Category Archives: Fiction

Star Wars Fan Fic

This is a fan-made Star Wars anime that is gorgeous.  In two minutes, this wordless cartoon made me feel more than in six hours of Episodes 1-3 (for the record, my children will have to discover Episodes 1-3 on their own.  I want no part in exposing them to that sort of filth).  I posted the video on Facebook and the following conversation ensued:

Friend and Fellow Star Wars Fan:  Although it always makes me feel guilty rooting so hard for the Empire.

Me: Who knows what the Empire had on those pilots, though? Maybe their families are being kept in a room with the oxygen slowly being siphoned out — maybe they pump in another liter of air for every rebel ship taken down.

Friend and Fellow Star Wars Fan: I wanna read that fanfic.


. . . . okay :)


Extra credit: Teenage Mutant Ninja Fan Fic


Jaclyn stared down at the pinprick of blood on her index finger.  It was remarkable how despite the number of souls she had sent back to their makers, she had never once seen a single drop of their blood.  The sight of her own mesmerized her.

A particularly loud squawk from her infant son, squirming on the changing table, brought her back down from the black.

“Alright, alright, almost done.”  Jaclyn finished pinning the cloth diaper to her child, lifted him to her shoulder and turned.  She startled at seeing her husband, Larek, leaning against the doorframe of the nursery.  He was smiling at her.

“What?” She said, shifting uneasily.

“I just like seeing you all domestic.”

“Har har.”

Larek wrapped his arms around them and pressed his face into her neck. “It suits you.”

Jaclyn closed her eyes and inhaled the scent of her family.

“Mama!  There’s a man at the door!”

“Coming, Remmi,” she called. “Wait for me.”

“Zak already opened it!”

“I did not, the wind pushed it!”

Jaclyn and Larek shared a smirk before heading toward their front door.  Rounding the corner, Jaclyn’s blood chilled when she saw the uniforms.  She handed the baby to her husband and gestured they stay.  She slowly walked toward the open door.

“Boys, go to Papa.”

Zak and Remmi obeyed, sobered by the tone of their mother’s voice.

Jaclyn planted herself in front of the Imperial officer.  “Can I help you?”

“Ahh, Captain Jaclyn Antarres,” he said. His face was cheery in stark contrast to the helmeted guards that flanked him.  “What a pleasure to finally meet you.  Your reputation proceeds you.”

“It’s Mrs. Reed now,” Jaclyn said nervously, wondering what Larek’s face looked like behind her.

“May we come in?” Said the officer, still smiling.  “It won’t take but a moment.”

“Of course.  Larek, would you take the boys-”

“No,” said the officer, “please, don’t usher them out on our account.  This may well be a family decision.”  The officer helped himself to a seat on the couch.  The guards remained standing at his sides.  “I am here to inform you that your services are needed again, Captain.  Congratulations!”

She followed him into the living room, her body tense. “But. . . but the Empire won.  Why do they still need me?”

“Oh, of course we won, thanks in part to your tireless efforts, but there are a few loose ends.  I won’t bore you with the details, after all, do they really matter?  The Empire needs you, Captain.  Won’t you join us?”

Jaclyn sat down across from the officer.

“But, Jaclyn,” behind her, Larek’s voice was thick with disbelief, “You said, I thought-”

“It’s not what you think,” she said, staring at her lap.

“I’m so terribly sorry, how embarrassing,” said the officer.  “Perhaps I am mistaken.”

He produced a small device from his jacket pocket and clicked a button.  A holographic video projected on the coffee table.  Cheering Galactic Republic soldiers choked a Star Destroyer landing strip as they surrounded a TIE-fighter.  A young pilot nimbly leaped from the cockpit.  She removed her helmet, revealing a young Jaclyn, grinning and pumping her fist.

Jaclyn stiffened, hearing her husband gasp and her boys, not understanding, grow excited.

“It’s Mama!” shouted Zak.  “Look, it’s Mama!”

“I want to see it again!” Remmi pleaded.

