Friday, November 02, 2007
NaNo Day 1 -- 20,039
This went far better than I could have hoped for. I don't know what happened, but my old writing ability finally kicked back in, and coupled with having very little real work to do today -- well it worked well, that's all I can say. My hand (the injured one) hurts tonight though, so it probably wasn't the best thing I could have done. Still -- you know, I needed something like this. It's been a long time since I was able to fly like that.
So, here's my excerpt for the day. It's the same one as I posted on the NaNo board. The one on the NaNo board will stay for a while, but I'll try to post more often here.
Oh, and the story is Reflections.
I wondered if I should call Darion to come and get me. Not yet. I needed to walk a little and think. There had to be something I could do, and being with Cherry and Darion wouldn't help right now. I wanted to find some link to Kelly, and I tried my hand at feeling her out again, but with no better luck. It only gave me a sudden blinding headache, and I stopped, with a hand on a trashcan, hoping it eased very quickly.
I finally let go, took a step forward -- and found a man standing between me and the end of the alley. I didn't know where he had come from, and it scared the hell out of me that someone had come so close. My hand lifted, but he reached and slapped it away, and in that moment I saw something -- unworldly about him. Something not human, and not fae either, and that didn't make me feel any better.
"You must find something for me," it said. The voice had an odd, echoing property to it, and I took another step backwards, already shaking my head. "You will find it."
"No," I said, and saw the head come up and the eyes glitter with golden light that didn't come from the snow-covered world where I stood. "No, I'm already working on something, and I'm not going to go hunt something for someone else."
"You will," it said, and took another step forward. I felt anger from it -- felt it like a new wave of cold in the already cold night. The human shape began to melt and change, which made me half ill to watch, my headache growing worse. What stood there was taller than human, wider, and I thought it might have wings. "I have chosen you. You will obey little half-thing."
It was not winning any points in attitude that was for sure. But I could feel power from it in ways that made me think that I wasn't going to get away if I turned around and tried to outrun it. Hell. I took a step out of its reach again, and lifted my hand, but it swept forward with unnaturally long and hit me again. This time I saw very long claws as well and felt one catch at my glove at it ripped it off.
"Tell me what you are looking for," I finally said. "When I'm done, I'll get right on it --"
"Now. You will do it now."
"Look, I don't know who or what the hell you are, but --"
I stopped at the sound of a car heading down the alley behind me and looked back, very much relieved to see Darion's car and him leaping out of it before the car had seemed to come to a full stop. He charged right to my side, and he did have magic in hand already.
"Get away from Skye," he said.
"You do not --"
"I am the Fae Ambassador, Darion Sapphire Wildling," he said, and yes, there was quite a bit of power in that name and title. "I command you to go."
"You cannot command me, little fae Ambassador. Not you alone."
"Then I shall call others in," he said, and I felt a wave of messages go out so fast that they felt like gnats swarming past me. I had the feeling that this was serious and it began to worry me so much my head began pounding again. "Tell me what you want, Gargoyle."
Gargoyle. I'd heard of them. They were big and dangerous, and they did not get along with fae, as far as I could tell from the little reading I'd done. And I could see it more clearly in the glow of Darion's magic and the lights from his car. It was larger than I thought -- almost twice as tall as me, the head with a long muzzle and sharp looking teeth. The eyes still looked gold, and with diamond-like pupils. The skin was lizard-like, though it looked like metal. I thought it had a tail, but I couldn't tell from where I was. And there were wings. I could see them folded across the back.
The arms were long, the hands had four long fingers and claws that glittered in the light. I wasn't stupid. I took another step backward, but it looked at me, the mouth pulled open in a snarl. Darion moved so that he came between us, and I didn't like that much either, so I moved up by his side. I could help if it came to trouble.
"What is it you want here?" Darion again demanded.
"I lost something," it said, the words slurred by the shape of the mouth. "It finds things."
The 'it' rankled this time, having heard it a bit too often from my mother in the last day, but then I reconsidered the creature. The gargoyle had the kind of attitude that probably meant it called anything not one of its own kind an 'it. '
"I told you I don't have time --" I started, and stopped when Darion put a hand on my shoulder and shook his head.
He looked worried. That stopped me from making any other protest at all. This was worse than I imagined or understood. I stood still this time and looked toward the gargoyle, suddenly wondering how it had found me, and why it had chosen me as well. I was not, really, that well known. Though maybe that wasn't true across The Veil -- which made me a little more nervous.
"What did you lose, Gargoyle," Darion said again. "Where did you lose it?"
A few others had appeared behind us. I looked back with a start, but they were Darion's people, and none of them looked happy. I had the feeling this was much worse than I really wanted to know.
"I lost a stone of power," the gargoyle said. That won hisses of surprise and worry behind us, though Darion only shook his head and looked disgusted. "I wandered alleys, watching the humans -- dark creatures, bloodthirsty. The stone in such hands --"
"How big of a stone?" Darion demanded.
The gold eyes flashed toward him and the clawed hand lifted, but then fell back to it's side. It reached toward the wall and pulled up what looked like a staff of some sort and touched the top part, shaped in a claw the size of my hand.
"It rested there," he said.
"A big stone," Darion said and sounded worried again. He looked at me and nodded. "If a stone of that size fell into the hands of a human, it would give him power, but it would warp him as well, and the people around him. These are very dangerous and they should never be brought across The Veil where there is nothing to temper their power, and certainly not taken into an area with humans."
"Do not lecture me, fae," the Gargoyle said, teeth showing this time. "It will find the stone for me. Now."
"Your own people --" Darion began.
The creature hissed in anger, and I figured it didn't want its own people to know it had been this stupid. I think Darion understood as well. The gargoyle was starting to look angrier again, and I had the odd feeling that if I didn't agree there was going to be a battle. I thought the fae would win, but it wasn’t going to be easy, and someone was bound to get hurt.
"I'll look for it," I said. Hell, why not? I was going to be out on the streets looking for Kelly anyway, so I might as well ask about odd stones as well. "I'll look for it and my sister."
It nodded, accepting the compromise, praise the gods. I relaxed a little. Darion looked relieved too, and lowered his hand a little --
The gargoyle leapt forward and ran a long sharp claw down my chest, ripping through jacket, shirt and skin. I gave a startled cry of pain and went to my knees, feeling incredibly ill. The white world seemed to go red and then dark -- and I didn't want to be unconscious on the ground. Blue had grabbed hold of me and I could hear shouting, but there was not a battle yet.
I got back to my feet, mostly so I could make certain Darion didn't do anything stupid. He had the look of someone who would have leapt in and attacked right then, but the Gargoyle had backed up.
"Marked as mine," it said. "Will do my bidding, and the others will wait. Find the stone."
It backed up, and again -- and then disappeared in a flash of light and snow.
"Damn!" Darion said, so loudly, in fact, it echoed up and down the alley. He turned to me and took hold of my arm, magic rushing down through the wound. "I’m sorry, Skye. I never expected it to do that. I've never known a gargoyle to mark anything but one of it's own."
"I don't feel well," I said, half sagging into his hold, even after the magic.
"Hell. The marker normally isn't poisonous as far as I know, but it seems to be affecting you that way."