Home of a mother, wife, writer

Archive for April, 2017

Sunday Summary: Banquet Time

Last night was our annual fire department’s awards banquet. Time to get dressed up, have some good food, and honor the people who keep our town safe(my husband among them). The PA state fire commissioner was even there to speak. It was a good time, and after the awards most of the people stick around for music, drinking and dancing. We all bring our own drinks. I had two hard sodas(those go down so easy), and we only stayed until about 11, so we could get home and MiL could go back home too), and I have a slight headache this morning. But, it was still a good time.

Don’t try to tell him he’s not a lap dog.

I had a pretty good week as well. I ended up playing catch up on scenes Wednesday and added a couple more in Thursday I hadn’t originally had planned, so those were longer days. But, I’m still right on track.

Plotting

  • Heart of Christmas – finish Story Toolkit, Outline in scrivener
  • Still BurningBrainstorm, Character back stories, plot summary, through Story Toolkit: Romance Arcwrote the plot summary(296 words), and got through the Initial Concept sheet, Worldbuilding, Antagonist, Main Conflict, & Stakes, & Major Plot Points 4/22 sections for the Toolkit. And I wrote another Stream of Consciousness post for this.

Writing

  • Playing with Fire – Add 73000 words/66 scenes(some of these include bits from my Just Jot It posts in January, they may be fleshed out to scenes of their own or merged into other scenes, but I’m counting them all for right now). – 42444 words/55 finished scenes for the month, 20414 words/22 scenes for the week
    • “Who made up these stupid rules anyway?” he demanded. “Someone who wasn’t in love with two people. Why do I have to choose between you?” *Oh, I just want to give all three of them a hug right now and assure them I’ll make it right again.
  • Side Projects – add 4000 words between all projects. – 3765/4000 words for the month, 1256 for the week
    • Dougal & Shae – 143 words – ”Any man who thinks he can try to force you to do anything you don’t want to do is too stupid to deserve you anyway.”
    • Mike & Fadil – 174 words – After stopping at the market, he drove down the next block to the house where he’d grown up. He always felt a slight pang driving past her. No, life hadn’t always been wonderful when he was younger. His father had never been a violent man, but Mike had very few memories where the man hadn’t been drunk.
    • Hang On – 108 words – Ian didn’t say anything else, but I could still feel him watching me as I focused on the road. Still, I couldn’t help wondering who this person was who he was losing his mind over. And wishing it was me. *hehehe, who says it isn’t?
    • Roman – 109 words – He finished his eggs and washed them down with the rest of his coffee. He pushed back from the table and picked up his plate. “Are you going to help Carlos?” Tereza asked before he could even take a step away from the table.
    • Midas’ Daughter – 122 words – This wasn’t going to be much of a party for her. Her father was certainly seeing to that. She was pretty sure it was more for him. To show off his perfect daughter. The golden statue. She rolled her eyes and took a step off the porch. She wished he could see her as more than that. But, she didn’t think that would ever happen.
    • Tavin & Haiwee – 120 words – And that would be easier to take if he could just see Haiwee again. 
    • Patrick & Sarah – 148 words – “It was my pleasure,” he said then turned and went out the door.Well, she knew that was a lie. She’d been anything but pleasant even when he’d been helping out. But, she’d be thankful even for that lie.
    • Preggers – 105 words – Lyndi came to an abrupt stop. “This isn’t right,” she said. 
    • Mason & Lila – 118 words – Brian and Ashley were heading over to the table, though they weren’t holding hands. He rolled his eyes. Looked they were on the outs once again. That wouldn’t last long, Mason was sure. This seemed to be part of the package with them.
    • Jacob & Matthew – 109 words – Matthew watched as Jacob sauntered across the room to the bed before standing from the chair and going to join him. 

Editing

  • Stained BloodAdjust chapters(some are really long after adding new scenes in), double-check for missing details, 50 search & destroy items, send to readers –  37/50 search & destroy items(cut 956 words).
  • Snow White Twist – rename, polish 48 search & destroy items, send to readers –If anyone else is interested in reading a f/f snow white retelling and offering feedback, I’ll send it to you, too. I’ve already gotten it back from one of the beta readers and started going through the notes. Didn’t make any progress this weekend, though.
  • Flames of Renewal – CP Edits once I get it back
  • In the Moonlight – transfer from One Note to Scrivener(on two different computers)