The blue light of the holograph reflected in the steely eyes of the officer as hundreds of Separatist fighter jets exploded in the living room.  “Am I confusing you with another Jaclyn Antarres?”

“No, sir,” Jaclyn whispered. “That was me.”

“Oh good!”  The officer clicked the button and the image disappeared.

“Aw, no fair!”

Quiet, boys,” barked Larek.

“You had me worried for a moment that I had come to the wrong house!” Continued the officer, seemingly oblivious to the family tension. “You know how government bureaucracy can be so messy.”

“Yes, sir,” said Jaclyn.  She didn’t dare look at her husband.  She could feel his stare burning into the back of her neck.  “I’m afraid I can’t accept this honor, sir.  I just had a baby, you see, and-”

“You won’t reconsider?”

“Well, maybe when the baby is older, I could-”

Jaclyn didn’t notice more guards had already filed into the living room, surrounding her family.

The officer stood.  “I’m afraid, then, that we are no longer asking.”


Zak and Remmi had never been off-planet before and Jaclyn wished she could have enjoyed their wonder as their home planet became smaller and smaller beneath them.  At least it took their minds off the cuffs around their wrists and ankles.  Larek held the baby, his eyes closed.  When she reached over and put her hand on his knee, his eyes snapped open.  The fury in his face made her recoil.

“Captain? So you were good at murdering people, were you?”

“Larek, please, I can’t be blamed-”

“You worked for them,” he hissed. “You lied to me.”

“Larek, I was young, I was broke, it was a job.  I didn’t know.”

“The Clone War was nearly over.  The Purge had already happened.  Don’t tell me you didn’t know.”

“It was a job.”

“For the wrong side.”

“For the winning side.”

“I see.”

“Larek, it worked out for us.”

“Has it?  Our children are in chains, Jaclyn.”

“I’ll fix this, I’ll-”

“Kill when you’re commanded.  Like a good Imperial dog.”

“That’s not fair.”

“Fair?!  My parents were murdered by the Empire.  My childhood home was razed to the ground because we were accused of harboring Jedi.  For all I know, it was you that did it.”

“No, I never fought on the ground, I was only a pilot, I was only-”

“A coward.”

The ship jolted as it entered the tractor beam of the Star Destroyer.  Tears brimmed in Larek’s eyes as his children cooed at the size of the warship.  Jaclyn looked at her feet.  She’d seen plenty before.

The Reed family was herded to the detention level and Jaclyn noticed quite a few other families, their civilian clothes pitably plain next to the gleaming white stormtroopers that patrolled the halls.  Droids zipped and tottered by, ignoring them.  She could tell the other former pilots by the guilt on their faces and the betrayed looks on their spouses’.  She wished she could hold Zak and Remmi’s hands.


“I don’t want you to go, Mama.”

“I know, darling, Mama will be right back, I promise I’ll be right back.”  They were in a cell now, much nicer than Jaclyn would have expected.  It was square and squat, but there were chairs and a thick glass window that looked out into the hallway.  Red, black, and white uniforms passed by outside.  Perhaps they only planned to intimidate, nothing more.

“Please don’t go, please don’t leave me.”

Jaclyn ran her hand through her son’s hair, but before she could speak the guards roughly grabbed her arms and drug her out of the cell, slamming the door behind them, cutting off the wails of her children.

Jaclyn whipped her arms around and released herself.  The officer stood impassively in the hallway.

“Was that really necessary?!” She snapped. “We’ve come quietly, haven’t we?!”

“And we’ve been more than patient.  Your fleet awaits you, Captain, and we don’t have time for any more sentimental moments.”

A hissing sound filled the hallway.  Jaclyn looked up and then through the glass window into her family’s cell.  Larek could hear it, too, and was gathering the boys around him.

“What’s happening?  What are you doing to them?”

“That is their air supply leaking into the hallway.”


“The general is so very fond of games and incentives.  For every rebel ship you take down, another liter of oxygen will replenish your family’s cell.”

