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Thought I'd post the first part in my serial web fiction, Cruise Control. If you like, you can follow on the official website!
I was told that Kimberly, like everyone else, had died in the flames of White Valentine’s. But I didn’t believe it. I couldn’t. I refused to believe that I couldn’t save her.
Someone was talking to me—or trying to. With headphones on and eyes closed, I blocked it all out. The shrill screams of Alexisonfire blared in my ears. I bobbed my head to the marching drums and screeching guitar. The memory of White Valentine’s had seeped into my mind and I needed it—to use a shifter term—shrived.
Music is an escape, Kimberly once told me. I put the volume up a couple of notches.
We are not the kids we used to be,
Stop wishing for yesterday, (“Zak!”)
We are not the kids we used to be,
Stop wishing for yesterday. (“Pay attention, Useless!”)
That surly voice ruined it all. I lowered the volume.
“Yo,” I said.
“We can hear you,” Chaz said, our self-proclaimed leader and elected pain-in-the-ass. “You’re gonna make my ears bleed.”
I changed the song. The music did the talking for me.
You’re mean to me,
Why must you be mean to me?
Gee, honey, it seems to me,
You love to see me crying.
Even the classics spoke for me. Thanks, Dean Martin.
Kip snickered and Annette chuckled.
“Very funny,” he said. His mouth didn’t do the talking, his mind did. The four of us lissed, something we could do since we were kids. “Now why don’t you turn that crap off and get to work. Bless us with what you see.”
I opened my eyes to the subway station. I sat on the concrete steps, the platform laid out in front of me, the tracks on either side. Two arched tunnels led east and west. We were at Broadwin Station, the last station before hitting Downtown York. Or what used to be the downtown before White Valentine’s had left it as a graveyard.
Groups of people huddled about, probably here for the same reason we were. To see the train coming, a train that hadn’t been operational for six years. But someone said he’d seen it: a train go from Broadwin Station and west into the downtown. Then someone else said it, and someone after that. Pretty soon everyone and their grandmother had seen the train, but no one knew when it showed up.
“You know what I see?” I lissed. “Diddly squat.”
“These people shouldn’t be here,” Annette said. I couldn’t see her. She hid somewhere. As usual, given that we were in public and she hated being seen in public. “The Rends might come.”
“No way,” Kip said. “The Rends wouldn’t come this far east for a silly rumour.”
I rolled my eyes. Then why were we here?
“Zak,” Chaz said, “why don’t you do us a favour and really look.” Then he added with his charm, “Do something, Useless.”
I sighed, switched the music off, plucked the headphones from my ears, and wrapped the cord around my iPod. The iPod was green and the words ‘Milky Way Eyes’ were inscribed on the back. A gift. To Kimberly, Love Zak.
I stuffed the iPod in my jean pocket and touched either side of my glasses.
My heart fluttered and eks flowed out of it. Using the little eks I had, I shifted the lenses, but the frames remained the same.
I saw the subway station as it had been a couple of days ago. No train. Some people waiting around like today. Some had even brought lawn chairs, blankets, and food. Like waiting for concert tickets to go on sale. I went further back: a week. Same thing. Then I went back a month. Nothing; no sign of life. This was before the rumours began. Rewind to two months. Three. Four.
I kept going back, speeding through the months, the years. Today being February 15, I went back six years and a day, to White Valentine’s. A twelve year old me stood waiting on the platform in a buttoned white shirt tucked into black trousers and an overcoat two sizes too big. Easy there, Casanova. My fingers clutched a gift-wrapped box close to my chest. My eyes were wide with a faraway gleam to them.
As I recall, I was shitting bricks that day. I had planned to meet Kimberly downtown at Dunmas Square.
I went even further back, trying to find her. Kimberly. But she’d rarely come this far east. Her father wouldn’t have let her. Not in Fallers territory, my father’s territory. Uh-uh.
Yeah, we weren’t the kids we used to be. We were eighteen year old shifters with our own unique abilities.