Blogging

  • A-Z posts: Draft 13 posts 13/13 finished. 9500 words. Started drafting T post on my phone while we were at husband’s aunt’s on Sunday. Yes, I’ll do just about anything to avoid interacting with people(and it was our last stop of the day and I’d had enough). I wrote about 255 words on that. And I finished it at home Sunday night(662). Wrote U on Monday, then  V, W, X, Y & Z on Tuesday.
  • A-Z posts: Edit 18 posts – 15/18 – Have T, U, V, & W scheduled.
  • A-Z posts: Post 25 posts – 18/25 posted. You can find links to all current ones on my theme reveal post(I’m updating as they go live)

Reading

  • Listen: 5 books – 4/5, 1 this week
    • Girl on a Wire(Gwenda Bond) – Started this Thursday. Wasn’t too sure about it at first, but I finished it Thursday morning and enjoyed it.
    • Emperor’s Edge(Lindsay Buroker) – I’ve actually read all these books, but I’ve been wanting to do a re-read, so I decided to start getting them in audio(which are only $1.99 since I have the ebooks). I’m on Chapter 15.
  • Read: 30 books – 21/30, 4 this week
    • Hammer of the Gods(Christina Ochs) – this is book 3 in her Desolate Empire series. I got the boxed set, but I’ve already read the first 2 separately, so I jumped right to this one on my phone. I’ll read it in the between moments. I’m on Chapter 96/166(If I counted right. The chapters are labeled with POV characters’ names instead of numbers).
    • Make Me Stay(Jaci Burton) – Read this Monday afternoon. Enjoyed it.
    • Wild Ride(Cathryn Fox) – Started this Tuesday morning. Finished it while eating lunch Tuesday. It was a quicker one, and I liked it.
    • A Rogue by Any Other Name(Sarah MacLean) – Started this Tuesday afternoon. On page 198/386.
    • Love Me to Death(Allison Brennan) – Started this Thursday. Finished it Saturday afternoon. Enjoyed it.
    • It Must Be Your Love(Bella Andre)- Started this Friday morning. Finished it Friday evening. Liked it, but it felt like nothing much happened, and the conflict between the characters was mostly resolved about halfway through.

Crafting

  • Knit: Duo Cable Hat – 6 rounds of decrease done, but I ran out of yarn. and still haven’t gotten more.
  • Crochet: Crystal Drops Beanie – I finished this on Wednesday.
  • Loom: Newborn Loom Knit Baby Hat

WeWriWa: “Down on You”

Welcome back to another visit with the Weekend Writing Warriors, the blog hop for anyone who likes to write. I’m still sharing from Dance with the Devil and probably will next week as well. Then, I may start sharing from Staring at the Sun(the one I’ve written for the A-Z challenge) until I start working on Hawk’s story.

“I’d be doing you and your pansy club a favor by getting rid of these-“

“That’s enough,” Icarus practically roared.

I couldn’t take my gaze off Hawk, and I saw the surprise light in his eyes. Icarus wasn’t known for losing it like that. Bull was usually the one who roared. But, apparently, Icarus had been pushed close to the edge too many times over the last year.

“You will let both of them walk away from here,” Icarus said, “and our deal will still stand. You leave the club and all the Riders alone, and we will not bring the force of our vengeance down on you.”

Are they going to let Hawk and Devil just walk out of there?

Mentioning Staring at the Sun, I wrote the last of the posts during this past week. I only have the last three to edit and schedule still. And the final seven will be going up during the next week. I have them all linked up at this post if you want to start it from the beginning, though.

“Stream of Consciousness: “Spell”

“Do I really have to spell it out for you?”

“Yeah,” Jace said as he rinsed the paintbrush off. “I really think you do, Jess.”

Jess leaned against the doorframe to the little bathroom in her brother’s new house. “You wouldn’t get it, Jace.” She ran a hand through the back of her hair. It wasn’t what most would call long, but she was antsy to get it cut again. “You’ve got everything here. A pretty little wife.”

“Aw,” Kammi said, coming up behind her. “Your sister thinks I’m pretty, Jace. Even though I feel like I’m about ready to explode.”

“If that’s how birth works,” Jess said, “I definitely don’t want to have any kids.”

Kammi laughed and gave her a quick hug. She was pretty sure she felt a foot in her side even during the brief contact. “My sister’s here, Jace. We’ll be back later.”

He moved over to her and gave her a hug and a long kiss. Jess had to look away from the intimacy of it. When Kammi had left, Jess finally looked back at her twin brother. “See? You have everything. Kammi, your painting, a baby pretty damn soon.”

“And I almost lost all of it because I thought it would be better to send her away,” Jace reminded her. “And I still don’t see what that has to do with you not deserving the same thing.”