“One,” she choked. “One liter?!”

“The average adult needs 550 liters of oxygen a day,” said the officer cheerily. “So I hope for their sake, Captain, you have very good aim.”

Jaclyn rammed herself against the glass window, watching her children’s mouths open in screams that she couldn’t hear.  Seeing her, they broke free of their father and ran to the window, faces red and wet with tears.  Their fingers couldn’t reach the glass.  She looked up at Larek, who only stared back at her from across the cell, his eyes empty.  The hissing stopped.

Not bothering to wipe her eyes, Jaclyn turned to the officer.  “Take me to my ship.”



Black uniform hugging her body, helmet under her arm, Jaclyn strode toward the landing strip, callously ignoring salutes from lesser officers as she passed.  She recognized no one from the old days and bitterly envied her former compatriots who managed to disappear or die young.  She put on her helmet and climbed into the cockpit. Her TIE was an advanced model, though the interior didn’t feel much different from her old ship; the controls had a nicer font and the seats were leather.  The escalating whirr of the ship’s engine sent adrenaline shivers through her body.  It felt like home, she conceded guiltily.

How easy it is to shed your humanity in space, she thought, dazed as it came time for her ship to launch into the black.  After all, the X-wings weren’t filled with people, they were filled with oxygen.  And Captain Antarres intended to get every last one.


The Concert

Hiya folks!  Late on this month’s writing project and, I admit, I took advantage and wrote a little into May.  Here is another Mia excerpt.  If you haven’t read the first two, here you go:


The Concert


I am sixteen.  I have not yet secured my position at the Academy yet, but I will this year.  I am in the smoky basement of a pub called The Underground.  We are new enough to town that few know what our family looks like.  It’s still easy to go out without getting harassed.  Electric lights of green, gold, and amber flash on and off, lining what appears to be a stage made of crates.  A lone microphone stands crooked in front.  The place is packed and noisy, young people, my peers, I guess, milling around drinking bright-colored alcohol out of beakers.  Some of the beverages are smoking.  My older brother does not know I am here.

I try to dress like young women my age, but I never seem to have all the elements together.  I’m always missing a key jewelry or the right boots or a debonair hair treatment.  Bustles are still in, but long underskirts are out, showing off stockings of all colors and patterns.  Corsets are visible and sexy after hours.  I am dressed in a black blouse with a high collar, black leggings and my lightweight sparring boots.  In an attempt to be fashionable, I stole one of Saga’s black silk cinches, which I will pay dearly for later, and secured it around my waist.  I have no skirts in my closet.

I do not say this to be ironic, but I wore all black before it was a statement.

The emcee, wearing a hat made of a variety of colored foxtails, approaches the mic carefully, leaning forward to speak into it without touching.  It must be one of the old microphones — my brother told me about them.  Apparently some of the more cantankerous models would electrocute people.

“Crazies and powdermen, continue to marinate!  Tonight’s eccentricities will begin in a few ticks so drink up, slobs!”

The crowd responds with a mix of dull acknowledgement and unnecessary cursing.  I remain in the dead space between the alcohol corral, piled high with kegs and stills, and the dance area.  People mill around me in colorful swaths, not noticing.

“Mia, my favorite niece!”

Aunt Elin never ceases to amaze me.  Although she is more than twice the age of most of the people in the room, she is dressed to kill.  Her hair, currently blonde with blue streaks, is piled high on top of her head. She wears a cerulean silk corset ratcheted tight with what looks like silver gears and teethy wheels.  She has no undershirt or chemise, showing off her bare muscular arms and shoulders.  She wears a silver bustle with dark patterned hose and boots with a heel sharp enough to poke someone’s eye out (and probably has).  There is nothing subtle about Aunt Elin.

“You here to see Artie?”  She leans over to shout in my ear, her breath thick and sweet with liquor.

“Yes, Aunt Elin.”

“Good girl!  Stupid of him to try and keep the family away.  ‘Slike he don’t know who he’s dealing with, right?”

