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Running late again. I tell ya! When these stubborn characters don’t want to go through something, they can really clam up. I did get them talking in exchange for adding a bit more warmth to an earlier scene, but not until very late last night. By the time I finished writing, I needed to go to sleep. (In Arvid and Tai’s defense, yesterday was a Day. One of my kids was special needsing all over the place. Anyway…)

Thank you, K.L. Schwengel, for hosting WIPpet Wednesday. :-)

Math: second digit of date – first digit of date = 6 – 2 = 4 pargraphs

Character descriptions:

Arvid 5’6″, dark copper skin, long brown hair, brown eyes, athletic build.

Taiamuk 6’3″, long red hair, gray eyes, a multitude of freckles, numerous scars, muscles a la Jackie Chan. Notable scars include three stab wounds on his right side and a long, horizontal gash across his chest. Owns one piece of clothing: trousers.

Necessary Context:

  • Arvid suffered some serious burns to her feet.
  • Arvid and Tai kissed.

The process of treating her burns, much to Arvid’s relief, turned out to be less painful than the injury to her arm. Her supply of slumberbark helped with that. She worked quickly to keep from passing out under the influence of the drug before she finished, giving her feet a scouring even Mother would call adequate. By the time she wrapped the rags soaked in woundclose tea around her feet, it took extreme concentration to get her eyes to focus for the task.

She refused to trust Tai with the debridement, given his obvious lack of experience with treating his own wounds, but she kept hoping for him to come back to help with tying on the bandages. Her fingers felt slow and clumsy and her eyes blurred every few heartbeats. She got them tied, somehow, and slipped into dreamless sleep before he returned.

With the drug keeping her senseless, she missed it when he laid down with her and woke late and alone. It gave her a sad, empty feeling, as though their months of close cuddling to ward off the cold conditioned her to need to wake with his arms around her in order to feel she slept well. She heard him practicing his fighting in the distance and supposed the warming days gave him a sense of urgency about assuring his skills stayed strong. She didn’t blame him, but it was unfair of him to do it while she couldn’t walk. She wanted to watch, to see how fast he moved when he fought a tree or rock, or some other opponent he need not worry about killing on accident. And maybe just to ogle. Ogling, instead of concentrating on learning, for a change, sounded nice.

She shook her head to clear the thoughts and set about checking her burns. She needed to be careful. They made it this far without slipping up. To give in now would be like wearing an opponent down to the point of breaking only to step back and let him deal the killing blow without protest.  She wanted to go home and she wanted to be accepted when she got there. Even if none of the elders knew of it, she would feel the shame. As for Tai, he would go home and find women lined up to marry him. Women who spoke his language and knew how to say the things men liked to hear.

As a bonus, I’ll let you have the little snippet I warmed up for Tai in exchange for him goading Arvid into talking for me. I warmed it up for Arvid, too, but she claims it was solely embarrassment and the fear that I would heat up another such scene that got her to loosen her jaw hinges, and not any true enjoyment thereof. As for context, the literal fire is a direct result of this, though that would take some ‘splaining and spoilerin’ and I’m late as it is.

 A gust of wind swept in under the door. Tai’s shivering increased. Arvid straddled his lap to wrap her arms and legs around him, pulling the blanket tight around the both of them, and rubbed his back with fast, hard strokes to create friction to warm him. He pulled her to him, mashing her chest into his, close enough for her to feel his heartbeat His breath fell hot on her neck, swirling across her skin and, despite the frigid air’s best attempts to steal all warmth, dipped below the neckline of her dress. His day’s growth of stubble traced the length of her neck a moment before his teeth did the same, pulling together into a kiss, followed by another, and another.

 

bandage

So, if you ever need it, a contributor who goes by Syker Fotograf uploaded an entire series of photo instructions for properly bandaging one’s foot to Wikimedia Commons.

To join WIPpet Wednesday…

  1. Post a snippet of your WIP that relates to the date
  2. Thank K.L. Schwengel
  3. Link up here
  4. Enjoy good writing

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What’d I tell ya? As soon as Tai finished telling his POV, Arvid piped right up. In case you missed last week, Arvid was being tight-lipped for a while there, so I got Tai to talk to me instead, but don’t expect me to make a habit of sharing his POV. This isn’t his book. There IS another scene I particularly like from his POV coming up, but he takes five times as many words to tell it as Arvid, so it may end up being a hidden post only for the very interested among you, if you are interested. That’s not for a while yet, though. If you missed Tai’s little spiel and want to read it, here’s a handy dandy link for you.