She wanted to pull her hair out, not just at irritation with her brother for being obtuse, but with herself for not being able to find the right words to describe how she felt. She’d never been good with words. She was a lot more like her oldest brother than any of the others. “Never mind,” she said. “I need to get to the work site anyway.”

“Jess, I’m sorry,” Jace said, putting the brush down and moving to intercept her. “I’m trying to understand, but I just don’t get what you think the problem is.”

“I’m not angry with you.” No, the problem wasn’t with her brother. It was something wrong with her. “But, I really do need to get to work.” And she hurried out before her brother could try to dig any deeper.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

It’s Stream of Consciousness Saturday ad today’s prompt was to Use the word “spell” any way you’d like. Bonus points if you use it in the first sentence. I’m still plotting out Jess and Austin’s story, so I decided to use them again today. I’ve felt some of what Jess is going through, though I didn’t go into exactly what that is here. It will be explored more in the actual story, though.

A to Z: S is for Set Up

Last time, we left Cassie and Raven in some potential trouble. Today we’re back with Icarus about to face Henry.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Icarus was glad for the speed, and to be taking point on this ride. If he’d had to be stuck behind any of the other bikes, he wasn’t sure he’d be able to stand it. He still couldn’t believe he’d let Cassie rip that promise out of him. He needed to be the one to handle Henry. And for good this time. He’d thought they’d dealt with him once, got him to back off.

He should have known it wouldn’t be good enough. That man was never going to leave them alone.

Once this was over, Icarus would take Cassie, and Trace and Birdie if they wanted to go, and find somewhere far away from this where they could just be together. But, he had to take care of Henry first.

He finally slowed as the house came into view. He took his bike around to the same place they’d stopped the last time they’d come here. When Henry had held Birdie as leverage to get Cassie and Trace back. He hadn’t won that time. And Icarus swore he wouldn’t this time either.

Once everyone else had pulled in beside him, he glanced around, his gaze finally landing on Bull. “I need you to take point,” he said. His oldest friend, and the biggest man there, he trusted him with his life. Or in this case, the woman he loved and their son’s lives. “I promised it wouldn’t be me.”

They worked out the details of how they would handle the rest of this mission, and Icarus followed behind Bull and the men he’d called to stand with him: Smoke, Jumper, and Devil among them. They were all good men. Hawk and Arrow were on lookout duty, like usual. “You okay for this?” he asked Hawk.

‘”Sure thing, Cap,” he said, but Icarus could see him moving stiffly still.

Trace fell into step beside Icarus. “It should be us,” his son said. “We’re the ones he keeps coming after.”

“That’s not the way your mom wants it. She wants us to come back to her.”

Henry was already waiting on the porch when they crossed the street. He was expecting them, which left an uneasy feeling in Icarus’ gut. “Hiding behind your bullies, Hartson?” he called out to Icarus.

“You’re the only bully I see here,” Icarus responded, trying to remain calm. This man kept trying to take everything from him and had succeeded once, nearly two decades before. He couldn’t go back to that time.

Before he could stop him, Trace lunged forward, through the rest of the Riders. “No,” Icarus said. Again and again as he tried to grab his son. But, the other men seemed to move aside for him. He couldn’t reach him in time.

Icarus started forward, but he still couldn’t move fast enough. Trace was already starting up the steps, his fists clenched at his sides. He couldn’t hear what the boy was saying, but he saw the sneer cross Henry’s face. Then, his hand came up and faster than any of them could move, though Icarus noticed several of the men lunging forward, Henry’s hand struck out, knocking Trace aside.

The boy fell back, missing each of the steps and hitting the ground. He didn’t stir at first, and Icarus’ chest felt hollow. If something happened to his son…but no, he was moving now, pushing himself back up. But, Henry was moving toward him, aiming his foot as if he meant to kick the boy.

Icarus couldn’t do it. He couldn’t let this man take away his son one more time. He drew the gun from the inside pocket of his vest and aimed it at the man who once again threatened everything dear to him. “I’m sorry, Cassie.” This was a promise he just wasn’t going to be able to keep.

“You shoot me again and you will never see Cassandra again,” Henry said, not looking all too scared about the gun in Icarus’ hand.

Icarus’ lip lifted in a snarl. “If you’re dead, you won’t be able to keep her from me. And if you put another hand on my son, that’s just what’s going to happen.”

“If you kill me, you’ll never know where my men took her.”

“You don’t know what you’re talking about.” But, from the smug look on Henry’s face and the ice gathering in his own belly, he was afraid he did. “She’s safe.”

