As the Freighter Turns

Amidst the vast ocean of space the massive freighter Calpurnia hangs high above the moon of Snosha. We begin our program where we left off last week. Carl had just learned he was to be transferred to another vessel and he is wondering how to tell his girlfriend Rachel when he meets his coworker Manny near the exercise deck.

"Hey Manny." "Yea What Carl?" “What in the name of the great galamazoo are you doing?” “ Well Carl I decided that today is the first day of the rest of my life.” Ok, that’s spectacular in all Manny, but why are you wearing rain gear, why do you have a surf board, and what’s with the five gallon bucket of manteca? Better yet where did you get the surf board? We are thousands of miles from earth orbiting a distant moon and you just found a surf board.” “Nope, I made it!” “You what !? With what? How? Wait don’t tell me, I truly do not want to know. Just promise me that whatever happens, you never mention my name in the report.” “Uh ok, what ever you say Carl. Oh and don’t worry about the geese. I will be sure to put them back after their workout. Bye!” “Um Manny, wait Manny. What exercise? I mean what geese? Manny hold up!"...
Brother Bear

A musing about a muse

The muse that calls the Sun
Each day to his post
From his slumber beyond the horizon
Whispering the names of all who sleep
Arousing them from the shroud of dreamtime
Casting aside the fog of formless inner reflection

Who baths those shadowy offspring
Of her kin Luna in the warm embrace of rest
Offering respite to the night crawlers
Softly singing her lullaby of supple breezes and
Sun kissed beds sweetly beckoning them home
To sweet surrender

The very passions of all life
Giving names and voice
To millions of unspoken prayers
Taking the weary weight of the past and
Swathing everything in the bastion
Of the unsoiled present
Ever set on the precipice of what could be

The promise of a new day
The reward of all our yesterdays
That lights the path before us
Our mother of possibility
Our spirits ardent lover
The friend of what we are
and might become

Is Dawn

Shawn E. Allyn

"Look to this day
For it is life, the very life of life.
In its brief course lie all the verities
And realities of your existence.
The glory of action, The bliss of growth,
The splendour of beauty.
For yesterday is but a dream
And tomorrow is only a vision.
But today, well lived, makes
Every yesterday a dream of happiness
And every tomorrow a vision of hope."

Unlikely Hero


With the outbreak of war and conflicts surrounding all of Castile and its center Rancho Aldana, it has been a trying few years in the midlands. Castile has weathered them as she always has with passion and faith. Even amidst these freighting times the people have lived each day with the hope of tomorrow. The people go on, each to his or her own familias and duties. With the most recent conflict with Montainge ended it is an uneasy quiet that lays on the hearts of all Castilians as all pick up the pieces of what life was before and begin a new path for Castile’s future.

Here in the home of Don Gonzalo López de Rivera del Castillo, The Castillo de Rivera life has been as full and varied as every. The stone bastion built at the mouth of the Río de los Testigos during the time of the Second Prophet as a Watch Turn and the central point between Tarago and San Cristobal is now the south east most corner of the larger Rivera garrison. Don Gonzalo is old, and his son’s sons see to the day to day operations of the household. The eldest grandson Javier is a shining echo of his grandfather, and with his father and uncles at Court or Universidad he has become the pivot upon which the Familia turns. The stewardship of Castillo de Rivera is not a duty with great importance politically or militarily, yet with its immense historical importance, small economic port location at the mouth of the central southern flowing river, and a strange and persistent legend about its central well, it is a place of some renown outside of the region. To the Rivera’s it is a home they would not trade for all the treasure of Eldorado.

Then they arrived, the travelers bearing a sealed letter for Javier and two platoons of soldados wearing no official military livery or insignia, but caring a full kit of footman and three Caballero’s with their pages. They arrived late in the night and were greeted by Javier himself only to order him to clear a section of the citadel of all household staff and forbid anyone entrance until further notice. With them, they had two unconscious men on horseback. One of them might have been bleeding.

