SFFS

Another part from chapter 3. Introducing the talking cat.

Enjoy.

As if on cue, a sizable black blob suddenly leaped onto my chest. I yelled out in shock, jumped off the couch and tripped on Djinn, which was propped beside the coffee table. My head hit the corner of the coffee table and I let out a pathetic ‘Ouch’.

While I was displaying just how clumsy humans can be, the black American shorthair simply stood on my coffee table, eyeing me with his yellow eyes. Cats cannot smile but Amaymon was halfway there as he snickered in amusement.

“Dammit, Amaymon,” I said as I nursed a bump on my head. “I told you to stop doing that.” 

“And I told you I will not stop as long as your reaction is always the same as an eight year old’s.” 
Amaymon is the world’s only talking cat and he’s always quick to use his tongue. And possibly the world’s most intelligent cat: certainly the most annoying one.

Ride the Lightning

Another part of the StarWars shortie. This one is an epic battle between Master and Apprentice.

Enjoy.

Ride the Lightning

He felt none of the reminiscence he thought would overcome him. This cave was something of a second home to him but Wraith didn’t miss the damp, cool hole where he learnt the majority of his skills. Maybe it was his imprisonment, maybe the detachment he felt from his connection to the Force. He felt no hatred or anger; simply a sense of duty. His former master had to be removed, and that was the end of it.
As soon as Wraith stepped inside, he felt the familiar presence of Darth Mortris, albeit his eyes did not pin point him.
“Come on out Darth Mortris,” he called, hefting his lightsaber. There was no point in deceit and dual wielding; his former master had ample experience in defeating both. Mortris emerged from the shadows, slowly appearing in Wraith’s field of vision. He removed his hood, letting his black mantle flare like a sinister cloud. He was clad in bulky armor, which cut out an already impressive figure. He held his weapon at his side too: the triple emitted guard gave it a menacing appearance, one reminiscent of a butcher’s tool.
“I was concealing my presence. It is indeed impressive that you have found me,” he murmured. His voice held a rumble in it like that of a feral animal.
“I’m stronger than the last time we met,” said Wraith. “Master,” he added mockingly.
“Don’t be so sure, boy,” snapped back the Muun.
“My name is not ‘boy’,” replied the former apprentice. He channeled his power, increasing the pressure in the room and causing small tremors in the ground.
“I am Darth Wraith.”
“You? A Darth? How dare you presume to be a Dark Lord of the Sith? You’re nothing but a failed apprentice. Disappear!” roared Mortris. Filling up with rage, he unleashed a barrage of blue and purple lightning. Wraith held his ground and extended his left hand. Catching the lightning, he absorbed the electricity and unleashed his own crimson version. Mortris was not expecting a counter attack and could only reduce the damage done by the lightning. His eyes widened as he saw the red bolts arching towards him. When did his apprentice get so powerful? Wasn’t he supposed to be locked away to be tortured or killed in one of Grievous’s schemes? What the hell had happened during the past eight months?

Mortris retaliated with a force blast. Fighting with pure telekinetic energy would prove too consuming to Wraith, who, despite having very powerful techniques, he was not yet accustomed to their continuous use. Motris on the other hand had less complicated Force powers but could sling them around repeatedly. He had to somehow gain a tactical advantage over the Sith Lord.
Wraith altered the angle of the blast, sending the concussive Force power up into the stone ceiling of the cavern. Cracks snaked through the rocks and debris rained down. With a little nudge from Wraith, large chunks of rock fell down. He caught them telekinetically and directed them at his opponent, flanking the Muun and crashing into him.
At the last second Darth Mortris unleashed a Force Wave, expelling power from his entire person. The large rocks exploded into tiny fragments and created a thick smokescreen. The Sith Lord shot lightning at the rocks, charging them with electricity and hurled the missiles at Wraith as he sensed his presence with the Force now that his sight was impaired. The rocks exploded on the spot where Wraith stood, but the former apprentice was no longer there.

