Oct. 13th, 2014 10:07 am
actionreaction: clip art of purple ankh in a red ouroboros on a blue background. ([symbols] ankh & ouroboros)
My name is Pandora Rich and on my birthday this year, I died.

I know. That raises a lot of questions. If I'm dead, how am I still here? How am I still able to tell people my story?

I'll tell you the same thing I was told when I 'woke up' after I flatlined.

Welcome to the Underworld.


Dec. 20th, 2012 12:25 pm
actionreaction: text: writers are often individuals with severe control issues ([writing] severe control issues)
So here is the next part, continued from yesterday.

That wasn't even remotely what I expected him to say. "Huh?"

Sahir shifted his weight, and as I was about to scold him again for moving, I realized how quickly his color had come back, how much better he looked. I shook my head, and realized that was a bad idea. I was still dizzy and even a little tired. He let got of my hands, slowly, almost reluctantly. "That's enough," he said quietly, that deep voice of his rumbling. "You've given too much already."

"What are you talking about," I said crossly, more irritated than I should have been.

"You have no idea, do you? Pan, did you ever wonder why you graduated from psychopomp to reaper-in-training so fast? Or did the Council feed you their BS line about how you have such 'great potential'?" He made finger quotes in the air as he spoke and I didn't reply, because that's exactly what they'd told me. I'd been happy to hear it, and now I wondered at the tone in his voice.

He actually looked a little remorseful at his choice of words then. "Ah, they did. Sorry. Well, yeah, you do have potential, but it's not what you think. It may not even be what I think, because I've never seen this before. I said that thing was too strong for me send back. I shouldn't have been able to call it up to start with. But I think I did both because you were there in the circle with me. There's something about your power, Pan. you're not just an ordinary reaper."

"You mean I'm more like you?" I hoped that's what he meant, and not something else. Not...a deathdealer.

He shook his head. "The Council probably thinks so."

"But you don't."

He took a long time in answering. "No, I think you're something the Council hasn't seen in a long time, maybe ever."

I didn't like how long he was taking to get to the frigging point. "What are you talking about? Stop beating around the bush already and just tell me!"

He threw up his hands. "I don't know, Pan! All I know is that you gave me the strength to summon that thing, even though that was an accident. You gave me the strength to send it back, and then you gave me the strength to heal from how much of my own power that took out of me. And you're barely more than a little dizzy. You ever hear of a reaper who could do that?"

I hadn't. Nor a necromancer, nor a deathdealer, and definitely not a mere psychopomp. I flopped down onto the stone floor, grateful to my ample curves for cushioning my landing. What in the name of the afterlife was I?


Dec. 19th, 2012 11:50 am
actionreaction: phot of typewriter with text "writers write. everyone else makes excuses." ([writing] excuses)
And the next bit! I would have posted this with yesterday's, but I didn't have time to finish this part.

Sahir's skin was ashen almost grey under his normally warm brown complexion and it worried me. But what worried me more was the tingling of my skin. It wasn't that buzz that I'd come to recognize when a sould needed to be reaped, but considering how Sahir looked - ironically - like death, I was starting to freak out. Okay yeah reapers and necromancers and even deathdealers and all of us ruled by the Council, weren't exactly among the living, but we weren't dead either. One thing I knew for sure was that we could still die, for real. So it was reasonable for me to be worried that what had just happened had taken too much of of Sahir and that he was not well.

I rested my hand on his forehead, feeling his cool and clammy skin. As soon as I touched him, he stirred, his head shifting towards me, and a sound rumbling in his throat. A few seconds more and he opened his eyes, trying to focus. When he saw me there, he smiled, weakly, and my heart skipped a beat. It wasn't just because he was awake. "Pan," he croaked. "What...happened?"

He sounded as terrible as he looked. I didn't move my hand. "That...thing you summoned. It was really strong. It almost broke through the circle," I explained, shivering as I remembered it. That thing had made this horrific hissing noise as it dissipated, its angry red eyes glaring at Sahir. I worried that it would take any opportunity it could to come back for him. Us.

Sahir struggled to sit up and with a frown I held him down where he was. "Don't move, jackass, you're almost dead. You look like hell and the more you move the more you make my skin buzz okay?" I tried to sound nonchalant and joking about it, but my voice shook and Sahir squinted at him, those striking eyes of his faded and tired.

"How did it- did I make it go away?" He seemed really confused, and his hand moved, reaching for mine. I swallowed a lump in my throat and let him take it. His hand was cool, slightly clammy but not ice cold. I wanted to just warm him up and wow, this was not the right time to be thinking like that.

"Yeah. You...looked like you were having a really hard time, like it was too strong.."

He sat up then, so quickly I nearly fell over. "It was. It was too strong for me. I know what that thing was and there's no way I could have summoned it, much less sent it back alone. Something else, no someone else helped." He stared at me color coming back into his skin as he held both my hands now. He looked like he was feeling better, meanwhile I was getting a little dizzy from him just staring at me like that, so close. "Pan?"


"I think I know why the Council picked me to train you."


Dec. 18th, 2012 02:12 pm
actionreaction: phot of typewriter with text "writers write. everyone else makes excuses." ([writing] excuses)
Oh hey managed to squeeze this out! I have the next segment started but not finished yet, so you just get a teaser.

