep’. ‘The Keep’ was an interactive writing/roleplaying yaoi fantasy story, which several authors participated in. Not only was I rewritten, but my family was rewritten and renamed. The Mavelynes went from being blood mages to the scions of Mavelyne, one of a pair of twins, who went on to form vampire dominated aristocracies. (Another author wrote and played the other twin’s house.) House Mavelyne’s vampire, Daryth used his mortal descendants as a source of power in his ancient war against an equally ancient vampire hunter, who was also a dragon. The dragon was the character of another author. I was actually a manifestation of part of Daryth’s lost self, who was also a Weapon, prophesied to bring about Daryth’s goals. I ended up falling in love with a werewolf (another author’s character), becoming part of a power triumvirate (with the werewolf and a wolf spirit, yet another author’s characters), and forming intimate ties with other characters, belonging to other people. Unfortunately, my author got distracted by other things than the Keep, such as CLAMP, yaoi, and shoujo manga. She started worked on ‘Stealing Myself From Shadows’, which took up most of her time. The Keep and I were abandoned. Eventually, my author put ‘Stealing Myself From Shadows’ aside, despairing over the all too accurate criticisms its beta readers had bestowed upon it. She tried to write with some other characters she’d created for another online roleplaying game/interactive writing project. Those characters had been transferred to the Keep. She made them the main characters of her new novel, ‘Stealing Himself From Shadows’. (‘Stealing Himself From Shadows’ is now called ‘The Hand and the Eye of the Tower’, since she’s recently resurrected ‘Stealing Myself From Shadows’ during National Novel Writing Month.) I was supposed to have a part in it, but I replaced by Christopher. I did have a role in a submission to Torquere’s ‘Riverdance’ anthology, although my name was changed to Rhoddry. The story was called ‘Every Thom, Dick, and Harry Has a Story’. You can meet one of the characters from that story, Kevin over at the Cauldron of Eternal Inspiration at inspirationcauldron.blogspot.com. Unfortunately, ‘Every Thom, Dick, and Harry’ was rejected. I got my name back, though, as a result. It may be undergoing another change, though, because my author has tentative plans to make me Rhodry Nevelyn. Yes, one of Nevalyn’s descendants, as well as Kyra’s (see ’N is for Nevalyn’ and ‘K is for Kyra’. I live centuries after Kyra’s time, after the Imperatrix has vanished and her empire has fallen. My author once planned to put me in Caerac’s Keep, involving me in the mystery going on there (see ‘C is for Caerac’ at the Cauldron of Eternal Inspiration at inspirationcauldron.blogspot.com. My author has a soft spot, though, for my incarnation as Rhodry Mavelyne. This is why she uses my name on Twitter, at Archive of Our Own, at tumblr, and at many conventions as her badge name. I’ve become a part of her identity, so I know she’ll never forget me. (hugs author)

Q is for Quartz

If you must call me something, call me Quartz. It’s my favorite stone. I’m one of seven dwarves living in a forest, within easy walking distance of a mine. Yes, it’s a day long walk for humans. Dwarves can make it to the mine in two hours. It never fails to startle me, how fragile humans are. Take our princess, whom I found collapsed on our cottage doorstep, half naked and half mad. My brothers thought I was crazy, taking in a fragile little human, such as her. I’m not sure what came over me, myself. The look in her eyes reminded me of a wounded animal. It turns out she was running away from her stepmother, the queen. However, with a little care, a little quiet, and a little honest work, a tiny bit of color entered our princesss’ pale cheeks. We all became terribly fond of her. I even made a little wooden placard for her door, with the words, ‘The Fairest of Them All’ for her. She never felt worthy of the words, poor thing, even though she was the prettiest little creature imaginable. It wasn’t just her looks, or her delicate hands, it was the way she was willing to put those delicate hands to work, helping us, never uttering a word of complaint. She was always sweet to us, even though my brothers and I can be right grouches. It was obvious that our princess was a true beauty, through and through. Something cast a shadow over her sense of self worth, though. It left her feeling as if she could never be truly beautiful. I wonder if that stepmother of hers had something to do with it? I’d like to throttle that woman! I won’t waste my hopes on that, though. I’m hoping the right person will come all with the right words and deeds to take that shadow of self doubt away from our princess. You can read for yourself what happens to her in ‘Fairest’, by K.S. Trenten, when prizmbooks.com releases it on May 11, 2016. Our princess deserves a happy ending. Wish her the best!