Mortris sensed him just in time: he ignited his lightsaber and blocked the plasma blade arcing towards his head. Pushing his assailant away Mortris put some distance between them, using the Force to speed up his pace. Wraith was breathing heavily holding aloft one side of his saberstaff. Mortris looked at the spot where his lightning grenades struck and calculated the distance between there and the spot where Wraith attacked him, from behind him. Even with the maximum power of Force Speed, no one could cross such a distance at such velocity.
“Teleportation,” he said, figuring it out. “You’ve discovered how to bend the folds of space.” He couldn’t help it; awe seemed into his voice. Wraith remained silent, still reeling from the blowback of his powers.
“You have indeed grown,” continued Mortris. “Do you have any more surprises for me?”
The former apprentice nodded at the Muun’s lightsaber. “You seem to have a few surprises yourself,” he said darkly. Mortris waved his lightsaber and examined the blade.
“This? This is a modification made especially for you, boy,” relied Mortris. Instead of the usual straight red blade, the Sith Lord’s weapon had a undulating weapon, giving it a flame pattern. The unstable synth crystal inside was the cause: it sent pulses of energy running through the blade, giving it the unique wave pattern. It was more prone to short out, or in some cases just explode, but Wraith thought his master was more knowledgeable to make some rookie mistake such as that. It was a weapon designed to short out lightsabers and wreck permanent damage through the victim’s nervous system. A brutal weapon, befitting Darth Mortris’s nature.
“I was expecting you,” said Mortris. “Ever since that incompetent cyborg reported you missing, I had a hunch that you would seek me out.”
Wraith had recovered his strength. His expression hardened and he ignited the second end of his weapon. He twirled it once and took a step forward in challenge.
“I know every style you use, even that despicable Juyo,” said Mortris through clenched teeth. “I taught you everything you know; don’t presume that you can beat me!” The challenge had clearly affected the Muun, who was more used to his victims bowing and cowering before him, rather than challenge him.
“You’re not my only teacher, Mortris,” replied Wraith. “The Force has enlightened me to all forms of combat.”
The Sith Lord squeezed his lightsaber, raised it and yelled “Show me!” before launching himself at his opponent.
“Gladly,” replied Wraith. Their blades clashed. Mortris launched an offensive, hitting his opponent’s lightsaber wildly. Wraith’s channeled the force through his weapon, giving it some degree of protection. His form slipped into the third form, taking advantage of its defensive techniques. Mortris, anticipating such a move, sidestepped past Wraith’s guard. He channeled the Force into the strike and sent the double-bladed weapon flying. Seizing his chance Mortris raised his weapon, ready to cleave his former apprentice in half. He saw Wraith take a deep breath and the undulating red blade pass through Wraith’s body. He did it – he had killed his former apprentice.

Mortris was not expecting a fist to his jaw. From his peripheral vision, before his world snapped black for an instance, he saw Wraith, healthy and in one piece.
The former apprentice had used his power to turn intangible, allowing his opponent’s blade the pass through him harmlessly. Once he let his guard down, Wraith punched Mortris, sending him reeling backwards. Wraith lunged and grabbed the Darth’s chest plate. Using the full might of the Force, he tore it open and unleashed a Force Blast point blank at the exposed flesh. Mortris’s eyes rolled into the back of his head and he was sent flying into a wall with such an impact, it shattered other portions of his armor. Wraith summoned back his weapon and unleashed a barrage of brutal strikes against his former master. Darth Mortris managed to hold him off enough to recover his wits.
Both Dark Jedi spun acrobatically, each mirroring the other’s moves, and slammed into a blade-lock. Both of them yelled, unleashing the Force through their weapons. Both lightsabers buzzed erratically as large amounts of Force energy went through them. Neither willing to concede, they doubled their efforts. As power reached critical levels, the weapons shorted out and the explosion of Force energy sent both combatants across the cave.