Thank you, K.L. Schwengel, for hosting WIPpet Wednesday. :-)

Tai would like to thank Trip and Fayth for the commiseration and booze. He still has a bit of a headache, but he feels the opportunity to get good and drunk was worth it under the circumstances. He hopes your hangovers will fade with merciful speediness. (And if either of you knows of a good chaser, he’s all ears.)

Arvid would like T’Pol to know she had a lovely time. The tea was delicious and that neck pinch move is brilliant. She hopes they’ll have the opportunity to spend time together again soon.

Math: month – first digit of date = 8 – 1 = 7 paragraphs

Character descriptions:

KIANO Some of you have not met Kiano yet. Kiano is Arvid’s older brother. He’s essentially the battle-hardened guy version of Arvid. He’s about 5’11”, has well-honed fighter muscles, and a decent number of flesh-wound scars. Smooth jawed, long-haired.

Arvid 5’6″, dark copper skin, long brown hair, brown eyes, athletic build.

Taiamuk 6’3″, long red hair, gray eyes, a multitude of freckles, numerous scars, muscles a la Jackie Chan. Notable scars include three stab wounds on his right side and a long, horizontal gash across his chest. Owns one piece of clothing: trousers.

Necessary Context:

There was a big fire. Arvid almost died in it. Tai kissed her like WOW. She kissed back.

Arvid felt the warm, spring sun filtering in through the cracks in the walls, telling her the cold snap ended sometime during the night. The soles of her feet stung with mounting infection. She needed to treat them today, or risk losing them. With her limited supplies, that meant scouring with shineweed and soaking in woundclose tea. Scouring burnt skin meant jaw-clenching pain and the courage to inflict it on herself since she doubted Tai knew the proper method. That meant a strong dose of slumberbark and slumberbark meant vulnerability. She hoped Tai knew better than to take advantage of her.

She reached her fingers and toes away from each other to loosen the tightness caused by her struggle against the fire the day before. To her surprise, she pressed into nothing as she stretched. No warm, firm body inhibited her movements. She propped herself on her elbow to look around the shack. Tai sat in the weapons corner with his back to her, rubbing his quarterstaff with a cloth to polish the surface.

Ignoring the pain lancing up her legs from her feet, she rolled onto her belly and rested her chin on her folded arms to watch him. The memory of their kiss sent a pleasant tingle along her spine. She wondered if he could tell it was her first real one. Years ago, not long after her coming of age rite, Kiano’s best friend at the time took it upon himself to make sure she knew how a man tasted, but Kiano brought an abrupt end to the kiss with a fist to his friend’s jaw. After that, she ignored men and they ignored her until the announcement of her new rank.

She brushed her fingers across her lips. Tai’s kiss, though satisfying, left her craving another, but here in this isolated place, alone with him all the time, it made her nervous, too.  If he kissed her like that again, she might crumble and disgrace herself. If that happened, she would lose the last shred of respect she held for herself.

He turned toward her. Her heart sped up and she found herself focusing on his lips. Bother the risk. She wanted another kiss. She smiled at him. Shyness kept her from initiating, but she wagered he knew an invitation when he saw one.

Without meeting her eyes or returning her smile, he stood, staff in hand, and walked out the door. She watched him go, confusion filling her. Yesterday he wanted… But now he walked away from her just like that. No greeting, no explanation, no smug smirk. Arvid sat up and wrestled against the bewilderment, wondering what caused this complete reversal.

Her feet itched and seared, reminding her where her priorities needed to be. Figuring out why Tai’s behavior changed had to wait. Setting aside the feeling of rejection, she gathered what she needed and set about treating her burns.

This video has nothing to do with the post. I just like the song and was feeling too lazy to sift through potential images to find one to go with the post. I think some of you will find it amusing.

To join WIPpet Wednesday…

  1. Post a snippet of your WIP that relates to the date
  2. Thank K.L. Schwengel
  3. Link up here
  4. Enjoy good writing

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I’m late! I’m late for a very important date! By a week and several hours. However, as it’s still Wednesday here in Alaska, I’m going to pretend last week never happened and call it good.