“Yes, she is,” Henry said. “With my men.”

“No, you’re lying.”

“You really want to test that theory? If I turn up dead, my men know exactly who to go after. And you’ll end up in a cage again, exactly where you belong. So, either way, you won’t see her again. But, if you walk away now, everything else will be forgotten between us.”

“Don’t believe him, Dad,” Trace said, drawing himself up beside Icarus. “I don’t think he’s lying about Mom, but he wouldn’t just let us ride away and forget about this.”

Icarus knew the truth of that. But, he didn’t see what other option he had. He was still hoping Henry was bluffing. He motioned for the other men to fall back, but didn’t turn around until he was right on the edge of the yard. When they were at the bikes, he ignored the clamor of voices, everyone wondering what they would do now. Instead he took out his phone and dialed a number. “Chief,” he said, his voice trembling, “tell me he’s fucking with me.”

“I’m so sorry, Grady.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Well, this is really not looking good. What is Icarus going to do now? Will he get Cassie? Just what did happen?

Fiction Friday: Midas’ Daughter – “James”

I’m back with another scene from Midas’ Daughter. Today we’re back to Calla, who is about to find out just what her father is up to.

“It’s about time.”
Her father didn’t even look at her as she walked into his study. Didn’t take the time to see what she’d done with her hair or that she’d put a dress on. He only knew she’d kept him, and whoever his guest was, waiting.
“Sorry, Father,” she said. “I didn’t know to expect company.”
Her father didn’t respond or even look at her. “You’re almost twenty-one,” he said. “It’s time you took on the duties of this household instead of wasting your time playing with that horse.”
Her throat burned, but she held back the tears. She wouldn’t cry, not in front of her father and certainly not in front of the man sitting across the parlor. What duties didn’t she already do? But, that wouldn’t be the right question to ask. He’d likely list them. Not that it was ever something he’d brought up before. She felt the other man’s eyes on her. She wouldn’t embarrass herself or her father in front of him.
“I understand, Father.” Even though she didn’t. Not at all.
“Good. Your birthday is in two weeks. We’ll be having a party here. The housekeeper and butler have the plans and guest list. Make sure they don’t screw anything up.”
What was she supposed to say? He expected her to oversee her own party. A party she hadn’t even asked for. Likely to prove a point. Or humiliate her when it all went wrong. Did he think she’d done that to him the other night? She’d been trying to help. Why was that so wrong?
Calla kept her hands at her sides but felt them trembling. She wanted to be back out in the stable with Ariadne. And Flip. No, she shouldn’t think about him, she knew he didn’t think about her. Instead, she had to be in feeling like she was a child having her hand slapped. She couldn’t believe he was doing this. What had she ever done to deserve him to treat her this way?
He didn’t wait for her answer anyway. “This is James Adair. He’ll be a special guest at your party. I expect you to show him around until then and treat him with the utmost respect.”
This was all hard to swallow, but she nodded. “Yes, Father.” This wouldn’t give her any time to spend at the stables with Ariadne. Which may be his point. He made it even clearer when he stopped her at the door to the study.
“After the party, you’ll be engaged or he’ll be buying your horse.”
No! She’d almost thought she’d shouted the word, but neither man reacted. They had her whole future planned out for her, and it wasn’t one she wanted. She either got married and got to keep Ariadne, or she’d lose everything. And without a penny to her name until he released her trust fund, there wasn’t anything she could really do. Anywhere she could go to get away from this.
“I understand, Father.” She only wished she didn’t.

A to Z: R is for Raven

Last time, we left Icarus talking to Bull and admitting he’s thinking about quitting the club. Needless to say, that doesn’t go over well. Now, we’re back to Cassie, and she’s watching the men leave.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Cassie stood on the porch and waited while the last of the bikes drove out of the yard. She hadn’t seen just about all of the Riders leaving the yard all at one time too often. Only Chief and two younger members, the ones who didn’t have the full back patch on their vests yet, had stayed behind. Even the last time they’d ridden off like this, they’d left more of the men behind, including Trace and that young man who went by the name Arrow.

But, even they had gone along this time. She’d heard Trace arguing with Bull about that very thing before she’d gone to talk to Grady. To her surprise, he’d insisted on going along. From everything she’d heard, he usually preferred to stay behind if violence was expected. And as much as she was sure they wanted to avoid that, it was pretty much a foregone conclusion when it came to Henry. Especially with what he was pulling now. He wouldn’t just let them ride away this time.

Cassie couldn’t help wringing her hands together. What if this was the last time she saw either of them? She wasn’t sure she could live with that.