That was nine days ago. The household staff speak only in whispers, and only after making certain no one is about. The first day was a mass of confusion with strange armed men barking orders and searching the grounds for some unknown end. A young and brash vaquero trying to clear his horse and tack was beat near to death by two of the soldados. On the second day Elena, the cook’s assistant and Carlos the Mason vowed to hearing screams from the old watch towers cisterns. Horrific screams for mercy. On the third day the two wall guards, Marcos and Hector swore to seeing a man dragged to the top of east tower by a pair of cloaked men and a man in a crimson hood. The fourth and fifth days were quiet, the silence at time more terrifying than the screams or unfounded rumors. Dawn rises now on the sixth day, with no clue as to what might come. No one has seen Don Javier in two days. His Secretaria Fernando passes each days orders on and then all set to their tasks.

Alma, smart enough to be sent to Universidad next year, has worked in the main house for the Rivera’s for most of her young life. Always given great latitude to peruse her master’s books and she is often asked to assist in matters well above her station. Alma, tending to the sick children and teaching the poor country farmers and field hands has become a most beloved member of house. Her beauty does not hurt her standing with the young vaqueros and soldados either.

As Alma finishes her breakfast she hears shouts in the courtyard bellow. At first, strange guttural foreign words, then quickly she hears her name. Her first thought is to run down stairs to investigate. Then her mind catches up with her as she flies down the stairs and fear washes over her. Her heart slows to a painful thud. Is she in jeopardy? Her worst fears are manifest with what meets her at the bottom of the stairs. A man taller than any she has ever seen, white blond hair and ice blue eyes gazes through her. His face is framed by two purple scars carved into his cheeks from the outer eye almost to the curl of his mouth. He barks in a sharp tongue to Fernando who uncharacteristically winces and immediately begins to translate. “Alma you are to follow this man and do exactly as he says. Do you speak any Eisen?” Alma replies in a whisper “No Secretaria”. “Do you speak Thean?” Again answering in a whisper Alma say yes this time. Fernando speaks to the man who Alma now sees is wearing a white smock stained almost black with what is unmistakably blood. Fernando turns back to her with pain filled slightly watery eyes adds, “May Theus be with you this day child. Do not open your mouth and forget all you see if you hope to survive...” Alma, at a complete loss for words simply nods. The great “butcher” snaps at her in Thean. “You will follow me and assist me in my investigations. If you fail or disobey you will be punished. Do not anger me.” And with a smile he says. “I would hate to spoil such beauty with any unnecessary lessons.” In shock Alma nods again and obediently waits for instruction. “NOW BE QUICK!” And with a blurring twist he strides away. That night screams were again heard from the catacombs and tunnels of the great old watch tower.

No one saw you. But you saw what transpired. Now it is day nine. No one has seen Alma since the moment in the courtyard. More rumors whisper about, but no one dare speak them beyond the walls of Castillo de Rivera. Javier is still locked away in his tower, filtering his words to the worlds below. The people are all afraid, with the path before them cast in shadow. You are a member of the Household of the Rivera Familia. You serve them faithfully. You may not have been born on this land but you will die here. You are sworn to them. You have no real title, or station yet. You may be anything from baker to pikeman but all people dream of the day when they will shine, when it will be their chance to change the face of Thea. Now may be your chance.


"Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear - not absence of fear."
Mark Twain
Unlikely Hero


Somewhere deep in the night, beyond the cries of pain and screams of war, there is a faint sound whispering a strange lullaby to me. Like some otherworldly tune the, plink plunk tink of rainfalls on the fallen armor encasing the lost souls strewn about me in the dark. I thought I had died. I remembered dyeing. I was pierced through from behind. I had thrown down my greatest enemy…a beloved. I could still taste the bitterness of his betrayal, could still smell him, his body cooling someplace nearby. My brother in arms, whom with one choice killed all we had lived, and fought for, all we had loved. His death had been more painful than my own. If I did die… or died, I am no longer so sure. I am cold. I feel cold, and now wet. How could I be dead, I feel.

