#FictMAYhem #StoryADay May 15, 2017

Welcome! This month I’m writing a small story each day to try to brainstorm a future full-length novel, a sequel to my current WIP Memories and Magic, which is tentatively titled Rebels and Rebellions.

Please forgive the vagueness of today’s story, but I had limited writing time and didn’t want to waste it trying to come up with names for incidental characters.l

Today’s prompt is: Meet.

Clara and the Mages followed their guide down the corridors. They stopped outside a tall wooden door, and the guide knocked. It opened from the inside and the guide stepped aside for Clara and the others to enter.

Inside, there was a round table lined with chairs. There were four empty chairs on one side and Clara made her way around, avoiding eye contact with the men and women already in the room. Rikard Voidsun was there and she did spare a small glance for him, though he seemed just as determined to avoid her gaze as she was to avoid everyone else.

It was an old man with white hair who stood up to begin the introductions. He nodded to Clara first.“Your Majesty,” he said and Clara returned the nod. At least someone was treating her with a modicum of the respect her position deserved. She knew that everyone here objected to her magic, but wasn’t that why protocol existed? So that everyone could at least meeting civilly, even if none of them wanted to speak to each other?

The old man’s eyes moved around the table, lighting on his colleagues first of all. “Honoured guests.” His gaze moved just in time for it to seem as though the Mages were included in that salutation. “Before we begin, we should all know each other.”

He went around the table, noting the names of each of the Racharans sitting there. When he had finished, he looked expectantly at Clara. She stood up and introduced the Mages. The Racharans were staring at the Mages with borderline contempt, and Clara felt tempted to say something in her friends’ defence. She knew it wasn’t going to make any difference, though. Not this early on at least.

The next hour passed slowly, and Clara tried to keep herself engaged. There was little discussion happening at this point; mostly, it was just the Racharans airing their grievances once again. But then they said something that made Clara sit up straighter in her chair.

“What a coup for the descendants of the Racharan magicians if they had the all-powerful monarch of Thelidon on their side.”

That was more than Clara could take. She would take responsibility for bringing magic where it was no longer welcome, but she wouldn’t be associated with a class of magicians who saw no life as sacred as their own.


#FictMAYhem #StoryADay May 14, 2017

Welcome! This month I’m writing a small story each day to try to brainstorm a future full-length novel, a sequel to my current WIP Memories and Magic, which is tentatively titled Rebels and Rebellions.

Today’s prompt is: Mother.

Max held the letter, staring at the address. It was in his mother’s spindly handwriting. He’d recognise it anywhere. He guiltily wondered how long it had been since he had written to her. He certainly hadn’t visited her in months; first he had been living here in Racharan, protecting Clara and helping her come into his powers. Then once Josef Bauer had been defeated, Max and the other Mages had been so busy playing their own parts in Clara’s coronation and assisting her with running the Kingdom that thoughts of his family had entirely slipped Max’s mind.

The letter had been addressed to him at the Mages’ quarters near the Palace, but someone had forwarded it on. He opened it and found that the paper inside was dated nearly a month ago. He skimmed the body of the letter and then scrunched the paper in his hands. His mother had written to inform him that his sister was ill, and she wanted him to come home and help her. She said she knew that he could find a way to use his magical skills to heal her.

Max sighed. His mother always had assumed that there were no rules to Aligarian magic and that Max could do whatever he wanted, provided he knew the Rune for it. To heal someone required blood magic, and to perform it went against every ethical bone in his body. He had performed it once, when Clara had been dying. She had given her consent, but he still felt guilty about it.

And he was feeling guilty now. His sister’s condition had sounded serious, and a month was a long time under those circumstances. Even if he couldn’t help her, he ought to at least see her. But he couldn’t just up and leave Clara now, given the whole situation with Racharan. He was just as much to blame for the current circumstances as she was; he had spent just as much time there the previous year as she had.

But how could he choose between his Queen and his family?

