Sandbox 11

The Return of the King

Pippin looked out from under the shelter of Gandalf’s cloak.

“Well, I’m back,” he said.


The Good Earth

It was Wang Lung’s marriage day.

But over the old man’s head they looked at each other and smiled.


The Last Battle

In the last days of Narnia, far up to the west beyond Lantern Waste and close beside the great waterfall, there lived an Ape.

All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on forever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.


Memoirs of a Geisha

Suppose that you and I were sitting in a quiet room overlooking a garden, chatting and sipping at our cups of green tea while we talked about something that had happened a long while ago, and I said to you, “That afternoon when I met so-and-so…was the very best afternoon of my life, and also the very worst afternoon.”

Whatever our struggles and triumphs, however we may suffer them, all too soon they bleed into a wash, just like watery ink on paper.


The Legend of the King

Sir Dinadan of Camelot, knight of the Fellowship of Arthur’s Round Table, emissary of Emperor Alis of Constantinople to the Seljuk Turks, sniffed cautiously at his left armpit. (It smelled very bad.)

As for Dinadan, he and Palomides rode the length and breadth of England—and every other nation—singing the tales of Arthur and his knights to everyone who would listen, in every language they could learn, for as long as they both lived.


North and South

“Edith!” said Margaret, gently, “Edith!”

“Hush!” said Margaret, “or I shall try and show you your mother’s indignant tones as she says, ‘That woman!’”


The High King

Under a chill, gray sky, two riders jogged across the turf.

And, in time, only the bards knew the truth of it.


The Dark is Rising

“Too many!” James shouted, and slammed the door behind him.

And in a great blaze of yellow-white light, the sun rose over Hunter’s Combe and the valley of the Thames.


The Empty House

It was in the spring of the year 1894 that all London was interested, and the fashionable world dismayed, but the murder of the Honorable Ronald Adair, under most unusual and inexplicable circumstances.

“Meanwhile, come what may, Colonel Moran will trouble us no more, the famous air-gun of Von Herder will embellish the Scotland Yard Museum, and once again Mr. Sherlock Holmes is free to devote his life to examining those interesting little problems which the complex life of London so plentifully presents.”


To Kill a Mockingbird

When he was nearly thirteen, my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow.

He would be there all night, and he would be there when Jem waked up in the morning.


Out of all of these openings and closings, words that for me conquer up memories of some of my favorite stories and characters, my favorite pair is the opening and closing lines from “The Last Battle”. The opening is simple, yet it introduces the story so completely, and the ending is so beautiful it always makes me cry, for the end is not the end—it is only the beginning of something greater.


April Camp NaNoWriMo is OVER

IMG_0310[1]As the title states, the April session of Camp NaNoWriMo has come to an end. And guess what? I met my goal of 75,000 words AND I finished the second draft of my novel “Snowfall”! And let me tell you, that was exhausting, but not as bad as I thought it would be. I’m super proud of myself for actually making all 75,000 words and even though my manuscript still needs (a lot of) work, I can already see it start to come together like I want it too! 😀


Chapter One From Stephan’s Perspective

I waited to post this one to keep from spoiling the big plot twist, but I really wanted to explore Stephan’s emotions in this scene. It’s the only time we see him before Alicia finds out he is a traitor, so it’s a pretty big scene for him. Enjoy!

NP10-McAvoyUncle had opened his mouth to say something as I walked up, but, seeing me, he instead gestured me forward. “What is it, Stephan?” He asked, looking at me with that tired way of his that always indicated Alicia had done something childish, again.

“Sire,” I began, feeling my anger toward my younger cousin boil up under my skin, “King Thomas is becoming extremely aggravated. I don’t think I can keep him entertained for much longer.” I subtly glanced over, taking in Alicia’s completely inappropriate attire. It seemed she was the reason the King and Queen were late meeting with the other Royal, as per usual.

Aunt pursed her lips, unconsciously I think. She tends to do that when she’s upset. “Our relations with Fayal are already tenuous as it is without Thomas acting like a puffed up peacock, seeing grievous insult at the slightest offense.” I agreed, though the situation wouldn’t be quite as difficult if Alicia would just act responsibly for once in her life—but, of course, such a thing wouldn’t even occur to her. Selfish girl.

Uncle gritted his teeth, as frustrated as his wife at the situation. After a moment he nodded curtly at me, wordlessly thanking me for alerting him of the problem. “Alicia, we will continue this conversation at a later time,” he told her curtly.

I hung back for a moment as they turned to go, waiting until they had reached the stairs to ask, “You knew the king didn’t like to be kept waiting, didn’t you?” I thought I already knew the answer, but still I felt compelled to confirm my suspicions.

“And what if I did?” She replied, a self-satisfied smile playing on her face. I had to struggle to keep my emotions in check. How was it that this little nit-wit was going to get to rule the kingdom? She couldn’t make a single decision that wasn’t in her own best interests!

“You’re never going to grow up, are you?” I asked, shaking my head. “The kingdom deserves better.” I turned on my heel, anxious to get away from her before my emotions got the better of me. As soon as I turned my back on her, I gave myself a little reprieve, letting my face twist up in an ugly scowl, leaving her standing alone in the hallway. She more than deserved what was coming to her.


The Soundtrack:

Chapter 1: Hunith’s Letter to Gaius (Merlin: Series One Soundtrack)

Chapter 2: The Blitz, 1940 (The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Soundtrack)

Chapter 3: Merlin Lost (Merlin: Series One Soundtrack)

Chapter 4: Darcy’s Letter (Pride and Prejudice Soundtrack)

Chapter 5: The Burden’s of Duty (Merlin: Series One Soundtrack)

Chapter 6: Boucher’s Death (North and South Soundtrack)

Chapter 7: The Face of Boe (Doctor Who: Series One and Two Soundtrack)

Chapter 8: The Battle (The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe Soundtrack)

Chapter 9: Irishmen (North and South Soundtrack)

Epilogue: The Breaking of the Fellowship (The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring Soundtrack)

S10-Lady EleanorAlicia’s favorite book is her old battered copy of “The Tales of the Lady Knight Eleanor”, the book that her father read out of for her bedtime stories when she was a small girl. As a little girl, Eleanor the hero she always looked up to, and later in life the lady knight became one of her role models.

Alicia’s favorite play is “Lady Knight Eleanor and the Serpent”, based on her favorite Lady Eleanor tale. The play tells the story in which Eleanor must fight a giant serpent that has wound itself around the castle keep, trapping the Royal Family inside. As Eleanor and the other warriors ready themselves to fight the beast, Eleanor realizes there is a ‘serpent’ among her people as well, one much less intimidating than the beast they are about to face, but no less deadly.