Then, she felt a hand lightly touch her arm. “They’ll be back, Cassie,” Raven said from just behind her.

“You can’t know that. You might be able to see into people’s heads, but you can’t see the future.”

Raven chuckled a little at that. “I can’t actually do that, either. It would make things a lot easier, for me and the people I try to help.”

And Cassie knew Trace had been one of them. Because of things Henry had done to him. Things she should have protected him from and hadn’t. Some she hadn’t known about until they’d come here.

Raven squeezed her arm briefly. “You know he doesn’t blame you, right?”

Cassie shook his head. “Are you sure you can’t see into my head? And he probably should. I never stopped Henry. Not one time.”

“I can’t tell you the things he’s told me, but he has talked about what happened. And I don’t know how you’d be able to stop him when he’d practically knocked you unconscious.”

Cassie trembled just at the memory of what life had been like. And how she’d acted like it was normal to live like that. After a year of never having a hand raised to her in anger, it didn’t seem real. Raven gave her a quick hug, then almost as if they’d already discussed it, started walking into the house together. But, they both stopped at the sound of motors coming up the drive.

“That can’t be them,” Cassie said. “They just left. They can’t be back already.”

“It’s not,” Raven said. “That’s not motorcycle engines. It’s a cage. You should get inside.”

But, the car was already rolling into view. It was plain, non-descript really. But, Cassie recognized it. And the man behind the wheel. “No,” she gasped.

“What is it?”

“He works with Henry. He had to have sent him. He’s going to take me back there.”

“Not if we have anything to say about it,” Raven assured her.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Well, now, that doesn’t look good, does it? Who is this person? What does he want? Will Cassie see Icarus and Trace again?

A to Z: Q is for Quitting

Last time, we left Icarus giving Cassie a promise he really didn’t want to. But, that put other thoughts in his head and a conclusion he hadn’t expected to come to.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Icarus couldn’t believe he’d made that promise to Cassie. All he’d been able to think of the last several days as they put this plan together, and Arrow and Hawk came back from town with more evidence Henry wasn’t going to back down, was being the one to take the bastard out. But, she had asked it of him now. And he wasn’t sure there was anything she could ask that he wouldn’t do.

He wasn’t sure how he was going to keep this promise, though. He couldn’t put the other men in danger and not be there to back them up. This was his problem, one he really should be the one to deal with. But, Cassie had taken that choice right out of his hands. He didn’t even know what move to make. He could lose Cassie for good no matter what he did. There was only one thing he was sure of that would mean not losing her at all.

“What’s going on with you, Icarus? You’ve barely said a word since we came in here.”

Icarus looked over at Bull. They were supposed to be going over final plans for this mission, but he couldn’t keep his focus on it. “I’m thinking about quitting,” he blurted. Even just saying the words had his skin prickling. This club had been his life for the last five years. But, Cassie was his heart and soul. If he lost her again…No, it didn’t even bear thinking of.

“Don’t give me any of that,” Bull demanded. “You aren’t leaving.”

“I have to, Bull. Don’t you see? It’s the only answer here. If I’m not here, Henry won’t come after the whole club. He can’t use it as a way to get to me. To get to Cassie and Trace through me. I have to go.”

“No, you don’t. That’s why we’re doing this. We’ll get him to leave us alone.”

Icarus smacked his hand against the wall. “It’s not just Henry. Me being here has brought trouble to everyone I care about. With Henry taking Birdie, and coming after Cassie and Trace. The Crows coming after Birdie and Trace. Even Devil and Hawk getting hurt.”

“That didn’t have anything to do with you, Icarus,” Bull argued.

“You go back far enough, and it does. I let Brad in here, I didn’t see through his lies. And that gave him the opening to get deep with the Crows and take them down. And with our connection to him, it led them back to us. If it wasn’t for me-”

“If it wasn’t for you, this club would have fallen apart long ago. I can’t believe you can’t see that. Dad might be the president, but you are this club, Icarus. You quit and you might as well disband the club.”

Icarus shook his head. “That’s ridiculous. The club isn’t just one person. We all make it work. I didn’t say I’m definitely going. But, if that’s what it takes to make sure my family is protected, it’s what I’m going to do.”

“Let’s take care of this business with Henry first,” Bull said, his voice subdued now. “Then, I’ll convince you you’re better off staying.”

Icarus let out a rough laugh. If only it would be that easy.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Will Icarus really leave the club? Will Bull convince him he really is better off staying? Will he end up breaking his promise to Cassie?

Tag Cloud