#FictMAYhem #StoryADay May 13, 2017

Welcome! This month I’m writing a small story each day to try to brainstorm a future full-length novel, a sequel to my current WIP Memories and Magic, which is tentatively titled Rulers and Rebellions.

Today’s prompt is: Malice.

The malice they were met with surprised Clara, even though she had known they probably would not be welcome in Racharan. These were people who probably barely knew of her existence up until the news had filtered down of her presence there the year before.

She could have understood the people she’d had contact with in that time feeling angry or betrayed. The magic-induced false identity she’d had when she had been there had created a much more extroverted personality than the one she had grown up with. She had greeted neighbours on the stairs, and chatted at length with the people who came into the shop where she had worked,

This wasn’t even the city where she had lived, though.  These were people who had never set eyes on here before, hissing and spitting. She could almost feel the waves of hate washing over her. She kept her head down as they made their way down the road.

She smiled grimly to herself This was her first big diplomatic visit anywhere, and so far, it was terrible. Surely after this, ruling her Kingdom would come easily.

#StoryADay May 12, 2017

Welcome! This month I’m writing a small story each day to try to brainstorm a future full-length novel, a sequel to my current WIP Memories and Magic.
I have been playing around a bit and have tentatively titled the sequel Rulers and Rebellions.

I missed yesterday! I know! I was doing so well. But unfortunately, it was just one of those days where there just weren’t enough hours to get everything done.  Life goes on.

While I have been  using the Fictioal MAYhem prompts, nothing was coming to me for today’s prompt, so I just went with my own muse. I’ll admit the ending is somewhat lacking. It’s rather late so I just wanted to finish it up.

“These people are assisting with our enquiries,” Rikard explained vaguely.

The other woman nodded towards Max and Clara, but eyed them warily from the other side of the table. Clara was once again aware of her much darker skin, and how it made her stand out in Racharan.

“Could we borrow something that belonged to your husband?” Max asked, and she tilted her head, frowning slightly but still not saying anything to them. “It doesn’t have to be anything significant,” he added. “As long as it was his alone.”

She glanced at Rikard, who nodded. She left the room, skirting as far around Max and Clara as she could. A few minutes later, she returned, holding a plain white shirt. She handed it to Max without a sound.

Max moved to pull out his pen there and then, but Clara clamped a hand on his wrist, staying his hand. “Not yet,” she said. Max glanced over at the Guard’s wife and nodded.

Clara and Max excused themselves, and Rikard joined them outside a few minutes later. Max had begun drawing a Rune on the cotton shirt. The ink from is pen spread thickly on the material, but Clara knew it would disappear as soon as the Rune had served its use.

Max pressed his thumb into the Rune and a blue light shot up from the surface of the shirt. As Max and Clara watched, it spread out into a circular shape, leaving a black gaping hole in the air in its wake. They waited to see if anything appeared, and after a while, it did.

An image appeared, and they saw through the soldier’s eyes. He was alive, at least, though what condition he was in, they couldn’t tell. Unfortunately, there wasn’t much to see. From the looks of it, the soldier was in a tent. Yellowed canvas surrounded him, with tent poles at regular intervals. A gap in the tent flaps revealed someone on guard, though only the guard’s boots were visible.

“What does that mean?” Rikard asked. He was standing away from them, distancing himself from the magic. He looked faintly ill, but at the same time, curious about what was going on.

“We’ll need to do this a few times,” Max said. “There isn’t anything to identify his location here. But maybe some of the others will be moved somewhere where we can get a glimpse of something more helpful.”

Rikard nodded. “I’ll take you to the other homes. But first, let me go and give Tobias’ wife the good news.”


#FictMAYhem #StoryADay #WIPpet Wednesday – May 10, 2017

Hello everyone! It’s WIPpet Wednesday again. It’s also quite late where I am, so this is very quick.

If you’ve never heard of WIPpet Wednesday, this is a weekly blog hop hosted by yours truly. If you’re a writer, you are very welcome to join us by posting an excerpt from your WIP that somehow relates to the date. You can click the blue guy on the right of this blog to be taken to the link up.