Stop wishing for yesterday, Zak.
I blinked; flashed back to the present.
“Didn’t see any train,” I lissed.
Chaz said something, but I didn’t listen. Too caught up by the three familiar eighteen year olds climbing down the stairs on the opposite end of where I stood.
Kip whispered a curse. I bit my lower lip.
They were here. Rick. And flanking him were Melanie and Aaron.
The Rends had come.
“Called it,” Annette said.
Chaz and Kip got ready. Chaz touched the sleeve of his leather jacket. Kip undid his duffle coat, unravelled his tie, slid it off his collar, and stretched it out from end to end. Where was Annette?
Rick saw us and scowled, his dark eyes narrowing to slits. He wore a long black overcoat over a dark red shirt. He reached into his coat with his right hand. His lips moved, whispering a single word. The air got thick, warm. Eks.
Then he pulled out a long, curved sword.
He’d already shifted. Not caring about the innocent non-shifters around us.
Both Kip and Chaz returned the gesture. The right sleeve of Chaz’s leather jacket expanded, moulding into a diamond-shaped shield. Kip’s tie stiffened and curled, shifting into a spear.
I stepped back. Not much my glasses could do in a fight.
Just as pandemonium was about to break, a thin crease cut across the air, glowing red like the embers of a dying flame. Chaz, Kip, and even the Rends, stopped, all of them staring at this abrasion in the air above them.
Then something… bizarre. A sound. Faint at first. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it. The sound grew louder; more familiar.
A motor from a car. Roaring as if at top speed.
“You guys hear that?” Kip said.
The very air ripped open a gaping hole and a bright gold convertible burst through.
Chaz and Kip ducked, covering their heads.
My mouth hung open. I’d seen some crazy things as a shifter, but never anything like this.
The driver’s blonde hair flailed in the wind. She turned her head and looked right at me.
My heart stopped. Those eyes. Those milky way eyes.
She wasn’t alone. Stalking behind her was the biggest greyver I’d ever seen.
By † Shazi
Aishod is a story I have been working on for years (and is still on it's second draft) I started it for NaNoWriMo in 2011 and finished the first draft for NaNoWriMo in 2013. Since then it has been and on/off sort of project (since I started writing a novel for my mumsy) but I have edited and rewritten the first 9 or 10 chapters to a standard I am much more happy with. I'm still not totally happy with the story, there is a lot of explaining that needs to be done and a lot of things that need to be expanded but for a second draft of a really rushed story I am pretty happy with it.
The story of Aishod...
Aishod follows the young and somewhat imulsive princess Pippa who has come home from magical boarding school. She had been receiving vague letters from home for years and suspected her uncle Tibbott of foul play. As soon as she returned she was put under house arrest, but little did her uncle realise that her magical ability of the mind far exeeded his own. She easily slipped out of the palace unseen and hired the mercenary Ivy to help her work out what is going on. The two are set on a journey niether of them expected as the Guardans of Magic warn that Tibbott is planning something far worse than just removing the Queen from power and taking the throne.
Hi I'm looking to expand into the world of Light Novels that are based on anime and manga.
I have taken the first steps by completing Novel 'Spice & Wolf' + side stories, to the total of 17 books, and now I'm stumped. I liked S&W and rate it highly, so now I'm looking toward SAO, but the only thing that is stopping me is that SAO is still Work In Progress. It's also behind with fan translations and official release of main story arc.
I have several questions:
- Dose SAO novel has a lot of cliffhangers at the end of the volumes? (will I go insane with anticipation between the volumes?)
- What other Novels bases on anime or manga are out there, and worth reading? (preferably fully translated, or have a solid point where you can stop reading until next volume)
- I tried to look up some novels but unfortunately MAL dose not poses accurate information about them. I mean about release dates, scanlations, and translation groups and progress of the groups. Is there a website where i can look up that info? (like in Anime -> AniDB, Manga -> Baka-Updates, or Visual Novels -> VNDB)