caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)

Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 370 words.  Kate gives the Young Duke the first barrel.

Also several hundred words of the increasingly weird dual Wood of Weyre fairy-stories that are obtruding myself on my attention.  My Muse is veering between the Cinderella variant, and its Snow Whitey sequel a generation down the line, as each feeds back loopily upon the other.  (The Snow character's being the Cinderella's character's daughter is the least of the craziness.)  It's a bit of a distraction, but writing it until Cynthia Coeur-de-Verre and her friends get bored with me is the price I'm paying for any sleep at all, just at present.

Meanwhile, I return from half-term holidays to work, to discover the real world imitating the Wood of Weyre as heartily as it is able.  Nnnngh!

caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 700 words.  Kate presents the Young Duke with two words about the Revolting Peasant Demands: he thinks she just gave him both barrels.

She hasn't taken the gun off the wall yet.


caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 1,000 words.  Nine main characters (i.e. most of them) and fourteen minor ones, drawn up in the presence chamber, and the Duke launching the final Conference.

Can they come together to give the Big Bad the bum's rush, or are they doomed to attempt the same upon each other while It sniggers up Its sleeve at them from every balefire?

Well, now: if the answer were as simple as yes or no, this would be a bit of a let-down of a story.

My own big extended family visit to begin within hours.  Glad I managed to finish this bit first!  Next time I get a chance to write, I'll be into the serious substance of the (Fictional) Family Fight...


caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 590 words.  Kate and her raggle-taggle embassy array themselves for the Conference, and come to the doors of the presence-chamber.

This is the last scene tranquil enough to finish before bedtime, that I expect to get for quite a while.  Now we emerge from the brief bright calm before the storm...

Some looming visiting and travel may delay the full blow of the tempest until about Tuesday.


caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 1,500 words, finishing the Young Duke's viewpoint, cutting his trio of scenelets off into a short chapter of its own, and beginning a pure Chapter of Showdown which is now told entirely from Golden Kate's perspective.  In her first scene, all has been very literally darkest before dawn; but dawn is what we have come to.

Decided who exactly is going to be present for the Conference, and why.

It's today...


caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 1,300 words, finishing the Young Duke's second scenelet.  Most of these I'll have to eradicate in the redraft, but I can't be certain which ones, just yet.  Character and motivation stuff all around, emerging in another of those petty conflicts that are turning up the pressure on him before the Grand Scene.

Also, a very silly Kateverse folksong, The Bungle in the Jungle.

A slight pause may shortly ensue, as travel looms large in my immediate future.


caper_est: caper_est, the billy goat (Default)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 830 words.  First fragment of the Young Duke's triadic introductory sequence, before Golden Kate takes over the point of view again for the furnace heart of the chapter.  The Puffin Superior's report of Kate dispels some bum theories, though not a huge fraction of them.

I mean  to get through this chapter as fast as possible, partly because the urge not to write is very strong here, and partly because if I linger on it it's going to rip me up something rotten.  I like most of the people gathered here, in their several ways - while I'm writing them, in large measure I am them - and 'collide' doesn't even begin to describe what they're going to do before the Second Climax is accomplished.


caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 1,700 words, and the end of the chapter.  The Young Duke receives his answer, and by-and-by departs to create an extra bonus scene elsewhere, because there is no way he would not.  This is a much better set-up for the ferocious chapter that follows, than the one I had before.  I actually winced at the parallel which occurred to him and me in the very last paragraph.

He has even more reasons to be unreasonable with Kate & Co. than the ones that were always obvious.  Reasons other than being related to Kate and more than a bit like her, too.  Though that's a pretty big reason, or at least a pretty good explanation, right out of the gate.

Now I'm back to "two chapters and an epilogue" remaining of the first draft, again.  Finally, I come to the second of my three climactic showdowns - the military/revolutionary one in Langdale, the political/family one here, and beyond that...

The Big Bad! 


caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)

Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 710 words.  The Young Duke's supreme offer.  When he really breaks out, he can achieve an Eddisonian grandeur of spirit to exceed even Golden Kate's.

Of course, my world isn't Zimiamvia, and it was not made for the benefit of any Lessingham, and its heroes and aristocrats are most decidedly not supermen.  This may have some bearing on subsequent events.

But this was his moment of all moments, and man! how he has earned it.

caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 150 words.  The Young Duke partakes of a religious mystery, which -

- Ahem.  Mystery!

- explains the terseness of this passage.  He isn't radically transformed, doesn't get a miracle, and doesn't get an oracle, because this is not that kind of book, or even that kind of age of the world.  But this does several important things for all concerned, not least getting my characters and me to the final final scene in this chapter.

caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)

Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 510 words.  The Young Duke solves a problem with scholarship.  His mother would be so proud, and so uncomprehending.  She's at least as smart as he is, and quite classically educated; but she uses it for pedantry or to help her wrap her head around dangerously unfamiliar concepts.  I don't think it's ever occurred to her, or to many of her former peers, as being of merely practical use.