I’m continuing with the Story A Day In May challenge, so once again, my snippet relates to the date because I wrote it today. 😛 I have a tentative title for the Memories and Magic sequel, and that is Rulers and Rebellions. I kinda like it. One of the major plot points in this story (so far; as I explained last week, the whole point of doing this challenge is to try to work out the plot and some new characters) is that Clara has lost her magic. In this scene, she’s trying to explain what that feels like.

Today’s prompt is: Mourn.

Clara tried to explain. “For me, it’s not just the practical side of being unable to do magic. That’s difficult but it’s only part of the story. The Aligarian Mages get their magic through drawing Runes, but for me, the magic is a part of me. I was born with it. And now it’s gone, and it’s like part of me has been ripped away. Sometimes I can’t breathe, I’m feeling the loss so strongly.” She smiled wryly. “I cried myself to sleep last night. When I drifted off in the meeting earlier, it wasn’t because I wasn’t paying attention. It was because for a moment I’d managed to forget, and then something reminded me, and for a second I couldn’t breathe again.”

She paused and thought about it. “It’s like someone died,” she said finally. “It’s like I’ve lost  my parents all over again.”

And with that, I leave you and go to bed! I’ll see you later!

#FictMAYhem #StoryADay May 09, 2017

Welcome! This month I’m writing a small story each day to try to brainstorm a future full-length novel, a sequel to my current WIP Memories and Magic.
I have been playing around a bit and have tentatively titled the sequel Rulers and Rebellions.

I had intened for today’s scene to go a little longer but I got distracted with some other tasks I needed to do, and the writing got left until late. This seemed an all right place to stop.

Today’s prompt is: Missing.

“Three members of the Magic Guard went missing a month ago,” Voidsun said in a low voice. “We’ve tried everything we could, but there is no trace of them.”

Clara tilted her head. “Why are you telling us this? Are you going to accuse us again?”

Voidsun looked uncomfortable. “We thought… we thought perhaps you could help us. Trace them somehow. Using…” He couldn’t seem to bring himself to finish the sentence.

“Using magic?” Clara supplied, actively stopping herself from scoffing at him. “After everything we’ve been through over the past weeks, now you want us to use magic to help you?”

“Will you do it?” Voidsun asked, deliberately skirting Clara’s question.

“You’d best be asking Max,” Clara said, motioning towards him. “Traces aren’t really my domain.”

“Isn’t the monarch of Thelidon supposed to be all-powerful?” Voidsun asked, and the usual scorn was back in his voice.

“The powers I have are strong, but they hardly make it possible to do everything.”

Voidsun turned to Max, who Clara saw stand up straighter as Voidsun approached him. “Can you find them?”

“We can try. There’s a spell, but we’ll need something that belonged to them.”

Voidsun nodded. “Come with me.”

He immediately turned and started heading out the door. Max followed and Clara brought up the rear.  Clara thought she saw Voidsun roll his eyes when he looked over his shoulder and saw her. If he thought she was letting him take Max anywhere alone, particularly when he was asking Max to perform Aligarian magic. What if it was a trap to make him perform something illegal?

They took one of the mechanical carriages and soon after ended up several streets away. Voidsun had the driver stop outside a white terraced house. He opened the gate and made his way straight up to the door.  Clara and Max hung back on the kerbside. A woman in a mop cap and white apron answered Voidsun’s knock and after a brief dialogue, nodded and stepped aside. Voidsun turned and beckoned for Max and Clara to join him inside.

As soon as Clara stepped across the threshold, she felt a wave of nausea hit her and a strange humming resounded inside her head. She stopped in her tracks.

“Blood magic,” Max whispered. “I could feel it from outside.”

“How come I’ve never felt it before?”

“You’ve never been anywhere where it’s been performed.”

“I’ve had it performed on me.”

Max frowned. “Hmm. Maybe that makes a difference, your being the recipient. Either way, something happened here. Something bad.”

