Thursday, July 28, 2005

Well, Here it is, at long last, Teresa. Special thanks to Evan for letting me use his scanner. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, July 27, 2005


Ok, update:
1. COM is being put on hold in favor of my contrast story, which is being written on old fashioned sheets of notebook paper with a pencil. I know, uncivilized, but what can I do.
2. The Dragon story is at a critical phase, and I've been scared to post any more updates for fear of screwing it up. But, I think I've now nearly caught up with my pre-writing, and I might just post something tommorrow or the next day, unless my computer crashes or the power goes out or my parents force me to spend both days cleaning.
3. Amy and I have finished a wonderful illustration. Unfortunately, I don't have access to a scanner, so I can't post it. I'm working on that, I'll have it as soon as I can.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Why *spoiler* *spoiler*ed *spoiler*

Same deal as before - If you haven't finished HP6, ignore this. If you have click the link in the previous post for my opinion on whether a certain character is really working for a certain other character.

Thursday, July 21, 2005


If you have finished Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, click here. Otherwise, don't, unless you want to get spoiled. This is the fan-art I am sending to J.K.

Friday, July 08, 2005

The Mirror of Truth

Once upon a time, there was a knight. He was in love with a beautiful princess, the daughter of the king to whom he had pledged his service. One day, as he approached the castle, he saw an enormous, hideous dragon carrying the princess away. He decided to rescue her. He knew, of course, that he could not just charge in and take on the dragon. He would need a plan, some clever way of defeating the beast. So, he decided to visit the famous Mirror of truth.
The mirror of truth was, as the name suggests, a mirror that would always show you things as they truly were. It was also said that the mirror would answer any question that was posed to it.
The knight journeyed many days in search of the mirror, but found nothing. Finally, as he was walking through the woods, an old woman approached him.
"You seek the mirror of truth?" she asked.
"Yes," answered the knight.
"Why do you seek it?" asked the crone.
"So that I may learn how to slay the dragon!," answered the knight.
The old woman laughed, high and mirthlessly.
"I will show you how to find the mirror,"she said, "But you will not like what you see there,"
"That's alright," said the knight, "I will go anyway,"
"Alright," said the old woman. "Walk east into this forest until you come upon a stream that flows into a cave. You must remove all your armor and your sword, leave them on the shore, and swim under water until you see a blue light. When you come up, you will be in the room with the mirror,"
So the knight went and followed her instructions. As she had said, he came upon a cave with a stream running into it. He dismounted, took off all his armor and his sword, and jumped in the river. Under the water, he swam. After a while he was almost out of breath, but he still swam on. His arms started to feel like they weighed a ton. Then finally, just as it seemed as if he'd lost all hope, he saw a blue light. Quickly he swam to the surface.
Gasping for breath, he climbed up onto the shore. He was in a dimly lit cave. The small pool of water he had come from was all that was there. Then he saw something that made him jump. Reflected in the pool was, instead of his own handsome face, the hideous face of the dragon.
"Are you the mirror of truth?" asked the knight.
"Some call me that," replied the dragon.
"But is it true that you cannot tell a lie?"
"It is true that that I can never intentionally deceive anyone, nor can I give blatantly incorrect information. However, I have found that the nature of the truth varies greatly depending on your perspective. So who can say if what is true to one man is also true to another?"
The knight was confused by this, so he decided not to pursue it any farther. Instead, he opted to pose the question he had come hear to pose.
"How do I destroy the dragon?" he asked.
"which dragon?" asked the mirror.
"The one that has taken my lady!" replied the knight.
"There is no such dragon,"answered the mirror, matter-of-factly.
"What?" asked the knight. "But I saw the Princess being carried away by a monstrous beast!"
"That she was," said the mirror. "If, that is, you are referring to Princess Isabella IV of Alvasia,"
"But I thought you said no dragon had carried her off!"
