I Went to a Writing Covention and…

20160303_122012[1]I have never been so well dressed in my life. As many of you know, I am still in college, though I just recently signed up for graduation in December (yay!), and being in college I’ve had the opportunity to join the English Honor Society: Sigma Tau Delta. This offers a wide range of opportunities for all college writers, and I definitely recommend joining if one ever has the opportunity to do so. One perk that I took full advantage of was being able to submit a piece to the national convention, which means I would get a chance to travel out of state, attend a literary convention, and present my piece in front of all my peers and colleagues for my college. Needless to say, I was beyond pumped.

I submitted a short story and *spoilers* my short story was picked! It was probably one of FB_IMG_1456698771494[1]the more exciting moments of my life. I received the news at around 11 pm via email after a long shift at work, and I immediately called and woke up my boyfriend to tell him the good news, along with my mom, step-mom, and grandmother soon after. I told my colleagues at work over the course of a couple of months, had them read the story if they felt so inclined, and they made me feel more confident than I had ever been. Also, my friends got together and bought me this amazing messenger bag that they surprised me with a few days before I would be travelling. I cried. I hugged them all. Little did they know, it was a huge boost to my confidence, reminded me that I was worthy of being loved, as well as assured me in my abilities as a writer. I now refuse to carry anything else.

Then began planning. I lassoed my partner-in-crime, my boyfriend, into taking the 16-hour drive with me and we were off to Minneapolis, Minnesota. Along the way we went through Tennessee, Kentucky, Illinois (where I paid my first toll fee), and Wisconsin. After an extended 19-20 hour drive because I just couldn’t drive anymore past 2 am, we finally arrived in Minneapolis. I read my story, met millions of authors and poets, ate at every northern restaurant I could find, got lost multiple times in the Mall of America, enjoyed hours in the underground aquarium, and countless hours enjoying the cold weather with my boyfriend. I have always said I would one day live in Portland, Oregon, despite having never been there. However, now that I’ve been to Minnesota, I don’t think I could picture myself anywhere else. Only time will tell, I suppose.

Unfortunately, our time in Minnesota came to an end and we made the extended 19-20 hour drive back through Iowa, Missouri (where I also received my first speeding ticket), Arkansas, and Mississippi. It was a trip I don’t think I’ll ever forget. It was my first trip completely on the road, completely independent of any guardian, and completely paid for by me. It was a wonderful experience, and I can’t wait to take part in next year’s Sigma Tau Delta convention.

Want to read the story I presented? Did I mention I was approached by another author with an offer to publish it in anthology? No? Well, more on that once we get the details ironed out. Until then, thank you so much for reading, and I can’t wait to share more of my adventures on here.

-Lissy

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The Blind Witch ch. 4 and 5 – A Left 4 Dead Fanfic

– 1st Chapter –

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(In this case, I felt ch. 4 was far too short on its own to post on here. So, they shall be together on my blog, but separate elsewhere.)

Chapter 4

She was beginning to dream again. With the heat came the dreams, and with the dream would eventually raise memory. There were bits and pieces, sometimes images, more words. She would see colors – blue, green, shades of pink, possibly the color of cheeks or roses, then she would feel things. There were soft things, hard things, painful things… things she both longed to remember and things she was happy to forget. The words though… the words were of the utmost importance.

Danger.

Danger was the first word.

It scared her until her body shook her awake, but even in the wakeful hours of bright sunlight and dew, she found the word “danger” still lingered within her. It left a bitter, copper taste in her mouth, which she tried to physically spit out, but to no avail.

The sticky dew was no help, and it had her squirming relentlessly. Then her eyes fell on a mass of darkness, curled on the ground beside her.

There was a thump.

She stopped and pressed a hand to her chest. She couldn’t recall such a feeling, or a word to describe it. It went just as quickly as it had come, and soon her mind was focused back on the mass next to her. It barely moved, and she could scarcely say it moved at all.

But as she reached out to investigate further, a little flash caught her attention. There, attached to the end of what should’ve been fingers, were claws. She made a little gasping noise, and held her hand up to the light, turning and turning the claws until she had investigated every edge and corner of them.

Had she always had these things?

Then, there was a grunt, and the mass on the ground stirred. The Witch shuffled back, claws extended out to put a serrated wall between herself and whatever was rising from the ground. The mass, now a full grown man, shook – an animal shaking off leaves and dirt from where he had slept. His brown hair was sticky with the dew and something crusty and black. Then, his face angled up to meet hers.

