Me Me Monday: Danyel and Tayel

Welcome to Me Me Monday! A day to promote, strut, and celebrate your Me-ness!

Two of my characters from my Tales of the Navel/The Shadow Forest universe are here to argue, err, talk about their favorite colors and their perceptions of the world around them…

Danyel: It’s been an ongoing argument between Tayel and I…green or blue?

Tayel: There’s nothing to argue about. Might as well quarrel with a handful of water which slips through your fingers.

Danyel: I’ve always sensed something very special in the color of a leaf dappled in sunlight. Or a blade of grass, crisp against my cheek while I’m laying against it.

Tayel: Looking up at the sky which covers us with a sea of blue, vast, unfathomable, covering everything below with a comforting blanket of cerulean.

Danyel: The hue of an iris, alight with contentment, pupils gleaming with childlike happiness which he’s more than willing to share with us…nothing is more comforting than that.

Tayel: Blue has an infinity of layers, not always seen, offering possibility after possibility, concealing wonders within.

Danyel: Wouldn’t you like a closer look at those wonders?

Tayel: No. The sky is enough. I can see whatever I wish when I look at my own reflection or into your eyes.

Danyel: Whatever you wish? Are you sure?

Tayel: I don’t need to be.

Danyel: Aren’t you curious about the ocean? We’ve only seen it in pictures. Wouldn’t you like to see all that blue in one place?

Tayel: Anything I’ve dreamed of would only disappoint me in reality.

Danyel: You can’t be sure of that.

Tayel: There you go on again about being “sure”. Nothing is sure. All the more reason to be content with what we have.

Danyel: We can be sure of each of each. Along with Map and Leiwell.

Tayel: If only we could. The garden, our cottage, and the nearby creek might all disappear if we’re careless.

Danyel: Don’t say that! Our home isn’t going to vanish.

Tayel: One never knows what might come and go, crouching on the hill, only to crumble.

Danyel: Are you talking about the tower on the nearby hill?

(Tayel falls silent, studying his twin, not smiling. The silence grows.)

Danyel: Wishing isn’t going to make what we have go away. Just because I’d like to meet another person with green in their soul doesn’t mean the ones I know will disappear.

Tayel: Look in the mirror. New leaves and tender shoots of growth are too easy to trample underfoot.

Danyel: I’m not sure if that’s a compliment or an insult.

Tayel: You’re welcome.

Danyel: I see green not only in leaves and grass, but in kindness. Kindness isn’t that easy to stamp out. Not if someone is determined to spread it.

Tayel: Jealousy grows in the shadow of kindness.

Danyel: What do you mean?

Tayel: Sprouting up with too much eagerness summons the harvest and unappreciative feet. All the green you’ve ever wishing for blossoms within you, but you insist on projecting it on another.

Danyel: I’m not sure whether to thank or be offended.

Tayel: You’re welcome.

Danyel: Who’s around to trample me? The only people we know are Leiwell and Map.

Tayel: Many a possible acquaintance awaits within our hearts and minds. See someone in the shadows and they will stir.

Danyel: Are you saying we can create our own acquaintances? Or that someone or something is waiting for us in the shadows?

Tayel: The former blue is swallowed by darkness. Hungry for more color, he waits, yearning for what he’s lost.

Danyel: Have I ever told you how unhelpful it is when you talk in riddles?

Tayel: You’re welcome.

Danyel: That wasn’t a compliment!

#RainbowSnippets: Aissa and Polyxena

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets! Every Saturday, those participating post and share six sentences of LGBTQIA+ fiction. The snippet might  be their own. It might be someone else’s. It just needs to be LGBTQIA+.

To read a wide variety of samples from LGBTQIA+ , go here…

And now for something completely different…while I try to figure how to satisfy Leiwell’s disatisfaction and what to do next in Protecting the Lights, here’s a little something from Aissa and Polyxena. It was my Camp NaNoWriMo project, which I’m revising and plan on submitting…

Transformation, indeed. I watched Cressida’s delicate hands at work, changing instruments, to pick up a different tiny tool, applying each one to my brow, cheek, and eye with the same assurance with which Achille swung a sword. She wore an intense expression of concentration, her brown eyes darkening, when she applied a slender implement to my eyelashes, applying kohl. She adorned me with the same care with which any artist might paint the walls of the palace.

Fascinated by her intensity, I lost sight of myself in the mirror.

“Pucker up,” Cressida said, applying a brush coated with rouge to my lips.

Swallowing my embarrassment, I wrinkled my lips into a sulky pout worthy of Paris. I avoided direct contact with my own eyes in the mirror.

#MeMeMonday: Protecting the Lights

Welcome to Me Me Monday! A day to promote, strut, and celebrate your Me-ness!

Dyvian is doing a lot more than strutting as he tries to, ahem, persuade Leiwell to give himself over more completely to him…


“How?” I trembled at his touch. It would be so easy to give in to him. To believe he could take care of everything.

“Give yourself to me completely.” He explored my flesh with soft, persuasive fingers, finding all the vulnerable spots along my inner thigh. “Agree to serve me, Leiwell. Once you do, I’ll be able to protect your family from the outside world.” He breathed into my ear, “I’ll teach you how to hide Danyel and Tayel from the world.”