"I said no dragon had carried off your lady,"
"What is that supposed to mean?" said the knight, infuriated.
"It is supposed to mean," replied the reptilian face, "That she neither is, nor ever was in any sense yours. Legally, she is still her father's, and in spirit, she is her own. In a much more practical sense, she is the dragon's,"
"That as it may be," said the knight, gritting his teeth at what he clearly believed to be a waste of time, "Can you tell me how to defeat the beast?"
"Yes," said the mirror.
The knight screwed up his face, trying to come up with a question that could not being contorted.
"How do you defeat the dragon that carried off Lady Isabella IV of Alvasia nearly a fortnight ago?" he finally asked.
"I don't," answered the mirror, "I'm a mirror,"
"Ha-Ha," said the knight, "Don't you realize a woman's life is at stake here?"
"I don't," said the mirror.
Realizing there was no point in arguing, the knight asked, "How do I defeat the dragon?"
"Which dragon?" asked the mirror.
"THE ONE WE WERE JUST TALKING ABOUT!" yelled the exasperated knight.
"Oh sorry," said the mirror calmly, "I thought you might have switched dragons. Well the best way, it's generally agreed upon, is to kill him. However -,"
"However," continued the mirror, as if oblivious to what had been said, "You could try challenging him to game of backgammon,"
"Why?" asked the now quite frustrated knight.
"He's very bad at backgammon," said the mirror.
"How will beating him at backgammon help me rescue the princess!?" asked the knight.
"Who said anything about rescuing the princess?" asked the mirror.
"You're lucky you're not made of glass, you know that?" said the knight, angrily.
"Yes," answered the mirror.
"Am I going to get a straight answer of you, or should I cut my losses and just go challenge that dragon?"
The mirror pondered this for a while, than said, "That's all up to you,"
The knight decided to give it one more go.
"How do I rescue the princess?" he asked.
"Assuming," said the mirror, "That we have not changed princesses, than to rescue her, you will have to kill the dragon,"
The knight was ready to explode again, but he took a deep breath, calmed himself, and said, "How do I kill the dragon we've been talking about this whole time?"
"There are many ways," said the mirror. "The easiest it probably to use your sword and stab it,"
"Where?" asked the knight urgently.
"Oh, anywhere," answered the mirror, "Heart, stomach, lungs, all that. Though I think the easiest would be the throat,"
"But what about his scales?" asked the knight.
"They're hard," said the mirror, "And red, and shiny,"
"Yes," said the knight, "but how do I get past them?"
"Well," said the mirror, "Either stab straight through them with something really, really, sharp, or try and slip under them with something really, really, thin,"
"Are you going to tell me anything I couldn't have deduced for myself?" asked the knight, who had by now nearly given up hope of discovering what he was here to discover.
"I already have," said the mirror.
"What?" asked the knight.
"The dragon is very bad at backgammon,"
"Can I use that information to rescue the princess,"
"Is there an easy way to kill the dragon?" asked the knight.
"No," said the mirror.
"Is there anything useful about the dragon you can tell me?"
"Define useful,"
"Pertinent to helping me kill him,"
"Who's him?"
"The Dragon,"
"The Dragon in question is female,"
"Her, then,"
The mirror was silent.
The knight took a deep breath.
"Is there anything significant you can tell me to help me kill the Dragon who is guarding Princess Isabella IV of Alvasia?" he said, his voice level but obviously enraged.
The mirror thought about this. Finally, after several long minutes, it said, "Yes,"
"What?" asked the knight.
"Dragons breathe fire." the mirror began, They have sharp teeth, and scales, and -"
"YAAAAAAARRRRRGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!" yelled the knight. He plunged a fist into the face in the mirror, but of course it went straight into the water. His hand kept going and hit the rock on the side of the pool, scraping the knuckle so that it bled.
"Well that was productive," said the mirror.
"Hey," said the mirror, "Sometimes the truth hurts,"
The knight jumped into the pool. Two days later, the old lady who had shown him how to find the place was discovered, stabbed through the heart, along with two other peasants who had just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. The knight was later killed after infuriating the dragon by challenging her to, and winning a game of backgammon.

The moral of the story is that some stories have no morals.

