News & Announcements:
My wrists have been pretty achy this week, which makes it hard to type a lot. Despite this, I'm still getting in a daily word count of at least 500 words. So far, I haven't missed a day.
I've started reading a new book and am loving it. I've linked it below. I highly recommend it. It's told in first person point of view, where James and Emma, the two main characters, tell the story in alternating viewpoints. I have a hard time putting it down each night, but I have to sleep, so I do. ;) You can read the description on Amazon at the link I've posted.
The first number for each day is that day's word count. The second is the total for the novel at the end of that day.
Day 29: 1,545 | 79,151
Day 30: 2,321 | 81,472
Fallen: Out of Time
Day 1: 583 | 583
Day 2: 1,951 | 2,534
Day 3: 1,145 | 3,679
Day 4: 2,371 | 6,050
Day 5: 1,470 | 7,520
Weekly Total: 11,386
Character Journal Entry - Zachariel: Freak
Why do I feel like I don't belong anywhere? Why can't I...trust anyone? You'd think I could trust Sam, at least, but I don't. I mean, he's my brother. We're family. But it doesn't feel like that to me. It feels more like we're strangers. He doesn't get me, and probably never will. I don't get him, either, though, so I guess we're kinda even.
He said his house is my house, but I don't feel comfortable there. Not completely, anyway. I don't feel like I belong anywhere. Do you have any idea what it's like to feel lost? I mean totally lost, like no place is familiar. You don't even fit in your own skin. That's what I feel like ever since I came back.
I try to fit in. 'N' I try to let people in. But I freeze. Soon's it starts lookin' like we might cross that stranger-friend barrier, I panic and clam up. Why...do I do that? What kind of jacked up freak have I become?
I must be one hell of an actor, 'cause it seems like I come off as just fine. No one seems to notice I'm different. They act like I'm the same as everyone else. News flash: I ain't like everyone else. I'm broken. A freak. I'm the craziest freak you'll ever meet, even if I don't show it. I may not act on all the crazy stuff that goes through my head, but if anyone could read me, they'd be totally freaked out. I freak myself out sometimes with the insanity in my brain. I ain't right. I can't be. But what can I do 'bout it?
Sometimes I wish celestials could sleep, 'cause I'd sleep for eternity. Then again, if I could sleep, I'd have serious nightmares. So, how can I get rid of the memories for even a little while? I've tried booze 'n' Sapphire. They don't work. All they do is make me stupid 'n' give me hangovers. I'm stupid enough without that crap. 'N' I get enough headaches dealin' with the crazy in my head. Don't need to make it worse, right?
I know 'bout the so-called angel drugs, but I don't want to use those, either. Too much can go wrong, 'n' there's the risk of gettin' hooked on 'em. Hell, I've already taken 'em. Not by choice, but -- I was an idiot. I trusted the wrong people. Yeah, that's right. I trusted 'em. Of all the people I coulda chosen to trust, why'd it have to be Sandman 'n' the Boss? Granted, I think the boss is a bigger freak than I am, but only almost. I still take the lead on that one. Anyway, I was undercover. Sort of a mission, but a stupid one. What can I do against a huge illegal operation? I'm just me. No powers 'n' fallen. I'm no hero. But I thought I could be. Talk about stupid.
I'll admit it. I was reckless. I didn't think 'bout what might happen. I wanted to prove I could be good for somethin', 'n' not just a useless mooch. I wanted to prove it to myself. 'N' to Sam. To everyone who knows me. 'N' I did good for a while there. But somehow Sandman 'n' the Boss caught onto me, 'n' that's when everythin' fell apart.
I didn't get hooked on the drugs, though. I didn't take 'em long enough. I just -- I needed more 'cause of the pain and nausea that hit me like a ton of bricks when I started crashin'. At one point, I was takin' a pharmacy of illicit drugs. I think the only angel drugs I wasn't takin' were Ash 'n' Serenity. That leaves -- eight, I think? But there might be more I don't know 'bout.
'N' turns out I've got PTSD. I didn't even know that was a thing. It makes sense, though. I saw 'n' did 'n' took some seriously messed up stuff when I was down under. Apollyon might've been the worst of my torturers, but he wasn't the only one. I'm talkin' 'bout the powerful ones that decided to take their rage out on me. They weren't all driven by rage, but that was the most popular reason. There were other reasons they -- did what they did to me. Some were just sadistic. Anyway, you can probably get why I'd have issues after 13,000 years down under.
I should be stronger. Strong enough to take everything they threw at me. I tried to be. I fought 'em tooth 'n' nail every step of the way. But they won. I'm damaged goods. A freak no one really wants to know. I bet Sam wouldn't even miss me if I left, 'n' that hurts. A lot. That's also why I don't dare to let him in. It's one thing to be damaged by your enemies. It's another to be damaged by those you love. 'N' I do love my brother. Guess that's why this is so hard. I don't know how to act around him. I don't know how close to let him get. 'N' there's always the very real possibility that I'll be the one to hurt him. I could never forgive myself if I did, so I keep him at a distance. Don't wanna hurt 'n' don't wanna be hurt. But if given a choice, I'd rather hurt someone else than have them hurt me. It's just the way I roll.