Both lightsaber hilts smoked, their inner components fried and bent beyond repair. Mortris was up first, bleeding from different cuts as bits of his own armor dug painfully into his skin. He tried switching on his weapon but a flurry of angry sparks bit into his hand and he threw away the weapon in anger. Resolute to kill his former apprentice, with his hands if needed, he made his way towards the downed man. Wraith had managed to scramble on his feet and held up his own weapon. Only one of the ends was damaged, leaving the other end functional. Mortris ignored the weapon pointed at him and reached out with the Force, grabbing Wraith by the neck in a Force Choke. At the same instant Wraith used the Force to wrap around Mortris’s heart and crush it. Normally the Sith would not allow anyone to affect their body, breaking their grip with his superior power. But in this instance he was too weak and too deep in his anger to care about his own wellbeing, focusing all his power on choking Wraith. Simultaneously, Wraith sensed another heart beating inside the Muun, fully aware that the alien had more than one heart, and hurled his lightsaber. The red blade pierced the sending heart.

Mortris let go of his Force Choke and a gurgling sound escaped him. He swung sideways, his eyes no longer focused. Before he fell, Wraith lunged forward, gripped the hilt of his weapon and allowed the fallen Dark Lord to slide off the plasma blade. Darth Mortris fell lifeless on the ground.

SFFS

You guys wanted chapter 3 of Firstborn, so here it is. This chapter is just Erik relaxing in his office, having a beer after a hard day’s work of killing monsters, saving children and . . . dying. We’ve all been there. 

He just want to relax and maybe nap a bit. But is it really that simple? 
*Evil Laugh*
Enjoy.

Steam rose from my leather trench coat as the unrelenting afternoon sun baked every inch of the surrounding geography. I arrived in front of a building block and opened the front door to my office. Inside I was greeted with a semi-chaotic mess of antiques, ornaments, scattered furniture and discarded delivery boxes, all managing to occupy a majority of the open area. At the far end stood an antique-looking wooden table and a leather chair where I managed the “business” side of my job. A doorway adjacent to the left of the desk led to a modest kitchen, a bathroom, and a narrow staircase leading to a basement. On the right of the desk was another staircase, this one wider, which led up to the second floor. It was mainly a corridor and two bedrooms opposite each other as well as a bathroom. I usually sleep in one, unless I just crash on my couch downstairs, whilst Amaymon occupies the other. The cat made it clear that he needs his own space.

“Ugh, what a day,” I complained to no one as I shifted my position so that I was lying on the couch.

Reminiscence of a Blade

As promised yesterday, here is another part of my Star Wars shortie. The next one will most probably go up on Sunday.

Enjoy.

Reminiscence of a Blade

The autopilot indicated a few light-years of distance, and even with the jump to hyperspace, the remaining parsecs would require a good number of hours. That was well and good with Darth Wraith: his project required time.

By sheer coincidence, or maybe it was will of the Force, he had commandeered a supply ship full of droids parts. This was probably a maintenance ship and a supply of materials was exactly what Wraith needed. The knowledge of how to construct a lightsaber had never left him, not after all those days of research and labour  General Grievous had allowed him to keep his synthetic crystals; a grave mistake on the cyborg’s part. Now was to time to see whether the meditation Wraith spent on them paid off or not. They were so in tune with the Force inside Wraith that they could now be considered a part of him, his life force.

The first thing he did on the ship, right after the Hyperspace jump, was disable all monitoring devices and security droids. He tampered with two astromechs, setting them on a scavenger hunt for the parts he needed and monitoring the bridge. Wraith had things to do: he sat cross-legged in a large open room, littered with workbenches and storage closets. A pile of junk sat in front of his lap, still untouched from when the droid dumped them there. Wraith closed his eyes and the room buzzed to life. Machines whirred to life and components flew to different machines, being cut, formed and shaped to Wraith’s mental designs. It took a couple of hours but the lightsaber components began taking shape, until floating around the room, orbiting one man, were two identical deconstructed lightsabers. It was nearly done: Wraith brought them hovering in front of his face and peeled his eyes open. The workman ship seemed solid enough, especially for his design. These would be a different pair from the plain old ones he’d used before. Still maintaining the sleek black design, the skeletal hilts had hints of chrome at decorative intervals. A thin filament of transparent casing ran from top to bottom on two sides, showing the inner workings of the crystal inside. This also showed energy when he channelled the Force through his weapon. It was a purely aesthetic design, similar to the intimidating and flamboyant designs of the Sith Inquisitors during the days of the Old Republic. In addition, a small chrome emitter guard now prevented his weapon from being disabled again.