In the distant murky night, I hear a sudden flurry of sound. The, will be dead, fighting with, those who will be victorious, never knowing who that will be until the very last moment. BOOM! A thunderclap of sound and I am lifted from the blood, mire and death I had fallen into. The heat wakes my legs and arms. I am alive! I crawl from stench of sulfur. I will live. I will go on. I will avenge us, me, even him. I will find them, make each one pay for their cruelty, then I will sleep...


"Death comes to all. But great achievements raise a monument
Which shall endure until the sun grows old."
George Fabricius,

A touch of frost.

My name is Crispin Frost and I am dying. I want you to know that I have always been dying. Since the day I was born. However in this case it seems to be a more acute state rather than philosophical one. Yet I digress. I should start at the beginning. I was born on a small mining penal colony in the Bauleke sector of Emyrean controlled space named Schneeball. My delivery was most prodigious, being born to the youngest daughter of the Summary Governor and Mine Warden of the moon Wärterver Zweiflung. My mothers betrothed, my progenitor, only lived long enough to say I do, and scream himself horse as he was led away by my Lords greatest assets, Shadrach, Meshach and Abendigo the Drei Geister. The trio was found, when their father and his gang of pirates tried to smuggle out unrefined oar from the dark side of the moon. The pirates either died quickly or ran screaming into abandoned mine tunnels from the mines enforcers, the Mond-Schatten. Shadrach, Mechach, and Abendigo, were the only survivors of that ill fated voyage. Found hold up in the galley, barley of age and coaxed back to the moon, they were fosterned, and taught by Geschöpf, my nanny. Once a Claid Rüstungsmann, and Back Brother to my Lord he withdrew from service to help protect and raise my mother after her mother, and sisters were killed in a raid. When his nephew had been found to have, spoiled, my mother it was Geschopf himself who performed Reckoning for the family and my Lord. It is said that my progenitor was so weak and low, that he wept openly in front of the Drei Ränder, and Geschopf as they passed decree upon him. Shadrach once told me that he was ashamed of his father. I told him to never feel shame for the actions of others. It only complicates a life already fraught with complexity.

I will not bore you with the verities of my life. Suffice it to say, I was raised in a lively environment. My mother was a source of delight in my life. Geschopf would chuckle and say, “Lady Galatea is very soul of this family. The very thing keeping us all out of hell.” I went into the Academy as is tradition in the Empyrean and my family. I learned well the lessons they had for me, yet I found my talents rested elsewhere. I mad my first million credits before my majority. True it was a poker game, and Meshach was required to rip another of the player’s arms out of its socket, so as to bring home my displeasure with cheating. All in all it was a rousing beginning to my career. I bought my first ship at nineteen, my first moon at twenty-two, and my first planet the day of my Second Majority.

Which brings us to today, me lying in a pool of Abendigo’s blood with another mans ear in my hand gasping for air as the life-support on my ship the Persephone slowly wanes due to the many holes the Gangrels left in my port side. There is an ancient maxim I have held dear throughout my life. “The less defined something is, the more powerful its potential.” I was hoping at this moment that all that the universe was in its undefined majesty had in store, yet another life for this somewhat impish cat. I had of course used more than a dozen already but who’s counting.


"Alignment with one Force will polarize against the others."
The Navigator, Empyrean. Andrew Robinson.
Brother Bear

Two Birds...

He stood under the awning of the old tanner building. It sat at a tee junction, across the street from a local nexus of coffee houses, bistros, pubs and one of the hamlets old run down beer gardens. There were a few theatres and flashy clubs one block over that spilled their late night dregs into this, its unkempt cousin. All walks of life lived, loved and lurked here from dusk till dawn. There was never any real danger in the pale glow of neon and glitter. The only thing one had to worry about was falling between the gap a few blocks away where the night lights faded.