She screamed.

The shriek echoed through the forest, erupting into a cacophony of sounds and animals. The Hunter’s brow shot up, and his mouth formed an unpleasant line with the loose, broken lip dangling off the bottom. He shook his head and held a finger to his lips.

“Hush. Quiet, Witch.”

She fell silent and carefully studied his mouth. He could speak, too?

“Who… are you?”

The Hunter sat up, rolling his neck until it made a cracking sound, then he sighed.

“… Hunter.”

The word formed in her mind, cloudy and foggy. There was something attached to it, something very real and very there, but just out of her mind’s grasp. She sat in silence for a long time, just trying to clear the fog and pull that image forward, but to no avail.

The Hunter grunted, his face now tight and accentuating the scars with what looked like annoyance.

“Witch?”

The Witch shook her head. That wasn’t right. The name was familiar, but there was something else… something that name seemed to cover up.

“Emily.” She said.

The Hunter froze in his morning ministrations.

“What?”

She clicked her claws together, trying to form the sounds again… slower.

“… em… Emily. I, Emily.”

The Hunter’s lips broke from their line into what might have once been a smile. He rushed toward her, a crouched creature with an ugly face.

She shuffled back, screeching and slashing claws before he could even get close. The Hunter stopped, and pressed a hand to his chest.

“Remember me?”

She didn’t move.

He hit his chest more forcefully.

“Remember me?”

She shook her head this time.

He yelled, raising his voice much louder than he needed,

“Hunter. Remember me?”

Her mind rushed and slowed, rushed and slowed, until it was throbbing in her skull. Why couldn’t she remember that word? Why couldn’t she remember that word? Then another word rose amongst the chaos.

Tears.

Then she remembered.

“Hunter…”

He nodded, and the smile returned to his lips, though wrinkles broke the laced pattern of his brow. He was worried, and so was she.

How could she forget so much, and remember so much, all at once? And why?

Chapter 5

Her Hunter hadn’t looked at her again since they had woken up. Her memories from the past were still foggy, a thick haze she couldn’t seem to wade through, but while her memories as an infected faded, something else long forgotten was beginning to rise within her.

She had remembered a name, her name. She was no longer just the Witch. She was Emily, and if she remembered nothing else the rest of her life, she would’ve been content with just a name. She had proof that she actually had been a person once. She had felt and carried the warmth she could only imagine now.

Though this new information was satisfying, that lingering haze had her growing more and more curious about the past. Who was she really? Who lingered just below her gray skin? She studied her hands, the palms scarred up and down from what she could only assume were her own claws. How many of these scars were from this life, and how many had she earned in her old one? She wanted to know. Somewhere deep down, there were answers. She just needed to figure out how to access them.

Then, a gruff voice broke through her thoughts,

“Witch?”

She looked up to see the Hunter, pacing back and forth on all fours, making much more noise than the Witch deemed necessary.

She shook her head, even though he wasn’t looking at her to see it.

“No. Emily.”

He growled.

“Emily.”

Emily peered over at the Hunter, his pacing was uncoordinated. His hands and feet seemed uncertain of their next fall, hovering in the air much longer than they should’ve been. He was nervous.

Emily then recalled the way he had lunged to her at hearing her name – her actual, human name – as if he was excited, as if he had been waiting for her to remember it.

“Hunter? Your name… only Hunter?”

The Hunter froze in his pacing, giving her a chance to catch the side of his face, and the way his lids and sockets twitched with unused muscles. It looked so painful. She wondered if and how he could see at all, but a little niggling at the back of her mind had her feeling a strange sense of déjà vu. She felt like she knew the answer already, she just couldn’t recall how.

The Hunter said, “No.”

Short, resolute. He didn’t want any more questions, and even if she asked, she probably wouldn’t get an answer anyway. The Hunter was too busy trying to remember how to pace properly to recall a name. His arms were bent at unnatural angles, as if they were contorting on their own. It was separate from what he wanted them to do, which was simply to pace back and forth.

Emily sat, waiting for something more, squirming in anxiousness when nothing did. In the meantime, she let her mind wander and ponder things she still had no answer to.

Hunter’s name?

Her name?