He levitated the four crystals and inserted them inside their chambers, enfolding them inside the components. The crystals hummed with power when touched by Wraith’s Force, and soon the constructed weapons buzzed alive, yet still unignited. He attached both hilts together into a saberstaff and settled the weapon into his hands. It felt oddly familiar, as if the final piece of the puzzle had been put in its place and he ignited the weapon. He felt warmth inside him as he gazed at the crimson blade. It was still red, albeit a slightly different hue than he remembered. He ran the Force through the weapon, a slight effort on his part given that this weapon was already an intimate part of him, and saw power running through the weapon from the transparent strips on the hilt. He smiled. His weapon was ready; it was now time to remember his training.

He centred himself and meditated with the lit blade. Eight months of prison, with not so much as a fork available, would have certainly eroded his sword skills. He was going to challenge a master swordsman, a Sith with the title “Bringer of Death”. Mortris had razed entire cities and cut swathes of warriors, men, women, children and elderly. In his prime he was a lightsaber-wielding Grim Reaper. In his later years, he had enlightened himself to the Force, devolving into obscure rituals and powers. Whilst he had reduced the amount of bloodshed he created with his lightsaber, he still led entire campaigns and conquered with both sword and sorcery. At one point he had completely eradicated a moon. He was a beast, an ace up the Sith Empire’s sleeve.

Wraith had decided to destroy that ace, he was going to make some really unpleasant enemies. He pushed those thoughts from his mind. He had to survive the duel first.

He felt the Centre of Being meditation take effect. He could clearly see the movements: what’s more, he could feel them, his muscles remembering the strain for each move. He allowed his thoughts to wander, slowly reliving the memories of his training. He had found the first form, Chii-Sho, easy enough to master, until his master begin sparring with him, always setting the bar a little higher. He was also exposed to other styles, in hopes of creating his own fighting style. He remembered the delicate steps of Makashi and how he hated that second form. The sequences were too complicated and limited: how could such a linear form have so many twists and shifts? His master liked this form and tried, in vain, to pass on this enthusiasm on to his apprentice. His master’s large build was enough to turn the usually weak strikes of Makashi into moderately powerful blows in their own right. During their sparring session the apprentice had favoured Soresu, the third and most defensive of forms, against his master’s blade work. Wraith remembered the fourth form, Ataru; he had particularly enjoyed performing the acrobatics and wild strikes of the form, relishing in the power as most young apprentices do. Mortris like this form too; swooping down on opponents after cornering them. The master had been keen on instructing this form and its successor, the fifth form Shien. This was Mortris’s main form of combat. He employed the Djem So subset, bringing this blade down with crushing force. The apprentice did not have the physique for this form, yet still employed Shien, alternating between the orthodox and unorthodox grip to confuse the opponent, whilst raining blows. Later on, he would go on the study the tactics of Sith Shien. The sixth form, Niman, was difficult to learn. The integration of force powers with lightsaber tactics was something Wraith had struggled with for a very long time. Aside from the very basics, he hadn’t progressed much. But all this changed when he expressed an interest in the double bladed lightsaber. His master had made him practice Jar’Kai, the art of wielding dual blades, until Wraith’s body developed the flexibility necessary to always employ an offence and counter offence. But it was the seventh form, Juyo, which peaked Wraith’s interest most. His master had instructed him in the basic philosophy of Juyo but refused to delve deeper in his tuition of the form. According to him, Juyo practitioners relished in the baser emotions of the Dark Side and it was easy to lose one’s reason and awareness in the midst of battle. And, despite common perception of the Sith, Mortris had emphasized that reason was the only way to truly grasp the philosophy of the Sith and unlock their secrets. Mortris had made his dislike for the Juyo clear and berated Wraith every time he used it during their sparring sessions. But like every other young rebel, Wraith still kept practising in secret, hiding the swift, short brutal strikes inside other forms, namely Shien and Ataru.
He had always felt that he had never been allowed to fight at his full potential; he had thought that he could give his former master a run for his money if he had been allowed to fully delve in his own style. But he knew now, enlightened and wiser, that it was nothing but hubris. He also knew that memory alone was not going to win any battles. He had nearly a year’s erosion to restore in the matter of a few hours.