Q is for Questioning

Hello, I’m Questioning. It’s a curious name, isn’t it? Nothing is certain about me; my gender, my identity, or who I truly am. Some people think I’m a beautiful woman, with strong features. Other people think I’m a beautiful man, with delicate features. My silvery hair makes me look old, but my face is young. Everything I had once had and knew was lost, until Kyra rescued me. I owe everything to her. This is why I’m very concerned, when I see her chasing after the Bloody Prince. Yes, this is the name by which we know Stephen Jasior, the Imperatrix’s brother. He announced he would marry whomever could defeat him in a magical deal. Nine women and three men were foolish enough to accept his challenge. All of them are dead. The Bloody Prince had just entered the magic circle, reading to claim a tenth woman. Her feeble powers were no match for his. Stephen Jasior was about to finish the stupid girl off, when Kyra stepped into the circle and stopped him. This was incredibly dangerous. No one can enter a magic circle, once it’s been drawn, except someone extremely powerful. The extremely powerful tend to be hunted down and enslaved by the Imperatrix, ah, excuse me. Recruited by the Imperatrix for her personal service. Kyra has golden hair and blue eyes. Those blue eyes change to golden, when she uses her power. This is a sign of Nevalyn’s Brood, one of the many descendants of the Great Serpent herself. Of course, her eyes changed, when she stopped the prince from killing the silly maiden, who challenged him. Yes, all this happened in a very public place. Kyra was lucky she wasn’t grabbed by the Dragon Claws (the Imperatrix’s personal guard) on that spot. This would have been understandable. What happened afterwards was entirely too fortuitous. A mysterious woman, clearly of wealth and power, decided she was going to become Kyra’s matron, supporting Kyra’s suit to Stephen Jasior. The Bloody Prince wasn’t happy about this at all. First Kyra showed him up in duel, depriving him of a victim, and now she’s daring to court him herself? The Bloody Prince isn’t flattered, or amused. Not one bit. Now, Kyra is caught up in politics, a quest, attention from on high, and all kinds of trouble. Not to mention the dark sorcerer who once captured Kyra and myself is still looking for us. I’d say you could read all about this, except our author still has to put all the fragments of our story together into a whole, let alone turn it into a book. I wish she would. What? She only just came up with my character for the A-Z Project? She’s working on other characters and their stories/books right now? I’m very tempted to creep into my author’s dreaming mind, and give her nightmares. Maybe she won’t be so quick to put me aside, if I do!

Snippet of ‘On the Other Side of the Mask’

Here’s hoping I can share this with #RainbowSnippets on Facebook! 🙂 This is my contribution to today’s ‘RainbowSnippets’, another six sentences of ‘On the Other Side of the Mask’, as promised. I pick up right where I left off on April 2, 2016. To read some of the amazing GLBT snippets posted, go to #RainbowSnippets on Facebook! (I really hope my hashtag works! :))

A few people murmured at that. The second boy shot him a surprised look, which set his strawberry blonde curls to trembling. A tiny smile touched his lips, as he looked, not at the judge, but at his companion.

“Shelley, Your Honor,” the second boy said, as he exchanged a secret glance with his companion, who squeezed his hand tighter.

“Byron and Shelley,” the judge said, with the repressed disapproval of one who has just heard an obscenity, but is powerless to correct it. “May you live up to the magic contained within those names.”

P is for Phaedra

Nice to meet you all! I’m Phaedra, Captain of the Timea. That sounded so impressive, when I said it in my head. Out loud, it just sounds stupid. I’m still very proud of the Timea. Yes, she’s very small, and I’m hardly an ace pilot, but flying her isn’t quite like anything else. Ahem. Recently, the Timean and I appeared in our author’s submission to Torquere’s ‘Theory of Love’ challenge; ‘A Symposium in Space’. Yes, it’s our author’s own futuristic remake of Plato’s ‘The Symposium’, which is why I’m called Phaedra. We’ve also got Pausania, Eryximachia, Aristophania, and of course, Sokrat, attending Agathea’s little dinner party on her star cluster. There are a lot of differences between the original ‘Symposium’ and our ‘Symposium in Space’. An obvious one is that the guests are all women, or life givers, as we’re currently named. The speeches vary from the originals, too. Pausania and I have a lot of unresolved chemistry between us, which was an invention of our author. Agathea and Eryximachia are more creepy than pompous, plus Agathea is following a curious trend of ‘feeding’ upon our speeches. The setting responds to them, in a curious fashion as well. Our symposium is brought to a crashing halt, literally, by the space pirate Alcibiadea, who catches up with Sokrat, after chasing her around the universe. Yes, there are a lot of differences, between our ‘Symposium in Space’ and the original, but our author was inspired to write this by her sincere affection for the original. If ‘A Symposium in Space’ is published and picked up, she hopes it will encourage readers to pick up the original. In the meantime, I’ve got a ship to finish learning how to pilot and a universe to explore. Catch you later!