Why was she remembering, and more importantly, why was she forgetting, too?

She held her arms out in front of her, studying the deep red lines she hadn’t noticed latticing her arms in a beautiful, ugly mixture of purple and gray. They were so in-between, much like a scar, a wound between being there and disappearing. Her eyes flicked back to the Hunter, who was now stopped in his pacing, staring at her, slack-jawed. His sockets were right on her, daunting and angry with their little pulps peeking out at her.

She couldn’t remember ever seeing something or someone so ugly, so animal. Then, another flash of memory: moonlight, rough hands, warmth, and light… bright, bright light in a dark room.

A room in a house she had lived in, in a former life from ages ago.

She had to go back. That would be where the answers were. She stood up, eliciting a growl from the Hunter who crawled up to her feet. She presented her claws, though she knew he wouldn’t hurt her. Something inside her, deep, deep down within her chest, there was a slight twinge. Something was changing inside her, but she just wasn’t sure what.

She looked to the Hunter, and she could see something was changing inside him, too.

He growled again,

“Where are… you going?”

She shook her head and pointed towards a break in the woods where they had walked through before.

“Home.”

The Hunter shook his head before nudging against her knees in the opposite direction, deeper into the woods, and farther away from her goal.

“No… bad. Need to keep… going.”

Bad? How was it bad? Her home was there. She knew it. It was familiar and safe. It might have smelled like vanilla or lavender a long time ago. It was a memory which burned her nose with its strength. There had to be more. She had to remember if it was vanilla or lavender. She pushed against his face, and he pushed back.

“No. Home.”

He growled, much louder, and pressed his shoulder against her, too, causing her to stumble back a few steps. He wasn’t going to let her pass… at least, not without a fight.

She brandished her finger blades, giving him a hiss of her own. The Hunter sat up until he was simply squatting, quiet and still, a statue. She pointed passed him, back toward the path she knew would lead her back to where she needed to go.

“Home. I need home.”

The Hunter shook his head, resolutely. So, fight it was. The Witch released a screech and stepped forward, not before a loud crackling of gunfire erupted within the woods. Behind the Witch, a tree whined with agony, having taken the shot for her. She turned to investigate, which the Hunter took as his chance. He easily rose from his squat and shot forward, scooping the writhing Witch in his arms.

Emily continued to screech and thrash. She was getting farther and farther from her goal, farther and farther from the chance of her memories. Then, as if on cue, another shot rang close by. A memory surfaced from within the haze.

A man… no. A group of men, with guns and knives, watched them as they ran into the woods. A man at the front of the group, poised with a knife pointed in their direction, not unlike her claws, watched with a promise gracing his lips.

‘I will find you.’

And he had.

It really was bad.

To be continued…

– 1st Chapter –

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Thanks for reading!

-Lissy

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“Sometimes I wake up and decide I’m a rubbish writer…” a micro poem by Alyssa Hubbard

Some days, I wake up and decide I am a rubbish writer. Everything I write, whether it be a novel, a short story, a grocery list, it is all just rubbish.

Some days, I wake up and decide I am a goodly writer. Everything I write, whether it be a novel, a short story, a grocery list, it is all goodly.

Then there are days I don’t write at all. Those are days I cease to be a writer.

-Alyssa Hubbard

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Open Endings

I’ve noticed a trend with my work. Since I’m in the editing process of An Austrian March I have little time and energy to work on another full-fledged novel or novella, and until it’s done and published, I won’t be doing very much novel writing. However, as I mentioned before, I have a very intense need for writing now. A writing habit, if you will. As such, I can’t go for very long periods of time without writing something.

So, I’ve gone back to writing short stories and poems – pieces that don’t need extensive and copious amounts of time and attention to create. And as I’m writing them and doing quick edits of them, I’m also constantly shipping them off to literary journals/magazines. As I’ve been writing them, I’ve noticed a lot of open endings. And once I took notice of that, I also thought back to Apocalyptia and An Austrian March, both having very open endings.

I, personally, hate open endings in the novels I read.

But on that same coin, I love them because I hate them.

I know that makes no sense, but allow me to explain. I love works that give me an intense emotional response, including anger. If a book can anger me because it didn’t give me closure, then it is a great book. To me, when a book is open ended, it gives me the sense of continuation, of immortality. The characters’ stories aren’t done, they have lives beyond the book that I may never know about. Something about having it end with a sense of more just fascinates me. It’s like saying you’ll see a friend later even though you both know it’s good-bye. Sad, but wonderful, and something I want to emulate in my writing, though I hadn’t noticed it until now.