“Yes, Aunt Elin.”

“I was gonna tell your father, but I wanted to see if this kid was even talented.  Fucking up on stage would be punishment ‘nuff.”

My brother, Art, is a musician and a singer, like my mother.  It has been hard for him to “book gigs” because many establishments still do not like the idea of having our family as patrons.  If they find out who Art is, they sometimes book him only under the condition that we stay away.  One relative of a genocidal maniac singing songs will sell tickets.  A passel of them cheering him on might start a riot.

So I admit that I am not supposed to be here.  But I am not one of the family members that Art should be concerned about.  Aunt Elin has found a young man enamoured by her statuesque beauty and is convincing him to buy her more whiskey.

Art is the first musician on.  He looks like my mother’s side of the family — tall and lithe, olive complexion, a long straight nose, brown eyes and hair.  I am the only one of my siblings with the traditional Fox Family green eyes.  Art carries on his guitar.  A girl with a bright red bob follows him on, holding a typewriter and with various bells around her neck.  She sits on a stool next to a large leather suitcase.  Finally a very handsome blonde man enters, a dark green bowler perched on his curls, an overly large purple bowtie secured about his throat.  I swear I can see his blue eyes from where I stand.  He’s wheeling on a beat-up bass.

Without introduction, Art and the blonde approach the microphone, temples touching, eyes closed as they softly sing in harmony with each other.  The room quiets.  It is hard to tell whose voice is whose, the audience is captivated by every breath the men take together.  The singers are joined by the percussive pecking of the typewriter.  Then the girl begins to kick the suitcase in rhythm.  The blonde takes a harmonica from his breast pocket and wails into it, his breath heavy into the speakers.  Then Artie begins to play.

I hope you do not think it hubris, but my brother is a genius guitar player.  I smile.  Mama would be very proud if she could hear him.

The blonde attacks the strings of his bass and the floorboards pulse beneath my feet.  Everywhere I look, I am meeting the eyes of someone my own age who is happy because of my brother’s music.  I feel young.  I hear Aunt Elin whooping and see a flash of blue as she is twirled by a young man in tails.

The chorus and bridge hit and no one is still, not even me.  Unknown hands take mine and I’m dancing, I’m dancing, and I’m being passed around between other girls and boys like I’m one of them, like I belong here.

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More Mia

Continued from last month’s project, here are two more snippets from Mia, Descendent of Monsters.  I should figure out a way to number these so it will be easier in the future to start from the beginning. . .

Also a BIG thanks to my Facebook weapons nerd friends!  I think once you read this, you’ll know which weapon I needed help finding ;)

Also also, yes, I realize that I refer to my husband as M Fox and the name of this character is Mia Fox.  I have a thing for foxes and apparently no imagination, okay?  Sue me. ;)


An Old Dog

After decades of mercenary work, Colin Skydance earned a reputation as the best, and his other titles included unapologetic scoundrel and great lover of women.  Colin was fortunate enough to have been hired by the winning side of the Horde War, but those in the know were very much aware that it could have gone either way.

After retiring, Colin had settled in a remote wooded area in a self-made cabin.  One storming night, just as he was musing how the sound of rain was preferable to the usual silence, he heard a knock at the front door.  His daughter was visiting her brother up north, but even if she was in town, she would never knock.  Intrigued, Colin slid aside a small panel next to the door, undetectable from the outside, and appraised the visitor.

Drenched with rain, chest heaving.  Tired, but excellent posture — a warrior.   Shorter and younger than himself, long black hair tied back, robes.  Thick blade tied to his waist.  A Nishen warrior.  Colin threw open the door.

“Well come in, come in, don’t be shy,” he said cheerily. “Just because you’ve been sent to kill me doesn’t mean all civility should be thrown out the window.”

The visitor stood awkwardly in the door frame for a moment, taking in the legendary mercenary.  Colin had managed to keep a full head of curls, now the color of steel.  Thick black eyebrows brooded over his light blue eyes, striking even in the dark and the rain.  He still had the body of an agent, lean and tight.  Colin made a grand sweeping gesture toward the hearth and the visitor entered, taking care to wipe his flat shoes on the “Grandpa’s House” doormat.

