April 2, 2014



Each Tuesday, rather than a POSSIBLY IRRITATING ESSAY, I'd like to both challenge you and lend a helping hand. I generate more speculative and teen story ideas than I can ever use. My family rolls its collective eyes when I say, "Hang on a second! I just have to write down this idea..." Here, I'll include the initial inspiration (quote, website, podcast, etc) and then a thought or two that came to mind. These will simply be seeds -- plant, nurture, fertilize, chemically treat, irradiate, test or stress them as you see fit. I only ask if you let me know if anything comes of them.

Popular Fantasy Story/Series: Harry Potter, et al

Trope: Allergic To Evil

Andre Xavier Xavier, a Bryshwyn of Bryshwyns, the turban on his head release more than its usual curl of very pale, very curly hair. The curls sprang out all around.

As well, a line of monks striding in loose exercise uniforms keeping cadence happened by at that moment. Andre used a vulgar word that made even Raven Zoe Jefferson, a Nobody of Nobodys blush in embarrassment. The lead monk called a different cadence and they set off at a faster pace. Zoe said, “If I’d shouted that, I’d be in the gym for the next forty hours.”

“That’s not true!” Andre exclaimed.

Fendwyri  Alyn Wader, whose family enabled music to communicate in addition to entertaining, walked by and said, “Of course it is, Bryshwyn! If it wasn’t for our kind, the Vacancy would be permanently filled with evil.”

“I thought you were allergic to evil, Wader?” Andre shot at the older boy.

Fendwyri spun around, eyes narrowing to slits as he shot back, “Aren’t you late to meditation?”

“Aren’t you?” The musician opened his mouth to snarl a reply then turned and ran.

Andre muttered the first syllables of another enablement.

Zoe kicked him in the shin, turned and sprinted after Fendwyri, snapped, “No more!” She passed the older boy who, once he thought he was out of their reach had slowed down to a jog. Now he exclaimed and tried to speak an enablement over her, so she spun, swept his feet out from under him and sprinted into the Canis Abbey proper, barely out of breath. She skipped to a halt, then strode to the front, plopped down on the bench then lifted her eyes to contemplate the slowly turning obsidian sphere hanging from the Abbey’s vaulted ceiling. No one noticed her because as she sat, Andre and Fendwyri came in.

The whispers started at the back of the nave and swept forward. Zoe ignored them until the older boy abruptly appeared next to her. She didn’t know if he enabled the floor to carry him faster than he could walk, but it didn’t matter as, glaring down at her, he whispered, “That’s the last time...”

The air around them grew cold and squeezing her eyes tightly closed, she only assumed her breath exhaled in a white cloud. A booming voice said, “All students will be seated and silent during meditations.” It was a standard warning. The University surveillance system could easily have generated it. However, it would not have added, “Masters Wader and Xavier and Mister Jefferson will please report to the commissariat following meditations.”

There was a faint rustle – though with the building now all ears no one dared actually speak – as everyone moved at the same time. Zoe kept her eyes closed as someone passed in front of her and sat down and someone dropped down next to her on her other side. She opened her eyes, but focused on the sphere instead of trying to look left or right.

The knees on either side of her gave them away as the colors were obviously Wader Green and Xavier Sable. Her own colors were Poor Girl Whatever. Instead of fear though, anger welled inside of her. What right did these two boys have placing her in between their familial feud? What right did either of them presume that she would be on “their” side in an arguments. Fendwyri was nice enough to her when they were alone. She considered Andre a good friend.

Her real enemy lived up the hall from her in the women’s dorm – Semolina Nyanchi Fieldthwaite. The girl with the amazing hair and the attitude to willingly flaunt it. The source of her control over enabling the growth of anything from snowflakes to Tower Trees, she was also a member of a family that had once shared the power of filling the Vacancy.

Now she just annoyed Raven and constantly made snide remarks. She tried focusing on the sphere again, finally and slowly calming her turbulent head games, when a cry went up from outside, “Syzhin devils!”

The assembly leaped to its feet as the land raid siren began its mournful wail, echoing even to the depths of the University; everyone rushing to defend the battlements against the scourge of the world.

Names: Popular African American name, Australian Capital Territory, Common African American last name; Popular American name, Brazil

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