Books with complete endings aren’t bad either. I also have an emotional response to those, but the analogy is much different in this case. At the end of a book (or series) for me, I feel as if I am burying a friend. I’m saying goodbye for one last time.

I love both and it’s up to us as the writers to decide whether our hero or heroines should get their complete ending or not. We don’t have to have them win or lose, live or die, or do much of anything. That’s the beauty of being a writer. We decide how we want it all to end, or if we want it to end it all. Isn’t that a beautiful thought?

How do you feel about open endings? Closed endings? Which do you prefer? Which ones do you tend to write? Let me know, and comment below!

Thanks for reading.

-Lissy

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Screenwriting

I remember the first time I had ever been introduced to the world of script-writing. My mother was reading a small project I had been working on for about three months when she stopped and said,

“Alyssa, you should write scripts.”

At the time, that highly offended me, especially when she went on to comment on how my writing was better suited for short stints of description, rather than full length novel description. I was angry, offended, and I set out to prove her wrong. I have been successful thus far, but just this morning I let my boyfriend read a short story I’ve been planning to shop around. He read it, smiling and enjoying himself. I was beaming, beyond excited to hear his feedback, and as he set down the manuscript with a satisfied sigh, I expected nothing but praise. What I got was not the opposite, but an eye opener.

“Lissy, this would make a great movie.”

A great movie?

Me? A movie writer?

Once again, an inkling of offense creeped up, but then I read over the manuscript again. I googled different ways of getting into the screenwriting business, what was required of me as far formatting and description went. I’ve learned a lot just from a few hours of light skimming, and I’ve even started a practice draft. I’m not sure if this will go anywhere, but I’m sure it will take time. Time and a lot of trial-and-error. We all have to start somewhere, and even if I do find this to be my niche, books and authorship will always be my true passion.

And no matter what, I was born a writer.

Thanks for reading.

-Lissy

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Why you should always be submitting/writing something…

I am an indie author, nothing new there, but even as I’m writing and preparing my works for their eventual publication, I am still submitting to multiple different literary magazines. I make it a point to write at least three new short pieces a week, and maybe a couple of poems if I can manage them. With my schedule as packed as it is, most of the time I can’t always have my computer on me, which is a problem since An Austrian March is being edited on the computer. So, whenever I have a little free time, I whip out my my notebook and start on something small, something that doesn’t require a lot of attention or heavy plotting, something under 2,000 words. Once I’m done, I polish it up, then prepare it for simultaneous submissions.

Even as an indie writer, I believe it is essential to be submitting to literary magazines and journals. Why? Well, grab your pens, raise them high, and scream HUZZAH! as we dive right into my new list!

  • PRACTICE
    Querying skills, to me, are essential. They teach discipline, how to follow the rules, and they help your technical writing skills. Querying different places helps to diversify your writing.
  • LEARNING A LIFE SKILL
    Querying magazines is very similar to inquiring about possible jobs. Though writing may be your job, a lot of indie writers have to supplement their writing with another job. When you query, you want to think of it like you’re inquiring for a job. You want to put your best foot forward without kissing ass. Just another great life skill to be had from querying.
  • FEEDBACK
    In rare cases, you may receive feedback with your rejected piece. Take the criticism and work it into your bigger projects. Not everything they say may be what you want to do, but there may be just a bit of advice that you can enhance your writing with. This point is very valuable. It gets you a front row seat to what an editor is looking for in a piece. Though you may never go through traditional channels to publish your novels, it is helpful to see what actually sells books or what usually works in specific genres and pieces.
  • IF ACCEPTED, YOU GET RECOGNITION
    Who doesn’t like getting a little praise? When you get published in a journal, it ups your credentials. People who read that magazine will recognize your name and may go after some of your other works, like your indie books. More praise, more recognition, more book sales. Lots and lots of good stuff.
  • YOU PUMP OUT A LOT MORE WORK
    Because I’m always submitting and writing, I always have new pieces to play around with. My writing is getting better, my ability to query is getting better. My writing skill, in general, is getting better.