It was a solitary man’s cabin.  There was one large room with a rug and some seating, a simple stove, open shelving.  Lamps still running on oil hung off sconces on the walls, the sticky smell mingling with the scent of burning wood. Above, a dark loft with a wooden ladder.

“You can sit if you like, though considering your damp state, I’d prefer you stand.  Oh, and not on the rug.”

“This is very hard for me to say,” said the visitor, his voice husky, on the brink of becoming hoarse.

“I can imagine.  Who sent you?”

“No one sent me.”

“Revenge, then?”  Colin meandered to his liquor cabinet and thoughtfully selected a bottle and a glass.  “I suppose I’ve killed someone important to you.  I am very sorry for that.  Whiskey?”

“No. You haven’t killed anyone I know or care about.  I’m here because of your daughter.”

Colin’s face remained impassive as he steadily poured himself another drink.  “Elin can take care of herself.  Go after her if you wish.”

“You misunderstand.  She saved my life.”

A smirk tugged at Colin’s cheek and he raised his glass, careful not to show his relief.  “That’s my girl.”

“She said I should pay my debt to you.”  The visitor unsheathed his sword, made of black metal with a divot down the center, painted red.  He held it flat in front of him and knelt before Colin.

The old mercenary slowly finished his second drink, his blood warming.  Upon his last swallow, he hurled the tumbler at the visitor’s head and kicked the offered sword into his own hand.  The visitor caught the glass and back flipped into a fighting stance.

Colin’s voice was smooth and low.  “You know who I am, what I’ve done, and what I can do to you, yet you knock on my front door with little to no proof of what you claim.  That’s pretty damn remarkable, if you ask me.”

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Mia, Descendant of Monsters

Third writing assignment!  No theme this time, just the beginning of an idea I’ve had for a long time. This month has been pretty busy with rehearsals and whatnot, so I didn’t write quite as much as I would have liked.  More for next month :)  Happy March!

(Also, I have spent WAY too long trying to format in this godforsaken software. . . so please excuse the inconsistency of the spaces between paragraphs.  I have no idea why they won’t stay where I tell them.)


A Forward

My great grandmother was a conqueror.  History has recorded her as an exceptionally ruthless barbarian, cleansing her hands with the blood of her enemies.  Victims of her horde’s atrocities numbered in the thousands and that is only taking into account the dead.  Villages disappeared.  Bloodlines ceased.  She was thorough — I suppose that is the glib way to put it.  The Horde War, though decades ago, echoes painfully in the minds of my fellow countrymen.  My peers have relatives who still hide food under the floorboards and sleep with daggers under their pillows.

She was never brought to justice or trial, but instead murdered by her daughter, my grandmother.  My grandmother was murdered by her brother, my great uncle.  My aunt killed him, eventually.  Family tradition, you might say.

It is hard to gauge how strange your own family truly is until you meet someone from the outside.  My bloody lineage made this very difficult.  I never knew my great grandmother, or my grandmother for that matter, but our family has carried their legacy.  Changing names was tried (and refused by some), but it is pretty easy to track us down, given both my family’s predilection for over-speaking and the acceleration of technology.  No more does one have to wait for a stranger in a pub to hear news.

In perhaps a futile attempt to distinguish some relatives from others, I have taken it upon myself to write out my family’s history.

I apologize in advance for any liberties I may have taken.  I think they were not on purpose.