The take away here? I'm a freak with PTSD. Not an enviable place to be in, that's for sure. I didn't choose to be like this. Apollyon 'n' all the others, they turned me into the monster I am today. Will I ever be normal? Will I ever fit in 'n' belong anywhere? Will I ever be close to anyone? I miss havin' friends, being' in love, knowin' others got your back while you got theirs.
I've never been the suicidal type, but I'm seriously startin' to depress myself. I'm tempted to take Serenity and eat a bullet, but for some twisted reason, I still wanna live. My life is completely shot, but I ain't ready to pack it in just yet. Call me crazy. Call me whatever you want. Just don't call me a quitter. I've never quit anythin' in my life, 'n' I ain't 'bout to start now.
Excerpt from Chapter 3: The Last Frontier
Zachariel Tagas yawned. Not because he was sleepy, but to get his brother’s attention.
“What do you want, Zach?” Samandriel asked.
“I’m bored. Can’t we get out of here? Go do something fun or whatever?”
Zach grinned. “Now that you ask—” He picked up the magazine he’d been reading and opened to the page of which he’d folded down the top corner. He tapped on it and set it down on Sam’s desk. “I wanna go there.”
“Valorin?” Sam asked. “Why there?”
“It’s the last frontier, Sam. Hardly anyone’s been there, and most of it hasn’t been explored even by the locals.”
“So, we should go explore it.”
Sam picked up a file folder and stared up at Zach. “I have way too much to do. I’ve got new students coming in who need to be processed, repairs to the outbuildings that need to be seen to, a new cook to hire—”
Zach ran a hand through his short, dark hair and glared at his brother. “Why don’t you just say it, Sam. You don’t wanna hang out with me. That’s it, isn’t it? I’m different now, and you don’t understa—”
“We’ve been over this, Zach. I have a business to run. I can’t afford to gallivant all over the world just because you’re bored. I have responsibilities here.”
Zach snatched up the magazine. “Fine, I’ll go alone.”
“With what? Your good looks credit card?”
“I’ve saved up a little money from the odd jobs I’ve got. I’ll make due.”
“You have no idea how much it will cost you to get there, do you?”
“I’ll research it. If I have to, I’ll take on more work.”
“Never mind that,” Sam said. He went to the safe, removed the painting that hid it, and unlocked it. He carried the cash box over to the desk and opened it. “I figure the air fare alone will be around a thousand guilders.” He counted out some bills and held them out toward Zach.
Zach crossed his arms over his chest. “I don’t need handouts. I need your company.”
“I can’t go. Take the money.”
Zach let out a breath. “Fine, but it’s not charity. I’ll pay you back.”
“I know you will. After you get this adventure stuff out of your system, you’ll work for me.”
Zach narrowed his eyes at Sam. “Work for you how?”
“We’ll come up with something when you get back. For now, have fun and don’t do anything stupid.”
“Like getting into a fight with the locals or getting yourself thrown in jail.”
“Why would I do that?”
“I don’t know that you would. I just want you to remember that anything you do will reflect on me and this school, so think before you act.”
“This is bull****,” Zach said, and he tossed the money back at Sam and turned to leave the room. “I don’t need your money. I’ll get there on my own.”
“Zach, would you stop?” Sam called after him.
“What?” Zach asked, halting in his tracks without looking back.
“Take the money, okay? Have a good time.”
“I don’t want your money.”
“Then how will you get there? It’s a long way from here.”
“I’ll figure something out.”
Sam picked up the money and rose to his feet. He approached Zach and grabbed his hand, set the money in it. “Take it. I want you to have it. I shouldn’t have said what I did. I apologize.”
“Will you come with me?”
“I can’t. I have too much work to do.”
Zach took the money and crammed it into the front pocket of his jeans. “Fine, whatev. See you around.”
Sam watched his brother go, a look of concern on his face, then he went back behind the desk and sat down, his mind already focused on other things.
Book I'm Currently Reading:
Winter World (The Long Winter Trilogy Book 1)
Music I'm Currently Listening To:
Classical Moods: Autumn Time (Vivaldi and More)
Video I Like:
Extreme Parkour and Freerunning 2018
Lois Eighmy (pronounced like Amy) is a full-time fantasy and thriller writer. She's also an artist and fledgling photographer. You can see some of her writing and other creative works here on her website. She lives in Missouri with her husband, Jeff, her white calico cat, Chloe, and her brindle mutt, Nikita. She dreams of moving anywhere she can experience an annual White Christmas, but is happily working on being content with where she's at in the present.