Though there are a lot of people who refuse to try traditional publishing, querying literary journals for pieces that may be too short to publish individually is a great way to practice and get your name out there. But what do you think? Do you agree? Disagree? Do you feel literary magazines and journals are worth the effort? Have you been published in one before? Let me know, and comment below!

Thanks for reading.

-Lissy

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The Blur – A Doctor Who Fanfic

In the mornings, I see a face. I’m neither awake nor asleep. It’s that inbetween, where the shadows of subconscious can still take hold, but your mind is aware enough to pull you back – reminding you, Hey. The day is waiting for you, but in my case, it’s a face that awaits me.

The face is both a blur and an itch. I squint my eyes, but only find that it twists it more. I open them wider and I lose sight of the face altogether. It’s maddening, and I have half the mind to just grab the man and shake him.

Man.

It was the first time I ever referred to it as a gender. Him. Yes, that’s right. It is usually a man.

“And you said it was an itch?”

Yes.

“Tell me more about the itch.”

Well, it’s not good or bad. It’s kind of just there. Not an itch I can scratch, either. It’s like a reminder that face brings – like something imprinted on my brain that I’m supposed to know or be able to remember, but I just can’t. It’s just as maddening as the blurry man.

“Tell me more about the man.”

You’re a demanding bloke, aren’t you?

“Well, that’s what you pay me for, isn’t it Mrs. Noble?”

I thought we’d be talking about my mum or something a bit more shrink-like. I didn’t realize dreams were a part of that.

“Now, Mrs. Noble-”

Yeah, yeah, you’re here to help me. I don’t need to hear it anymore. Let’s just get a move on. Now, what was your question?

“The man?”

The man? The man. And see, that’s another thing. I’ll remember him for one second, then I’ll forget him the next. It’s like two different parts of me are fighting over this guy – one to forget and one to remember.

“Which one do you want to win?”

Huh?

“Which are you rooting for? Do you want to remember him, or don’t you?”

I- I don’t know. I suppose I would like to, but-

“But?”

Hang on. Hang on. I’m getting there, you impatient bugger. But there’s something about him. I feel like he’s dangerous, but it’s almost attractive the way he is. His danger is attractive. I reach out to him sometimes, and I feel my fingers brush against his jacket. He smiles at me sometimes.

“He smiles?”

Yeah.

“I thought you said he was a blur?”

Huh? Oh. Well, I guess he isn’t always a blur.

“Continue.”

I don’t know. I’m getting a headache. Maybe we should stop for the day.

“You know your mother is outside.”

Nevermind. We can keep going, and you can stop smiling. You look daft when you smile.

“Nevermind that Mrs. Noble. On you go.”

Right, well, sometimes he’s not just a face either. He smiles and I can hear a laugh, and sometimes he reaches out for me. But there’s something sad about his smile. He’s a very sad man.

“You feel sorry for him?”

Yes. He is so lonely. He just wants someone to travel with, to be his pal, but it’s too dangerous. Things are always happening to him and to his friends. He’d rather be alone than risk their lives.

“You sound like you know him.”

Huh? Well, I guess I would have to know him. He’s in my head after all.

“Yes. Well, you speak of him as if he actually exists.”

How do you know he doesn’t exist?

“I don’t, I’m just asking-”

How do you know the sun will rise tomorrow?

“Mrs. Noble, there’s no need to get upset-”

How do you know the Earth will always move?

“Mrs. Noble, please don’t raise your voice-”

How do you know there isn’t something out there? Someone calling for help? Just waiting to be saved?

“Mrs. Noble, please calm-”

How do you know that blue box won’t come back?

“Mrs. Noble?”

“Here are some tissues. Please don’t cry.”

“Are you ok?”

“Do you want to talk anymore? About the man?”

No… no. I think I know who I’m rooting for now.

“Who?”

… Maybe it is best that I forget him.

“I agree.”

Doc?

“Yes.”

The man cries when he smiles. Do all doctors do that?

“Is your man a doctor?”

… I think so.

The End.

Thanks for reading!

-Lissy

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The Writing Habit

We’re always told to write every single day. I’ve dedicated entire blog posts to how this can best be achieved, even for those who seemingly can’t spare a second. I’ve figured out my own methods, and I’ve been writing daily ever since. Now, I have reached a snag, but not in my daily writing routine. No, no. It’s much worse.

