I haven’t gotten too much further today, though I did decide to switch the POV character at the beginning of the next chapter, which allowed me to describe my primary heroine, Merlynne Jones. It wasn’t a huge description, but it let me establish that she isn’t one of those cookie-cutter pretty girl leads. One of the other characters, had described her as “barely below average,” and I went ahead and established that yes, she really is “below average” in that regard. (But the secondary heroine is still into her anyway. But Merlynne is asexual, so…)
Anyway, I thought I’d share the passage I was talking about yesterday that I was so proud of.
Starting with some context. Okay, so the concept here is an inter-dimensional flood, connecting countless times and places indiscriminately. It was inspired by an offhand comment my brother made several months ago. When I started my file of notes for this project, this is what I wrote about the flood:
How this works is not so much like the Doctor Who chaos when River tried to refuse to kill the Doctor at the time she was supposed to have done so, but more of a Pratchetty thing where in walking across town you pass through four or five other times and realities, so that when you’re receiving directions, you would get things like “head down Maple Street, through the Forum of Augustus, along the Great Wall of China for a block, and then climb up Mount Olympus until you hear the bells of Notre Dame. If you get to Londinium, you’ve gone too far.” Only that’s all much too Earth and much too real. In the actual book, there’d be sci-fi and fantasy stuff in there like mecha factories and unicorn markets. But beware of going to the Goblin Market!
Now, obviously, that’s directions, not a passage of someone actually following the paths, but…anyway. Here’s the passage I wrote yesterday:
Turning away from CAMPUS, Merlynne went into a nearby grocer’s, and found her way to the toilet. One of the stalls opened into a closet on a crashed space frigate in the next galaxy over. The frigate could be dangerous at times, as criminal squatters often used it as a hideout, but that galaxy had little understanding of magic, and she had only used one spell so far today, so she knew she’d be fine if any space brigands showed up.
Luckily, all she had to contend with was a lone sentry bot, which was handily dispatched with a low-level lightning spell. It wasn’t far to the next gateway; near the crashed frigate was a deep pond, which connected at the bottom to the fountain in a Goblin Market. Merlynne knew better than to buy anything from the goblin men, of course, but she was always tempted to nick some of their fruit in passing. The peaches looked especially tasty today, and as the vendor was distracted by another goblin trying to barter with him, Merlynne helped herself to a small one. If he noticed the theft, it wasn’t until after she was down the alley and away into the wide grain fields of the uninhabited paradise that some fellow Earthers had dubbed Fantastica. No one lived there—the shadow creatures that came out at night saw to that—but a lot of people came from Earth to plant and harvest the purple grains that grew naturally there, beneath its pale maroon sky.
Fantastica had a wealth of passages to other places—thankfully, the shadow creatures seemed frightened to leave Fantastica—so Merlynne had to be very careful not to take the wrong one and end up in the midst of an intergalactic war. The right one was behind a boulder not too far from where she had arrived, and it took her to the mecha yards of an Earther colony in orbit around Jupiter. She had to stop and admire the handiwork of the craftsmen as she passed. “That’s looking nice,” she told the engineer who was surveying one of the nearly-completed mecha. “But what’s with the yellow V on its forehead?”
“Helps hide the vulcans,” the engineer said. “Besides, it’s got a nice retro look, don’t you think?”
“Hmm, maybe.” Merlynne shrugged. “Good luck with your war.”
“Thanks.” The man paused, and bit his lip. “Hey, uh, do we win?”
“Spoilers,” Merlynne admonished him. The galactic government was really hard on anyone who told people in the past about their future. Besides, that stupid civil war was a long time ago. Merlynne didn’t really remember who had won or lost. As she remembered it, they had all just been spinning their wheels rather pointlessly, with neither side’s ultimate goals coming to fruition in the end. She’d never really paid attention to AE history lessons, anyway; BE was much more interesting.
There was a room off the mecha yards that led directly where Merlynne wanted to go, to the non-tech world known as Nowhere.
And….I have forgotten anything else I wanted to say in this post.
So, my word count is 1,669 for today, and 37,509 for the month. Not the greatest day. *sigh* I also didn’t manage to do any of the housecleaning I meant to do today. Just not the day.