#FictMAYhem #StoryADay – May 08, 2017

Welcome! This month I’m writing a small story each day to try to brainstorm a future full-length novel, a sequel to my current WIP Memories and Magic.

Today’s prompt is: Mountain

Later that night, when everyone else retired, Clara stayed in the common room, staring at the fire. The servants hadn’t registered she was there and they had turned down the lamps. Clara didn’t mind. It gave the whole room a gloomy atmosphere that matched her mood.

She thought about her father. She had been thinking about him a lot lately, and what he would do in her situation. As a girl, she had thought that being the King meant there was nothing her father couldn’t do. She had thought that if he snapped his fingers, the mountains would bend to his will.

It was only in the year before his death that he had really started to share with her just what a challenge ruling the country was. That the expectation of moving mountains was on his shoulders not just from his daughter, but every one of his subjects.

He had been twice Clara’s age when he assumed the throne. Clara had magic where he hasn’t, but still… How was she supposed to do this without him?

#FictMAYhem #StoryADay May 07, 2017

Welcome! This month I’m writing a small story each day to try to brainstorm a future full-length novel, a sequel to my current WIP Memories and Magic.

Today’s prompt is: Myth

“The Magic Guard may not have apprehended you during your months in Racharan, but they have apprehended others,” Rikard said. “What a coup for the descendents of the Racharan magicians if they had the all-powerful monarch of Thelidon on their side.

“That is complete bollocks!” Clara exclaimed, slamming her hands down on the table and rising slightly as she glared around at the Racharan officials. With the use of the slang, Max heard Clara’s accent momentarily slip into the working class accent she had had during their time in Racharan. Murmurs made their way around the room; the Racharan officials had noticed, too.

“It seems you would have fit in there quite well,” Rikard remarked, an eyebrow raised.

Clara frowned, slid her hands from the table, and took a moment to compose herself. “Mr Voidsun, during the months I lived in Racharan, I had no memory of who I was or why I was there. Using me as an information gatherer would have been quite useless. And if I may say so, the reasons why I was there have been made quite clear. Anyone can verify them.”

“And yet, you still remember everything you learned of our country while you were there. And you were not there unaccompanied.”

“Are you suggesting that Max and Jana were undercover operatives for one of your rebel groups?”

“I’m suggesting nothing. I’m only noting the coincidence between your time in exile in our country and the upsurge in rebels trying to infiltrate our borders again.”

“You can note all you like, Mr Voidsun. It doesn’t stop the fact that all of it is speculation. Fabrication. A complete myth.”

“My government’s investigations haven’t finished yet,” Voidsun replied. “We shall see.”

#FictMAYhem #StoryADay May 06, 2017

Welcome! This month I’m writing a small story each day to try to brainstorm a future full-length novel, a sequel to my current WIP Memories and Magic. Today’s scene is one of the big plot points of the story, and takes place slightly before yesterday’s scene.

Today’s prompt is: Magic.

Clara awoke with a start, her heart pounding.

Something was different.

She sat up and grasped for the candle on the bedside table, and sent a small wave of magic towards it, enough to light it.

Or at least, she thought she did. She remained in the dark. She tried again and still, the candle remained unlit. She placed it back on the table.

She took a few breaths, and then took stock. She wasn’t hurt. That wasn’t the issue at all. And yet the longer she remained awake, the bigger a gaping hole behind her heart began to feel.

“No,” she whispered. “It’s impossible.”

She threw the blankets off and stood. She picked up the candle again and then moved to the window. There was a street lamp just outside, blazing brightly. She slid the window up and stretched out one hand towards the light, telling herself that this was what had been lacking the first two times she tried. She hadn’t had a light source to transfer to the candle. The fact that she hadn’t required a nearby source since the early days of her magical education was beside the point.

She tried to reach out her consciousness along her arm towards the lamp, to pull the light towards herself, and send it into the candle.

There was nothing.