Not only are we told to write every single day, but we are also told to wait and revise with a new set of eyes. Well, on 8/13/2013, I completed my long novella project: An Austrian March. I was immediately filled with excitement and sadness. Writing, to me, is like raising a child, and that day inspired this tumblr post: http://lissywrites.tumblr.com/post/58166724610/being-a-writer-78.

But all of those lovey-dovey sad notions fell to the wayside, and I realized that now that was done, I would have to take a writing break. This seems like a positive thing. Take a break from writing and enjoy the other wonders that life has to offer. Spend some time away from the computer, see friends you’ve been avoiding just to pump out a few extra words everyday, and enjoy the solace of plotless thought.

But it is killing me.

This post probably won’t be up for the next couple weeks, mainly because of what I’m about to tell you, so just for the record, I am writing this on 8/14/13. Think of my blog as a TARDIS, if you must.  Now, onward to my list for all of you Time Agents and Time Lords out there.

  • On 8/13/13 I finished An Austrian March
  • On 8/13/13 I declared a two day break
  • On 8/13/13 I wrote and scheduled 11 blog posts
  • On 8/13/13 I declared that I would be doing no writing, whatsoever the next day
  • On 8/13/13 I wrote a fanfic
  • On 8/14/13 I got up and wrote this blog post
  • On 8/14/13 I will finish this blog post
  • On 8/15/13 I will add to this blog post
  • On 8/15/13 I wrote some in Ice Over
  • On 8/15/13 I take peaks at An Austrian March
  • On 8/15/13 I edit chapter one of An Austrian March
  • On 8/15/13 I’ve failed to take a writing break

I had originally ended this post on the 14th. Well, this part has begun again on the 16th, after a few additions in the past couple of days. See why this is a problem? A writing habit is a wonderful thing to have, until you must force yourself to stop just to get some other work in your life done.

Most would say the easiest thing I could do to elieviate all the needs to constantly write is to allow myself to start on other projects, but that’s what made AAM  (An Austrian March) so long in the making to begin with. About halfway through AAM, I found myself spinning my wheels trying to pull some plot out. So, I took a break, trying to decide how best to go about outlining it. At that time, I had started my writing habit, but it wasn’t as full-fledged as it is now. I could’ve probably stood a few days away without batting an eye, but I digress.

After the first three days of my break, I had hardly any outlines to show for it, and I was itching to start back, but I knew it would go nowhere. I would end up staring at a blank screen, just as I always was. So, I decided to work on a story I already had outlined and ready to go. Problem was? Once I got started, I couldn’t stop, and that’s how Apocalyptia came to be, and even it went on a year to two year hiatus. AAM has been left in the dust long enough, and I refuse to start another project, just to abandon it again.

So, I’ve failed to take a break, but AAM is going smoothly despite it. The long hiatus actually made for plenty of time to have fresh eyes on the beginning chapters, and that should leave me plenty of time in between to develop fresh eyes for the late chapters. We shall see, but I have no clue what I’ll do later. New stories, new finished first drafts, new breaks, new problems, but all part of the craft, which is writing.

I’m sorry if this sounded more like a rant than anything else. I’m feeling somewhat bitter over my wasted break, but I’m glad to have been productive where writing is concerned. Do you have moments like this? Have you developed a writing habit/addiction? How do you bring yourself to take writing breaks? Let me know, and comment below!

Thanks for reading.

-Lissy

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The Blind Witch ch. 3 – A Left 4 Dead Fanfic

– 1st Chapter –

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The Witch and the Hunter ran until night fell, but the rain never let up. The Witch tried her best to remain calm, but with her sense of sight dulled once more, her nerves were mounting. But even as infected, they all had their limits, and the Hunter had reached his. His breathing was much more labored, and from what the Witch could see from the flashes of light between the trees, his head was glistening. Not with sweat, but with blood. His gash hadn’t stopped bleeding since they had left.

When they did finally stop, it was because the Witch said so, not because the Hunter gave out. The Hunter would’ve probably kept going all the way into the night, no matter his injuries, but the Witch couldn’t stand hearing his feet, once smooth steps, crunched into the ground, heavy and without much purpose. He was getting worse and worse the farther they traveled.

“Hunter. Stop now.”