And now I know about old King Quicksilver, Mercurio, the Kateverse's twisty answer to Roman Numa - and a little bit more about the tradition of Puffins Superior.

Now the Duke need only see whether his solution is any improvement on the problem.  But it takes the most enormous brazen balls for a man like him to dare such a sissy-seeming venture as this is going to look, at all.  He's a strange lad, my golden wolf-pup, and much closer to the centre of the story than I imagined him.

Been feeling a deal more human, today.

caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)

Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 1,460 words, and just got up to the climactic and final bit of the chapter.

Most of this is going to have to go into incluing in previous sections, be moved back into previous episodes, or just deleted and left for implication.  I can't do that in this first draft, or I'll forget half of what I was trying to imply.  The Bonfire Arc is definitely taking a turn I hadn't planned for.  That's new, eh?

Also, my nerves are piano-wires, my muscles feel fresh off the barbecue, and I am mucous as any slug.  There's a simile I shan't be working into any folksongs any time soon!

caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 720 words.  Good Katy's daughter is terrified beyond bearing of what Good is turning out to mean, and of what it may come to mean before the end.

Some chougher has set up what appears to be a big Tesla Death Ray, just across the canal from my garden.  I thought I was dreaming when I woke up in the night and saw it, but morning isn't making it go away.


caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)

Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 70 words.  Linking matter to next phase of a critical conversation.

Where's my sleep?  Want more sleep!

Want more waking hours than available, too.

caper_est: caper_est, the billy goat (Default)

Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 1,020 words.  A lad at the end of his tether, a lass who has run herself nerve-ragged after snapping her own - and the one question she must not reach up to him to answer.

caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)

Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 600 words.  Final Council Scene.  Is this all-out war with Elfland?  No, because this is not an Epic Series of Doorstops; but I can't blame Fairly Okay Genius for detecting strong signs of it.  I've finally managed to sneak enough noise into his datastream to make up for his being twice as smart as I am.

Now I'm wondering what I'd do, if a publisher told me that they'd take a good shot at Three Katherines of Allingdale, provided only that I bestseller-enable it by reimagining it as Extrudable Epic Doorstops.

Lord of the Blue Flames?

The Mace of Morgander?

The Chronicles of Katherine Garcastle-Honeywoolf de Hautdesert, the Unbearable?

A Song of Peasants and Torches?

 I might not get away with The Wheel of Katherines.

caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 1,240 words.  The Duke's excursion completed.  Back to the claustrophobia.

Have I mentioned the Puffin Superior's being really scary?  She's Katy's most principled and lore-wise opponent, and she's just identified an utterly plausible and horrible danger to our Good Witch that nobody else - including me, in my normal narrator mode - had so much as picked up on.  Admittedly it's not Katy's welfare she's chiefly concerned about, but even so... 

Also, after that little potted sermon she dropped in - effective as it was in the circumstances - I begin to get why her order really, really is not generally a preaching or a teaching one.  Most people prefer the Flame of Eternal Truth somewhere safely below Gas Mark 3.  As to where most of the Olympians would prefer it given their druthers, let's not even go there!


caper_est: caper_est, the billy goat (Default)

That would be my weekend's writing, housework, and viewing.  One out of three ain't bad, and the second don't look so tiresome once it's finished, at that.  The other will have to await the redraft for its refreshing pine-scented polish.

Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 1,000 words.  The Young Duke, who is much more of a reader than his parents, still needs a governess to patiently spell out the word T-R-A-P when it's written in giant letters of smouldering bone charcoal in front of him.

caper_est: caper_est, the billy goat (Default)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 380 words.  Excursion with puffins.  Good Katy doesn't seem, after all,  to have accomplished everything everybody hoped for - I'll need in the redraft to be a bit clearer about just who thought the Night Without Stars accomplished just what. 

Somewhere near Stoneygates, there is a man voluntarily going under the alias of Hob Hop-Toad.  He and some other fellows should get to make their reports tonight.  That's going to go down like black pudding at the Vegan Society banquet!

Speaking of black pudding, I've now finished the worst of my annual wade through blood and offal in the course of my employment.  The first Open Day of the term - a separate event! - is also safely accomplished.

I begin to see a light at the end of the Friday...

caper_est: The grey wolf in the red gloaming. (golden kate)
Killer-Kate and Luke Lackland: 500 words. An overstuffed winter-locked castle in a country of no trust is not a good hostel for the soldiery of two estates who traditionally hate one another - even when their two lords are, for a novelty, the same person.

If the double lord isn't utter scum, he may have certain non-selfish issues with the places this takes him, too.

No, Wayne, you do not want to be a mediaevaloid Duke!  There is no road you can take from there, without horrors leaping out from every bush.  It's debatable enough whether you can avoid becoming one of them...


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