The ship emerged from Hyperspace and the world of Korriban came into full view. Wraith switched off the engines and went back for a final sparring session with the assassin droid he had found on-board  This time he would fight to his full ability, and if the droid ceased to function, he would use another until he ran out of droids. As he faced his opponent, he saw every flaw in the technique and how to exploit it. He was also aware of his limitations, and used the Force to overcome them. He rushed in and the droid’s stun baton clashed against his lightsaber, which was set on its lowest possible setting, enough to give it a proper shape. The weapons clashed and the proper rehabilitation began.

Undulating Updates

Welcome ladies and gents to yet another blog post. This one may be shorter than the rest but bear with me for a day or two.

First up – my Star Wars shortie. I should be posting 2 new pieces this weekend, I promise. I know I haven’t posted anything in a week or so. Between writing it and typing/editing it, its taking some time. This is the longest fanfic I’ve ever done (I think I may be going for a world record here) and it’s taking it’s toll.

Also – I’ve written a substantial amount from the second book, but am now taking a small break until next week due to health issues. Apparently having exam week, and writing not one but three different stories merely hours before finishing the exam is not healthy. Neither is forgetting the eat or sleep for 5 straight days. No wonder my doctor’s eyes rolled over like the girl from the Exorcist.

I still can’t talk about the future of the Legacy series yet, but what I can tell you is that a CANON story from the series will be published in the May issue of DieGo’s new product: the Kingdom of Fantasy magazine. The story is entitled Wizards Always Cheat and it’s meant to be an introductory piece for the entire series. So you can look forward to that. The June issue of the same magazine will also feature an article by myself called Buffy vs Twilight – on the surface its a discussion about the vampire creature, being compared in the two franchises. (But really its more of an excuse to voice my opinion in a sarcastic, verbose and graphically livid way at the expense of one of the franchises.) You’ll love it, seriously.
Get your KoF subscription here: http://www.diegopublishing.com/ and visit this page too whilst you’re at it: https://www.facebook.com/KingFantasy
I’m sure you’ll be impressed.

Issue number whatever: the Blogiversary. I have been invited to participate in this blog: http://cloeyk.blogspot.com/ and I shall be doing an interview. However I will not be the one answering questions: Amaymon will.

Yes, I am allowing the perverted, narcissistic, masochistic and definitely sarcastic black demonic cat to answer questions in public!
And this work of art will feature on the above blog on the 19th of this month. Be sure to check it out, its a boat  load of laughs and then some.

That’s it for now. Be sure the check the links and support the people behind them. I’ll be posting links of the day of my features (or perhaps a little before) so that you guys can have a look and a laugh.

Till next time folks

SFFS

Final 10 sentences of Ch2 of Firstborn. Lemme know if you want chapter 3. Enjoy

She blushed and scowled before scurrying out of the room.
It was Roland’s turn to shake his head. “Don’t bother. Every single cop in this town has heard stories about you,” he said as he patted my back mockingly.
“All good stories, I hope.”
“Good stories, yes. Funny ones. But none of them picture you in a good way,” he said, no longer trying to hide his amusement.
I sighed. “Then they’re probably true.”

Eulogy to Victorious

Sometime in the summer of 2010, I came across a show about a performance school, a slew of teens who attended it and their screwball adventures. I am talking about the Nickelodeon show Victorious.
Lemme make something clear: I’m a twenty-something year old, with a very active imagination, a remote sense of humour and very high standards when it comes to my entertainment. Victorious is aimed at tweens, teens and anyone below legal age. And yet, something about it just made me want to continue clicking on the next episode, until I realized that I was eight episodes in and dawn peeked from my window.

The reason I am writing this is because of the series finale of the show, which was last Saturday on the 2nd of February. There have been many people, especially on Twitter, who have been vocal about the cancellation of the show. It came suddenly – not even a proper ending was written for it and I, personally felt that the last episode was no different from the rest: it made me want to watch the next. Yet this is the true nature of show business and the entertainment scene. Cuts are made, ideas are put in drawers and, as long as the big names are racking up the big bucks, other, perhaps lesser known shows, are bound to get the boot first. It is indeed sad.
I did not protest or follow one of the many many plans of action circulating twitter. I did sign the petition which proposed Nick to give the show a proper ending, but I doubt they give two shits. And I highly doubt that mobbing in front of their office will achieve anything other than a enactment of brutality and nihilism with which the Occupy Movement was treated with. Also, I live in Europe, and plane tickets cost money.