I came to a part in Queen of Bears where I knew what I wanted to happen, but hadn’t actually written it yet. So, I sat down to write it and, guess what? Neither Arvid nor Tai wanted me to write the scene. Nope. Not at all. This does not happen very often. I’ve had writer’s block due to Arvid refusing to have something written while Tai hopped up and down in the back of my head practically singing, “Write the scene, write the scene, pretty please right now write the scene,” but this is the first time they both refused. *sigh*

Well, usually when Arvid is being stubborn about having something written, I go to Tai. He’s really the talkative one. Quite often, if I can get him to tell me his POV of a scene, Arvid will pipe up to correct him share her side of the story. Since he wasn’t talking either, I called up Abigail Erryne and asked her to put Adrienne on the phone. Most of you have met Adrienne, I think. She’s a sweet young lady with a partner/trainer named Levi. She also happens to be Tai’s best friend outside his mythos. He’s very fond of her. Adrienne has a way of recognizing strengths in him he doesn’t recognize himself. (I should point out, she’s also well-acquainted with his weaknesses.) I think the same can be said vice versa.

Anyway. Adrienne obligingly lectured Tai for me. She did a great job of it, too. He started out slow, but he FINALLY told me what I needed to know. Now, this story is officially from Arvid’s POV all the way through, but that doesn’t mean I don’t have things written in Tai’s POV. Now that I have Tai’s piece written, Arvid will tell me hers, but since he piped up first, I’m giving you his POV today.

So, now that you have all the background info, here are 5 paragraphs of Tai’s POV for the last digit of the year. This comes pre-dawn the morning after last week’s post. You can all thank our gracious hostess, K.L. Schwengel, for this glimpse into Tai’s entertaining (I think) head. Warning! He tends to ramble.

Character descriptions:

Arvid 5’6″, dark copper skin, long brown hair, brown eyes, athletic build.

Taiamuk 6’3″, long red hair, gray eyes, a multitude of freckles, numerous scars, muscles a la Jackie Chan. Notable scars include three stab wounds on his right side and a long, horizontal gash across his chest. Owns one piece of clothing: trousers.

Necessary Context:

See introduction to post.

Her silky black hair framed her beautiful, dark face. Tai brushed an errant strand back into place with its fellows. He knew better than to stare at her as she slept, it only made the emptiness worse, but he gave up fighting this one desire months ago. Her soft exhale filled the space between them, swirling across his skin, tracing patterns of heat where he wanted touch. The kiss still burned on his lips, hot as the fire he started, the fire that almost killed her. He closed his eyes and swallowed down the guilt-spawned sickness. If she died because of him…

She shifted in her sleep, brushing against him and bringing his mind back from its morbid wanderings. She lived. More scars decorated her luscious copper skin, but she lived. He groaned and flopped back into his usual place, with his arm around her waist and her curves pressed into him, fitting with agonizing perfection. For warmth. Just warmth. They lived and worked together, sharing everything, including a bed, but never the way nature intended a man and woman to share a bed.

The rejection gnawed at him. She didn’t love him. If not that, a jealous husband lurked in her past. Both possibilities filled him with desperation. He wanted her love and her fidelity. He wanted to be the one she greeted each morning with a kiss, the one she lulled into satisfied slumber with her own, particular love song.

He shook his head to banish the daydreams. He needed to pull back, center himself elsewhere. No woman ever filled his head like this before. He sat up, propped his elbows on his knees, and rested his head in his hands. No other woman would ever fill his head like this. Come spring, he would go home, find heaving bosoms lined up to warm his sheets, and never spend a moment thinking about any of the women they belonged to.

Survive, return, report, and then do what he came up the mountain to do before he met Arvid. He wouldn’t look at her, wouldn’t touch her except to keep her from freezing to death at night, wouldn’t try to speak to her. He would train alone during the day, sparring against trees, rocks, and water. Maybe, if he isolated himself from her as much as their circumstances allowed, going home wouldn’t hurt so much.

To join WIPpet Wednesday…

  1. Post a snippet of your WIP that relates to the date
  2. Thank K.L. Schwengel
  3. Link up here
  4. Enjoy good writing
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