P is for Peter

Welcome to the Navel, center of everything bizarre! May I say you look utterly ravishing today? Are you looking for something in particular? Sometimes, the most unusual item catches your eye. You’ll find yourself drawn to something you wouldn’t look twice at. For instance, see that boy sulking in the corner? That’s Christopher. He’s Gabrielle’s son. Yes, ‘Brie is the one who owns the Navel, as well as my boss. I really shouldn’t be staring at the boss’ son. Not to mention he’s not at all pleased, whenever he catches me looking at him. When I first met Christopher, he was muttering to himself, glaring up at the sun. This was nothing, compared to the glare he bestowed upon me, when he realized I was in the Navel to take his precious prick’s job. No, I wasn’t being dirty, although I wish I was. I was referring to Damian Ashelocke, who worked in the store before me. Disappeared completely, leaving Christopher and Gabrielle behind. You don’t know how hard it’s been, filling the void left behind by the Perfect Prick. Yes, he left behind a vacancy in the Navel, but a vacancy in the hearts of Christopher and ‘Brie as well. I don’t think either of them realize how much better off they are, without him. Traces of Damian linger about in the Navel, almost like cold spots, with sharp fangs. They’re particularly strong around that painting, hanging on the wall. I think it’s called ‘Waiting for Rebirth’? A more sinister painting I’ve never seen. It watches me, particularly when I’m around Christopher. Christopher thinks it’s beautiful. That painting specializes some kind of special bond between Damian and himself. All the more reason to get rid of it, before it draws Christopher in, taking him…oh, what am I thinking? Much as I love a little magic, a little of the weird, that’s too much. It’s a good thing I’m not as fanciful as Christopher is. He needs someone to hold onto him, keep him grounded. I’d love to be that someone, but my efforts aren’t going anywhere. You can read all about it in ‘Unwilling to Be Yours’, ‘Be My Valentine…Snack’, and ‘Stealing Myself From Shadows’, once our author finally finishes editing each of these. I’d like to steal just a little piece of Christopher’s heart for myself, even if it’s just a little piece.

O is for Oleander

Why, hello there. I couldn’t help notice you checking out my legs, my thighs, and well, everything else. (smirk) My master calls me Oleander, because I’m as pretty as an Oleander blossom and twice as poisonous. You couldn’t help, but notice my beauty, could you? My hair is so dark, it has blue highlights. My skin is as pale as a creature of the night. I’m the monster within Thomas (see ‘T is for Thomas, coming soon to inspirationcauldron.blogspot.com), the monster he’d like to be. If you ask me, I could never be half the monster he is. Killing squirrels for fun? Trying to beat up on Danyell and Dayell (see ‘D is for Danyell and Dayell at inspirationcauldron.blogspot.com), just because he thinks those twins are too pretty to be boys? I can think of far more interesting things to do to them. Thomas can’t admit he’s a halfling, so he takes it out on everybody else. He’s made up this ideal father figure and projected him upon Jupitre, his fake father (see ‘J is for Jupiter at inspirationcauldron.blogspot.com). Jupitre enjoys the flattery, although he thinks Thomas is fat and stupid. Thomas’ so-called mother and sister want nothing to do with him. Why would they? They’re demigods, dragged down to earth and mundanity, while Thomas was mundane to begin with. Only he must have had a spark of something special, or Seraphix wouldn’t have called to him, whispered to him, creating me within his heart. (see ‘S is for Seraphix, coming to inspirationcauldron.blogspot.com) If only Thomas would just let go and embrace me, letting himself transform into me. We’d have so much more fun, plus we’d make everyone fall in love with us. We’d make the twins truly crawl, for rejecting us. Thomas keeps resisting me, though, clinging to his overrated humanity. It’s not like he has very much of it. There’s no point in worrying about it, because Thomas wants me, no matter how badly he tries to deny me. It’s only a matter of time, before he gives in to his deepest desire. It’s only a matter of time, before he gives in to me.