– Mia Fox, daughter of decent people, descendant of monsters


I Join My Family

I am seven, I am the youngest. The lightbulb has not been invented yet.  I am sitting on the edge of the bed I share with my sister Saga.  She is three years older than me.  She has my writing folder, my special folder.  It has everything in the world to me — poetry, stories, drawings, lyrics.  She’s holding it in front of me and talking in that calm voice she gets when she’s about to do something horrible.  Whatever is on her mind at this moment will be nothing compared to what it would be if she read its contents. . .
“So Mia, what do you have to say to that?”
“What?”   I cannot focus because all I can see is the folder, waving back and forth, a page peeking out.
Saga rolls her eyes and exhales loudly.  “You do all my chores until my birthday, including the chickens-” I hate chickens – “and I will give you your folder back when I turn eleven.”
“Saga, I need it before then.”
“Well then I guess leaving it out for all to see wasn’t very smart, was it?”
“It was under the bed in my box, Saga, you took it-”

Saga opens the folder and holds a single page above her head.  Staring at me with dead brown eyes, she crumples it and drops it.

If I were anyone else but me, I would scream.  If I were anyone else but me, I would jump at her and claw her face off.  But I am me.  And so I am obedient.  Quiet.  Small.

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Marion of the Lists

Here is my second writing assignment!  The theme was “First Day.”  This character is from an old D&D campaign, but I like her so I’ll keep reusing her!  Ten points if you spot my very obvious Tamora Pierce reference (although, I guess Marion, by virtue of being a red-haired lady knight, is sort of an homage all of her own. . .)  Enjoy :)


“Damn him and his toasted arse!  If it’s not the slags, it’s the swill!”

Gilder hurled his cap to the ground and did a war dance on top of it, cursing gloriously.  The nervous page shifted on his feet while the short man finished his tirade.  The boy had had the unfortunate duty of reporting to Gilder that one of his jousters was passed out at The Mutton Chop, and the keeper wouldn’t let him leave until his debt was paid.  While he wasn’t unused to delivering bad news, sometimes the receiver got a little carried away.  Gilder, who ran the jousting in town, was mostly the good sort, but any man could get mean when someone messed with his coin and the page preferred to leave without a black eye.

“How much does that red-faced bilge drinker owe?!”

“Not sure, Mister Gil,” said the boy.  “But prolly lots, seeing how the keeper’s got him locked in the back.”

“More than his bout in bets, then.  Curse his soaked hide!  You get out of here now, I’ve got some thinking to do.”

After the grateful boy left, Gil turned to his three other partners in the tiltyard — the armorer, the weapon master, and the head of the stables.  They stared back at him in tired resignation.  Sir Duncan was a disgraced knight, but he had been a damn decent jouster once.  Or at least he won more than he lost, which was all that was needed of him.  These last few months had been particularly irregular, though.  It used to be that paying your tilters was enough to keep them on time and sober enough to ride.  Not with Duncan.

“That bastard’s cost us three bouts this week already, Gil,” said the head of the stables.

“Yeah, when’re we going to cut him loose?”

“When you figure out a way to end the wars and keep the young men around, then we’ll talk about cutting tilters,” sneered Gil, unfairly.  He knew the armorer was right.

“I can do it.”

Gil turned around.  A female wearing breeches and a smock stood in the opening of the tent.  She was tall for a girl and dirty, like she didn’t sleep inside.  Her red hair was completely untethered.  She looked him straight in the eye.

“‘Ere, what’s this!” Cried the weapon master.

“Yeah, throw the baggage out,” said the armorer.  “We got a problem to figger out!”

“I know you,” said Gil, engaging her against his better judgment.  He motioned for the others to be quiet and they obeyed.  Although they each helmed a vitally important part of the operation, there was no doubt that Gil was the head of the snake.  “You’re the one the men have been complaining about, the girl hanging around the yard trying to have a go with the lances.  Don’t you have a husband or something?”

“Duncan’s always half-drunk for these bouts,” she said, unphased.  “Everyone knows it!  He’s the laughing stock of this yard.”

“You think I don’t know that?”

“I can ride ten times as good as him.  And I can win.”

Gil sighed.  He blamed those modern scribes, always writing those damn romances about swordmaidens.  Now every slip of a girl fancied herself the next Lioness Rampant.

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Fan Fic

So I managed to find a couple other writers who are interested in actually producing some writing instead of falling into the pit of uselessness that I have only just recently crawled out of.