At first, the Hunter ignored her, and his steps became much more calculated, while his speed took a toll. Seizing the opportunity, she dug her heels into the ground, hissing as her naked heels took a beating from the underbrush. The Hunter fumbled, much less gracefully than he usually would have, and even lost his grip on the Witch’s wrist. He didn’t fall, but he came close, and ended up in a dipped crouch. He turned back to growl at the Witch, but momentarily froze, along with the Witch as she caught his face in a flood of light.

What had it been called? Moonlight? She couldn’t recall it right away, but at one time it had made her feel warm. But as her eyes studied the face of the Hunter, she could only be filled with dread. His face was marred with a never-ending lace pattern of scars. They had no real rhyme or reason, but they seemed to form some intricate pattern beyond the understanding of the Witch’s mind. His lips were shredded, parts of the top lip hanging limply on the bottom lip. None of his face was more horrifying than his eyes, or rather, his lack of them. They were sockets, darker than the night that blurred the sides of his face, where the light didn’t quite filter out. But where the tops of his cheeks were, laid two pulpy masses, which glimmered red and angry. The Witch had been blind since her change, but she couldn’t imagine what the Hunter had seen before his eyes had been mutilated, and it wasn’t just because she was unable to comprehend complex ideas.

She stepped toward him, and he shuffled back, his form bleeding into the darkness. He was nothing more than a shadow, and he would eventually be nothing to her if he didn’t come back into the light.

“Hunter. Come.”

The Hunter growled, but remained in the darkness. The Witch tried again, adding a flourish.

“Hunter. Come. Please.”

The Hunter remained silent for much longer than the Witch was comfortable with, but he did make his way back into the light. He stood much taller and straighter than before, his body rigid except for a slight lean he had on his left side, but for the most part, he was much more like the men the Witch remembered at her old home. She physically shivered, which caused the Hunter to wilt. She wasn’t sure why.

Still, she made her way toward him, slow. She reached out with her hands, claws reflecting all the light that filtered through the trees, making them look unearthly beautiful. There was a feeling of warmth in the Witch’s chest when the thought danced across her mind – the thought that something about her might be beautiful. But she was careful. She knew they could harm the Hunter, and she didn’t want to harm him more than he already had been. She lifted her claws toward the sky and pressed each cold palm against his cheeks. They were rough to the touch, and she was reminded of something in her past life. She remembered feeling such a thing before, but she couldn’t recall a name. It was infuriating, but when she saw her shimmering claws masking his eyes, she was reminded of something else. They were tears.

She wondered if the Hunter could cry, but she found the image before her too beautiful to question or alter. The Hunter, on the other hand, was lost

“What you do, Witch?”

The Witch suddenly felt self-conscious. She knew what it was like to be blind, but the Hunter had feigned perfect vision since they met. It didn’t make sense to her, and she found herself longing for the innocence of his hoodie.

“How? See?”

The Hunter’s mouth moved slowly as he spoke, each word seemingly forcing its way out of his mauled mouth.

“No eyes. Mind. Mind’s eye. See sound. See smell. See all. I am Hunter.”

His description matched her former description of the word, “Hunter.” He was stealthy, but he was so much more than that. He lifted his hands to grip hers, careful to avoid her claws.

“I see Witch. Witch always so sad.”

The Witch wasn’t sure how to respond, and instead focused on his hands holding onto hers. Even his hands felt rough, a detail she hadn’t noticed before. She also wasn’t sure if it was just her own imagination, but she felt both a heat rising in her cheeks, and a strange heat from his hands warming her hands. It didn’t necessarily feel real, more nostalgic, like the flash of a memory across flesh. It was a lovely feeling, but the Witch soon felt a dampening deep in her chest – a dampening of the heat, and the rising of tears. She wasn’t sure why, but she cried, just as she did when she had been stuck in that house. The only difference was that the Hunter was there to take her in his arms. And while she feared his face, she did not fear his imaginary warmth and the warmth his touch rose to her chest. The memories were becoming much more powerful as the night went on, and the intensity had her wishing she could have known the Hunter before the change – before, when all of the heat was real.

To Be Continued…

– 1st Chapter –

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-Lissy

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I Can Feel It Move – A Doctor Who Fanfic

I can still feel the Earth move beneath my feet. So fast and sure as it careens through space. I know and feel so many things. I have seen things that my eyes haven’t, I have heard so many things that my ears haven’t, so many foods, so many people, so many hellos, and good-byes, but none that I physically have done.