The thing Sahir had called up was not human. If it had been once, it was so far removed from humanity that I couldn't begin to connect it. It was tall, over seven feet easy, with shiny grey skin, an oversized head, four arms, and a tail. But what really terrified me was Sahir's response. He was shaking and I didn't think it was from fear. I think it was from exertion. Beads of sweat appeared on his forehead and he struggled- and then I realized why. The thing was snarling the tendrils it had for hair whipping back and forth, near to our protective circle, but not crossing it. It couldn't, because Sahir was using every ounce of his will power to keep it at bay.

Unsure of what else to do, I tightened my fist around the coin and laid that hand on Sahir's shoulder. Then I guess I sort of hoped, prayed, willed Sahir to be strong enough to send that thing back. There was sudden gasp from him and I could feel power pouring out of him, crashing into the creature like waves in the fury of a storm. It shrieked, a horrible noise that could have woken the dead, and considering what we were, I was afraid it actually could do that. But nothing surfaced and the creatures two a step back, then another, screaming in agony until it finally disappeared the same way it appeared.

Sahir immediately slumped to the ground, no longer shaking. In fact, he wasn't even moving.

PS I see what you did there, iTunes.
actionreaction: phot of typewriter with text "writers write. everyone else makes excuses." ([writing] excuses)
So I actually started writing this yesterday, for [personal profile] yabamena and "finished it" today. That's in quotes because haha this scene isn't even done, much less the story as a whole.

Sahir? Can you show me what it is you do? )

I have a better idea where this particular scene and some overall character development is going now.
actionreaction: text: we do not write because we want to. we write because we have to. [Somerset Maugham] ([quote] we write because)
I'm having a brain-splodey kind of day. Did some housekeeping on a few different things, came up with a better idea for February's Less Than Three anthology (I had been thinking pen-pals, but I'm going with secret admirer instead. Still epistolary fiction though so yay), and actually had to force my brain to pick one thing to write so I wasn't all over the place. This is what I went with.

I still wasn't really used all of this. )

Still not 100% sure of the direction of this, but then, I still haven't outlined it at all. Just a bunch of free-form writing and braindumps. I like the direction it's going in though.
actionreaction: photo of arthur and eames from inception. text: keep calm and dream bigger darling ([inception] keep calm and dream bigger)
So did another prompt today and this one was "first to arrive" and this went...absolutely nowhere I expected. At all. What. Also, don't read this before bed. It's a little creepy.

The room was dark, silent, and almost unwelcoming when I arrived. Windows were still shuttered, places weren't set, and the overall atmosphere was foreboding. I checked my watched. I was early, sure, but this wasn't a simple case of me being the first to arrive. No I was either in the wrong place entirely...

Or it had happened again.

A cold shiver ran up my arm as I turned around, waiting for the temperature to drop, waiting for my breath to become visible. Waiting for the spirits to walk. At the far end of the room was a door. Maybe it led to a kitchen or pantry, or even down to a cellar. Through it, silent and pale, nearly translucent, came a figure dressed in what was once servant's clothing. It still looked neatly pressed, crisp and perfectly in place, down to the cap on the maid's dark hair. Her face was serious, solemn, and somewhat plain, not at all remarkable.

Then she turned and I stumbled back, stifling a scream. Her face was half gone, flesh and skin peeled or rotted back to show teeth and bone. Her entire left check was missing, her left eye drooping slighting into the cavity. The maid noticed me then and not for the first time, I wished that the dead couldn't see me, that they didn't need me. I stepped back, into something warm and living, and the scream I'd been holding back erupted.

"Pan, whoa, it's just me! You okay?" Large hands settled on my shoulders as I recognized the voice.

"Dammit, Sahir! Warn me before you creep up on me like that!" I glared at him, punching him hard on the shoulder. I looked back towards the maid, but the spirit was gone, disappeared as if she hadn't been there at all.

"Ow!" Sahir rubbed his arm and glared right back, but then he noticed by expression. "Happened again?" His voice was calm and quiet as his other hand slipped down my shoulder to my hand. "Tell me about it."

I have no idea where I'm going with this.

EDIT: Also, changed my layout. I needed something less busy because it was too distracting.
actionreaction: mini icons of coffee, computer, pens and paper. text: now what? ([writing] now what?)
How's about another random likely-to-be-changed excerpt from another series I'm working on? This one stars my reaper girl and is clearly paranormal.

Looking back, I should have known that something was different. No one survives what I did, comes back from where I did, without changing. The summer between high school and college, when my life was getting ready to go in a new direction, the biggest change of all happened to me.

I died.

It was for ten minutes and thirty-four seconds, which doesn't seem like very long if you know, you're not talking about someone being dead. Really though, it's eternity. Ten minutes with no blood flow to the brain or other parts of the body - well it's not pretty what could happen. The doctors, once they got over their shock when my heart started beating again, were sure I'd have some kind of brain damage, that I'd be different. I surprised them by seeming totally normal, just the same as I'd been before.

I wasn't though, not really.
It took a while to learn just how different I was, and for a while, I thought the doctors were right, and that there was something wrong with my brain. I couldn't think of any logical explanation for what was happening. All I knew was that something had changed, because after my accident, just like that kid in The Sixth Sense, I could see dead people.


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December 2016




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