They, the unhurried graying pair, Cicely and Rebecca, would have been out of place entirely if it were not for the periodic theatergoers who wandered through in search of a nightcap, or a little adventure now and again. Cicely silver haired and glimmering in her grand evening dress and pearls, Rebecca, striking in her classic hat and frock overcoat. Cicely smiled with her whole body as they jauntily sauntered down the street. Like a clock striker, Rebecca rocked back and forth from her umbrella side clicking on the damp pavement and Cicely’s arm sturdily guiding her along through the moonlight. They nodded to the others frolicking in the night air. The coffee house denizens, pub-crawlers, and the better coiffed and clothed club yuppies took only the simplest of notice of them. No one bothered them as they had dessert at Charlie’s. A classic little bistro they had eaten at for what seemed like ages. Then they glided over to Simone’s for a nightcap and good conversation with the regular’s. They got a few curious looks but nothing more than the idol curiosity at seeing two so “seasoned” ladies laughing and smiling with so little worry. It was a superb night filled with the simple revelry of good living. They say their goodbyes to Simone, vested themselves against the ever-quickening night chill and made there way back into the moonlight. As they walked down the street towards Desoris lane they noticed him standing under the old Tanner St sign.

When you first glimpsed him he did not appear to be anything special. Nothing about him gave an impression. It was as if he was background noise. That was, until for whatever reason you decided to look at him. Not a passing glance but a true look. Taking in all the threads of his person. Then the vast array of inconsistency and disturbing little gremlins started to peak through the façade he had cloaked himself in. Most kids his age, early teens maybe, had a tendency to look a bit disheveled to begin with. Hair going every which way with no rhyme or reason to it. Loose fitting clothes that never matched and made one think of those big everything for a dollar clothing bins in thrift stores. First it was his hair. His hair appeared to have been cut with a pair of children’s left-handed safety scissors while looking in a mirror. His hands too big for his arms and body. Like a puppy not grown into his feet yet. When you looked closely his clothes were not just in need of a good ironing. He was wearing the long sleeve button down shirt inside out with some of the buttons not mated properly. His watch was on the wrong wrist. Strangest of all his shoes appeared to be on the wrong feet. But nothing was so wrong as his eyes. They were not the eyes of any boy that young. They also felt misplaced. As if he was chiseled from soft stone and the artist had carved his eyes to far apart on his head. Not so far as to be obvious but just farther than was comfortable to look upon. The only thing that could make you feel more unsettle was if by mistake you looked to long and he happened to look you in the eye. They seemed to take in everything on the street. They were large bright eyes implying great awareness. Also they conveyed a haunted, hollow, even hungry quality that made a chill crawl over your bones.

He was not sure they had gotten a good look at him but it would be no trouble to loose himself in the shadows as he tracked them back to their car. He knew he was too ravenous to let such an easy and sumptuous opportunity to go by. He could see the soft glow of those pearls even from across the street. Two birds with one stone…


"God loved the birds and invented trees. Man loved the birds and invented cages."
Jacques Deval
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    contemplative contemplative

His Story...Our Story

Lealis knew at that moment, the moment he watched Trela falling, her life’s blood spilling out, and dead before she had touched the ground that there was something wrong. You see, he or more aptly they, do not feel things like you or I do.

They have been curiously obsessed, and charmed by humanity for longer than recorded human history. They had stumbled across humans in our cultural infancy. Like one might discover an ant hill in the forest and stop to watch the busy comings and going of those tiny lives, mesmerized by the almost unreal nature of a world that is totally unknown. Yet they realized that we were different. Unlike ants or wolves, or any other social creature in the world, we seemed to have a unique quality. They could not qualify it or quantify it yet they remained intrigued. They watched us grow and slowly mature over many ages. They shook their heads in disbelief at out folly and held their breath when we took our first steps into the world like tiny fledglings from the nest. Eons went by and they took to mimicking our actions like actors trying to find the truth in the words if a play. They took enjoyment from pretending to be like us. The peculiar way we take so long to find our feet and yet the mad pace at which we keep in our lives. At first it was simple impersonation. Then it became as much of the amusement to be like us and pass for one of us as it was to play with us like strange games of tag and hide and seek. Rarely were they ever discovered. Usually only when doing something so pedantic to us that we never think about it, and yet so bizarre to them that it becomes far too complicated and we see through the mask. Most often when they are discovered they use it as an opportunity to ask taboo or difficult questions. On extraordinary incidents when discovered it ends in tragedy. Usually do to misunderstanding or fear on our part. Overall from our perspective they have fallen into myth and legend, being constantly strained down into the tiny confines of our limited view of what we think of as magical beings. To label them elves or fairies is simple romanticism or small minded misunderstanding. Their reach and diversity was vast before we discovered to bang rocks together let alone learned our own mortality. We call them the Fhey. They call themselves TerThua, which means People of the Center. This is the story of how I became their teacher…