I have grown so old, when another me out there will never experience age, at least, not at the rate I will.

I envy that other me. He lives in our lovely blue box, dancing his way through the universe – a universe I have drank my fill of, but yet I’ve only had a taste. It’s a strange feeling – one of both knowing and unknowing. I want to blame my other self, but I must thank him as well. Without him, I would not be, and that thought always sends a chill into my hand – the hand I was born from. While he took my life of time travel and mystical lands from me, he gave me something he may never have. I know so much of him, but he will never know of me.

He gave me a normal life. A life of companionship and happiness. While so short and fleeting my life will be as a human, I will never have to live through the deaths of my loved ones. At least, not until it’s time for us both to go. I have a wife, I have a child, and a grandchild.

He has all of the universe, but I will never have the weight of loneliness such beauty carries with it.

“Doctor, what are you up here day-dreaming about?”

I look to the door of our bedroom, and there she stands, smiling. Her blond hair has faded to a white, and crow’s feet have found their way to the corners of her eyes, but I smile back just the same. She isn’t the only one with a head of snow-covered hair, and the wrinkles on my face are much deeper than hers. Knowledge is a wonderful thing, but it will age anyone much quicker than time ever will. I find my gaze drifting back to the plain white ceiling, and I wonder how old my other self feels. Much older now, as he is learning and seeing things every day – things I am thankful to be blind to, but some small part of me still aches for it.

Before I know it, her hand is gripping mine. The hand he and I both share, and I meet her gaze as soon as her warmth envelops me. She is smiling, and her blue eyes shine with the same youth she carried when we first met, but as she holds the hand I hadn’t realized was shaking before, I know her mind is somewhere else. She thinks of him too. Knowledge has been kind to her, but she misses those stars just as much as I do, but I believe that’s what has kept us together for so long. I love her, and I believe she loves me, but we both love that man in his blue box, and all of those adventures we will never get to take.

Still, I don’t say a word, and take her hand in mine. That touch brings her back to me, and we both know the truth. With such beauty and knowledge, there can only be that much more pain. I pull her closer to me, until she is forced onto the bed beside me. She doesn’t complain, and cuddles close to my side, her frail body molding perfectly to mine as we intertwine hands. Our hands have held children, children I have gotten to raise to adulthood. Our hands have held the hands of our grandchild as she tells us her dreams of the stars and what must be out there to discover. We have told her a few stories, but only those that will fade into her adulthood. With knowledge comes pain, and while we both want her to see the beauty of the things we have seen, it’s not worth the pain of always wondering. Wondering and waiting for the man in the blue box, a blue box I may never see again.

I look to my Rose and find that she has shut her eyes, drifting off into a world where she and her Doctor can travel the stars for eternity. I am not jealous, as I have the same dream. Though, my dream is to be the Doctor in her dreams, taking her to all of the places she wishes to travel, but never will. My mind grows weary with such thoughts and dreams, and I find my eyes drifting shut.

I always dream the same thing, if I dream at all.

I dream of myself, younger. Blue suit and red converse, standing before the doors of the TARDIS. Usually, the doors are locked, but in this dream, I find the weight of its key around my neck. I’m neither surprised nor excited by this fact. I place my hand against the metal at my heart, and find a light thrumming of not just one, but two hearts. This is what makes me excited. I am The Doctor.

I pluck the key from my chest, and put it into the lock of my TARDIS, and without even a turn of the key, the door opens for me, revealing white light. It’s blinding, and I’m not able to make out the round console of my dreams. I turn my face away, hoping the light will fade when I catch a glimpse of something behind me. I turn a bit to get a better look, and there she is. Blue eyes wide, hair the color of warm hay, and with her favorite Union Jack shirt.

She studies me up and down, while I do the same to her. No crow’s feet.

We lock eyes, and she asks, “Doctor?”

I’m not sure if I can answer or not. Instead, I give her a smile and an out-reaching hand.

She looks to my hand, then back to my eyes, and her face brightens. She rushes forward, reaching out and gripping my hand as I turn to lead her into the light of the TARDIS.

The TARDIS alerts its departure, then slowly fades away. To the stars? To the universe? To another dimension entirely? I can’t be sure. I’m not sure if I am The Doctor or not, but a man can dream, can’t he?

The End

As always, let me know what you think, and comment below!

Thanks for reading.

-Lissy

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