Truly, he’d discovered my weakest spot. Resistance had been rooted in my instinctive protectiveness of my little brothers. If Dyvian could teach me to do this completely, shielding them from the world, there was no reason to resist.

I’d give him everything, everything which had once been his. Part of me had always yearned to surrender completely. To return to my master.

This way I could protect my bright little lights and still belong to Dyvian. My heart would no longer be divided.

At least this was what I kept telling myself.


Are you intrigued? Want to know what happens to Leiwell next? What do Danyel and Tayel think of all this?

This is the story I tell in The Hand and the Eye of the Tower, the second novel in my Tales of the Navel/The Shadow Forest, which I’m revising for self publication.

Let me know if you’d like to see more of this!

#RainbowSnippets: Protecting the Lights

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets!

Every Saturday, those participating post and share six sentences of LGBTQIA+ fiction on their blogs. It can be their own. It can be someone else’s. It just needs to be LGBTQIA+.

To read a wide variety of samples from LGBTQIA+ stories, go here…

Mine is slightly over the limit, with Dyvian slipping into Leiwell’s troubled thoughts left behind on Monday in Protecting the Lights…


“You should never have run from me,” Dyvian whispered to me, holding me close.

In a dream, I fell into his arms, surrendering to his embrace. I let him explore my body in a bed bigger than the largest room in my cottage, surrounded by silk hangings.

Perhaps none of it was real. I didn’t care.

“I could keep you safe,” he murmured against the most vulnerable, sensative part of my neck. “You and your family.”

To be continued Monday!

#MeMeMonday: Protecting the Lights

Welcome to Me Me Monday! A day to strut, promote, and celebrate your Me-ness!

Leiwell and Map might be proud of themselves and their family, but they’re cautious of showing that pride to outsiders. How to strike a balance between being a part of their world and staying safe in it? Leiwell contemplates this in the next part of Protecting the Lights…


We did our best to work hard, tending those flowers, fruits, and vegetables. Map insisted on doing the bulk of it. I tried to helping with the digging and pulling as much as I could, so my brothers’s hands would remain smooth and unweathered.

“You shouldn’t keep them from work. It does you good, all of you, plunging your hands into the soil.” Map dragged an onion out of the soil for emphasis. “Digging in the dirt connects you to the heart of the world.”

“Too often people are judged by their hands.” I fumbled to express my worry, based on a prejudice held in too many of the worlds I’d walked through. “I don’t want that to happen to Danyel and Tayel.”

“We’ll all be judged by more than our hands if outsiders ever find and catch us. We’re too different.” Map scowled up at the bluff over our cottage for emphasis.

Up there was the road which wagons came from, passing through to somewhere else. Sometimes they stopped to haggle with Mag. Most of them just rolled by.

“We’re lucky.” Map tapped a dirty finger against her nose. “We’ve been ignored. No one has looked too closely at us…yet.”

How her words haunted me. How long would it be before someone stopped on that road and looked at us? Looked long enough to judge us and interfere with us?

#RainbowSnippets: Protecting the Lights

Welcome to Rainbow Snippets!

Every Saturday, those participating post and share six sentences of LGBTQIA+ fiction at their blogs.

It can be their own. It can be someone else’s. It just needs to be LGBTQIA+.

To read a wide variety of samples from LGBTQIA+ stories, go to

For mine, I’m picking up where I left off for Me Me Monday in Protecting the Lights, my Tales of the Navel/The Shadow Forest freebie story. It’s just slightly longer than six sentences…


I gazed up at the ladder in the middle of the room, leading to the attic bedroom. I’d given that room up to the twins once they’d grown big enough for their own bed. I wouldn’t intrude upon the solitary bedchamber where Map slept, too often restless with her many aches and pains.

The floor was fine with me. We didn’t have a lot of space at the Old Cottage, the only survivor of a village long gone. Fruits and vegetables grew aplenty in the garden beyond the lawn, not that my brothers and I ate much. We derived more nourishment from each other’s company and the garden’s beauty than any food.

#MeMeMonday: Protecting the Lights

Welcome to Me Me Monday! A day to promote, strut, and celebrate your me-ness!

Dyvian is certainly trying to promote himself, wooing his creation by taking him by hand, offering a taste of all places Leiwell can go to, as long as he stays by Dyvian’s side. Picking up where they left off on Saturday in Protecting the Lights…


I placed my damp fingers in his and closed my eyes. Nothing existed anymore, only his hand in mine.

“Walk with me.” Dyvian led me, step by step over soft ground which might have been turf or a rug. I couldn’t tell. Nothing solid lay beneath my boots. “That’s right. Just hold onto me. I’ll keep you safe.”

I’m not sure how long we walked before I opened my eyes.

A ornately carved door stood before me set in a dusty wall of bricks.

It led to a hall, filled with statues and marble.

I turned around, gazing at the motionless young men, half covering their naked bodies in each alcove. This place was somehow familar, yet I’d never seen anything like it before.

“You can have anything you wish for here.” Dyvian spun around, robes disappearing. In a pivot on his heel, he was dressed in a velvet doublet with a silk tunic and stockings. “I am the lord of this place. All you have to do is accept me as this.”

I shrank back, only to shudder myself awake upon the cushions on the floor. I was back in the cottage.