Lealis quickly raised his rifle and exposed the mans brains to the moonlight. There was no rage behind his actions, yet he did feel some small tear drop of relief at the hope that he ended in pain. He did not know why it mattered, yet it did. As his comrades began firing into the night quickly ending the attackers he knelt before her rapidly cooling form and began the song of transformation from this life to the next. He had done it thousands of times before for both TerThuan and other alike. It was tradition among his clan to show honor to those who were on the journey to the next world, despite being noble or not. Yet for the first time since he was a new born and watching his Great Father being turned to ash at his transition, he felt something. He had not words for it. He could not describe it or share it with any of his companions. It began tiny and fragmented and grew like glass tendrils through out his being. When the song was finished and the sun was cresting the horizon he and a brother Feruk began to prepare her for her transition. Again he had moments of profound disease as a tempest of disquiet raged within him. They wrapped her in the soft white cloth that the Garden Speaker gave them. It would help her reach purity faster. When all of the preparations were made, he laid her on the stone and stepped back to be with the crowd that had gathered to wish her good journey. As the fire was lit the Garden Speaker asked if any would like to Speak. Feruk laughed out loud and said that he envied those who had crossed before for now they would know what true laughter was. For no one could make him laugh like Trela. A healer who had known Trela’s mother from her birth, MsDrea, said that she would always know her wisdom, because when Trela was first born she had given her a bloom from her Great Mother’s garden as a gift on her Life Day. It grew high and MsDrea has given others cuttings from it sharing the beauty that Trela had shared so freely. Trela had said later that the greatest gifts were those that sent ripples ever outward touching everything around them. They all spoke, saying the things that those who had crossed before would now get to share in, and the things that they themselves had been given by knowing Trela while she was on this journey.

The Garden Speaker gathered her ashes and sang his song for her Journey. Then he stepped into the Garden and sowed the seeds into the soil mixing it with her ash and covering it with earth and adding water to the small mound. Turning to the collected faces he proclaimed, all cheer for a new Journey has begun! Everyone cheered and whooped and hollered, sending Trela on her new voyage like casting a boat on the seas to explore new undiscovered lands off beyond the horizon. When others came to the garden to speak their truth about Trela, they will stand here and see what had grown from her time with the People, and The Garden Speaker would tell them all the stories he had heard. Ever sending ripples of her into this world and the next, endlessly touching all life.

Yet it was not enough for Lealis. The next afternoon by the time the last person spoke Lealis knew he was ill. He must be, for he had never felt like this before. IT hurt all over, even in places he could not describe. He feared he may be off center for ever. He had intended to speak about many of her qualities. But in the end, he could say nothing. This made many standing at the Gate very unsettled, but no one said anything. Without knowing it he made a decision in despair to flee. He thought himself running away from his storm of pain within him. That if he ran far enough and long enough he would forget it all. Little did he know he was not running from the memory of her or his pain, but to my front door. At the time I hated him for ruining my life. Now I see...


"Writing is not necessarily something to be ashamed of, but do it in private and wash your hands afterwards."
Robert Heinlein
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A step...