She slammed the window shut and threw the candle down on the bed. As quickly as she could in the dark, she found her way to the door. The guards outside startled and called out to her as she ran past them, but she paid them no heed. She counted the doors on her left until she had passed the right number, then she pounded on the next one she reached.

“Max!” she shouted. “Max, wake up!”

She realised she was shaking, and braced herself against the door. Her face was hot. Her eyes were stinging, and she quickly wiped away the threatening tears.

It took Max a few minutes to reach the door. When he opened it, he was bleary eyed, squinting out at Clara.

“Clara? What’s wrong?” he asked.

“My magic is gone,” Clara said. “I don’t know how they did it, but they’ve stolen my magic. They’ve switched it off. It’s like the past few months never happened, it’s just… gone!”

Max blinked at her. She knew she was probably speaking far too quickly for him to follow in his barely-awake state, but she wasn’t thinking rationally.

“Are you listening to me? My magic is gone! I couldn’t do something as simple as light a candle!”

“I’m listening,” Max said. “I just… don’t know how that’s possible. Surely the only thing that could do that is some other kind of magic, and the Racharans are completely against that.”

“What about you?” Clara asked. “Can you make a Rune work? Or is it just me?”

Max held up his hand and disappeared back into his room for a moment. When he reappeared, he was carrying one of the pens every Aligarian Mage owned; it filled with ink at the touch of its owner and could write on any surface.

Once back in the corridor, Max pressd his thumb to the Rune on the side of the pen casing. There was a quick flash of blue, and Max nodded, confirming that the small additional weight of the ink was there. The Mages hadn’t been affected. At least, not yet.

Clara wrung her hands. “Just me, then,” she said.

“Looks that way,” Max replied. “Are you sure you’re not just tired or something?”

Clara shook her head. “It feels like something has been switched off inside me. There’s this emptiness that wasn’t there before. Max, I’m really scared. What if I can’t get it back? Thelidon relies on its monarch having the magical power to protect the Kingdom.”

“It’s the middle of the night; there’s not much we can do at the moment. Tomorrow we’ll talk to Reiner and the others, and find out who did this and how. Then we can work on getting it back.”

“I’m not going to be able to sleep tonight.”

“Just try. Maybe your powers will be back in the morning.”

Clara nearly rolled her eyes. Max and his unfailing optimism. She nodded.

“All right,” she said. “See you in the morning.”


#FictMAYhem #StoryADay May 05, 2017

Welcome! This month I’m writing a small story each day to try to brainstorm a future full-length novel, a sequel to my current WIP Memories and Magic.

Today’s prompt is: Mirror.

Clara looked at herself in the mirror. She looked the same on the outside. Same face, same figure. How could she still look so normal outwardly when her insides were roiling with turmoil? Her magic was still so new, and yet without it, she felt empty. She felt violated. No one had the right to do this to her.

She clenched her fists and felt the rage stirring inside her. It was the same rage that had coursed through her after she had watched her parents murdered. The same rage she had felt when she had seen Josef Bauer sitting on her throne like it was his, while his men terrorised her people.

If these people thought they could just take her power from her, they were wrong. She would have it back, then she would show them how big a mistake they had made.


She started and turned around. Max was in the doorway.

“What?” she snapped.

“I just came to check if you were all right. If the magic had returned?”

Clara unclenched her fists and took a deep, shaky breath. She shook her head. “It hasn’t returned. I don’t know what to do. What if I never get it back?”

Max stepped into the room and placed a hand on her shoulder. “Whatever they did, there has to be a way to reverse it. They may not like magic here, but they know how much our Kingdom depends on it. We’ll get it back before we leave.”

Clara nodded. The tone of voice Max was using was one she could never argue with. He always sounded so sure. She wished she had half his confidence. It would help her in the role of monarch to no end.

Once her breathing was steady again, Max put his arm around her shoulders and began to guide her out of the room.  They had a meeting scheduled with some of the Racharan officials in half an hour. Clara was grateful for his presence. Enraged was not a good state of mind for negotiations.