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Chapter 33: Some Answers

By the time Thursday rolled around, I was so full of questions I was ready to burst. I was about to start questioning Teresa as soon as I got into the car, but she got there first.
"Did you listen to the tape?" she asked.
"Yes," I answered, "Of course,"
"Did you understand it?"
"Yeah, it only took me about three hours. How does that even work? I mean, I know you can learn a language quickly by immersion, but not that quickly,"
"It's your dragon blood. You're naturally inclined to understand Draconic. By the end of today, you'll be speaking it too,"
"So is that what we're doing today?" I asked.
"One thing, yes. Recent developments mean we need to... speed up your training a bit. Is there any way you could do a second day a week?"
"Would these... developments have anything to do with Senator Walsh?" I asked.
"That's part of it,"she admitted, "So is what happened to you on Friday. But it's a lot deeper then that. I wish I could tell you more, but I don't know all that much myself. When it comes to Senator Walsh, the fewer people who know the better - if he's to have have any chance of winning the nomination. Can you get off for another day?"
"I think so," I said, "But I think my father may be getting suspicious,"
"If Walter suspected anything, he'd have let us know," said Teresa, "He knows how to get ahold of us. So let us worry about that,"
We pulled up in front of her apartment building. We got up and made our way upstairs. To my relief, there was no sign of Pat along the way.
"He's working," said Teresa, when I brought this up. "Since that news story hit the air, Thadius has insisted on some new security measures, but they take a lot of people to orchestrate,"
"Am I getting more security?" I asked.
"That would draw too much attention to you," she answered. "Don't worry. You'll be fine. We just want to get you to the point where you can defend yourself as quickly as possible. Now, let's get started,"
Teresa pulled off her shirt. Then she started pulling down her jeans. She looked up at me.
"Honestly," she said, "If you want to go to another room, that's fine. I've pretty much lost all my reservations at this point. You'll only be a naked human for a few seconds - just strip and transform.
I turned away from her, a little embarrassed, and started taking off my own clothing. I was just about to pull of my underwear, ready to change forms immediately, when I heard Teresa behind me.
"Could you help me get this?" she asked. I turned around. Her back was now to me, and I could shee that her only garment was a gold, sequined thing with arm holes that went around her chest. There were two more holes in the back. It was clearly too large for her. It was fastened in the back with five large clasps, three of which had been fastened.
"I can't usually get those clasps with hands, much less claws," she said.
I reached over and clasped the other two. Immediately, the garment filled out as she transformed from beautiful woman to gold-colored lizard monster.
On closer reflection, she actually looked more like a cat than a lizard. Her face was distinctly catlike, and what, in the heat of battle, had appeared to be a mass of tentacles, now appeared to be almost hair, although very thick strands of it, that started gold and ended up turquoise. A strange turquoise marking, like a flame, was on the top of her her head. And a rainbow pattern on her leathery wings extended onto frills that ended at her tail. She was actually still quite beautiful, in an odd sort of way.
"What are you waiting for?" she asked in the same rough tongue he'd heard on the tape.
I turned around, pulled off my boxers and focused on what it felt like to have a tail, until I could feel the tail. Then I looked down at my new, silvery body and turned around.
"Good," said Teresa, "Much faster. I think you're geting the hang of it. The first thing we're gonna work on is communication, and maybe your motor skills a little more. Everyone who lives in this building either works for the NA in some capacity or has been vouched for by someone who does, so it doesn't really matter if we're seen. Lets take a walk, shall we?"
She opened the door and stepped to the side. I walked through.
"So how does this work?" I tried to say, but all that came out was "Ror horrir urur?"
"Don't try to talk yet," said Teresa. "Your grasp of Draconic is unusual. You have pretty much all the grammar and a fair amount of vocabulary, but as far as actually making all the sounds, you're at the level of a newborn. So we're gonna start with vowels. Most of them are pretty much like they are with a human mouth, with some exceptions..."
There's no point in my going on further. Suffice it to say, about an hour later I way speaking draconic, though with what could only be described as a thick human accent.

Friday, July 01, 2005


I'm in Florida. I wasn't expecting to be. My computer access is inconsistant, and it will be for the next few days. I want to work on the dragon story, but I can't - even when I have a computer, it's in a room full of people, and I need silence to write. So, it'll be at least a week. Sorry.