I was never asked to be perfect. I was even repeatedly told by teachers, parents and others that perfection was impossible. I simply was never good enough. It had nothing to do with perfection. I was simply incapable of achieving anything, due to the expectations set forth. No matter what the task or instance, I was always expected to do better. Some might think me bitter or resentful for this. I was, as a boy. I have over time come to the conclusion that though I am not all that I aspire to be, I like who I am. As strange as it may sound I enjoy my own company. I generally like myself despite my shortcomings. I know some who can’t be alone, because of how much they dislike themselves. I also know that without the trials and tribulations of my life I would not be who I am today. There are things in my past I would not wish on anyone. Yet I know that without that experience I would not be me.

I want to write. I want to write for more than just the sake of ego, or the classic desire to make a log of one experiences for posterity. My desire is not so much to write a diary or memoir as it is to learn about my self in a unique way, and be able to go back when I am older and see what I was through the eyes of what I have become. I want to write every day. Every day. The problem comes in two forms for me. One is simply the means to do so. Time paper, ink a computer a typewriter, blood and stone, whatever it takes to put the word down. That is not so much and obstacle as a challenge. The other is fear. Some children are taught that they must be perfect. They spend their lives trying to always achieve impossible goals and when the inevitable moment arises that they do not succeed at something they have attempted, they break. The writing issue comes from my cultivated discomfort with my English and basic grammar skills. I have never been an effective grammarian. Punctuation still drives me batty. My handwriting is abysmal. I love to write. I love to craft images and form thoughts. I love reading well composed words. The ability to convey feelings and knowledge across time and space with a bit of ink and parchment is a wonder.

More than one teacher taught me that the quality of my efforts comes not from what I alone accomplish, but how that stacks up against my elders, peers, and juniors. I was repeatedly taught that despite the joy I received from writing, I was to cease doing so immediately to become a tree pusher or a cog swabber or some other meaningful job that I would be better suited. That and never write again. I had a few beautiful souls who encouraged me. They were a family of heart that loved me enough to give me positive guidance and support and always encourage me to follow the calling of my heart in all of my life. I lost that support as the family fell apart with the death of some of our core. Some of those I would have given my life for. After they died I took to writing in journals. It was what my grandmother and great-grandmothers had done so many years before, and had encouraged some of their grandchildren to do. I jotted down Ideas and thoughts constantly. On scraps of paper, I hoarded them in secret files on our family first computer. Anywhere I could squirrel them away for later. Slowly I trained myself to keep them so hidden that it became an anathema to show them to the light of day.

After years of hiding even from myself I began to build a new family. Yet despite loving all of them, always wanting them to know me, I held by the worlds inside. Just letting them out on brief occasions and the odd social rant, only to quickly stuff them into the shadows. Over time I shared them with some. They began to seep out a little at a time. I started hanging around an internet café in 1998. I began to expand my chosen family. We were a community of extraordinary and distinct souls. A few years went by and one of my brothers, booda, told me about Live Journal. At first I did not see the attraction, until the idea came to me about “the call to the void”. That is the desire to speak and know that it’s possible someone might hear you. That somewhere in the cosmos someone might hear your words be touched by your thoughts. Not a need to know, simply to know it was possible. That is why I don’t lock my posts. I have wandered through here ever since. I still love paper journals, both those that are filled and those waiting to be filled. I write all the time. I still want to write more consistently though. I want to make it a ritual to write at least once a day. Like any ritual it will take time, and effort. I will not ever be perfect at it. However, life has taught me that practice makes progress.

I will begin one step at a time. One more way to learn who I am and craft what I will become. Both an act of creation and record of life. If there is nothing to record, I shall record the nothingness and if, and when, I reach old age, I shall open one of my tomes of vanity and personal discovery, and light a fire to life and all of its verities, against the cold of faceless time.


If I lose the light of the sun, I will write by candlelight, moonlight, no light. If I lose paper and ink, I will write in blood on forgotten walls. I will write always. I will capture nights all over the world and bring them to you.”

Henry Rollins~
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    hopeful hopeful