What I’m about to say next is gonna make me seem like the devil’s advocate. I can understand why the show was cancelled. And I can probably justify it. I do understand that most of the show’s viewers have a one way POV of the situation and just go “That’s not fair.” It’s not. But a mature person can look at this perspectively and so here is a sorry ass attempt on my part to do just that.

First off I believe that the first and second seasons of the show are worthy of every nomination and award they have won and much much more. I love them and will watch them for years to come. The feel of the show changed halfway through the third season (I suspect once Victorious got the boot) and lasted through the fourth. The episodes became blander, the jokes less ‘smart’ and the show devolved into something silly. Now, remember that I am judging as an adult, certainly not the mainstream audience for the show. I’m just saying that the early episodes have enough lull to them which managed to pull even some mature audience – a testament of Dan Schneider’s superb writing skills.

I loved the inclusion of the songs, because this is a music show, after-all, yet I think that every music critic would agree that the talents of the cast can never be truly explored in the environment of Nick show. Most fans would disagree; but guys, research the main cast in other roles and then judge. Avan Jogia is an actor and director of a certain subliminal aptitude, the likes which is only seen in certain directors like Moffat. Ariana Grande has a singing voice which could make Simon Cowell burst into tears and suck his thumb under the table. Liz Gillies has a sultriness to her person and a subtle method of acting and portraying a character as if she were born to it, not to mention a vocal range which is extremely rare. In my opinion it was her voice and that of Ms. Grande’s which, when voiced on the show (which was not often unfortunately) brought a certain class to the entire episode. I am not degrading Victoria Justice at all with my comment; we’ve seen Ms. Justice in nearly every Nick series and any comment on her acting will not do her any justice (see what I did there?). The same applied for Daniella Monet. It takes real talent to make a character that annoying, but at the same time I really enjoyed her role as Toothy in that Fairly Odd Parents live action movie. She portrayed characters of opposite polarity with skill and that is testament to her talent. Leon Thomas III is to be complimented on  his musical talent: while the musical portion of the show featured a heavy female contribution, the balancing of the scales relied mostly on Mr. Thomas’s hands and he succeeded with merit. Matt Bennet brought a lovely comedic twist to the show especially when coupled with Ariana’s character (for some bitter-sweet and cutesy moments) or Michael Reid for some really interesting scenes, ranging from funny to creepy. Eric Lange and Lane Napper had supporting roles in the majority of the episodes and they are to be congratulated. As is my understanding, it is very hard to shift from a silly adult to a smart one in a kid’s show. Indeed it is very hard just being an adult on such a situation.

My point is this: for them to be able to cultivate their talent into higher levels, they need to move beyond what Nickelodeon and Disney can offer. To prove this I shall point you the Keke Palmer: formerly the star of a Nick show called True Jackson PV. I’ll admit that I only watched the show because Greg Proops, my favourite comedian, had a supporting role in it. But Ms. Palmer is now making Hollywood movies, which critics are receiving positively.

Essentially I am OK with the show ending because that means we get to see these marvellous performers in different roles. I hope I get to see some of them on TV shows and some big movies. (I myself wouldn’t mind having one or two acting out characters from my novel.) I hope to by able to buy an album or two. But they can’t do either unless they are out of their Nick contracts. And yes, they have albums out but they are Nick owned, so I have doubts on their dilution. I’m not saying they are bad; I’m saying I want their evolution of talent to be apparent.

So I am here writing a eulogy for Victorious. I have accepted the end for this show – if a proper ending comes and gives us closure, then all the better. But honestly I doubt that will happen. So I am going to write off Victorious as a must-see-again show, thank the actors, cast, crew, and writers for their hard work and remember Victorious for what it truly was: good laughs, good music and great memories.

Long live Victorious.