So once a month I will be posting my exploits!  This month’s theme was fan fic — you know, start us off easy.  I went with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, if that wasn’t already obvious from the post title.  I didn’t polish it or anything, I mostly just wanted to get my muscles moving again.  Also, I grew up on the ’80’s cartoon and the live action movies, so I’m working from those universes.  I decided to go with the lore where Splinter was once Hamato Yoshi, as opposed to Yoshi’s pet rat.  (A pet rat learning karate?  That’s just nuts!)  Enjoy!

Here’s the super awesome theme song to get you in the mood :)


The sewers were super Mother-of-God stinky that day.  Michelangelo, in his usual almost-helpful way, had ordered several anchovy and bleu cheese pizzas in an effort to cover it up, but it really wasn’t working.  Plus, to add insult to injury, the other three turtles thought bleu cheese on a pizza was practically sacrilegious.

“You might as well put ranch dressing on it and move to Santa Monica,” grumbled Raphael.  “You can’t even pick this crapola off.”

“Leave him alone, Raph, he was just trying to help.”  Leonardo diplomatically chewed his slice, but his heart wasn’t in it.

“I like it!”  Michelangelo enthused, helping himself to another half of a pie.

“Yo Donnie, can’t you dream up some sort of wind machine to blow this stink outta here?  It fricken reeks!”

Without removing his protective goggles, Donatello poked his head out from the second story of his workshop and looked down at his brothers.  Raph’s red-masked green face glared up at him.  “There are too many tunnels.  By the time I finish building enough turbines, it would be high tide again.”

“Besides, it’d be a waste of energy to power them all,” added Leonardo.  “Just deal with it, Raphael.  There’s nothing we can do.  Master Splinter said we had to stay down here while he was away.”

“We could have asked him before he left, but someone wanted to be a goodie goodie two-shell. . .”

“How many times do I have to remind you that Master doesn’t like to be interrupted while he’s packing?!  He could forget something!”

“Yeah, like his toothbrush!” Michelangelo said helpfully.

“Damn it, Donnie, can’t you do anything?  Aren’t you supposed to be some sort of genius inventor dude?!  Ouch!”  Raphael rubbed his nose and looked down at the projectile his brother had chucked at him with stinging accuracy.  At his feet was a clothespin.

“Ooo, Donnie’s throwing presents!” Said Michelangelo, bounding to Raphael’s side and leaving a trail of toppings and hot pepper packets.  “I want one!  Ouch!”

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A snippet

This is a bit from a larger piece I’m working on, but I really like it.  My tip of the hat to Terry Pratchett.

For all intents and purposes, Rudolph “Ruddy” Cobb, Angel Carrier sailor for three years, was a good man.  Sure he cursed and he drank and he sometimes even took a bite of his mate’s biscuit when he wasn’t looking, but Ruddy felt pretty confident that he deserved a good life, and a sailor’s life was a pretty good life.  Three hots and a cot, as they say, although it would definitely depend on a man’s definition of “hot.”  In Ruddy’s world, a closely related and practically identical word to “good” was “simple.”  Simple like when you put on an extra pair of socks, your feet stay dryer and warmer.  Like when you have too much beer, you belch.  Simple like how men, such as Ruddy and his mates, sometimes have to fight other men, like those scurvy, thieving raiders, to protect their stuff.  And sometimes their “stuff” included their women.  Women were sweet little things with lots of skirts on who wrung their hands and made sure that there were no raw bits in the middle of a cooked chicken or that your boots made it off before you hit the pillow after a long night at the pub.
Women were not–and Ruddy, while not an expert, could be very certain about this–arrow-shooting, battle-ready killers who sniped blood-thirsty raiders from hidden perches all around the deck.
Ruddy had just cleared his blade of an enemy who had the stones to swing onto the deck dressed like a vibrantly colored bird, when the first arrow found its mark in the chest of another air-born raider, who plummeted into the ocean below with a scream.